The City of West Hollywood invites community members to attend the third Neighborhood Conversation about a Laurel House and Park Artist Residency Program. The Conversation will be led by consultant team Kimberli Meyer and Sara Daleiden on Friday, March 17, 2023 from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Plummer Park Community Center, located at 7377 Santa Monica Boulevard. The consultants will share updates on the project and seek feedback from the community.
The City-owned real property at 1343 N. Laurel Avenue, known as Laurel House and Park, consists of a 30,000-square-foot lot, a 7,177-square-foot former single-family dwelling, and an unattached accessory structure that is approximately 2,379 square feet and consists of a chauffeur’s cottage and garages. The original portions of the structures were built in 1917. The conversion of the original single-family residence into four apartment units and the southerly four-car garage addition were completed in 1941. The property was designated as a Local Cultural Resource by the City of West Hollywood in 1994.
In 2010, the West Hollywood City Council directed staff to develop a plan to open the grounds at 1343 N. Laurel Avenue as open space on a temporary/interim basis for public use. From 2013-2014, the City conducted an extensive community visioning process for the Laurel property. The community expressed support for several potential uses during the visioning process and prioritized several factors, including: access to more community gathering spaces; activation as an Arts and Cultural Center; maintenance and/or enhancements of the property’s use for peacefulness and beauty; preservation of the house and gardens, but activation through new features and programming; and, continued use for dog walking.
In 2018, the West Hollywood City Council received a report forwarded by the Arts and Cultural Affairs Commission focusing on Artist-in-Residence programs, including consideration of the use of 1343 N. Laurel Avenue as a potential Artist-in-Residence site. This recommendation was forwarded to the Council Subcommittee for further review and consideration. In October 2022, in a feasibility study update, the City Council confirmed that the site should be used for arts and culture programs and it directed staff to issue a Request for Proposals (RFP) for a qualified architectural design firm to continue the programming and design process.
Kimberli Meyer and Sara Daleiden are guiding the development of the Artist Residency Program for the cultural resource, Laurel House and Park, located at 1343 N. Laurel Avenue. Meyer is an independent cultural producer, curator, writer, and designer working across the fields of art and architecture. She served as the Director the MAK Center for Art and Architecture, at the Schindler House, 835 N. Kings Road, from 2002-2016. Daleiden is a consultant who specializes in facilitating civic engagement using arts and cultural exchange strategies. She encourages local cultures to value neighborhoods, public space, civic art, business development, as well as artist residencies, creative placemaking and media culture-making.