Thursday, 17 February 2011

The Watts Towers by Simon Rodia

Simon Rodia was an Italian-American architect, who emigrated to the US when he was just 15.
In 1921 he began constructing these towers on a piece of land opposite his house in the Watts neighbourhood.
Although some vandalised the towers whilst he constructed them, others saved their broken plates and cups and glass bottles to add to the mosaic structures. The shape around the towers somewhat resembles a boat, and is thought to represent the ship that Rodia originally travelled to America on.

The Watts neighbourhood has seen its troubled time. In 1965 the Watts riots took place here and during the 70's, the area was plagued by gang violence.

The Watts towers art centre, give tours and talks about the towers. Due to budget cuts, they are threatened with closure. Important restorative work was started on the towers, but halted by more budget cuts.
The centre is a great place, and welcomes local children to spend time and make art after school, and i am sure it would be sorely missed.

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