Watts Towers


The Watts Towers, Towers of Simon Rodia, or Nuestro Pueblo are a collection of 17 interconnected sculptural towers, architectural structures, and individual sculptural features and mosaics within the site of the artist's original residential property in Watts, Los Angeles. The entire site of towers, structures, sculptures, pavement and walls were designed and built solely by Sabato Rodia, an Italian immigrant construction worker and tile mason, over a period of 33 years from 1921 to 1954.

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These 17 interconnected towers rise like inverted ice cream cones, the tallest reaching over 100 feet. Built by an Italian immigrant construction worker from 1921 to 1954, they may be America’s most famous example of self-built architecture.
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The world-famous Watts Towers, as the well-known story goes, were built by Italian immigrant Simon Rodia with simple hand tools and raw determination— merely because he “wanted to do something big.” He succeeded. These mosaic-adorned steel structures are indeed a sight to behold.
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Still haven't been to the spectacular Watts Towers? This is the perfect opportunity to check out the iconic sculpture, constructed from broken dishes, bottles, tiles, pottery, rocks, seashells and more, items salvaged from the area by Simon Rodia in the early part of the 20th century. Today, the Watts Towers Art Center, adjacent to the Towers, displays contemporary art, provides tours of the Towers and offers art classes, for local youth and special needs adults.
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Located in the heart of Watts, The Watts Towers Arts Center provides classes in painting, sculpture, photography, music, dance, and more. During the last weekend of September, Watts Towers Arts Center also produces the Annual Watts Towers Day of the Drum Festival and the Annual Simon Rodia Watts Towers Jazz Festival.
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August 11-16, 1965 Riots Break Out in Watts Riots in the Watts area of Los Angeles leave 34 dead and more than a thousand injured. The arrest of a young African American man charged with reckless driving sparks the violence, but its underlying causes are mass unemployment, poor living conditions, and other forms of systemic racism. Visible from across the neighborhood, the Watts Towers art project serves as a source of pride, bearing silent witness to change.
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