Who loves hidden gems? Yessss, I love your enthusiasm. Nothing is more exciting when you find something new to do in your hometown – whatever it may be a hiking, museum, bar, etc.
I live in Los Angeles, and I have to admit I’m one of those who sometimes wonders“what is there to do in Los Angeles?” Some who aren’t from Los Angeles would gasp and say, “oh c’mon, there got to be a lot to do in Los Angeles!” I’m not going to lie, but it is because I became bored with Los Angeles.“Been there, done that” thinking. Going to the same places repeatedly no longer fill me with excitement for the first time. Hey, I’m human here. However, I know that I still need to appreciate what LA has to offer after learning from my experiences from other countries. So, what to do?
While researching hidden gems in Los Angeles, one of the list I came across was this: Mosaic Tile House in Venice.
See something really colorful?
Mosaic Tile House is very well hidden right in the neighborhood in Venice Beach where many may not notice. I learned that it isn’t a museum but an actual home.
Two lovely married artists, Cheri Pann & Gonzalo Duran have been transforming the house for past two decades into a beautiful artistic masterpiece. The reason why I use the present term is because they are still working on it together. They both first began installing mosaic tiles in the bathroom which gradually evolved their home inside and out.
Since it is their home, they provide tours through appointments only. I knew that it is most unlikely that they will provide an American Sign Language interpreter; therefore, when I arrived, I explained to them that I’m Deaf. With the best they could, they accommodate with me by repeating and using visual examples, such as showing me a piece of tile and gesturing how they install it. I was unable to understand everything they were saying, but I got the general idea how much work they both have put into their creativity and energy into this unique house.
They sometimes go to different yard sales and collect random stuff for their art. Gonzales explained that sometimes people donate or drop off random stuff for them to support and encourage them to continue their magnificent work.
I have to warn you. Watch when you try to get close to the wall to pose for a picture because this can happen to you:
Because something on the wall poke right on my arse.
Everything that they did was just absolutely brilliant and fascinating. I mean, 20 years and still counting! Cheri and Gonzales were both really lovely and beautiful couple, and I can feel so much passion and determination from these two! At the end of the tour, Cheri gave me a hug and I can feel all the warmth and joy from her. She got that positive vibe.
I’m happy to discover this little gem in Los Angeles, and I recommend stopping by there just for an hour or two!
It’s always fun when you discover a hidden gem in your backyard 😉
Mondays, Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays 12 – 5PM
$12, they accept credit/debit
1116 Palms Blvd Venice CA 90291
(between Lincoln Blvd & Penmar Ave)
Tips for Deaf and Hard of Hearings:
Remember that this isn’t a museum, it is located at the married couple’s house. Therefore, it is most likely that they will be unable to provide interpreters. You can try to ask though! If they are unable to then, make sure:
- When emailing them for an appointment, explain to them that you are Deaf/HH and what you’ll like them to do to accommodate you. Gestures? Transcripts? Visual Aids?
- Although it’s not really the best option, you can try to search for interpreters who are in Interpreter training programs at local schools. They would love to build their resume! Schools: Mount San Antonio College, Pierce College, California State University of Northridge, etc.
- Or you can also try to find someone to go with you who know American Sign Language.
- Check out their website here to get the idea of the artists and their extraordinary work