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Beacon Arts Building

A massive art compound opens its doors in Los Angeles

by Phuong-Cac Nguyen in Culture on 27 October 2010

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At over 32,000 square feet, the renovated former storage warehouse located in the middle of the downtrodden city of Inglewood, CA, doesn't exactly have the pomp and circumstance that you'd expect Los Angeles' newest art studio complex to have. But that's the point. The new Beacon Arts Building is a low-key space designed to serve as a refuge for artists looking to focus on producing work away from the hype of the L.A. art scene.

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Kicking off with "Ghost Stories: A Night of Happenings and Hauntings," the Beacon Arts pre-Halloween bash will mix art, music and food "to activate architectural and societal space through shared experience" says curator Shana Nys Dambrot.

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Rather than divide spaces into pre-built rooms, the open floor plan means renters can choose the size of their work spaces up to 800 square feet. The first floor houses the Beacon Arts Gallery, overseen by director Renee Fox, whose series Critics As Curators will bring in art critics and their visions for the space. She's pushing for them to not include only stationary art pieces but more dynamic pieces with interactive elements, such as performance-based art. "We believe experiencing art on an engaging level and acknowledging the symbiotic relationship between artists, peers, art viewers, patrons and supporters will help to break the boundaries between viewer and artwork," she says.

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The premiere exhibit, curated by Flavorpill's Shana Nys Dambrot under the Ghost Stories title, began a few weeks ago and fulfills the fine art part of the proposal, while this weekend's event with storytelling, piano concert and performances including one by the Reverend Ethan Acres fulfills the interactive part.

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