Citizen Sprout Eases Holiday Stress with Thanksgiving Pre-Orders

Citizen Sprout Eases Holiday Stress with Thanksgiving Pre-Orders

Thanksgiving will be here before we know it, and when it comes to the holidays, we all know a last minute week of planning can go by in a flash. Whether you plan on doing a little cooking, or you need all the help you can get, Citizen Sprout wants you to know that they’re here to keep your holiday plans from falling apart. Available next month for pre-order, Citizen Sprout is offering an extensive menu of Family Style Starters, Sides, and Desserts, from Winter Squash Soup, to Cornbread Stuffing. There’s something for everyone, and it might be just what you need to not stress yourself this holiday season. Read on for more details.

Menu Highlights

Family Style Starters (priced $20-$60) include Winter Squash Soup with House-made Croutons and Kale and Brussels Sprout Salad with Candied Almonds, Parmesan Cheese, Currants and Maple Dijon Dressing.

Sides (priced $20-$65) include: Cornbread Stuffing, Caramelized Onion Gravy, Roasted Butternut Squash with Pomegranate Molasses, Pomegranate Seeds, and Sage, Cranberry Sauce and Maple Roasted Carrots with Lemon and Thyme.

Desserts include: Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake with Fresh Whipped Cream ($70), Pumpkin White Chocolate Chip Cookies and Ginger Date Molasses Cookies. (Cookies priced $2.25 each.)

When and How to Pre-order and Pickup

Preorders can be made from November 11 to November 21, via Citizen Sprout or by calling (424) 280-4123. Pickups will be available on November 27, from 10 am – 6 pm, at Citizen Sprout in Santa Monica. (Address: 1128 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401)

About Citizen Sprout

Citizen Sprout is the brainchild of former professional chef turned mom, Jennifer Jewett. What began as a passion project to fill the need of Jennifer’s fellow parents seeking easy, wholesome meals to feed their children has now turned into a full-fledged business serving Santa Monica and beyond.  Five years since its inception, Jennifer now provides healthy, nutritious meals to students at more than a dozen private schools while also manning Citizen Sprout’s retail location in the heart of Santa Monica’s Wilshire Blvd. Originally the byproduct of Jennifer’s solution to reducing the amount of food waste that resulted from the meals she prepped for schools, the Santa Monica storefront now offers fresh, on-the-go meals for adults and children alike. Catering to everyone from the conscientious parent to the busy working professional and time strapped millennial, Citizen Sprout provides a range of offerings from snacks to complete meals along with a variety of beverage and kitchen goods from local purveyors including Sqirl and Larder Baking Company. Citizen Sprout is located at: 1128 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90401.  More information can be found at:

Address: 1445 4th St, Santa Monica, CA 90401

Phone: (310) 319-1995

Inaugural 100-Course Meal Serves DTLA This December

Inaugural 100-Course Meal Serves DTLA This December


Do you know what’s better than a Christmas present? An early Christmas present! Culinary madman Michael Cirino from A Razor/A Shiny Knife (behind uber creative food & drink experiences like Lunch on the L Train and Cocktails with Drones) is bringing his next big idea — the 100 Course Meal — to life for the first time ever in LA this December! Tickets just went on sale, and guests can expect to be in for quite an unbelievable treat this holiday.

Cirino has lined up some of LA’s top culinary talents to take part, including favorites like Bub & Grandma’s Bread, Coolhaus, Homestate, Konbi, Jewel, Ms. Chi, SLAB, and The h.wood group. In addition, 100 Course Meal is an expansive, seemingly never-ending table of highly choreographed delivery of 100 artfully presented dishes throughout the course of the event. Each of the 100 guests per dinner (or lunch!) will be able to sit and enjoy ten dishes at the table in rapid succession. As if that weren’t enough, exploring the space via ultra-experiential elements like drone bartenders, laser-printed food, chef demos, beverages galore and more alongside 100 dish presentations like 100 pieces of sushi, tacos, sandwiches and donuts – all for guests to photograph and consume. Imagine an over-the-top 100 person dinner party.

The inaugural 100 Course Meal, an interactive culinary journey to set sail with exclusive cruise partner Virgin Voyages that will be held at Downtown LA’s Hudson Loft on December 6-8. The 100 Course Meal is an elaborate gastronomic adventure that artfully merges theatrics, technique and flavor. Attendees will be immersed in a high-impact, multisensory experience curated by the city’s top culinary and beverage talent, including Bub & Grandma’s Bread, Coolhaus, Dune, Future Gin, Homestate, Jewel LA, Konbi, LAMILL Coffee, Ms. Chi, Phorage, Tackle Box, SLAB, and The h.wood Group and set within a breathtaking space that offers sweeping views of the city.

100 Course Meal is the brainchild of Michael Cirino who’s been bringing his highly sought-after A Razor/A Shiny Knife dining experiences to sold-out crowds around the world from New York City to Panama for more than 15 years. In collaboration with Thrillist, Cirino is excited to bring his latest concept to Los Angeles, a city with a diverse, rich food history and insatiable zest for culinary innovation.

“At Thrillist we are always trying to push the limits of traditional dining to create one of a kind food experiences that elevate the senses,“ said Ocean MacAdams, President of Thrillist. “Michael has a history of creating these innovative culinary moments that surprise and delight and we are confident that this event will create an atmosphere, unlike anything our audience has had before.”

The trademarks of the 100 Course Meal will be an expansive, seemingly unending table and the highly choreographed delivery of 100 artfully presented dishes. Each of the 100 guests per session will be able to enjoy ten dishes at the table in rapid succession along with tableside preparations ranging from Lawry’s spinning Caesar salad to traditional dim sum. Bringing together notable LA farmers, chefs, bartenders and coffee roasters the event aims to foster a sense of community and collaboration and serve as a reflection of the city through an examination of its food culture.

In addition to the seated experience, guests will be given the opportunity to further interact within the 7,000-square-foot space via multiple activations including the culinary lab, showcasing the future of food and beverage. The lab will be complete with cutting-edge demos highlighting everything from a drone bartender stirring cocktails to a food laser and popcorn ice cream made with liquid nitrogen. Additional components include multiple demos led by the event’s culinary contributors including tortilla making and knife skills.

For more information on the 100 Course Meal and forthcoming ticket sales, please visit this link. Tickets are priced at $100 and include ten seated courses and access to unlimited beer, wine, and cocktails and all the food and fun happening inside the venue.

About Thrillist

Thrillist means fun; we are the essential resource for how to spend your time and money. We’re eaters, drinkers, travelers, and doers. We serve the curious and believe that new experiences are what drive the richest lives. We bring our passion, expertise, and taste to bear on the things that are truly worth your time and money. Life’s for living, and that’s why we’re here. Today will be great. In December 2016, Thrillist joined forces with NowThis, The Dodo and Seeker to form Group Nine Media – a global top 10 publisher.

About 100 Course Meal

100 Course Meal is a multi-sensory celebration portraying diverse cities through a unique lens that exposes their culinary identity through the framework of their storied history and current innovations. Characterized by its interactive format, the event allows guests to taste, experience and explore. 100 Course Meal is presented by Michael Cirino of A Razor/A Shiny Knife whose creative studio and hospitality group focuses on creating larger than life immersive experiences that are brought to life through trans-media storytelling. Over the last 15 years, Cirino’s seminal experiences have included a multi-course, haute-cuisine lunch served on the NYC subway, a birthday party for the 125th anniversary of pizza with a pizza delivered from every pizzeria in New York City and a life-sized Monopoly game gala dinner for the Panamanian elite Calicanto Foundation.  Cirino and his team have also collaborated with Fortune 500 brands including Chanel, Google, Sothebys and Pepsi. With work in nearly every major city in the US and extensive international locations including Panama City and Milan, Cirino and his team bring their brand of experience to a global population.

Your Food Trip Around the World Starts Here: Mambo International Kitchen

Your Food Trip Around the World Starts Here: Mambo International Kitchen

Co-written by Anthony Stafford

How would you describe Los Angeles? Colorful, vibrant, diverse, or perhaps, a multicultural melting pot?

If any of those adjectives came to mind, you would be right in believing so. However, when it comes to the “melting pots” of the world, it is rare to find a restaurant that authentically captures the different essences of the world. Sure, there are plenty of themed restaurants offering cuisines from exotic places, but how often do you find a singular restaurant offering unbelievable cuisines from around the world? Luckily, for Southern California, there is a special place, tucked away in the city of Northridge, which offers exactly this: Mambo International Kitchen (IG: @MamboResto).

We recently had the opportunity to try some of their newest menu items, along with a few other popular dishes we missed during our first visit. In addition, we could not pass up a unique opportunity to meet with co-owner Donna, who, like our first visit, was immensely kind and hospitable. The love of food, culture and people truly flows throughout every dish, drink and dessert that the owners share. Mambo International Kitchen should be on your foodie radar — otherwise, you are doing yourself a major disservice.

Upon our arrival, we prepared for the amazing food journey we were about to embark on — from the Philippines to the Americas. Our anticipation set in, and before we knew it, it was chow time. It’s worth noting that dishes typically don’t take long to come out, and even during peak business hours, Mambo tries not to keep customers waiting longer than 15 minutes for their order — great for any workday lunch.

The Best Hydration

If you’ve seen the news recently, you’ll know it’s been discovered that water alone is not that great at hydrating humans. In fact, water infused with fruit is substantially more effective. Cue Mambo’s new Pineapple and Watermelon Agua Frescas! Light, sweet, and tasting like they had just been squeezed from their respective fruits, these drinks were not only cool and refreshing, but they also prepared our palates for the new high-profile appetizer— fried tofu! (Bonus: Mambo also now offers Stubborn Soda — a healthier alternative!)

Wake Up, Buds!

Tofu is not particularly known for flavorful attributes and understandably so. It’s all about how it’s used, combining flavor, texture, or both. In the case of Mambo, the fried tofu provides exactly one half of this dish: texture and appeal (… and preventing you from drinking a flavor-filled zingy sauce, alone). Crispy on the outside and moist on the inside, we received over a dozen fried tofu cubes, piping hot and stacked next to their “other half,” a ramekin of savory vinegar sauce for dunking them into. A mouth-awakening sauce, this specialty is packed with flavor from its namesake vinegar, soy, onions, cilantro, garlic, ginger, spices, and subtle sweet undertones. A match made in heaven is an understatement for these two, however, if you’re not a big fan of vinegary flavors, Mambo offers a sweet and sour sauce as well.

A Flavor Flight with a Side of Garlic Noodles

With freshly receptive taste buds ready to go, our jaws were seething to dig into the entrees and main dishes. We were presented with some of Mambo’s newest offerings, as well as some older favorites. It’s safe to say that Mambo can take the likes of Buffalo Wild Wings head-on with their own chicken wings, aptly named “Frequent Flyers”. #TeamFlats, anyone?

Mambo presents an impressive list of international flavors for their Frequent Flyers which come in 6 or 12 count orders, with up to 2 to 3 flavors each. Equally impressive is the size of the wings, which put some other wing specialty places to shame. We’re looking at you, Wing Stop. Mambo’s saucy options include Filipino Sweet and Sour, Atlanta Lemon Pepper, Indian Tikka Masala, and Mexican Chipotle Aioli to name just a few. The flavors we had the privilege of tasting were Tokyo Umami Aioli and Korean Barbecue.

Boldly vibrant and orange, the Tokyo Umami Aioli wings visually reminded us of traditional American buffalo wings. What these lacked, however, was the nose-tickling aroma of vinegar and spices, and signature tear-jerking spiciness. Despite what they lacked in comparison to a traditional buffalo wing, Mambo’s wings stood in their own spotlight, covered in savory, sweet, umami goodness. On the other hand, the Korean Barbeque Flyers were almost unlike any chicken wing we’ve ever had. If you’ve ever had beef bulgogi, you’ll understand that sweet and bitter barbecue flavor that is barely reminiscent of teriyaki sauce— but on chicken. If you’ve never had bulgogi, the best way to describe it would be barbecue sauce with a soy sauce and ginger-like “twang”.

At this point, Mambo seems like they can do it all, and then when you consider we’re only halfway in, you just know they can do it all. Up next were the Garlic Noodles. There are noodles, and then there are noodles. Mambo provides an experience so strikingly authentic, that if we were to wake up blindfolded and try their Garlic Noodles, all signs would point to us being overseas and ordering freshly made street food in Asia. Not a soup, not a bowl, but nearly pad Thai-style noodles in a barely there flavorful coating of whatever decadent magic Mambo’s chefs put together. It’s as if they injected each noodle with garlic flavor, then cooked them in even more flavor, and immediately delivered them to us. Fortunately, our tour didn’t end here, as we devoured tacos, a recently controversial sandwich, and a Filipino favorite.

Let’s Taco ‘Bout It: Who Has The Best Chicken Sandwich?

Imagine for a moment you’re basking in the tropical sun of a Mexican beach. Well, that’s exactly where Mambo’s Tacos will take you. These tacos are a culinary masterpiece of crunchy fried shrimp, lettuce, pico de gallo, and a smoky, mild chipotle aioli all coming together on a corn tortilla for a tearfully delicious union. One of our favorite tacos, we’d recommend this to everyone — with extra aioli! Mambo’s Taco comes in a flavorful trio, and sets the stage for a filling time.

Our next dish — another Filipino favorite — was the Tapsilog Rice Bowl, and it brought back strong memories of the Hong Kong Rice Bowl. The main comparison here was the unforgettable garlic rice, however, this time we received a sunny side up fried egg atop the rice, and beef tapa, rather than pork. Each bite of this bowl set off a savory explosion of love as we mixed the egg into the rice, and tossed the strips of beef into the fray. Yet and still, we had quite a way to go: Mambo’s Chicken Sandwich with sweet potato fries.

America was recently overcome with strong emotion about who had the better chicken sandwich between Popeyes and Chick-fil-a. With all the arguments, fussing and fighting that went on, we shook our heads at the poor souls who fell victim to that debacle. Little did everyone know, Mambo was the savior they needed at the time. Easily one of our favorite dishes from this list, Mambo’s Chicken Sandwich features a large fried chicken fillet, melty muenster cheese, garlic aioli, tomato, lettuce, and onion, embedded between a buttery soft bun. Juicy, tender, and delivering an addicting flavorful crunch, Mambo has perfected their chicken sandwich, as they have everything else. Seasoned to perfection, we couldn’t recommend this sandwich more.

What More Could U-be Excited For?

Finally, we couldn’t be any more disappointed to reach the end of our voyage with the arrival of dessert. What could quite possibly be the most unique sweet treat we’ve ever had, Mambo’s Ube S’more was not nearly what we expected, and we couldn’t be happier! It took us by surprise because this s’more was not melty and messy, but rather neat and cold. A perfectly cylindrical presentation of lemon custard, ube jam, and lightly torched meringue sat upon a graham crust. While it may seem more like a cheesecake with its density, foundation, and temperature, Mambo’s Ube S’more was pleasantly surprising, and brimming with a sweet arrangement of exciting citrus, gentle ube, and the familiar graham cracker taste most kids come to love. If no other part of this massive meal filled us up, the ube s’more was the key that locked the door. The density of this dessert is enough that two people can share it and be well beyond satisfied.

Money-Friendly Mambo

If the exhausting run down of the food wasn’t enough to sell you, we have to ask if you’re human. If money is a concern, and your pockets aren’t very deep? Well, rest assured that Mambo International Kitchen offers plenty of money-saving options to help guests spare a few bucks. You can find a number of penny-pinching methods to save below, and try different ways to combine the savings where applicable.

Yelp: Check in for a free Korean taco.

Mambo Loyalty Punch card: A free dessert on every 5th visit, and a free rice bowl on every 10th visit.

Happy Hour: Tuesday through Friday, from 2 pm to 5 pm, $1 off all appetizers.

Every Tuesday: $10 rice bowls

Catering: Mambo does have catering options, and you can even reserve the entire restaurant for an event!

In addition to all these money-saving methods, we must say, Mambo International Kitchen has quite an extensive menu. It’s exciting to see so much that sounds so amazing, yet heartbreaking to have to come back to give some of those other things a try. It’s easy to go crazy ordering from the menu, but expect to be well over your head, as Mambo’s dishes are filling, and larger than one might expect. While this tasteful journey does have to end, it’s always reassuring to know that that another delicious trek around the world isn’t too far away, and always available at Mambo International Kitchen. We’re always delighted to step into the miniature world within our world, and hope for more people to experience their “food trip around the world.”

About Mambo

The owners of Mambo are very passionate about good food and equal to that is their delight in hosting and serving people. For many years they’ve dreamed of opening a restaurant that people will love and finally that dream is now a reality.

Our company is established with a passion and desire to serve high quality and cost-effective gourmet food with excellent customer service; quickly and consistently. By combining homestyle comfort food with creative and fun dishes, and a family friendly atmosphere with old industrial decor, we know Mambo is soon to be a community favorite.

8300 Tampa Ave
Northridge, CA 91324
Delivery: Yes:

Journey Up the Nile River

Journey Up the Nile River

July 2019
There are many kinds of vacations—the relaxing, island vacation, the adventuruous trip up the mountains of Peru, the majestic splendor of old churches throughout Europe, and then there is the Middle East. A term coined in 1850s by a British India official, it is composed of 18 countries, 60+ languages and nearly four million people. It is the birthplace of most of the world’s religions and “has been a major center of world affairs; a strategically, economically, politically, culturally, and religiously sensitive area.”

So, let’s just say, it’s not Hawaii.

There are over 200 Nile cruise ships. Many originate in the small town of Aswan, which is down the Nile. This is where our journey begins—after we leave the hustle of Cairo. To get to Aswan you travel by plane or train—driving is not recommended.

An overnight trip to Aswan by an overnight train is a unique experience. The train station in Cairo grows smaller in the distance as we head south on a 549 mile journey. Waking early morning, a rattling train is now alongside the Nile River; a country with a long history that hasn’t seen, in these parts, enormous change: Men still pull carts with cattle, horses carry cane sugar. In one brief moment a dead cow carcass can be seen in a small pond by the side of the road. Time has stood still in these parts.

Aswan is a smaller version of Cairo. To be sure, there is a McDonalds, a Kentucky Fried Chicken, and likely anyday, a Starbucks, but for now, it is a popular city that sits on the Nile, with a substantial amount of river boats.

Aswan is the “Jewel of the Nile”. Pink and grey granite thrusts upward through the Nubian sandstone, forming mountains, cliffs and jagged outcrops. While there countless mosques, there is also Archangel Michael’s Coptic Orthodox Cathedral—a towering catherdral  in the Coptic architecture — the architecture of the Copts, who form the majority of Christians in Egypt.

Security is a way of life in Egypt. In Cairo and in places like the Coptic Church, security runs high. Armed guards and blockades can be found at many hotels and indeed at this Coptic Church. But retail and restaurants flourish in the city of Aswan—it is only until late one after noon on a Friday that the azan, the call to prayer can be heard by countless speakers throughout the city—these callers, called muezzinine, are a cacophony of  sounds—it becomes a surreal moment in a backstreet hotel as the soundtrack shifts, the sun sets, we are surely not in the West anymore.

The river Nile. The view of the river as seen in Aswan.
Photograph by Zuke Oshiro
“What you can expect from a Nile River cruise is the adventure of a lifetime.”
DAY ONE we board the Santuary IV. The Sanctuary Sun Boat IV is a contemporary chic, sleek boat with heavy art deco influences. There are 36 standard cabins, two presidential suites and two royal suites. We are greeted as enter the plank by the entire staff offering refreshments and introductions. We are divided  into groups and assigned an English-speaking tour guide, who will accompany us to the various temples along the way. Afternoon tea will be served. Everynight an activity is planned—tonight, after a gourmet dinner is served, we watch as traditional fokloric music and a “whirling dervish” perform.

As one look about it becomes clear that this journey invites all kinds of people—local Egytians, A London-based Sufi businessman with his family, and elderly couple from Scotland, a couple from Cape Cod, a Brazilan opera singer and her daughter, and Egyptian family with their California-based son-in-law. The staff is attentive, ocassionaly too attentive, but the dinner, which is buffet-style, is a nice start to the this ride up the Nile.

A felucca is a traditional wooden sailing boat used in protected waters of Egypt. Its rig consists of one or two lateen sails.
Photographed by Zuke Oshiro
DAY TWO a large buffet breakfast is served each morning. Groups gather on the first deck and we head out for adventure.  We journey to the majestic Philae Temple on the Island of Agilika. We begin to make friends with some Egytian locals and their California-based relatives. The temples are surreal. Over three thousand years old, the preservation is impressive. We are to dress like and Egyptians for a post-dinner party. We bargain with the locals to buy a “galabeyya”, the traditional Egyptian outfit. Each night, at dinner you are seated in the same place. We are seated next to a Brazilian opera singer and her daughter. The after-dinner party is a chance for everyone to mingle and dance into the wee Egyptian hours. This is the requisite fun of travelling by boat—it’s a small party, you get to know everyone, and their stories.
DAY THREE we set off the visit the Temple of Horus. We begin to understand some aspects of the Egyptian pharoah culture. The mythology is deeply complex. For example Horus, is the sky god and there are two, Horus the Younger and Horus Elder. There is a surprising lack of sexuality in these temples, and everyone is quite fit. The drawings are impeccable and rarely vary in form.

We head to The Temple of Esna. The Temple of Esna, which was buried beneath its own debris for many centuries, is located in the center of the town, close to the River Nile and only a short walk from your boat through the local market. We are given passage by way of carriage. The remains of the Temple contain a hall of columns with 24 pillars beautifully decorated with lotus and palm capitals. Also notable is that while looking up, astrological symbols can be seen, 12 of them.

To suggest that it is overwhelming is an understatement. One has to pinch themselves to remind themselves of the reality—you are in Egypt, in the MIddle East and these are the temples that Hollywood has been in love with for so long.

So that evening, as entertainment, they have set up a projector to show the 1978 film, “Death on the Nile”. This version features Peter Ustinov as Hercule Poirot, the famous Belgian sleuth. Actually filmed along the same route we are on, this two hour and twenty minute film runs late into the Egyptian night—we all retire early for our last day.

DAY FOUR The east and west banks of Luxor. This is the big one, the grandaddy of temples. We’re suddenly seeing more people at these temples.  First stop, Temple of Luxor, dedicated to the god Amun. We have had a change in our tour guide! The people in our group requested a new guide. Welcome Medhat, looking like something out of a central casting for Indiana Jones, he is informative and affable. We move onto the Temple of Karnak.
After lunch, visit the Valley of the Kings or The Great and Majestic Necropolis of the Millions of Years of the Pharaoh, Life, Strength, Health in The West of Thebes, as it was once known. We will have the chance to visit at least one tomb in the Valley of the Queens, and visit the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut. On the way back to the river Nile, you will pass by the famed Colossi of Memnon, known in Ancient Greek times for their haunting voices at dawn.


It’s over. We arrive at our final moments on board the Santuary IV — saying goodby the ship is abuzz with activity. Rooms are quickly seen to. We head to the Luxor airport to head back to Cairo. We have made friends. We travel over vast stretches of desert, broken by the sudden appearance of a great lake, which seems to run for miles. We are back in Cairo for 12 hours.

There was something about this trip, that for the well-worn traveler speaks to that ocassional need for danger—not physical danger, but to be somewhere where your native language is foreign, the landscape, the people, the culture is vastly different than anything previously experienced. Bali was one of those places, The Maldives certainly. Cairo, Aswan, Luxor, all spoke to a distance of things known, flavors never tasted, history seen in terms of thousands instead of hundreds. Dangerous? Sure—you’re in the Middle East—you cannot get to Israel easily from Egypt though it is under 500 miles away. But it’s Egypt, it’s Cairo. It’s the Pyramids! It’s everything you ever imagined and more. To be sure, there was a moment, leaving the hustle of Cairo in a taxi and the Pyramids suddenlhy appear in the distance—it’s a moment. Crusing up the Nile via a five star luxury boat, that too, was many moments.

Giant Humanoids Descend Upon DTLA in “Fantastic Planet” at FIGat7th

Giant Humanoids Descend Upon DTLA in “Fantastic Planet” at FIGat7th

Gigantic, startling, illuminated, and altogether breathtaking humanoid figures will descend upon Downtown Los Angeles later this month at the FIGat7th Plaza. The Australian artist Amanda Parer’s latest must-see light installation opens Tuesday, October 30th and will live among us through November 10th.

While seemingly peaceful and ethereal, the figures are also imposing and daring. They seem to display an extraordinary curiosity for their onlookers, just as onlookers are fascinated by them. These giants from above give audiences the impression that they have just landed and are quietly observing us and gently exploring our, you guessed it, “fantastic planet.”

Parer’s edgy artworks explore the natural world and our place within it. As with Parer’s globally successful public art exhibit Intrude, these forms will not be randomly placed sculptures but are strategically placed to give the impression that the giant humanoids have taken over the entire event site and, perhaps, the world.

As Parer describes her work, “I raise questions about our relationship with the natural world. I communicate these themes by use of, scale, light, dark, humour, and drama. In these works, the audiences are enticed with beautiful, mostly invasive (which includes us) or endangered species, enlarged and dominant within their given habitats.”

Parer was inspired by the 1973 Czech/ French film Fantastic Planet (La Planète Sauvage). This stop motion science fiction film was directed by René Laloux and depicts a story set in an unimaginably distant future in a world of gargantuan humanoids where human beings are treated as animals and sometimes even kept as pets. The film was awarded the Grand Prix special jury prize at the 1973 Cannes Film Festival, and in 2016, it was ranked the 36th greatest animated movie ever by Rolling Stone.

In her eerie and surreal installation, Parer lightly touches on the idea of a struggling human race through her Fantastic Planet installation, opening the door for existential questions about our place in today’s world.

While wondrous and life-affirming, Parer’s work also offers jarring examinations into our world today. Fantastic Planet is a sight to behold, but also crackles with emotional and political resonance.

Fantastic Planet will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., and is located at 735 S. Figueroa. The light installation is free and open to the public, and very close to the 7th Street Metro stop. Be sure to stop by, say hello, and welcome them to our City of Angels.

See more of Amanda Parer’s work at Parer Studio and watch a live one minute video of Fantastic Planet below.



While seemingly peaceful and ethereal, the figures are also imposing and daring. They seem to display an extraordinary curiosity for their onlookers, just as onlookers are fascinated by them. These giants from above give audiences the impression that they have just landed and are quietly observing us and gently exploring our, you guessed it, “fantastic planet.”, pub-2907176749232271, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0