The Wonderful Towers of Watts
Patricia Zelver, Frane Lessac
(Boyds Mills Press, Sept. 1, 2005)
The incredible artwork of an Italian immigrant who followed his dream of monumental proportions in the impoverished Watts neighborhood of Los Angeles is revealed in this fascinating and engaging true story. Simon (Sam) Rodia had no formal engineering or architectural training. Yet, over the course of three decades, he constructed an artistic masterpiece in his own backyard – the Watts Towers. Using all kinds of things other people had thrown away, such as broken bottles and tiles, pieces of mirror and glass, seashells, and bits of pottery, he adorned the collection of 17 interconnected sculptural towers. His imaginative salvaging and perseverance can be seen today, as people from all over the world still come to marvel at Sam’s dream.