Book Review: Art Tiles of Venice Beach

By Eric Ahlberg

You may stroll in the eternal carnival that Ocean Front Walk has become. You may sit upon one of the distinctive cement and wooden benches and not even know that your ass is probably very close to some really hot Art.

In 2000 two Venice artists created these tiles to depict distinctive Venice events. Clayworks was a decorative ceramic art business working with at-risk youth with the Venice Community Housing Corporation.

Now we have cooked up a little book about the tiles, a graphic Venice History book of sorts, the beautiful ceramic renderings of important elements in Venice’s Dharma. You have the Canal Festivals, the Nude Beach, the Gas House, Gondolas, Oil Pollution, Love, the Drum Circle, the Fire Breathing Chainsaw Juggler, Break Dancing, Biking, Muscle Beach, Surfing, Skateboarding, the Pavilion, the Plaza.

No wonder we love this place, it has all the makings of a movie. From free land to $2.7 million bungalows in Ghost Town, Venice Beach has a jaded history, and this book will help you remember.

From the Jacket:

“Want to love Venice even more than you do now? As a 20-year resident of Venice I have walked, biked, staggered, bladed, jogged, stumbled, and strolled my way down Oceanfront Walk. This little book exists to remind us of Venice’s oddly rich history that has made Venice a mecca for generations of artists, musicians and free thinkers – and now, of course, real estate agents.” – Matt Malloy, actor

“By drawing attention to public artworks in Venice, this book helps preserve our shared history and memories.” – Francisco Letelier, Venice muralist, artist and poet

“There are lots of things to see in Venice, but some you have to look for. The tiles on the boardwalk benches are easy to miss, I did for many years. But once you realize that there are more than one, you start checking all the benches. Yammo! Cool stuff right under your nose (or tush). How very Venice.” – Chris Hero, artist and teacher

We are printing this book in January 2014.  It will be available at Small World Books and all over Venice.  We are currently looking for sponsors to help us print the book.


Art tiles

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