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How the Bombay Beach Biennale Brought Art to a Toxic Wasteland

James Ostrer (seated) with Joseph Walsh of the San Francisco Ballet at Bombay Beach Biennale 2017. (Photo courtesy of Bombay Beach Biennale)

Just a few hours south of Los Angeles there’s a tiny desert town called Bombay Beach– though its geographically close at hand to many millions of people, it might as well be another world.

One of several beachside settlements on the shores of the Salton Sea, the town was once a booming resort spot popular during the prosperous post-War years when more than a million vacationers traveled there annually. But the sea– actually a sprawling, shallow lake– and the dusty desert expanse around it, have since lost their appeal, slipped out of range, and essentially vanished from the minds of many Southern California residents. “I’d never heard of it,” filmmaker and LA native Tao Ruspoli explained in a recent interview.

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Watch This Trippy Reimagination of the Domino Site Before You See Kara Walker’s

Tomorrow, Kara Walker’s monumental installation in the Domino Sugar Factory, “A Subtlety” (or “The Marvelous Sugar Baby”) will be unveiled to the general public at the Domino Sugar Factory (sorry, you missed Creative Time’s preview dinner with folks like Chuck Close and Jenna Lyons of J. Crew, who played Hannah’s boss at GQ in Girls).
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