My recent hiatus from the blog was due to my trip to Los Angeles for the Swatch TTR Art Rules contest. I was in LA for five days, meeting the Swatch crew, the other finalists, exploring the city and filming our interviews before the winner was revealed on Friday night at a spectacular event at the Royal/T café.
8 May 2012
The first day consisted of the other two nominees and myself arriving from the airport, meeting the folks from Swatch and TTR and having dinner together at Hotel Erwin (where we stayed) right by Venice beach. Everyone was so friendly and I enjoyed their company over the next few days.
9 May 2012
The second day was predominantly filming our nominee interviews. We visited Marina Del Ray Harbour for Bettina’s interview on her design GRATEFUL, DJ Skee’s studio for Marta’s interview on her design Scream of Victory and the hills of hollywood for my interview about The Stuff of Legends. The interviews you will see below are the work of two extremely talented German videographers who were with us. They totally looked the part, getting around on skateboards with their huge cameras and tripods slung over their shoulders.
That night I headed up to Abbot Kinney Road near the hotel and I caught up with a local friend of a friend at The Tasting Kitchen which served really unique meals made from local organic ingredients. I enjoyed good food, drinks and company and got the lowdown on where to head for sightseeing and shopping the following day.
10 May 2012
On Thursday Marta, Bettina and I walked to the outdoor shopping mall in Santa Monica via the beach. Shopping in the US is great, it’s like there’s always a 30% discount on everything compared to Australia and there is more variety. I bought clothes, gifts and a few kilos of Super Sculpey clay to bring back! We headed back to the hotel afterwards for drinks and dinner courtesy of Swatch at The Tasting Kitchen again. Which was still great because we didn’t have anything that I had the previous night (except for this awesome bread pudding with caramel and pecans. Which I did not mind eating again, at all!). I met more great people including a very nice blogger from Italy who joined us in exploring LA over the next couple of days.
11 May 2012
The following day we headed to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and the tar pits to check out an exhibition of ancient Mexican artworks (Children of the Plumed Serpent: the Legacy of Quetzalcoatl ) and a mid-century modern Californian design exhibition (California Design, 1930-1965 Living in a Modern Way). LACMA was huge! We only had about two hours to spare but we probably could have spent half the day there, the architecture itself was something to marvel at as well. Its a pity we didnt have more time but we had to head back to get ready for the main event, the Swatch Art Rules night!
The peachy dress I am wearing in the picture below was actually made by my super talented sister, Shelley Barton. Check out her Facebook page here.
After drinks, DJ performances and socialising we sat down and waited to see whose design would be revealed underneath the red cloth!
Marta Zarina-Gelze from Latvia with her entry Scream of Victory!
Congrats to Marta! Marta and Bettina are both lovely people and I am so stoked for Marta! The final trophy actually features a button which gives its own little “woohoo!” of victory when pressed. Marta’s trophy and Swatch watch design will become the official tour watch and trophy for the 2012/2013 TTR World Snowboarding Tour.
That night we had a mini after party near the hotel.
12 May 2012
Thanks to a late night I didn’t wake up as early as I hoped. A bunch of us still managed to make it into Downtown LA before I had to get back to catch a shuttle to the airport. We saw Little Tokyo, the Walt Disney Concert Hall and various other little surprises while we were walking around. Before I knew it I had to rush back to the hotel, pack my bags and say goodbye to my new friends. Thankfully Facebook makes it easier to stay in touch!
The trip was a really great experience. I met some fantastic people, saw parts of LA I hadn’t seen before and enjoyed being spoilt by the generosity of Swatch. I really didn’t expect to be chosen as a finalist so I am feeling optimistic and looking forward to whatever surprises could be next in store for me 🙂