The idea came, as ideas so often come, by accident. There was the back of an art studio in a neglected part of downtown Los Angeles, hanging out in a loading dock, and a comment from a random stranger; and voila, an art gallery — the world’s first drive-by art gallery, or so its creators claim.
“There was no glass, no guard separating the art from the audience,” says Carlton Davis. The Art Dock symbolized a moment in time not just of a neighborhood but for the art world in Los Angeles. It was a moment when people made art just for the sake of it — just because they had to.
Davis long ago left what’s now become a trendified spot, but recalls the good old grungy 80s in a new book called The Art Dockuments. On Friday at the Armory Center for the Arts there’ll be a program commemorating some of the work and the artists who were part of the Art Dock era. Here’s a preview: