MapFund

About the Grant

$30,000 to support Walk the Talk (MAP 2009), a performance created by director John Malpede and the Los Angeles Poverty Department that celebrates the community of the poorest neighborhood in Los Angeles: Skid Row.

About the Project

Skid Row is the poorest area in the city of Los Angeles and has the largest concentration of homeless people of any neighborhood in the US. Despite its poverty, Skid Row is a place with amazing human and community strengths: The Skid Row community has long been a generative site for visionary answers to social problems. Largely under-appreciated is the extent to which the visionary efforts have been the work of community members. Without the civic engagement of citizens of Skid Row, the largest concentration of affordable housing stock in LA county would have been destroyed. With free recovery programs, neighborhood residents have generated the biggest drug recovery culture anywhere.

With the Community Redevelopment Agency, Los Angeles Poverty Department is commemorating 30 significant individuals with public artworks—a multi-site series of permanent images and an accompanying performance, intended to honor residents whose visionary actions re-knit the social fabric of the neighborhood. The work will result in a “Skid Row Walk of Fame.”

On Skid Row news travels face to face—like theater. Walk the Talk will travel through the neighborhood and at each public artwork site, a theater action will illuminate the contribution of the person or group commemorated at that spot. A brass band of neighborhood residents will lead the parade from site to site in a peripatetic performance that brings the history of the community to life, and keeps it alive.


Related Websites

Los Angeles Poverty Department



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