Conjuring Wonder in Hollywood's Hidden Sculpture Garden - Atlas Obscura

Conjuring Wonder in Hollywood’s Hidden Sculpture Garden

An art oasis grows and glows in one of L.A.’s most iconic locations.

In the daytime, it's easy to see how the design of Dr. Gordon's home influences his garden, and vice versa.
In the daytime, it's easy to see how the design of Dr. Gordon's home influences his garden, and vice versa. All photos by Foster Snell

Hollywood doesn’t reserve its magic just for its movies; the hills themselves are dotted with marvels, from sleepy stucco estates haunted by legendary escape artists to space-age homes that wait, sentinel-like, for a future not yet realized.

One such hidden gem is a secret sculpture garden, nestled just beneath the iconic Hollywood sign. On rare occasion, Dr. Robby Gordon opens his home for private tours, as he did a few weeks ago for Chase Sapphire® cardmembers and Atlas Obscura guests. Located on a steep and winding road and obscured by an overflow of flowering vines, the sculpture garden sits behind Dr. Gordon’s home. A collection of both his own artwork and the work of those he admires, the garden is a living gallery of dynamic, modern pieces.

Visitors wandered around the tight, terraced gardens and throughout Dr. Gordon’s home, where practically every surface is covered in art. As the sun set, guests enjoyed a champagne toast and watched as the L.A skyline lit up like a million little stars. Behind them, the vibrant colors of Dr. Robby’s magical garden glowed against the Hollywood Hills.

Artist and sculpture garden owner Dr. Robby Gordon greets guests.
Artist and sculpture garden owner Dr. Robby Gordon greets guests.

A woman-shaped sculpture stands in front of a cinematic sunset.
A woman-shaped sculpture stands in front of a cinematic sunset.

A neon-colored wall sculpture imitates its environs.
A neon-colored wall sculpture imitates its environs.

An artist with work in the sculpture garden chats with guests.
An artist with work in the sculpture garden chats with guests.

Guests find perhaps the most monochromatic vista on the property for a better view of the collection.
Guests find perhaps the most monochromatic vista on the property for a better view of the collection.

A serpentine ground light snakes its way through the garden.
A serpentine ground light snakes its way through the garden.

The garden is a steep labyrinth where surprise waits around every corner.
The garden is a steep labyrinth where surprise waits around every corner.

Dr. Gordon's collection plays off its organic and urban surroundings.
Dr. Gordon’s collection plays off its organic and urban surroundings.

At night, Dr. Gordon's house becomes a neon wonderland.
At night, Dr. Gordon’s house becomes a neon wonderland. All images by Foster Snell

A sci-fi flower blooms in the dark.
A sci-fi flower blooms in the dark.

At night, the city and the garden play off one another: one a fanciful, dreamworld reflection of the other.
At night, the city and the garden play off one another: one a fanciful, dreamworld reflection of the other.

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