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Little Tahiti

It began in 2008... I wanted to walk outside my door and sit by a tree. I found a discarded car seat while diving the streets. “Why not?” I said to myself, “It looks comfortable, maybe I'll take it home.” I had no idea what I was about to get myself into.

Sitting on the bench seat in front of the eucalyptus tree, on the side of the hill, wasn't as comfortable as I had imagined. The seat kept sliding down the hill. “I'll have to level it off,” I said. Then I thought.... “Why not build a hut while you're at it?” So I went out and bought four posts, and then realized I needed to sink them into cement for some stability. The project quickly took over, but it was fun... and hard work. I would take breaks and look at the incredible view, drink some coffee, and smoke a cigar. Griffith Observatory was pm the horizon with the sun setting right behind, over the hill in the distance. Man-o-man.

I put the video camera on a tripod and documented the process. No cameraman, no zoom in, zoom out... just a stationary shot. At night, I would look at the footage and laugh at myself. When I watched the dailies, I thought about how I could make the hut better. For six years I kept improving it. I started having parties at the hut, I called them HUTWARMINGS.

We all need a place to sit and relax. Maybe you relax with your legs crossed, maybe you meditate. The world is a crazy place, and you need a respite to escape the madness. Where's the special place where you can escape? Tell me. When I'm relaxing and letting my mind wander, it goes places. Sometimes far away. The hut is a perfect place to daydream or meditate, contemplate, fantasize... a place to exercise the imagination. Years ago when I visited Tahiti, I was struck by the beauty of the Society Islands.

When I sit here, I want my mind to go there. My mind can see the tropical foliage, my body can feel a warm breeze, and I can swim in the blue waters. There is a picture- postcard on the wall in the hut, a picture of the Island of Moorea in Tahiti. Bali Hai is located on that island, near the beach cove where Captain Cook and his crew landed in the 18th Century. The men were mesmerized by the bare-breasted women on the shore. They got a bit wild, so the Captain decided he couldn't allow them to continue to go on shore and get drunk, to chase the ladies the way sailors will do. They mutinied. Go figure.

When I can't see Tahiti in my mind’s eye while sitting in LITTLE TAHITI, I look at this picture and fantasize about being there. It helps me sail over that mountain ridge in the distance, over the ocean, and land in Tahiti.

I hope when people sit here and look out over this vista, they can also use your imagination and fly... out there, to someplace you might like to be, a place that makes you feel warm and comfortable. Have a nice journey.

Little Tahiti 2009 Hutwarming II Captain Squid in Little Tahiti

Click on a thumbnail above to see a video from Little Tahiti

Sunset from Little Tahiti Moonset from Little Tahiti