May 19, 2021

Kimchi Fried Rice at the End of the Jar

Community / DIY

By Jen Kim, Conservator

So grateful am I for my colleague Christina Lehua Hummel-Colla’s post on the AAPI experience and comfort food, that I am chiming in with my family’s own style of kimchi fried rice. It’s a very basic version of the dish that’s great for using up leftovers. In fact, it’s better with leftovers. Like Christina, I don’t have a formal recipe, and no measurements, but hopefully this description can impart some sense of how I make it.

I always use older kimchi (there are many types but I’m referring to the bright red stuff with napa... Read more

May 18, 2021

How I Owe My Life to Spam (Plus a Recipe for Spam Fried Rice)

Community / DIY

By: Keisha Raines, Communications and Digital Marketing Manager

There doesn’t seem to be a middle ground for Spam. You either think it’s weird (which it is) and gross or you love it and think it’s delicious (which it also is.) For my family in war-torn Guam, it was salvation. Without Spam, I might not be here today. To understand how canned pork plays into my creation, you need to know how it got to Guam.

To say the residents of Guam love Spam is an understatement. The people of Guam eat an average of 16 cans per person annually, more Spam per capita than... Read more

May 18, 2021

Garlic, SPAM, & Rice: A Comfort Food Trinity

Community / DIY
By Liza Posas, Head of Research Services and Archives

I am joining in on the fried rice game with my Autry colleagues Jennifer, Yuki, Keisha, and of course the woman who led the charge, Christina.

Like my colleagues, my version of fried rice is derived from something that is as familial as it is familiar. Growing up, my father was the fried rice maker in the house. And our fried rice was synonymous to GARLIC fried rice that included just a few ingredients, basic instructions, and the promise of comfort food savoriness (or dare I say “umami”).

Dad’s Garlic Fried... Read more

May 13, 2021

Spam Fried Rice for the Soul

Community / DIY

By Christina Lehua Hummel-Colla, Library Collections Assistant

The years of our coronavirus, 2020 and 2021, have been hard on us all—including Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities, targeted as scapegoats for the COVID-19 crisis from the start. Given the co-morbidity of disease and racial violence, from anti-Jewish pogroms during the Black Death to 19th century anti-Asian racism during the 1817 Cholera Pandemic , I am hardly surprised, yet... Read more

March 8, 2021

Ingenuity in Scarcity: Sustainable Solutions to Material Shortages during the Pandemic (The Autry’s Collecting Community History Initiative)

The Autry's Collecting Community History Initiative / Collections / Community / DIY

Nicole Mitchell: “I custom-designed, and dyed antibacterial hemp face covers, Made-in-LA. I chose hemp because of its natural antibacterial properties, UV, and mold resistance. Hemp fabric gets softer and more durable with every wash cycle. Our first production runs, I decided to keep a minimalistic design with no logo or prints because our top priority was to produce quality protection for the people a quick as possible. Urbane face covers represent a movement of unity not only to protect our global health but to consume items where the product lifecycle will benefit... Read more

March 8, 2021

Words on Walls: Messages of Resistance in Public Spaces (The Autry’s Collecting Community History Initiative)

The Autry's Collecting Community History Initiative / Collections / Community / DIY

Banner image by Jonathan Moller

By: Marina Nye, Curatorial Research Assistant and PhD Student, UCLA History dept.

Contributors to the Collecting Community History Initiative (CCHI) captured powerful images of the Black Lives Matter protests. Some of the photographs captured messages of resistance that were inscribed across public spaces such as buildings, storefronts, sidewalks, vehicles, and statues. Whether these messages were written hastily with spray paint or took hours of careful precision, they all express the importance and... Read more

December 11, 2020

Let Them Eat Books: Chocolate Spice Cookies from The Arizona Cook Book

Collections / DIY / Library and Archives / Revealing Women in the Archives
By Christina Lehua Hummel-Colla, Library Collections Assistant

Williams needed a public library, and the women of the Williams Public Library Association were determined to provide one. Though a small town with a population of about 2,500 in the early 1900s , Williams was not insignificant, hosting the terminal of the Grand Canyon Railway and serving as the Gateway to the Grand Canyon. Despite this, the town had not the means to construct and maintain a public library .... Read more

September 28, 2020

Griffith Park Yarnscape 9: How to Crochet a Merry-go-round Horse

DIY / Exhibitions

Have you had enough passive screen-time and want to make something with your hands, maybe learning a new skill in the process? Join us in contributing to a gallery display of Griffith Park in crochet, with the help of these how-to videos.  

As part of our exhibition Investigating Griffith Park we’re inviting the Autry community to make pieces to represent various aspects of the park, from nature to recreational activities, and mail them into the Autry (or drop them off in person once the... Read more

September 25, 2020

Way to a Heart: How Pandemic Cooking Re-United a Family

Collections / Community / DIY / Library and Archives / Revealing Women in the Archives
By Christina Lehua Hummel-Colla, Library Collections Assistant

Since childhood, one of my favorite social activities has been cooking and baking with friends and loved ones. In high school, I baked cakes, cookies, and even a flan with two of my best friends. As an undergrad, I would squeeze into the dormitory’s kitchen to make treats with my roommate and our shared friends. Over the past year, I have learned whole new ways of cooking with two members of my chosen family, Molly and Timber. Neither of them eats eggs, and Molly maintains a vegan and gluten free diet. When we cook together, we... Read more

September 24, 2020

How the Pandemic Redefined Family Dinners

Collections / Community / DIY / Library and Archives / Revealing Women in the Archives
By: Keisha Raines, Communications and Digital Marketing Manager

I wouldn’t call myself a great cook. I have signature dishes, but I also still have to Google “how to hard boil an egg” because I never commit the sequence and time to memory. I wouldn’t even say I enjoy cooking because most the time I was cooking for one and where’s the fun in that? Before the pandemic, I made quick meals in between work and going out. Usually eggs in some form or a stir fry. I prepared salads for work lunches that I would eat at my desk, shoving greens into my mouth like some sort of deranged rabbit. On the... Read more