Los Angeles City Councilman Joe Buscaino, representing the 15th Council District, is proud to present the Watts Community Studio Report. The Watts Community Studio has been a participatory economic development and planning project aimed at learning more about Watts from the people who live and/or own businesses in the community. Councilman Buscaino believes that involving residents in the decision-making process for their neighborhood will help produce programs, projects and policies that will successfully improve their quality of life. The Watts Community Studio’s final report offers recommendations for supporting residents and businesses in Watts as they build towards the future. A major component of the research was obtaining approximately 750 surveys from the neighborhood and including the young people of Watts in the research process. The results of the survey and various other analyses are included in the Community Summary and Full Report available at the link below.
One hot, summer day this past July, students from Inspire Academy High School and staff from Watts Community Studio were walking along 103rd Street pointing out different places and things that they consider to be assets in Watts. One student, Rynisha Alexander, pointed out how she considers Watts to be art and that the different forms of art in Watts is one of the neighborhood’s biggest strengths.
Apparently, Ms. Alexander is one among many who feel the same. Two days ago, Al Jazeera reporters released this awesome video on how street art in Watts build bridges across all colors, cultures and artificial boundaries that exist. Please take a minute and check out the video below!
Watts Village Theater Company
As an aim to preserve, and make accessible, the memory of Watts in the context of historical narratives, the WVTC explores the 1965-Watts Riot/Rebellion. This highly recommended 90-minute play demonstrates how performance art, as method for oral history, serves as a way to understand and heal from the remnants of a difficult history in the present. Based on interviews from the 1965 survivors, this play offers an array of artistic efforts (acting, singing, dancing, poetry, and personal narrative accounts) to expose the changing community of Watts, challenge the dominant narrative of both the riots and Watts as a place, and build on community resilience, survival, and history.
Unfortunately, it is not getting a lot of coverage and there is a need to expose this play to begin to challenge the dominant narratives of Watts. You’re invited to come to Watts and learn more about its history … please join us!
Entry Fee: $10
November 1 – 24, 2013
Thursdays – Saturdays at 8pm
Sundays at 3pm
Mafundi Auditorium (1827 East 103rd Street, Los Angeles, Ca 90002)
“I look at Watts as art. It’s art because of the Watts Towers, because of the graffiti artists that make beautiful drawings. The Watts Towers Art Center hosts lectures, jazz festivals and art classes. People make music videos in this neighborhood and get tattoos of the Towers. Look around and you see art everywhere.”
Rynisha Alexander is 20. She is a resident of Watts, participant in the Watts Community Studio and student at Inspire Academy in Watts. She aspires to become a medical assistant.
There are a variety of businesses unique to Watts that WCS team members noticed walking through the neighborhood. Several ironworks businesses thrive in Watts and have a range of specializations. One business, Ornamental Ironworks, had these speciality iron doors on display for the ultimate Lakers or Raiders fan.