L.A., Where the World Convalesces

Today, It’s Chinese Health Tourists. A Century Ago, It Was American Consumptives Coming for the Sunshine.

The historical record is full of such stories: He moved to Los Angeles “for health reasons.” She relocated to Southern California “for her health.” Booster rhymes of the late 19th and early 20th century tripped off the tongue: come to Los Angeles for health and for wealth.

And come they did, especially following the arrival of the railroads in the 1870s and 1880s, amidst the pathos of collective coughing, and spitting, and shortness of breath. Tuberculars, thousands of them, but …


The Takeaway

How to Make an Artist Biopic That’s Not Pretentious or Boring

The Writer-Producers of Tim Burton’s ‘Big Eyes’ Say You’ve Got to Start with the Right Subject: Someone Who’s Not Universally Considered to Be Great

What makes a piece of art great? Which artists’ stories are worth telling? And why are biopics about the great artists generally pretentious and boring? After a screening of their new movie Big Eyes, writer-producers Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski discussed these questions at a Zócalo/Getty “Open Art” event at the Landmark Theatre.

The Tim Burton-directed Big Eyes tells the story of Margaret Keane (played by Amy Adams), an artist whose surreal paintings of doe-eyed young girls became a sensation in …