Archive for the ‘Art’Category

Travelogue: taking in the arts in Scottsdale, Arizona

Taliesin West

Taliesin West

When I think of Scottsdale, Arizona, spas, golf and swimming pools come to mind. But now, after having spent some time there, I know that art — in all forms — is just as integral to the city’s identity.

I had the opportunity to visit two of Scottsdale’s cultural centers: the Musical Instrument Museum and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West. I would go back to either in a heartbeat. Each was a unique experience that left me wanting more.

The Musical Instrument Museum, which is actually in neighboring Phoenix, houses more than 6,000 instruments from 200 countries and territories. This collection makes for hours of fun education for anyone interested in music and world culture. The upper level is categorized by region of the world, and the lower level features special collections, including an exhibit of self-playing instruments and an experiential gallery. There’s even a concert hall with live performances. Allow at least half a day here. Our two hours were not enough!

Guitar exhibit

Guitar exhibit

Chinese instruments

Chinese instruments

This fall, on Oct. 18 and 19, the museum will host an outdoor, two-day music festival celebrating musical traditions from all over the world, with musical performances, dancers, street performers and food trucks.

We also toured Taliesin West (pictured above), architect Frank Lloyd Wright’s West Coast home, studio and instructional campus. We took the 90-minute tour of the grounds and house that includes a lot of historical information from informed docents who clearly enjoy what they do.

I’ve also heard that the Museum of Contemporary Art is a must-see as well. This fall and winter, from Sept. 28 through Jan. 11, 2015, the museum will house the Donald Rumsfeld-inspired “Covert Operations: Investigating the Unknowns,” an exhibit from 13 international artists based on the idea of expansion of federal power and infringement of constitutional rights in the wake of 9/11. Given Arizona’s Republican leanings, this should be an interesting show.

So next time you’re thinking about taking a trip, especially one within driving distance of Los Angeles (6 hours by car), then consider Scottsdale. You can relax at the spa, play the links and take in some culture.

Note: These visits were hosted.


07 2014

VIVA JAPAN event to support relief efforts

Japan tsunami. From Amazing Photos.

VIVA JAPAN: A Benefit to Support Relief Efforts in Japan will be held Friday, April 1, from 7:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. at Voyeur in West Hollywood. Expect live music from DJ Glenn Red (Afrofunke, Eclectica), Mr. NumberOnederful (Cannibal Flower), Rick Wren (Hang Together) and The Love Connection, as well as live art from Mimi Yoon and Stephen Williams.

Now, I normally don’t post this kinds of things, but when I saw that all proceeds from the event will go to Direct Relief International (DRI), California’s largest international humanitarian nonprofit organization, I though people should know about it. Here’s why:

  • Efficiency: 98.8 percent of funding went to program expenses, with 1 percent dedicated to administrative and fundraising.
  • In the past 10 years, each dollar spent has provided up to $30 (wholesale) of medical material aid specifically requested by in-country health professionals to care for patients.
  • Transparency: Direct Relief provides a map detailing where it delivers its supplies and how much it spends on each kind.
  • Proven Track Record: Direct experience with large-scale emergencies in Asia, including the Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami of 2004. This will help guide them to best plan and execute a recovery strategy.
  • Charity Navigator: Direct Relief is a 4-Star Charity, which is labeled as “Exceptional: Exceeds industry standards and outperforms most charities in its cause.”

There will be a $10 donation entrance fee, and attendees will be allowed to stay in Voyeur when it opens to the public as a club at 11:00 p.m. Proceeds from art sales will also go to support relief efforts in Japan. Do good, people!



03 2011

Your weekend starts now!

Fluxus Ursa dress

Shopping happy hour at Fluxus: The Larchmont Village store location of this drape-y clothing brand is launching a weekly shopping event with discounts on select merchandise and complimentary drinks every Thursday from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Starts today!

202 N. Larchmont Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90004

Enza Costa Rogue sample sale: Cash-only sale of luxe basics and knitwear from $10 to $23 on Thursday, May 20, and Friday, May 21, from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Enza Costa Rogue
2635 Nevin Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90011

Refinery 29 East West Tag sale at Space 15 Twenty: Fashion website Refinery 29 and Urban Outfitters are hosting a sale with 50 percent to 75 percent off designer items from Helmut Lang, Band of Outsiders, What Comes Around Goes Around and others. It’s happening all weekend: Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m., Saturday from 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m., and Sunday from 11:oo a.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Urban Outfitters at Space 15 Twenty
1520 N. Cahuenga Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90028

Rebecca Minkoff sample sale: Can’t get enough handbags? Well, Rebecca Minkoff is back in Los Angeles with samples! Go Friday or Saturday between 10:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. or Sunday between 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.

4661 Hollywood Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90027

From Palate, by Clare Crespo.

Palate art show at Scion gallery: Art inspired by food. Art that looks like food. Check out Palate featuring artists Clare Crespo, Jeph Gurecka, Scott Hove, Tamara Kostianovsky, Alan Macdonald, James Reynolds, Martha Rich and Jeff Vespa “exploring the idea of food as muse and medium.” The opening night reception on Saturday, May 22, from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. has free admission, free valet parking and an open bar. It’s the trifecta of L.A. events! There will also be a raffle to win a free cooking class from EATZ. The exhibit will run through June 12.

Scion Installation Space
3521 Helms Ave.
Culver City, CA 90232


05 2010

Bags, beer and art: Harveys Open Canvas event


Harveys, the company that makes those cute seat belt bags including the “hipster” bag I mentioned recently, hosted a fun event last Friday at its Melrose Avenue boutique. With multicolored Sharpies (official sponsor) in hand, guests were encouraged to put their mark on nearly blank canvases while sipping on cans of PBR (get it? “Open Canvas”?) and munching on bags of chips. There were even two plain white Harveys bags for us to decorate, too.

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09 2009

As your attorney, I advise you to…


…check out Fear and Loathing: The Board Game.

I love Hunter S. Thompson’s work. I have multiple HST-inspired posters by Ralph Steadman (they’re framed, mind you – I’ll get real ones some day) on my walls, and I spent a semester in grad school writing a research paper on the image of the Gonzo journalist in film (yes, I am a dork). So when I saw the Fear and Loathing: The Board Game on UrbanDaddy, I was intrigued. Apparently players draw “dosage” cards that tell you how much of a particular “drug” to ingest. Sounds kind of fun, I guess. But looks like it’s more of a mixed-media art piece than a board game because it costs $3,500. I better start saving now!

By the way, I haven’t yet made it to Tony’s, Cedd Moses’ newest bar in downtown’s Arts District. I wonder how HST-inspired it really is…

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06 2009