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Check Out the de LaB (Design East of La Brea) Story

Today we’d like to introduce you to de LaB.

Please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
Design East of La Brea (you can call us de LaB) is a Los Angeles-based nonprofit that celebrates and supports local creatives in their efforts to enlighten, improve and engage the city.

Through events that are educational, inspirational, and interactive, de LaB unites an enthusiastic community of local residents who are invested in the future of LA.

We firmly believe that the east side of Los Angeles is home to the most exciting creative community in the world. We bring exposure to its artists, designers, and architects—both legendary and emerging—through events, workshops and public engagement projects that focus on building a better LA. Together, we explore the changing urban environment, discover new projects and ideas, and learn about the city in which we live, helping us to become more passionate, more invested Angelenos.

Has it been a smooth road?
de LaB started so organically that it has always felt fairly smooth doing our work. In a way, you could say we were in the right place at the right time. The community responded very enthusiastically and quickly to the types of programs we instinctively loved to create! The struggle came when we wanted to grow bigger and realized that there were limits to being an all-volunteer nonprofit organization.

We’d love to hear more about your organization and the work you do.  You’ve had a lot of great press as well – any particular highlights you can share?
Since our inception in 2008, de LaB has inspired and educated thousands of architects, designers, design enthusiasts and members of the general public through a range of programs—more than 200 and
counting!—which regularly sell out or reach capacity. Organized and hosted by local design professionals
Alissa Walker, Haily Zaki, Marissa Gluck, and Erin Cullerton, our programs are attended by an evergrowing and diversifying audience of Angelenos curious about their city.

Here’s what the media has said about us…

“de LaB has done hundreds of micro-tours investigating the most fascinating places on the LA design and architecture map, offering both special access to legends and the joy of discovering the new.”
—LA Weekly

“The women of de LaB like to joke that cocktails are the fuel that keeps their educational design nonprofit running. But just like buying another round, the group’s lively events, studio tours, and boots-on-the-ground neighborhood explorations are things that are possible only in person.”
—California Home + Design

“Los Angeles, you’re getting smarter. Or acting smarter, anyway. Judging by the runaway success of interdisciplinary idea-jam conferences like TED, intellectually spiked salons de LaB and farmlab, and the brainy bacchanal of Mindshare LA, the Los Angeles area has become a hub for gatherings that combine the social and the cerebral.”
—Los Angeles Times

Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Absolutely. We wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for the amazingness of LA and all that it has to offer creatively.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
de LaB, Monica Nouwens, Tara Wujick

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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