Dispatch is a series highlighting channels we’re paying attention to on Are.na.
How to know a place as large as L.A. County, five thousand square miles and population eleven million, if not through triangulation? Not even New York incites the amount of block- and channel-angst on Are.na that Los Angeles does. Something about the city’s simultaneous utopian and dystopian affects inspires hardlines; something about the city’s sprawling size and connected microcultures gives off a sense of unknowability. When summed up, it is only through contradictions, an attempt to make opposing terms capture a thing through the space between them. “The L.A. vibe is wrinkles caulked with make-up, fading high-budget marketing for something no one saw, no one bought, black SUVs gliding away from a distant sound of gunshots, the cookout smell of roasting corn, a sixteen-year-old vomiting on gleaming travertine,” one block reads.
Pseudo Nim’s “Offbeat LA” acts as a “behind-the-scenes travel guide” with hidden histories, self-guided tours, and info on navigating Los Angeles by bus.
"In L.A. you have the power to determine when you're seen by others and when you go dark, and how intimate the settings are when you make an appearance... Moving to L.A. isn't about disappearing — it's about modulating between 'being there' and 'ghosting.'" (K-Hole #5, collected in Lukas W’s “LA Phenomenology”)
In "Home Turf," Eric Hu documents what it's like to grow up in Temple City, his Los Angeles County hometown and one of "the most unique ethnic enclaves" in the state.
Tom Rutten's "Anza Borrego" is a document of a camping trip to the Southern California Anza-Borrego Desert State Park in January 2018, featuring playlists, travel photos, maps of overhead flights, and scans of desert wildflowers.
Manon Berthier's "Mulholland Drive" looks at David Lynch's seminal L.A. film about an aspiring actress and the amnesiac victim of a car crash.
Zach Rose's "Songs from Soundtracks from Movies Set in Los Angeles" (a companion to "Songs from Soundtracks from Movies Set in New York City") features music from To Live and Die in L.A., Body Double, Boyz N The Hood, and more. It can be listened to as a playlist at mac.are.na, a collaborative music player for Are.na channels.
Have suggestions? Connect your own channels to the Los Angeles megachannel.