Kw-logo-holiday

Artist - Simon Rodia

Mosiac art.
Courtesy of WTAC
Another Watt Tower.
Courtesy of WTAC

You'd really have to be blind not to see the large steel towers touching the sky in Watts, Los Angeles. The nine steel forms are embedded with ceramic tile, pottery shards, seashells and broken glass. Two of the three main towers are nearly 100 feet high and contain the longest slender column of reinforced concrete in the world. Built by Simon Rodia, it took 33 years to complete.

In 1921 Simon bought himself a house and some pie shaped land. Alone, he began making the masterpiece he called Nuestro Pueblo which means "our town." Without any help from special equipment, scaffolding or even drawing board designs, Simon set out building his towers with a tile setter's tools, and a window washer's belt and buckle. During the next 33 years Simon filled his yard with three tall towers, a patio, three birdbaths, and a spire 38 feet tall. Not to be left out is a structure he called the Ship of Marco Polo which has a 28-foot tall spire. On top of all this, he built walls all around his yard and decorated it with a wide variety of objects and materials.

At 74, his work complete, he moved back to Martinez, California and never saw the towers again before he died in 1965. Unfortunately, a fire destroyed his old home in 1957, but what remains is still inside this complex maze of steel and is considered a cultural monument.

Do you have a masterpiece you would like to share with us? Or maybe you know someone else who has a masterpiece you'd like us to know about. Drop us a .

Related Stories:

  • Anne Geddes
  • Dave Chihuly - Glass Blower
  • Temper the Graffiti Artist
  • More Great Artist Biographies and Art Projects!
  • >

    readers voted!

    Comments

    there are 0 comments

    Please login or register to add comments


    like this article?
    Sign up now to get more just like it!

    latest videos

    F982020323328

    How Would You React If People Made Fun of Your Artwork?

    • Give up, it's not worth the humiliation.
    • Work only in your fortress - this may mean building one.
    • Make fun of those laughing at you.
    • You live in a bubble so who cares.

    related stories

    Random in the forums

    AlphaT
    AlphaT posted in Say Anything:
    5
    reply 31 minutes
    Mollie16:)
    People!
    reply 31 minutes
    Mollie16:)
    An Artist or an Actor I have feeling for both and am very talented in both, i hv been acting since 3 and Drawing since 4
    reply 32 minutes
    Mollie16:)
    Idk....
    reply 34 minutes
    Harmonia
    The Vanishing Game by Kate Kae Myers.
    reply 43 minutes

    play online games

    Hour-of-code-tumb

    Codey the troll is lost! Help him avoid obstacles and get back into the computer...

    Candy-quest-feature

    Your troll is lost! Help it avoid obstacles and get back into the computer.

    Fo...

    Dragon-dash

    Your dragon must return to guard the treasure! Help it gather lost coins and avo...

    _thumb_100x100

    Shoot blobs with different properties to merge yellow blobs. Your blobs can be r...

    1005_cc_kidz_100x100_vlh

    Candy's got her candies into a terrible mess, can you help her to sort them out?

    Candy-100

    A great online version of the famous Candy Crush. This is the best game launched...

    _thumb_100x100

    Bloons 2 is here! A worthy and awesome sequel at last to our original Bloons gam...

    Frostbox_100x100

    Explore the world or hang out with friends in your own condo. Get a unique look,...