A break down of the expansive boroughs 3.8 million people call home are explained while enjoying the 360˚ view on the roof of a West Hollywood condo. My temporary home, in the affluent neighbourhood known as Miracle Mile, will make for easy transportation options in my car-less adventures. From this view, my eyes dance on the horizon: the infamous white block lettered “HOLLYWOOD” sign, Studio City, Beverley Hills and finally to Downtown L.A. Here the city is divided into a slew of districts: Little Tokyo, the Artist’s District, the Financial District, as well as Central City East, also known as Skid Row, “an area rife with homeless people, discharged mental patients, low-quality, inexpensive housing, violence, prostitution and illegal drugs.”
Intrigued by this transient lifestyle, I request an evening vigil through the ghastly district of failed dreams. The Fashion District, central in the West Coast apparel industry, is blocks from “one of the largest stable populations of homeless in United States . . . estimates rang[ing] from 7,000 to 8,000.” Where the sidewalks, according to city research, have up to 30 times the bacterial contamination of raw sewage. Even by night, the situation allows for the visitor to experience the heavy toll of this observance; the intrinsic influence the lifestyle in downtown Los Angeles offers.
Naivety had left me dumb to the beauty fashion designers have embraced and attempted to convey to the public. First-handedly, I was able to appreciate the inspiration found from the usage of deconstructed materials, graceful lines discovered in layers built for insulation from the harsh city street life. Function essential for construction of each garment; the innovative form consequential, thus playing a secondary role upon evaluating design in relation to aesthetic.
They say everyone on Skid Row belongs, it is by no mistake life has led them there. It is here, Synchronicity provided the eerie location for the lesson Life had to offer. In finding truth within the realm of creativity and interpretation: I find resolution with my decision to learn from the environment while travelling.