Liza Simone is the Founding Director of Phantom Galleries LA (PGLA), a program launched in 2005 that facilitates and administrates temporary public arts programming in vacant storefronts throughout Los Angeles County. The program was established as a valuable resource for artists, curators, communities, and not-for-profit organizations for creating temporary public art galleries where they are least expected. Taking its name from Phantom Galleries of San Jose, Simone introduced an alternative system for exhibiting art to Los Angeles. With PGLA, Simone uses the potential of art to transform and bridge communities.
Inspired by her collaborative success of the Gallery Row Ad Hoc Committee for the Downtown Los Angeles Neighborhood Council (DLANC), Simone helped organize nomadic exhibitions and temporary public art as part of the 2004 unveiling event for Gallery Row. Feeling that there was a need for more of this kind of programming, Simone cultivated her own vision of temporary public art in action for Los Angeles’ economic climate by developing PGLA. Since PGLA’s inception in 2005, Simone has directed well over 450 exhibitions. She currently serves as Executive Director of ArtSite LA and is the co-founder of The Long Beach Downtown Art Walk.
Simone has also been an active participant in the LA art scene as a curator, organizer, writer, and consultant for projects, including the initial launch of The Arts District Citizen. She has worked with a number of highly regarded local museums and non-profit organizations and has been a guest speaker at Biola University, USC, UCLA, FIDM, and Cal State Northridge. Her contributions as a writer and photographer have been published in the LA Times, The Arts District Citizen, Public Magazine, 944 Magazine, The District Weekly, and now, the Huffington Post.