52 Miles of Concrete

John Arroyo's thesis blog, Culture in Concrete: Art and the Re-imagination of the Los Angeles River as Civic Space came to our attention because of its relevant featured content based around the L.A. River.

"Movies and Memory on the LA River" was one of many posts made by John. Click to view all entries from "Mental Maps of the L.A. River" or view John's blog.

Film is a popular medium for creative expression and collective memory along the LA River, exhibited full length multi-ethnic dramas like Eric Nazarian's award-winning The Blue Hour, and short documentary films like Sarah Lorenzen's account of current master-planning efforts in The Los Angeles River.

Before I jump into sharing stories of the great people and creative projects I've found along the LA River in my research process, I want to orient you on the River's unique landscape through Osseus Labyrint's award-winning documentary, 52 Miles of Concrete. Hannah Sim and Mark Steger made this film in 2001 for Shoot America, a Los Angeles-based and urbanism-focused independent film festival. 52 Miles of Concrete paranormally illustrates how the LA River is, as according to many of those I interviewed, ‘inspirational,’ ‘beleaguered,’ ‘damaged,’ ‘complicated,’ ‘hopeful,’ and ‘hyper-real.’

Thanks to John Arroyo and CoLab Radio for sharing the research.

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