Mukta Mohan

In Passing preserves LA's iconography

Mukta Mohan
In Passing preserves LA's iconography

For those of us lucky enough to call Los Angeles home, it’s hard to ignore the ever evolving landscape around us. The loss of our favorite restaurants, bars and stores to “multi-use” buildings is a constant reality. In Passing (@inpassingla) is a collaborative online archive of images and design found throughout Los Angeles that aims to preserve some of the images that accompany our favorite places. On this episode of Sunset Hour, creator of In Passing Nathan Ward talks to Mukta about his goals for the archive, what inspired the project, and how he hopes it will contribute to the preservation of LA’s iconography. Open to submissions from everyone, with an ever expanding collection, In Passing won't be lost to time anytime soon.



On what he chooses to capture

I don't really have a set structure. I just am kind of in the city and see things that excite me and want to capture it. So it's really a feeling more than anything. It's a lot of hand drawn stuff for sure, a lot of commercial storefronts, a lot of, I would say small businesses mostly but it's also maybe a weird mural in an alley that probably not many people have seen… I've started taking more time to notice things in the city as I drive around or walk around and when something sticks out like that it's kind of how I know that could be a good addition.


On collaboration

The real goal is for it to be a collaborative archive. And it was definitely inspired by a few artists and people who have really cool archives on Instagram like Guadalupe Rosales. Another thing I was thinking about was it not just being me, because I don't think I speak for LA imagery as a whole and I think there's so much out there - so many people in different parts of LA. More contributions would be awesome, so if you're listening and if you have any cool LA pics DM me.


On changing neighbhorhoods

I grew up in the Fairfax neighborhood. My mom grew up there too. We've been in the same house actually for 60 years. It's a predominately Jewish neighborhood or it was, you know, in the commercial spaces there were a lot of Jewish stores. There's a lot of imagery I remember in that neighborhood that I wish still existed. I know I might not need to explain this but, the name was definitely intentional. In Passing, these are things you're seeing in passing as you're walking in LA, but definitely a little on the somber note, these are things that might not exist, and this is potentially LA imagery that's going to be gone. But hopefully not...