BoldPas: An Art Takeover

Jul 31, 2017

Old Pasadena is going bold. Bold in size, shape, color, and concept.

Old Pasadena “is the canvas for your day of art and play” on August 12 at the inaugural BoldPas: An Art Takeover.

Artists with backgrounds in design, history, urban planning, and architecture descend upon Old Pasadena’s historic and renovated 22-blocks with 12 site-specific installations—to be erected, arranged, placed, or “planted”—for viewing and, also, interaction.

Muralist Andrew Hem plans to live paint in Mercantile Alley. Pasadena’s Lyd & Mo Photography snap pics at a “tissue paper flower wall,” and Arty Vartanyan and Zenah Sakaamini welcomes one and all to enter “Vantage Obscura,” where six 8-foot cubes of yarn and translucent colored film are woven throughout a wooden framework.


An Andrew Hem mural in Portland, Oregon.


Image of proposed “Vantage Obscura” by Arty Vartanyan and Zenah Sakaamini.


Concept of “Blister” by Anali Gharakhani.


Anali Gharakhani has created seven compressed and nesting cardboard spheres that viewers may rearrange and lounge in.

Reflecting on Pasadena’s history as a “citrus grove capital,” Viviana Palacio creates an installation of found wooden orchard ladders formerly used for fruit picking (image, top right) in “Displacement of Working Objects.”

Shadows are constantly intriguing and Sarah Umles creates “Crystal Lucida,” an interactive site with cut glass containers filled with colored water. They sit on a white table surface and visitors are welcome to “paint the reflections and colorful shadows.”



Two hundred brightly colored papier-mâché cacti will be “growing” in an alley, some of them up to 7 feet tall, thanks to Paul Heintz. Want more plants?


Concept image for Paul Heintz’s Colorful Cacti.


Ash Cano invites you to walk through a “Rose Garden” of 6-foot roses created from painted pipes and cardboard, and even some made of paper that can be “plucked” for photo ops. Ash sent us work-in-progress pictures…


Ash Cano spray painting her flower stems; photo by Jessice Marie.


Ash’s roses for her Rose Garden installation; photo by Jessica Marie.


Creating the roses, complete with “to do” list; photo by Jessica Marie.


Construction of Ash Cano’s roses; photo by Jessica Marie.


Roses by Ash Cano; photo by Jessica Marie.


If four-legged guys are more your thing, Po Yang Leung has created “Walking the Pets” to interact with pedestrians. These particular pets are papier-mâché and up to 3 feet tall.


Concept for Po Yang Leung ‘s “Walking the Pets.”


In several locations, Flower Pepper Gallery has organized participating artists to have pop-up canvases (canvas teepees), including Yeti & Friends, a Pasadena-based, husband and wife “hand-crafted monster team.”

Cody Williams of Yeti & Friends kindly shared what he and his wife’s business and concept is, and described their idea for the BoldPas pop-up…

“In our small business, we create all kinds of creatures in the medium of faux taxidermy and art dolls, but we also love to illustrate our world on paper. We draw our inspiration from things like folklore, zoology, medieval bestiaries, 80’s fantasy films, and a good amount of dungeon geekery. Our ambition is to create work that puts a smile on people’s faces, and maybe plays a nostalgic chord, bringing viewers back to their childhood. If it has claws, horns, or carries a sword, we are painting and crafting it, breathing new life into ye olde tyme adventures.”


Moss troll by Yeti & Friends; courtesy photo.


Yeti & Friends, courtesy photo.


“We are very excited for our BoldPas installation,” Williams continues. “We wanted to do something that would be interactive as well as something viewers of all ages can enjoy. So, continuing our medieval theme, we came up with a short quest for adventurers who stop by. Our tent will be converted into a mimic, a well-known fantasy monster that takes the shape of regular, everyday objects, springing to life to defend his treasure. If you’re brave enough to sneak past his wailing arms and his hungry jaws, you’ll be treated to a fine reward! We typically work with textiles, so we’re incorporating a lot of different fabrics and furs to give the tent a tactile, worn in feel, as well as some cardboard crafted props to set the scene.”


Group shot! Yeti & Friends, courtesy photo.


Yeti & Friends, courtesy photo.


Other pop-up artists include The Muppet Show muppet builder Amy Van Gilder, maker of tiny animals Liten Kanin, “general maker of magic” Vivien Mildenberger, and illustrator/painter Lena Sayadian (we have one of her mini works—a penguin—on our wall. For BoldPas, she’s creating a very unique teepee, and we thank her for giving us permission to share her work-in-progress photos…







Julia Long of Pasadena Walking Tours is scheduled to lead tours at 1:30 p.m. and 5 p.m., highlighting the temporary BoldPas installations as well as Old Pasadena’s permanent public art. Walkers on the tour also have an opportunity to meet the participating artists. The tour is $10 and advance registration required:

BoldPas is presented by Old Pasadena Management District, and we’ve got to say, great concept! We’re looking forward to August 12.

BoldPas: An Art Takeover
Saturday, August 12, noon-8 p.m.
Old Pasadena, all over!
Free event
For more details, visit


Maps of the installations and pop-ups will be available at Mercantile Alley between Fair Oaks and S. Raymond Avenues, Fraser Alley at S. De Lacey Avenue, and near the Metro stop at Memorial Park. A Google map may be viewed at



One of Lena Sayadian‘s penguins (now living in our living room at home).






Flintridge Books

Lyd and Mo Photography

Louis Jane Studios

Homage Pasadena