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Mosaic Tile House in California stands as monument to 2 Decades of artistic collaboration

Pann was encouraged by family and professors to pursue accounting, but at age 18 she went to a Van Gogh show and never looked back

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Mosaic Tile House
Mosaic Tile Artwork. Representational image. Pixabay
  • The Mosaic Tile House stands as a monument to two decades of artistic collaboration between Cheri Pann and husband Gonzalo Duran
  • The house is on a quiet street, a 20-minute bike ride from the beach and Pann bought it in 1994 and wanted to build an art studio in it
  • Pann was encouraged by family and professors to pursue accounting, but at age 18 she went to a Van Gogh show and never looked back

The Mosaic Tile House in California stands as a monument to two decades of artistic collaboration between Cheri Pann and husband Gonzalo Duran. 

“Its tchotchke heaven,” Pann, 76, told Reuters about her kaleidoscopic bungalow. “It’s turned out to be homage to putting everything possible into cement.”

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By “everything,” Pann means figurines of poodles and hula girls, commemorative china baseball bats and a sweeping arch of coffee cups, their handles pointing skyward. Smashed pottery and shards of mirror make up the more traditional mosaic patterns on the house’s interior and exterior surfaces.

The couple met in 1992 when Duran was working at an art supply store and Pann was in need of some acrylic paints. They still go back to the same store for supplies.

Photos of artists Gonzalo Duran and Cheri Pann are seen in the kitchen of their Mosaic Tile House in Venice, California U.S., August 26, 2016. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni
Photos of artists Gonzalo Duran and Cheri Pann are seen in the kitchen of their Mosaic Tile House in Venice, California U.S., August 26, 2016. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni

The house is on a quiet street, a 20-minute bike ride from the beach. Pann bought it in 1994 and wanted to build an art studio in it. After the studio was built, Pann made tiles for the bathroom.

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“It was so much fun doing it, we just kept on going,” said Duran, 72, who was born in Mexico and raised in East Los Angeles.

Tiles in the shapes of butterflies, camels and giraffes surround the sink. A ceramic cockerel sits proudly atop the breakfast bar. One of the walls is covered in photographs of the couple. Kitchen appliances are decorated with paint.

The collaboration is, Pann said, the ultimate “honey-do” project. She makes the tiles, he lays them. 

“He’s busy working, working, and working and then I’ll come along and say, ‘Hon, hmmm, there is something wrong and I won’t know what it is.’ And then he’ll take a look back and he’ll say, ‘Ah, I know what it is,’ and then he’ll fix it,” Pann said. 

Pann was encouraged by family and professors to pursue accounting, but at age 18 she went to a Van Gogh show and never looked back. 

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“The story behind the house is really about the love story behind Gonzalo and myself,” Pann said. “We salsa in the house, we kiss all day long, and if it weren’t toxic, I’d paint on him.” 

Pann hopes the Mosaic Tile House eventually will be preserved on the National Register of Historic Places. He is convinced the house will stay standing. 

“To tear this down is a big job. So I mean it’ll be here forever,” he said. (Reuters)

 

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2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo to be Postponed Due to Coronavirus Pandemic

Coronavirus Forces Delay of 2020 Olympics

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Tokyo olympics
A man wearing protective face mask, following the outbreak of the coronavirus, looks at his mobile phone next to The Olympic rings in front of the Japan Olympics Museum in Tokyo, Japan. VOA

The 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo will be postponed until next year because of the coronavirus pandemic, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced Tuesday.

Although the International Olympic Committee had said it would spend up to a month debating the matter, the decision to postpone became inevitable after several countries said they would not send athletes if the Games were held this summer.

“The IOC president and the prime minister of Japan have concluded that the Games must be rescheduled to a date beyond 2020, but not later that summer 2021 to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games, and the international community,” the IOC and the Japanese organizing committee said in a joint statement Tuesday.

Tokyo olympics
Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe talks to the journalists in front of the prime minister’s residence in Tokyo. VOA

Both committees say they made their decision after consulting with the World Health Organization. Abe and the IOC had said that canceling the Games had always been out of the question.

“The Olympic Games in Tokyo could stand as a beacon of hope to the world during these troubled times that the Olympic flame could become the light at the end of the tunnel in which the world finds itself at present,” the IOC said.

Abe told reporters in Tokyo that when the Games finally gets under way, it will prove that “humanity had beat the coronavirus.”

The Summer Games were to have opened July 24.

Team USA, which represents triathlon and duathlon Olympic contenders, tweeted its thanks to the Tokyo organizers for what it says is “all you have done for a great Olympic and Paralympic Games. We wish you all the best as you keep your communities safe and offer our cooperation and support as you prepare to host the world.”

Tokyo olympics
A man takes pictures of the Olympic Flame during a ceremony in Fukushima City, Japan. VOA

The Olympics have been canceled three times since the modern Games began in 1896. They were scrapped in 1916 during World War I and in 1940 and 1944 during World War II.

The Games have been boycotted, propagandized by Nazi Germany, and attacked by terrorists, but have never before been postponed.

Japanese organizers said Tuesday they are also postponing the Olympic torch relay that was supposed to start Thursday.

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The flame arrived in Japan from its traditional lighting in Greece on March 12. It was supposed to have traveled around Japan, to be used to light the flame at the opening ceremonies in Tokyo.

The torch will remain in Fukushima until the Games are firmly rescheduled. (VOA)