The Hammer Museum's bookstore is often humming. Now the Westwood institution is helping the empty storefronts of Westwood Village capture some of the same energetic, people-filled spirit.
A pop-up, that brevity-minded enterprise that takes over an empty kiosk or store or mall nook for a few weeks, is more than prevalent around our city. In fact, you'd be hard-pressed to not come across some sort of pop-up shop after a day of retail-therapy-ing. (We don't want you to be hard-pressed.)
But the space a pop-up occupies tends to be reasonable; after all, it won't be there for long. But could you do a pop-up that's the size of an entire neighborhood? Say, Westwood Village? And could you fill a number of empty storefronts with funky clothing purveyors and gifty goods and such?
You could, and would, if you were the Hammer Museum. The Westwood-and-Wilshire-cornered art institution is setting out to just that, via Arts ReSTORE Westwood, a 24-day initiative that puts businesses back in some of the villages more echo-y spaces.
The Hammer is looking to "activate the Village long term," meaning that although these pop-ups will only be around for just over three weeks, the spirit of the project should, fingers crossed, have a longer reach in terms of permanent tenants that continue to lend the area a cultural or innovative vibe.
The pop-up vendors are local artisans and crafter and makers-of-cool-things. Fallen Fruit will have a "Fruitique" while Whitman's Beard Used Books and Homeboy Industries will also set up creative camp.
And the larger campaign that's serving as a forward-thinking Arts ReSTORE umbrella? LA2050, which is taking the long view of our city's cultural health and vibrant possibilities.
The opening celebration happens on Friday, Nov. 1, but Arts ReSTORE is on from Nov. 1 through 24, so swing by to eye (and buy) any time during that period.