2018 was a year filled with travel and with art, and it was a year of evolution where both are concerned. No longer content to be a spectator my quest for art and unique experiences has reshaped the way I approach travel and inspired me to spend more time creating on my own.
Travel will always be a priority in my life, but realistically I can’t always be on the road, so creating adventures closer to home has started to play a bigger roll. That doesn’t mean I don’t have some pretty lofty travel goals. Currently Croatia, Italy and Japan are topping my international wish list, while New York, Nashville and Charleston are at the top of my North American list.
In 2018, we made it to San Francisco, Atlanta, Palm Springs, Puerto Vallarta, Portland, Seattle, Miami and New Orleans. Speaking of which, San Francisco and the Bay Area are back in our lives in a big way, and while we aren’t leaving Southern California we will be spending a lot more time up north, so stay tuned for more NorCal adventures.
San Francisco, California
A weekend visiting friends in San Francisco was a great way to start the year. We shopped, ate and of course hunted for street art.
I’ve been following FNNCH, a San Francisco based artist, for a while, so was excited to see a few of his pieces in person.
A surprise bonus was our impromptu visit to one of San Francisco’s most iconic attractions, the Coit Tower.
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A girls weekend brought me to Atlanta, Georgia in February, and I jumped at the chance to explore a new city.
A highlight of our visit was Atlanta’s newest park, The BeltLine, which was a perfect way to get an overview of the city.
The multi-use pedestrian friendly pathways are perfect for cycling, running, and walking, and they’re also home to the South’s largest temporary public art installation! Atlanta is host to multiple mural and art festivals each year, including the Outer space Project, and Living Walls. This means you’ll find murals, sculpture, and performance art throughout the city.
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Palm Springs, California
Palm Springs, an easy two hour drive from Los Angeles, happened to be one of the few well known Southern California cities our family had yet to explore, which made it the perfect choice for a quick getaway.
The Palm Springs Art Museum is the largest cultural institution in Coachella Valley. The Downtown location features modern art and is spread out over three floors. The museum has a nice easy flow, a wonderful selection of art, and a lovely cafe.
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Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
In April we joined friends for 4 fabulous days in and around Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. This was my first trip to Mexico, and we filled our days with boating, snorkeling, ocean swimming, and a trip to town. In between all that exploring we even found time to relax.
We walked along the beach boardwalk, explored the markets, and admired the art installations. There isn’t a lot of street art in Old Town Vallarta, but there is some, and you know I did my best to hunt it down.
Many of the pieces I found are part of the Restore Coral Mural Project an initiative bringing awareness to the importance of coral reefs and the preservation of marine ecosystems.
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Los Angeles, California
Historically May is a busy month for our family and we don’t often travel, but living in the second largest city in America means a lot of opportunity for exploring right here at home.
We’ve had our fair share of pop up museums in LA, but when I heard about Beyond the Streets: Vandalism as Contemporary Art, I knew this was one exhibition I couldn’t miss.
Unlike other recent “museum” pop ups Beyond the Streets really felt like a museum, and less like an Instagram photo op, but how could I resist posing with these fabulous LA Hands?
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Los Angeles, California
Not one to stay put, we love to pick a neighborhood and explore and one of our favorites is Silver Lake, a treasure trove of one-of-a-kind shops, restaurants and hidden gems just waiting to be discovered.
The area’s hidden stairways, which wend and wind through the vibrant and colorful residential areas are a great way to spend an afternoon. Keep your eyes open as you wander through the streets and you’ll find hidden murals and art installations and if you make it to the top you’ll be rewarded with fabulous views of the city.
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After 10 days exploring the Oregon Coast this self described city girl needed a dose of hustle and bustle and a good cup of coffee, so we made a beeline for Oregon’s biggest city.
I’m impressed with the longevity of the street art pieces in Portland, many of which are years old.
My never-ending quest for street art led me to the Alberta Arts District where we found street art murals and slap tags aplenty.
We took a walking tour of the Central Eastside Industrial District and although it was a blistering hot 95 degree day we persevered.
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It’s been 18 years since I’ve called the Emerald City home, but family and close connections guarantee that I visit regularly, and August is my favorite month to be there.
Our quest for art took us from one end of the city to the other including Georgetown, SODO, Downtown, Belltown, and Capital Hill.
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Los Angeles, California
September, October, November
Autumn found me digging even deeper into our local art scene. Including…
Showcasing my work at my first art market in Downtown Los Angeles,
getting a chance to assist one of my favorite artists, Bumblebeelovesyou, with a large scale mural in Japantown.
and finally hosting a graffiti art party in support of my 10 year old son’s elementary school at the Venice Art Walls.
With two trips, in the first two weeks, December was a busy month. The first of which was a solo trip to Miami where I spent three days immersed in all things art.
A visit to the Wynwood Arts District and the Wynwood Walls outdoor mural museum was first on my list and I know I’ll find my way back to this vibrant and happening neighborhood in the future.
Art Basel Miami Beach, and Little Havana were also highlights of my whirlwind three days in South Florida, and I’ll be sharing more about my experiences soon.
Our final trip of the year was our annual visit to New Orleans. I was nervous we might not make it for the tricentennial in 2018, but we managed to fit in a quick visit. Our three days there were filled to the brim with both old and new favorites. Beignets anyone?
New Orleans isn’t known for street art, and what little there is has for the most part eluded me, but the movement has started to catch on, and we managed to discover a few art pockets while exploring the Faubourg Marigny and Bywater neighborhoods. A lot More to come on that…
The Bywater is home to Studio BE, a 35,000 square foot exhibition space, which features large scale works by New Orleans artist and filmmaker BMike. Unfortunately our visit didn’t coincide with the studios’s opening hours, but it’s on my list for next year’s visit.
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So there you have it! It’s been a great year filled with travel and art, and art and travel and I am so grateful for each and every one of you who choose to follow along on all my colorful adventures. Thank you, and Happy New Year!