Eastside Weekend: Obscura Day explorations; flavors of the Eastside; Girlpool in Eagle Rock


Echo Park’s Phantasm Gloria | Photo by Kelly Erickson


It takes a friend from out of town to get a local to appreciate their neighborhood. Well, what about a whole day where people explore their neighborhood? Obscura Day is, well, it’s … huh. Okay, it’s an excuse to get out. This year’s event includes a few spots in Southern California, including Echo Park’s Phantasma Gloria or the Virgin Mary in the form of colorful bottles. There are also a handful of tours like one through Historic Filipinotown in Echo Park or a strange tour in Griffith Park’s abandoned zoo. Obscura Day is Saturday, May 30. Various locations.


Lobster by Knuckle & Claw; Taco from Diablo Taco; The Greyhound’s shrimp and grits

Wordless expressions of joy will be loud and clear at Taste of Eastside this weekend.  You know those Ymms! and Ooohs! – sounds that people make when eating fine foods, those leaps of satisfaction that just can’t be contained. This year’s lineup includes spicy meats from Diablo Taco, shrimp and grits from The Greyhound Bar & Grill and lobster from Knuckle & Claw. There will be wine and desserts in the mix as well. Some people will be eating with their hands and others will say, “Oh, try this,” and offer their friends bite sized morsels. What’s important is to enjoy the company of strangers making strange noises. The Podunk Poets will provide music in case those other sounds get out of hand. Sunday, May 31 at the Los Angeles River Center & Gardens.

Harmony Tividad and Cleo Tucker make up Girlpool | Photo by Alice Baxley

Polite and soft. The members of Girlpool play as though they don’t want to wake the sleeping dog on the porch. But they’re watching its eyebrows dance in its dog dreams as it performs radical dream pirouettes over humming vacuum cleaners. Harmony Tividad and Cleo Tucker of Girlpool continue to speed up the pace, their honey harmonies dripping, the string work lapping up the landscape like a brush fire, and now the dog’s back leg and tail go on wagging. But one of them has to go to work in a bit, so they start to shout and the dog’s up, happy, and excited to be awake. They play the Center for Arts, Eagle Rock with Stephen Steinbrink and Michael Vidal, Monday, June 1.
Over 70 artists from 16 countries make up the roster of Art 4 Non Violence at Pop Secret Gallery. This bevvy of artists will depict violence and atrocities from their own communities, ranging from Argentina in South America to Serbia in the Balkans. Problems range from global environmental catastrophes to personal episodes that stick to various points of our society. Hosted by The Society of Illustrators of Los Angeles, Saturday, May 30 at Pop Secret Gallery in Eagle Rock.

Nathan Solis is a Highland Park resident who writes about and photographs the L.A. music scene. You can find more of Solis’ stories, reviews and photos at Avenue Meander.

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