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Home BLOGS So Hot Right Now Pismo, LA, and Fiberglass Dinosaurs

Pismo, LA, and Fiberglass Dinosaurs
Written by Noah Hanson   
Thursday, 20 July 2006 07:30
Noah continues his travels across the US heading down California and through LA.

Hello again! In my last trip log I left off at a privately owned campground in Big Sur, where we stayed the night and explored some of the rad local beaches. It was slightly crowded, but still a really great place to stop and rest, plus the camp staff was really helpful in telling us how to get to a hidden beach a few miles away. So far the coast and it's people have been super kind to us, not to mention how beautiful it all is. It's a pretty surreal feeling, driving the coast over these last couple weeks, knowing that we're on the very edge of the land with nothing but water out to the West.

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The next day we continued our journey south where to our surprize we found Hearst's Castle.

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See it up there in the hills? Basically it's a huge mansion that was built by some dead rich dood, whose hobby was to collect rare artifacts from all over the world (most probably based on their dollar value), and then to constantly build new rooms attached to his enormous pad, to house all of his "stuff." Back in the day it used to be like $5 a person to tour the place, and then you could just drive up to it all by yourself. Now that the guy's dead, it's like $25 and you have to take a shuttle bus full of sweaty, crying kids with poop in their pants if you wanna go. Michelle and I decided against the tour, and stuck to just checking out the free visitor center. It was pretty interesting, but after about 20 minutes we decided to make our way down to Pismo Beach instead. On the way down we were surprised once again, when we found a spot on the coast littered with all these elephant seals!

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Here's a video showing how they shift their fat ass' around.

And here's a video I took of two male's biting each other! After hanging out with the seals for about half an hour it was time to press on.

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Michelle spent a lot of time at Pismo Beach as a younger person, so it was cool for her to go back and see how well she remembered it all.

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We stayed there for a couple hours and ate cinnamon rolls from a small shop a few blocks away, buried each other in the soft, fine sand, and found a liquor store that sold mini bottles of rum for our bottle of coke.

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We camped that night [Friday] at a camp in San Simeon State Park. Now, I'm not much of a complainer about this kind of thing, but do yourself a favor and don't camp at San Simeon State Park if given the choice. It's relatively close to the beach, but that's all it has going for it. The campsites are small and crowded, the grass is stiff and brown, there's no trees [= no shade], there are a lot of RVs that pull in late at night, the dense fog in that little area gets all of your stuff drenched with dew, and you have to pay for "hot" showers that are really just barely lukewarm. By the way, you're not even supposed to use the showers, since they belong to another campsite. If you wanna use 'em you gotta sneak down there after it gets dark without getting caught. Save yourself the $22.50 and sleep in your car instead, or just find another spot all together.

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That said, we naturally made the best of it, grabbed some beers, and hiked down to the beach to stare at the setting sun, all while walking around popping little kelp carrots on the ground with our feet.

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Here Michelle pee's out some booze. That night we grilled up some delicious veggies from a farmer's market we had gone to in Fresno, and Michelle finished reading me "From The Mixed up Files Of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler" by E.L. Konigsburg, thanks to our rechargable lantern.

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Saturday we headed down the coast further, through beautiful Santa Barbara, and down to L.A. Somewhere along the way I spotted this hotdog man at a gas station ... Not pictured: huge American flag napkin wrapped around his backside. Anyway, L.A. is a strange place. It seems to be a 90% desolate, filthy, car-packed slum, with about 10% really, really awesome beach. We called my friend Jaime Flam to see if we could crash at his place, but our schedules ended up clashing since he had just left town to visit SF for the week. Not sure of what to do, we cruised around the streets, looking for fun things to do on our own.

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Saw this mural and threw up in my mouth a little bit.

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"The"

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And then I found Sunset Blvd on accident. I shot this for all the emo's out there.

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Some graffiti scribbles mixed in with prayers and shit were all over the thing. From there I could just barely see the Hollywood sign through the smog, and also found a Giant Robot store with an attached gallery called JUNC. The guy running the place looked kinda like Bobby Birdman, and didn't want me taking any photos for some reason. I decided to pull the "I blog through FecalFace" card, so once he heard that he was all about it. Here's some stuff from their sculpture show.

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There was stuff by Evah Fan, Gary Garay, Jungmin Koh, Albert Reyes, Florencio Zavala, Rachel Sumpter, Luke Ramsey, Patrick Roberts, Esther Watson, Mark Todd, Jess Hutch, and Mari Araki. After all that I back tracked and drove all the way back up to Camarillo, where my old roomie Cody, AKA Chodester, lives with his grammy-wammy. Appearently she can't hold her farts in long enough to let us stay any longer than one night, so we had to jet early the next morning to keep her from exploding. Plus, get this, she actually expected Michelle and I to sleep in seperate bedrooms while we were there. Well, after she passed out we broke the rules and just got drunk with Chodey and watched "Wet Hot American Summer" anyway. Still though, it was great seeing the Chodster again, and we had a pretty good time looking at all of his grandma's porcelin wolf decorations while we were there. Really, the stay there was actually a lot more fun than I make it out to be. Thanks for letting us crash, Cody! The next morning we headed back towards L.A. where we hung out at Venice Beach for a couple hours.

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Venice Beach is interesting yet I'm sure vastly different from the real Venice in Italy ... Lots of beach bums pounding booze mid-day, surfers, people on beach cruiser bikes, skateboarders, and people hawking all sorts of random junk from henna tattoos to sculptures made solely out of motorcycle parts.

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That thing was life-sized and only one of the massively huge collection of Predator, Alien, and Star Wars figures. We also checked out a legal grafitti area on the beach, and it was definitely cool to see people spray painting murals in broad daylight in an area teeming with cops and pedestrians.

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Also to be noted was a man who had brought a large, professional-type sound system down to this little cement amphitheater on the beach so that he could roller skate to his own music. That's right ... roller skate! He had the moves, too. Check it! (The ending is the best.)

Does anyone know what song that is?

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After a swim and then a shower to rid our bodies of the sea salt, we spent another half an hour or so driving around so I could get my LA graffiti and mural fix.

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These ovens were my all time favorite.

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Our next destination was Cabazon, CA, the location of the giant hollow dinosaurs made famous in the cinematic masterpiece "Pee-Wee's Big Adventure".

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To get to the dinosaurs we drove East for a couple hours through the desert, into this creepy little valley with brown air [from the smog sucked in from LA and elsewhere] and a million of those wind-electric-generators. I remember it being especially creepy since the i-pod was on shuffle and some super scary Aphex Twin was playing the whole time. Have you ever played the final level in the SNES game StarFox, where everything is colored tan, and a bunch of huge metal chunks are flying at you? I was reminded of that stage during the drive ... (Please, somebody, know what I'm refering too.) Anyway, we eventually arrived to where we found the dinos sharing their turf with a gas station and fast food giant, Burger King.

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That's me there, with my hands on my hips. Sadly we found out that you now have to pay to go inside of the T-rex, and tickets must be purchased inside of the brontosaurus.

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If you've ever wondered what was inside of a giant, fiberglass brontosaurus, I will tell you: a gift shop full of wingnut Christian creationist propaganda!! As far as we could tell, it looked like some wacko group bought the dinosaurs for $250,000 a few years back in an attempt to educate the public about how God created dinosaurs [and presumably everything else]. There were posters and murals all over, calling evolution "a theory in crisis," as well as a full library of books (for sale) with such titles as "Bones Of Contention: A Creationist Assessment of Human Fossils."

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Inside the gift shop lurk such treasures as stuffed dinosaurs, Precious Moments dolls, and my personal favorite, "1 Savior + 3 Nails = 4 Given" t-shirts in size XXXL. That just made Cabazon even creepier.

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Eventually we had our fill of Cabazon's dirty air and it's creationist ways, so we headed Southwest, past hundreds of similar looking sub-divisions, full of thousands of cookie cutter homes.

Well, that's all for now, but I'll continue this story later from where I had my humble beginnings. That being my birthplace, San Diego, CA. Where the weather is perfect year round, Barbaque is eaten on a daily basis, and the parks are always holding a birthday or block party of some kind. Until then, send me your comments, and wish me luck on my journey! OH! Also, right now I'm actually as far as Philly on the East Coast. Right now I have a place to stay with reliable internets, but on Sunday or Monday I have plans to go to NYC but still with nowhere to crash. Anyone out there reading this, PLEASE leave a comment if you've got some floor space for 2! We're gettin' a little worried. Thanks!

{moscomment}

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contact FF

"Arrangement" by Michelle Fleck
Friday, 18 April 2014 10:23

This morning we take a closer look at this beautiful painting by San Francisco based Michelle Fleck now showing at FFDG.

Arrangement measures 24"x30", acrylic and aerosol on panel - inquires: info(at)ffdg.net

Michelle Fleck is a painter living in San Francisco. Her work focuses on the relationship between man and the landscape, and the marks we leave on it. Influenced by everyday life in the city, her paintings serve as snapshots of an ongoing intersection of the natural and man-made world. She strives to make work that has a sense of relevancy in a culture driven by a need for change and newness.

 

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Wednesday, 16 June 2010 16:39


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SAN FRANCISCO --- You've seen the murals pop up around town the last week from this Austrian street artist as he prepares for his solo show at Fifty24SF opening this Friday, 4/18.

GET THE SHOW DETAILS --- a bunch of NYCHOS

 

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Wednesday, 25 April 2012 10:56

 

Banksy's Mobile Lovers
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Some galleries have been forced to close due to 300% rent hikes. Many artists have fled to Oakland, LA and NYC in search of affordable housing and a more vibrant art scene... But we wanna know what you think of how it's going here in San Francisco. How are you making it work? What's your take on the art scene or lack there of? Do you think things are on the up and up or down and out here in San Francisco? Are artists a bunch of complainers and every thing looks great or is it curtains for San Francisco's artistic community? Thoughts

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Wednesday, 25 August 2010 11:50


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Ferris Plock - Online Show, April 25th

FFDG is pleased to announce an exclusive online show with San Francisco based Ferris Plock opening on Friday, April 25th (12pm Pacific Time) featuring 5 new medium sized acrylic paintings on wood.


GOLD BLOOD, MAGIC WEIRDOS

Backwoods Gallery in Melbourne played host to a huge group exhibition a couple of weeks back, with "Gold Blood, Magic Weirdos" Curated by Melbourne artist Sean Morris. Gold Blood brought together 25 talented painters, illustrators and comic artists from Australia, the US, Singapore, England, France and Spain - and marked the end of the Magic Weirdos trilogy, following shows in Perth in 2012 and London in 2013.


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John Felix Arnold III on the Road to NYC

Well, John Felix Arnold III is at it again. This time, he and Carolyn LeBourgios packed an entire show into the back of a Prius and drove across the country to install it at Superchief Gallery in NYC. I met with him last week as he told me about the trip over delicious burritos at Taqueria Cancun (which is right across the street from FFDG and serves what I think is the best burrito in the city) as the self proclaimed "Only overweight artist in the game" spilled all the details.


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Henry Gunderson at Ever Gold, SF

Ever Gold opened a new solo show by NYC based Henry Gunderson a couple Saturday nights ago and it was literally packed. So packed I couldn't actually see most of the art - but a big crowd doesn't seem like a problem. I got a good laugh at what I would call the 'cock climbing wall' as it was one of the few pieces I could see over the crowd. I haven't gotten a chance to go back and check it all out again, but I'm definitely going to as the paintings that I could get a peek at were really high quality and intruiguing. You should do the same.


Mario Wagner @Hashimoto

Mario Wagner (Berkeley) opened his new solo show A Glow that Transfers Creativity last Saturday night at Hashimoto Contemporary in San Francisco.


Serge Gay Jr. @Spoke Art

The paintings in the show are each influenced by a musician, ranging from Freddy Mercury, to Madonna, to A Tribe Called Quest and they are so stylistically consistent with each musician's persona that they read as a cohesive body of work with incredible variation. If you told me they were each painted by a different person, I would not hesitate to believe you and it's really great to see a solo show with so much variety. The show is fun, poppy, very well done, and absolutely worth a look and maybe even a listen.


NYCHOS Mural on Ashbury and Haight

NYCHOS completed this great new mural on the corner of Haight and Ashbury in San Francisco on Tuesday. Looks Amazing.


Sun Milk in Vienna

With rising rent in SF and knowing mostly other young artists without capitol, I desired a way to live rent free, have a space to do my craft, and get to see more of the world. Inspired by the many historical artists who have longed similar longings I discovered the beauty of artist residencies. Lilo runs Adhoc Collective in Vienna which not only has a fully equipped artists creative studio, but an indoor halfpipe, and private artist quarters. It was like a modern day castle or skate cathedral. It exists in almost a utopic state, totally free to those that apply and come with a real passion for both art and skateboarding


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Tyler Bewley ~ Recent Works

Some great work from San Francisco based Tyler Bewley.


Kirk Maxson and Alexis Mackenzie at Eleanor Harwood Gallery

While walking our way across San Francisco on Saturday we swung through the opening receptions for Kirk Maxson and Alexis Mackenzie at Eleanor Harwood Gallery in the Mission.


Jeremy Fish Solo Show in Los Angeles

Jeremy Fish opens Hunting Trophies tonight, Saturday April 5th, at the Los Angeles based Mark Moore Gallery. The show features new work from Fish inside the "hunting lodge" where viewers climb inside the head of the hunter and explore the history of all the animals he's killed.


The Albatross and the Shipping Container

Beautiful piece entitled "The Albatross and the Shipping Container", Ink on Paper, Mounted to Panel, 47" Diameter, by San Francisco based Martin Machado now on display at FFDG. Stop in Saturday (1-6pm) to view the group show "Salt the Skies" now running through April 19th. 2277 Mission St. at 19th.


The Marsh Barge - Traveling the Mississippi River from Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico

For some reason I thought it would be a good idea to quit my job, move out of my house, leave everything and travel again. So on August 21, 2013 I pushed a canoe packed full of gear into the headwaters of the Mississippi River in Lake Itasca, Minnesota, along with four of my best friends. Exactly 100 days later, I arrived at a marina near the Gulf of Mexico in a sailboat.


Flavio Samelo's Downtown Sao Paulo Murals

Our buddy Flavio Samelo down there in Brazil does all kinds of great work including this recent mural project in downtown Sao Paulo in front of one of the most important modern buildings of Oscar Niemeyer from the 60's, THE COPAN.


John Trippe, FFDG and Fecalface.com Founder, Stepping Down From Daily Operations

John Trippe, founder, owner and curator of FecalFace.com and the Mission District art gallery FFDG, announced today that he will stepping down from daily operations of the two ventures to seek new career opportunities.


High 5s - Get Your Feet Wet

I purchased one of the first digital cameras when Fecal Face went online in 2000. It was a massive Kodak with 2 mega pixels


"Touching Base" by Schuyler Beecroft

San Francisco based Schuyler Beecroft emailed over the great new series of paintings he's completed entitled "Touching Base", 16x20in on mounted wood panel. Like them.


Flume - Space Cadet (ft. Ghostface Killah & Autre Ne Veut)

Buddies Jay Howell & Jim Dirschberger did this great video produced by Forest City Rockers.


Fire Shelter for Papay Gyro Nights 2014

Last year we posted photos from another one of Simon Hjermind Jensen's Fire Shelters he's made in Copenhagen. This time around the Copenhagen based artist/ designer created one for the Papay Gyro Nights 2014 way up in on the Orkney Islands in Northern Scotland.


"Portrait of a Slugger 19" by Hiro Kurata

Beautiful painting by NYC based Hiro Kurata now on display at SF's FFDG through April 19th as part of the group show "Salt the Skies".


"Veins of Octulen" by Curiot at FFDG

"Salt the Skies" opened on the 21st at FFDG and features this great piece by Mexico City based Curiot (Favio Martinez) whose sold out 2013 show Age of Omuktlans ran at FFDG. His forthcoming solo show is slated for March 2015.


Rome's Alice Pasquini ~Mural+

Rome based multimedia artist Alice Pasquini emailed over a recent mural completed in the historic working class neighborhood of Rome called Tufello.


Project M/3 in Berlin curated by NUART

BERLIN --- Project M is a temporary art project with the objective to improve the neighborhood, to push creativity and to connect people. At regular intervals Urban Nation with director Yasha Young invites a group of internationally reclaimed contemporary urban artists to re-design the facade and shop windows of a prominent residential building in Berlin, while it is being reconstructed.


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