de LaB: Showing People The Creative Side Of Los Angeles


Los Angeles is a hotbed of creativity and now de LaB is taking design-interested folks behind the veil. Begin your peek behind the scenes this weekend, when their biannual de LaB Home Tour goes inside five of LA’s most notable East Side homes. 

It was during a cocktail party on the West Side of Los Angeles that publicist Haily Zaki of Secret Agent and Curbed’s National Urbanism editor Alissa Walker bonded. The conversation between the event’s two lone East Side residents not only sparked a friendship but an idea for a project. Passionate about their city, its future and their developing neighborhoods, the two new friends, eager to share their enthusiasm with others, launched de LaB, a non-profit which celebrates the creative spirit of Los Angeles. de LaB, literally “Design East of LaBrea”, introduces Angelenos from all over the city to unusual, innovative, intriguing and inspiring spaces, buildings, homes and offices and the people who live in, work in and design them.

Although originally limited to the eastern side of the city, de LaB now hosts events citywide from Hollywood, where the group was granted entry to the members-only Magic Castle, to Culver City, where, led by KCRW’s Frances Anderton, they visited the offices of some of the city’s most exciting architects. de LaBBers have toured artists’ studios in West Adams, pedaled their way around the east side before settling down to a feast during the organization’s annual Design-n-Dim Sum bike tour, explored turn-of-the-century underground subway tunnels and stations, sniffed wildflowers in a swing through the city’s revitalized parks, and drenched themselves in the area’s changing relationship with water at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena. They’ve even traveled as far as Palm Springs for Modernism Week.

Start your relationship with deLaB this Sunday, April 2, from 12 – 4, when they kick off their annual fundraiser. Opening the doors to five incredible residences, ranging from a mid-century home that just needed a little updating to a house destroyed by a fire that required a near total rebuild. The Renovation Innovation Home Tours offer a peek into the work of celebrated local and international firms, including Bestor Architecture, Tom Marble, LA Design Group, and Mexico City-based Productura.  Tickets may be purchased by clicking here.

Or, if your calendar’s already full this weekend, look ahead two months and plan on joining deLab on Saturday, June 10 when MAKING LA will be hosted as part of the LA Design Festival. As a follow up to their successful MAKING LA Conference in 2014, de LaB will be drawing attention to the potential defunding of the National Endowment for the Arts program with a fun and informative evening focusing on water, transit, community and density, four of the city’s most challenging issues, seen through the eyes and ideas of the designers and artists creating the solutions.


photo credits: Casey Caplowe for CaploweBennet home; Trevor Tondro for Bestor Architeture; Taiyo Watanabe for Marble Architecture; Nathan Riley for LA Design Group; Wonne Ickx for Productora 


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