Love Apples, public art project with Islands of LA, 2008
An installation of 70 tomato plants on 12 traffic islands in LA, carefully tracked to see which thrive and which perish, Survivor style, and then harvested in a public festival in August. “Love Apple” was an early European name for the tomato, once considered an aphrodisiac. These tomatoes were planted on unoccupied and irrigated public space, and nothing was destroyed or removed in placing them. The project was a test of the definition and use of public space in the city of Los Angeles, imagining new ways in which such spaces could be utilized for the enjoyment of all. Visitors were invited to sample but not hoard any tomatoes they found in public. To encourage people to explore the city’s forgotten spaces, a complete map was released near the end of the project. Love Apples was a collaboration between Islands of LA (islandsofla.org) and Fallen Fruit.