Art as Home in Venice, California

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Sometimes people forget that traveling can be done without leaving your hometown, especially if you live in a large city like Los Angeles. Last year, a group of my friends and I decided that we wanted to devote some time to discovering parts of our city that we hadn’t explored. We named our group the “Day Trippers,” and we set out to travel on daytime excursions. This month we visited the home of Cheri Pann and Gonzalo Duran in Venice, California, also known as The Mosaic Tile House http://www.cheripann.com. Cheri and Gonzalo are both artists and they bought the “ugly” house, as they describe it, over twenty years ago. They decided to cover the house with mosaic tiles to make it more interesting. Soon, they were placing tiles and found objects in the interior as well. It is a work in progress, as they continue to add to the decor daily.

The entrance to the Mosaic Tile House
The entrance to the Mosaic Tile House
Welcome to the Mosaic Tile House
Welcome to the Mosaic Tile House
The fortune cookie in the front yard
The fortune cookie in the front yard
one of several "fortunes"
one of several “fortunes”
one of several "fortunes"
one of several “fortunes

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Cheri and Gonzalo
Cheri and Gonzalo

“Both Cheri and Gonzalo, who are happily married, have their separate studios in the back of the home. They both paint and do sculpture. Cheri says the key to a happy marriage is to “kiss a lot.” She met Gonzalo in a paint store, and kissed him that day before she left the store with her paint!

the wave
the teacup wave and dolphin
the side yard window
the side yard window

The Mosaic Tile House is available for tours. For $12, either Cheri or Gonzalo will walk you through the exterior, interior, and both studios for about an hour. They will tell you all about the project, answer your questions, and allow you to take as many photos as you’d like. If you are anything like me, you will feel inspired, joyful, happy, and childlike the whole time. I cannot wait to go back!

the side yard
the side yard
the alley
the alley
Cheri's studio
Cheri’s studio
Cheri's studio
Cheri’s studio and paintings
Gonzalo's studio
Cheri in Gonzalo’s studio
The kitchen
The kitchen
The kitchen ceiling
The kitchen ceiling
The study
Glass tile door in the study
Barbie orgy
Barbie orgy
Stairs up to the master bedroom
Stairs up to the master bedroom
The bathroom
The bathroom
wine bottles
wine bottles
The kitchen utensil door
The kitchen utensil door

DSC02370DSC02348

Cheri's paintings of Gonzalo, the love of her life
Cheri’s paintings of Gonzalo, the love of her life
The plate wall
The plate wall
The giraffe
The giraffe
the elephant
the elephant
Fun with mirrors
Fun with mirrors
Cheri's work
Cheri’s work
The "ugly" original house
The “ugly” original house
Front yard
Front yard
Fortunes
Fortunes
Cheri's ceramic pot dedicated to the victims of 911
Cheri’s ceramic pot dedicated to the victims of 911

For lunch afterwards, we hit a Caribbean cafe called The Sunny Spot http://www.sunnyspotvenice.com which has a great patio as well as a comfy dining room. Roy Choi is the chef and his motto is for “people to eat with their souls, not with their brains.” He’s accomplished that at this innovative spot. The food is spicy, so order your sauce on the side if need be. Welcome to the West Indies, West Los Angeles style.

Just hanging out on a tile bench....
Just hanging out on a tile bench….
The Day Trippers
The Day Trippers with Cheri and Gonzalo 

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One comment

  1. Thank you very much for this lovely post Robin. Your “day trippers” group inspires me to get out and explore the city! nancy

    Like

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