City: Los Angeles
Position Seeking: City Council – District 7
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.
Travel has always been an integral part of my life. I am fascinated with ancient cultures and civilizations and was lucky to have International exposure from an early age. When I was seven years old my family spent the summer on a freighter cruising thru the Mediterranean. The Captain of the ship had a daughter about my age, but she only spoke Yugoslavian. I remember creating picture books of various objects and ideas that we could point at in order to communicate with each other. Being thrust into an unusual situation forced us to be creative problem solvers and we instantly became friends.
Question 2: What do you believe the role of City Council should be in developing and supporting the region’s arts and cultural infrastructure?
Councilmembers should encourage public art projects in conjunction with all new development projects. Aesthetics are important to the health, happiness and prosperity of our communities.
We need to ensure our transportation links our neighborhoods with our cultural centers, theatres and museums. We should continue having our Metro system run late and promote “free nights” to accommodate popular music and art festivals throughout the City.
City Council should take an active role in promoting cultural and art events that draw crowds of spectators. The giant Boulder that made it’s way across town to LACMA and the Space Shuttle journey became instant tourist attractions. Just the kind of creative attention Los Angeles needs to encourage an engaged and artistic community.
Question 3: What’s your vision for the city? What role, if any, does art and culture play in advancing that vision?
Los Angeles is the Creative Capital. Even when budgets are tight, it is necessary to look for solutions that are inexpensive or free for the City to initiate that will draw focus to our artistic and cultural diversity.
Citywide art projects paired with charities, clubs and organizations like the Community of Angels Scuptural project brought foot traffic and tourists on a quest to see every last decorated angel. Concerts in the park and songwriting competitions can help promote local talent and the World Music Renaissance that Los Angeles has recently become famous for. Art walks highlight our unique and eclectic neighborhood galleries and can attract private and not for profit attention and grants that can help fund costlier endeavors.
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?
We need to help our student’s transition more seamlessly into the workforce. Pairing young artists with professionals will help open doors and show them first hand how to make a living using their talents. Encouraging internship programs, mentorships, scholarships and technical schools will help keep our creative workforce thriving.
I am committed to increasing production incentives to help stimulate the Entertainment Industry so Los Angeles always remains competitive.
We need to create affordable living complexes that integrate the needs of our creative community members that include studio space, practice halls and performance venues for artists.