CURATING L.A.: L.A. River Bridges Plates – A Unique Holiday Gift by Jim Gilbert

March 28, 2017

It should come as no surprise that I’m attracted to products that promote the people, places and culture that define Los Angeles. After all, Curating LA is all about helping locals and visitors alike gain a deeper appreciation for those things that make Los Angeles one of the world’s great cities. But it’s rare to discover items that honor L.A. in a unique way. More often than not, what I find in local brick and mortar and online stores are products that rehash the same L.A. themed imagery (e.g. the Hollywood sign), are poorly designed or just plain tacky.

I was therefore very excited to learn about the L.A. River Bridges Plates, which depict four historic bridges that span the Los Angeles River. The set of four, limited edition, collectible porcelain plates depict the Fourth Street Bridge, the Sixth Street Bridge, the Seventh Street Bridge and the Cesar Chavez Avenue Bridge.

Each plate is adorned with an image of one bridge on the front and a brief history of the structure on the back. Mayor Eric Garcetti took the photograph used for the Sixth Street Bridge plate, while Daniel Stein took the other three bridge photographs.

The plates have a classic, formal look that I find very appealing. I can envision displaying them in my home or using them for special occasions. In either case they’d serve as an elegant reminder of some of the city’s finest 20th Century civic architecture.

If you’re looking for a holiday gift that’s unique, decorative, useful and educational, this set of plates will fit the bill. Aside from bringing a little local history into your own home or that of a friend or family member, you’ll also be doing some good with this purchase. A portion of the money you spend will go to the Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles, which “brings together the best of private, philanthropic, non-profit and government resources to take on the city’s most pressing challenges.”


What: The L.A. River Bridges Plates are a set of four porcelain plates, 8.25″ in diameter (salad/dessert-sized). They are food safe and can be used in a microwave and/or a dishwasher. They are only available as a full set.

Cost: $199 for the set of four plates

Where to Purchase: Order online from The River Bridges Plates Project web site or purchase from one of the following local retailers: Los Angeles County Store, Museum of Contemporary Art gift shop, Art Share L.A. in the Arts District, and Los Feliz Cafe. I suggest calling ahead for availability.