Art Hound, a guide to living with art Art Hound

on the hunt for good art

Living The California Dream

December 16th, 2010 · 6 Comments

Liz Kuball’s ongoing series “California Vernacular” captures Southern California’s beauty and peculiarities which (depending on your geography) feel either acutely alien or familiar. For me it’s a bit of both; I grew up on the East Coast but spent a lot of time in SoCal visiting family. The “California” Kuball captures isn’t Hollywood, Beverly Hills or another cliched locale but the quirky, laid-back and unabashedly superficial California which so many (like Kuball) fall in love with.

When you move out to California from back east, you come for a reason: You’re leaving behind a bad relationship, or escaping your hometown, or thinking you’ll be a star. And what you find when you get here is that things aren’t what you thought they’d be. There’s some of what you expected—sunshine and palm trees and long, wide beaches. But there’s more: houses with cacti and succulents in place of the green lawns you grew up with; women in bikinis climbing ladders…

And you’d think that, after all this, you’d become disillusioned and go back home, and some do, of course, but many more of us stay and instead of growing bitter, we hang on—hang on to a world that, to us, is even more fantastic than the one we thought we’d find, because it’s real in its absurdity and because we have stories to tell.