#215: Alex Tieghi-Walker
Alex Tieghi-Walker on Always Wearing A Hat, Vespas, Growing Your Own Vegetables, and more.
Cool people like cool things, which is why we asked Alex Tieghi-Walker to share a taste of his taste on Perfectly Imperfect.
Alex Tieghi-Walker is a (currently) Los Angeles-based curator and gallerist. In 2020 he founded the folk-craft gallery Tiwa Select that champions self-taught artists who make things by hand using natural materials. They believe in showing artists' work in environments that feel relatable, dignified and human, rather than white-box art spaces. His bohemian 1960s home acts as a great entry to the ethos Tiwa Select represents, but I’d also urge you to browse their Instagram to get a better idea. Alex is actually moving to NYC this Friday and driving cross country with his dog Ivo as we speak. He’s opening a new gallery and cultural space in Nolita which’ll have an opening show by Megumi Shauna Arai at the end of October! Lucky for us, Alex is here to tell us what he’s been into.
Without further ado
Alex Tieghi-Walker (instagram)
🤠 Always wearing a hat
It started when I got self-conscious about my thinning mop, but now it’s a ‘thing’ and I like it. Generally I wear a striped Breton (gnome-y) beanie, but I have a collection of cowboy hats I’ve picked up in Texas on road trips over the years that I’ll wear to the beach. I hate suncream so it’s good to keep the face in the shade. I bought my godchildren baby-sized striped beanies so we can match.
🌀 The Spa
Maybe it’s because one time I was lucky enough to live in a house with a sauna, or as a rowdy teenager I spent after-hours on weekends at London’s gay bathhouses, but, truly, still, at least once a week I need to decompress in a spa. When I lived in the Bay Area, I’d go to the Kabuki or the Russian Banya, and sit in silence and sweat. In L.A. I’ll nip down to Koreatown. Even the seedy spas are fab. I just want to exfoliate. Pls send spa tips 🙏🏼
🧑🏼🌾 I grow my own veg
It’s as rewarding as you imagine. This year I planted four tomato varieties and staggered them by several weeks to give me a whole 5 months of tomato snacks. Between the plants I put basil, mint, chamomile, dill.. I haven’t bought a herb in a supermarket for years. I tried to grow celery and leek plants but they tasted nasty: still learning!
🏔🛁 I’m a hot spring hopper
Cleanliness is godliness ! ESP when that cleanliness is given to you by 20,000 year old water from deep inside our earth. I have a whole map saved on my phone of secret and not-so-secret hot springs all over the USA and Europe. Happiest when dunked in hot water (*see spas, above)
🏴 I’m here to sing the praises of my home country, Cymru aka Wales.
For ages, Wales was deeply uncool to anyone who wasn’t Welsh. But it’s where paganism started! Druids, mountains, forests, swamps, meadows, castles, ruins! But I’m not just proud of Wales and its bucolic history, it’s got a good/progressive future, too, as one of the world’s fastest growing renewable energy markets, as a major contributor to the world’s seaweed (diet of the future) economy, and over 32% of the landmass designated as conservation zone to protect wildlife and habitats 🌿
Although in a fuck, marry, kill scenario, I’d prob marry Wales but I would def fuck Japan
🥾🥾 At any time, I own just one singular pair of shoes
I’ll wear them until they are just raggedy scraps of leather hanging off my feet. I usually go for a sturdy boot situation—right now it’s the R.M Williams Craftsman boot—I’ll wear them to traipse through a bog one day and to a wedding the next.
🚂 Train Travel
I only take flights over oceans, and have avoided short-haul flights for about 5 years now. It’s the combination of deep environmental guilt, but also tbh I just *really* enjoy train travel. I just took the train from London to Venice Italy which was incredible—sunset over the alps. European trains are so much further ahead than American trains, which is silly when you think about the whole railroad race / baron situation in the late 1800s. America could have had such a cool rail network. I took the train from LA to San Francisco last year and it took 15 hours. FIFTEEN! and the only food on board was soggy hot dogs. Nein danke. Pls send your rail execs to Europe for some on-the-tracks research. It's just so much more stress-free to walk into a station in the middle of a city, taking time to read as fields and forests speed by, a chic little snack and then, boom, you arrive right in the middle of another city as if nothing happened.
🍒 Saba Sams - “Send Nudes”
My fab little cousin Saba Sams wrote a collection a short stories called “Send Nudes” published by Bloomsbury and it’s about all sorts of exciting/terrifying🚨 things that young people have to deal with today—it’s treacherous terrain out there—negotiating hookups at music festivals, dating apps, grimy pubs, toxic friendships, ambivalent parents, and social pressures. I rarely read fiction but this was witty and tender and I loved it.
I cannot bear short drives and being stuck in a car in traffic, so I bought a mid-noughties Vespa up in Oakland about 6 years ago and it’s the best thing I’ve ever owned. I love being able to zip down side streets in NYC, avoiding traffic🦨 and being able to park right outside where I want to go instead of cruising blocks for hours is a dream. In summer when it’s hot I’ll just drive around for the breeze; friends like hopping on the back for rides.
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Buy tickets to the Perfectly Imperfect Party on October 22nd
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