City: West Hollywood
Position Seeking: City Council
Question 1: Please share a meaningful experience you had with art (visual, dance, drama, music, media arts) while growing up and its impact on you.
I announced I wanted to be an actress at 4, after spending the day at Judy Garland’s home, where my Grandmother worked as her cook, in the last few years of her life. My first play was in third grade, where we enacted the “The Three Little Pigs.” I was a pig, though, felt I had the lungs to be the wolf. At the same time, my Mom was doing a play at the local Ojai theatre and I would go to rehearsals with her, reciting the play, word from word, by memory, when an actor forgot their line. Later, we moved to Seattle, where I continued my love affair with plays, attending an all girl school that fostered the arts. I went to Skidmore College, and received my Bachelor of Science in Theatre, and embarked on a career in entertainment, which has spanned 30 years, and still going. (I realize that was a VERY long and detail answer.)
Question 2: What do you believe the role of City Council should be in developing and supporting the region’s arts and cultural infrastructure?
Paramount, seeing the current administration is threatening to cult the endowment for the arts and sending a bad message as if the arts are incidental and play little role in the development of an individual or society. West Hollywood bought the Coast Playhouse and I applaud that. We need music in the parks on the weekend, and monthly art walks. The city should have a sound budget to spear head a coalition of musicians and artists, of which I am one, to come together and form an outreach to any and all residents whom wish to participate and learn or just be exposed. Simply, the city should make it’s art programs a top priority for community development and cohesion.
Question 3: What’s your vision for the city? What role, if any, does art and culture play in advancing that vision?
Art creates imagination and has no biases. It brings people together. It gives a person pause or a sense of awe, whether a sculpture on the blvd, or passing a gallery on Melrose. Again, I feel the city could benefit from more art walks and music in the parks; events that create community and supports artists who wish to communicate through their work and give something back.
Questions 4: A recent report by the Otis College of Design found that 1 in every 6 jobs in LA County supports the creative sector and economy in Los Angeles County. If elected, how will you aim to ensure the continued vitality and growth of the creative economy and the artistic community that it supports?
Outside the city Urban Art Program, where as, the city requires developers to contributes a small percentage to on-site public art or a the fund, in turn, the city should create grants to infuse our artist community, and send the message of how important the arts are to this city, fostering the creative residents who are not as visible, yet, can contribute. We have sculptures on Santa Monica, near Doheny…there is an AIDS monument about to be built, designed by artist Daniel Tobin, which is fantastic. But, there are many artists who do not know how to get involved, or even being considered, whose works can be of importance. I also would include a yearly film festival…every city has one, as well as, Shakespeare in the Park in the summers, balancing our music venues and art district, with independent film and theatre.