How Scott Timberg’s “Leaving Los Angeles” Inspired a New Art Show

In an essay for our July issue, writer Scott Timberg wrestled with whether or not he should leave a city—Los Angeles—that he could no longer afford. The piece resonated with one reader in particular: local artist Teale Hatheway, whose newest installation, Fragmented Realities: City of Dreams, is on view now at Gallery 825.

Timberg’s piece along with a 1935 book by Harry Carr titled Los Angeles, City of Dreams act as bookends for Hatheway’s mixed-medium exhibition, comprised mostly of white frosted Plexiglass sheets spray-painted with depictions of L.A.’s myriad street lamps. “Harry Carr expressed optimism about Los Angeles, as well as nostalgia for the way ranchero life had been,” Hatheway says. “Timberg’s article expresses eloquently the drive and the passion and the enthusiasm to stay here based on optimism. I get it! But this is not is the friendliest place for all dreams and desires. L.A. has been chewing people up and spitting them out for 200 years. But I fear the circumstances that have made L.A. the best place to be a creative might be taking a hard turn.”

For Hatheway, her paintings represent a rocky relationship to place. “The paintings are composed to emote a sense of uncertainty: Where do I stand in this? How do I fit in? Where am I? What side am I on? What am I looking at? What am I seeing?” she says. “And for me, creating the compositions is much like my pursuit in figuring out how to put the pieces together for my personal experience as an Angeleno.” Fragmented Realities: City of Dreams runs through October 9.

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