Saturday, March 26, 2011

Playland Not At The Beach

Detail of Playland Diarama, ink & watercolor
Detail from Playland Diorama, ink & watercolor, by Jana Bouc
Playland Not At The Beach Museum of Fun is an amazing place created by a group of volunteers and artists who are passionate about the circus, history, carnivals, and a San Francisco amusement park (now long gone) called Playland at the Beach.

Laughing Sal, ink, gouache & watercolor
Laughing Sal who laughs non-stop
Hidden away behind a nondescript storefront in El Cerrito, Playland Not At The Beach is both a museum  and a place to play, with room after room of visual delights, each surpassing the next.

Circus Diorama Detail, ink & watercolor
Detail from one of the Circus Dioramas, ink & watercolor
The circus dioramas contain 300,000 hand-carved and hand-painted realistic figures of every kind of person, animal and behind-the-scenes activity. The creativity and dedication to follow one's passion that went into making the circus dioramas brought tears to my eyes and left me intensely inspired.

For more about our sketching night at Playland, please visit my blog, (and scroll down  for more Playland sketches from our group.)

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