Who doesn’t love when someone takes extreme artistic license with a task that seems cut-and-dried? This map of L.A.’s 5,000 square miles, helpfully emblazoned on a plastic Pavilions bag, is a gift to cartography discourse everywhere. It’s a radically flattened, bird’s-eye view of our teeming metropolis from the vantage of palm fronds…somewhere.
Geographically speaking, nothing makes sense. Downtown protrudes into West Hollywood (I wish!), Santa Monica cuddles up to Sherman Oaks, a ride that appears to be the Incredicoaster takes up more space than both Marina del Rey and the Hollywood Hills. It’s about as legible as a certain map that debuted on Vanderpump Rules a few weeks ago.
In other words, I love it! But I still have a few questions about how it came to be:
- Why is there a Mordor-esque void surrounding Sony Studios’ iconic rainbow? Is this meant to be seen as some sort of commentary on the darkness that descended on the studio after the hacking of Amy Pascal’s emails? Hasn’t Pascal recovered now that Spider-Man is a hit??
- Who picks Santa Monica’s Third Street Promenade over the Americana at Brand? Rick Caruso is seething.
- Where is Sqirl?
- Oops, just realized Venice isn’t here either. This is erasure!!
- Downtown looks like a foreboding painting by a postwar German artist. In terms of shopping-bag art, this is canon. But why all the doom and gloom?
- The purple hills? Stunning. But also from a different city, I think.
- Not sure what’s looming over the Simi Valley. I’m seeing a spacecraft of some kind preparing to launch from a colosseum, but I also think this map just gave me a contact high.
- Angelyne deserves some real estate here, don’t you think?
- Where are we looking down from? Palm Springs? Heaven? Hawaii?
- What’s with all the Eastside erasure? This shopping-bag map is like a romantic comedy that purely revolves around Santa Monica and Beverly Hills. Trader Joe’s would never.
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