Summer is traditionally the time for outdoor adventures, trying new things and good, old-fashioned play. But as summer begins to wane and our kids head back to school, it appears the people who live and work in Playa Vista won’t be abandoning that sense of child-like wonderment anytime soon.
No, we’ll be looking for new ways to test the limits of what it means to be a maker, collaborator and innovator. Playa Vista has a long history of innovation and is carrying that spirit into the new millennium through a willingness to push themselves — and others — outside their comfort zones. To find the satisfying rewards that come out of risk. To cherish the new and exciting.
As head of the creative residency program 72U, Maria Scileppi’s full-time job is putting artists and techies together and tasking them with incredible, often mind-bending community projects that may exist for
a moment or forever. It sounds like an ethereal, dream-like undertaking, and, in fact, it is. Scileppi told me she’s found her dream job here in Playa Vista, a place that allows her to bring together people from different cultural backgrounds and create a safe space for them to take risks and build ambitious projects that bridge the gap between art and commerce.
Just down the road, across Jefferson Boulevard at Broadway Gymnastic School, a young woman named Evan Pakshong faces her fears every single day as she leaps, twists and dances along a four-inch piece of wood called a balance beam. Pakshong is the 2016 Junior Olympic National Beam Champion and has found her comfort zone in the air.
New restaurateur Monique Yamaguchi has left her own personal comfort zone of documentary filmmaking to create Wellfed, a local eatery she hopes will honor her late parents every time she serves up a plate of traditional Hawaiian comfort food.
As always, I hope this issue of Playa Vista Direct will inspire you to create, innovate and push yourself out of your comfort zone. Sometimes, the risk alone is its own reward.
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