makes movies.



make movies.

Video, 14 min.
Performance by Linda Leigh

Linda Leigh and I met one spring day in 2018, at an art book library, which was really just a corner in the supply room of the Studio 526. The Studio is a community art center, located inside the social service agency building on San Pedro Street, downtown LA.

My first week at the Studio, I picked up a stapled booklet titled Skid Row Zine from a black storage bin. The zine featured photos of works and texts by the Studio artists. A poem got a hold of me, and I stayed with it a long while, perhaps too long, since someone had to yell to get my attention. The poem was written by Linda Leigh. It was about her dad. In it, she was tending to him, and he was letting her. 

When I finally met Linda, I was starstruck. I asked if she was indeed that Linda from the zine. She turned. Behind the bright pink dollar store shades, she smiled.

We decided that we'd work on a project together. The result is Passage

Stills from the video -

Passage took place on the ground level of a five-story parking structure on March 28, 2019.

The 14-minute video was projected onto the wall. 
A hyper-edited condensed footage documents three years of my navigating around the city. The crowd starts to gather. Some came alone. Others came in pairs.

Neon lights emanating from the nearby signages bleed through the windows. Linda stands against the wall, pulsing with the rhythm of the traffic. Her voice, neither loud nor quiet, fills up the cavernous lot.

She takes us to the night she looked out to the black ocean waiting for grunions. She takes to the day her parents first met and flirted. She confides in us the many lives she lived.
Mise en scène: Main Street abuts Los Angeles Street where Skid Row starts to loom. They are, in other words, a boundary, the edge of a cliff. Past Main, people act weird, and no one pays any mind. Folks who howl, pass out, drag a filthy blanket through puddles, urinate, defecate, and sleep barefoot on the streets cannot possibly get the attention. Everybody just looks away.

The parking garage is attached to the new luxury loft apartment. It is reserved. The ground floor of the garage is never used. It’s left empty for those who can afford to leave it empty. During lunch, at its busiest hour, you might spot a pair of musicians honing their repertoire before their real gig on the train. Retail employees saunter inside the cool garage to eat in peace. Security can tell if they can stay or not. One quick glance will do.