Lisa Hanawalt is a Brooklyn based artist who has a bit of a thing for being funny. She’s not a comedian, no, but there is an inherent humor in her work. There’s a dry sharpness to them, these pointed pokes to the ribs that are crafted to make you giggle and smile. She’s recently compiled her work into the book My Dirty Dumb Eyes, a hysterical and at all times finely illustrated tour through the happenings in (and around) her head. This includes everything from honest movie reviews to animal comics to renderings about Anna Wintour’s secrets.
To promote this new release, she’s embarking on a cross country tour of the United States and parts of Canada and, obviously, is stopping into Los Angeles. She’ll be doing a little signing and talk at Skylight Books this Monday, June 3, and we thought since she’s a rad gal and LA is a rad city we should probably have a little chat with her about her visit. Although she hasn’t arrived just yet (She’s likely en route from Oakland to Portland, actually.) we had a quick talk about her thoughts on Los Angeles, a city she actually adores and has quite a history with.
What brings you to Los Angeles?
I’m doing an event at Skylight Books! I’m going to show and tell from my new book, My Dirty Dumb Eyes, and then autograph (and make dumb drawings) in peoples’ books.
How long are you in town?
Only two nights, unfortunately!
What neighborhood are you staying in? What are your thoughts on that part of town?
I’m staying with my friend Jessica Gao in Koreatown, near Hollywood. It’s not the most beautiful part of town but it’s very convenient and the Korean BBQ there is the best I’ve ever had. I’m staying with Jessica because she’s funny as hell and she has terrific shoes.
How many times have you visited Los Angeles? What do you think of the city?
I moved there in 2001 to attend UCLA, and lived in West LA (near Sawtelle, basically right under where the 405 crosses the 10) until I moved to Brooklyn in 2009. Eight years!! I love LA and still fantasize about moving back and finding an affordable bungalow in Silverlake (I know, dream on). If the public transportation was better it would be my favorite city.
What is the best part of your trip so far?
I’m not there yet, but I’m looking forward to seeing old friends and maybe getting some decent tacos.
Could you see yourself living here?
I’m staying in NY for now, but I could definitely see myself moving back, especially if I get the opportunity to work on a TV show as a character designer or writer.
Well, you heard it here: give Lisa a job on a television show so we can recruit her to be a West coaster again! We’re sure that will happen sooner than she thinks and, as noted before, you should swing by and see her at Skylight this Monday if you are around. You can–and should–pick up her book here, too.