Chinese restaurants and movie theaters notwithstanding, lonely Jews on Christmas have a new place at which to convene. The Skirball Cultural Center is open and mostly free to the public today. See the "Time/Space, Gravity and Light," "Celestial Nights," and "Visions and Values..." exhibitions, watch a screening of "Back to the Future" at and take part in a drop-in art workshops free of charge. The "Einstein" exhibit is not free.
Noon-5 p.m. Movie screening at 1:30 p.m. 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles. (310) 440-4500.
It's a family kind of weekend. Spend today at the Getty's "Close to Home: An American Album" exhibit, which celebrates the family photograph. Some 200 black-and-white and color images taken from 1930 through the mid-1960s, by amateur photographers, as well as by professionals like Thomas Eakins and Alfred Steiglitz, are included in the show. From birthday parties to family vacations to pictures of people with their prized possessions, these pictures strike a familiar chord as we consider our own family portraits.
Another klezmer CD? Why not, especially when it's as good as "Actions Speak Louder Than Words"? The instrumental CD by Klezmer Juice offers new takes on traditional melodies like "Zemer Atik" and "Donna Donna." The group also recently caught the attention of New Line Cinema, which cast them as on-camera performers in the upcoming film "The Wedding Crashers," starring Owen Wilson, Vince Vaughn and Christopher Walken. Their version of "Hava Nagila" will be featured on the soundtrack.
Film director Pierre Sauvage comes to the New JCC at Milken this evening for a discussion following the screening of his 1989 film, "Weapons of the Spirit." The last in the JCC's "Between Worlds" series featuring Holocaust-related films, this movie tells the story of an entire French village of Righteous Gentiles who saved the lives of some 5,000 Jews.
7-9 p.m. Free. 22622 Vanowen St., West Hills. (818) 464-3300.
Put idle hands to work today with producer Ellen R. Margulies' new DVD, "The Art of Knitting." According to the producers, this is the first DVD of its kind, despite the huge knitting trend that has swept the country. You'll learn everything from knitting and purling to color theory and how to start your own knitting circle in this first of four volumes.
Fahey/Klein Gallery offers the public the rare opportunity to see privately owned works by renowned artists like Diane Arbus, David Hockney, Man Ray and Robert Mapplethorpe in its latest exhibition, aptly titled, "Photographs From Private Collections." Catch them before they retreat behind closed doors again on Jan. 29.
148 N. La Brea Ave., Los Angeles. (323) 934-2250.
Say "Sholom" to 2004 with the Santa Monica Playhouse's one-night, two-show reprise of "Author! Author! An Evening With Sholom Aleichem." Backstage West has hailed the musical comedy, based on the Yiddish author's letters and stories. Included in the price of admission to both shows this evening are buffet supper, champagne, favors, hats, New Year's surprises and an after-party with the cast.
$35 (6 p.m.), $45 (9:30 p.m.). 1211 Fourth St., Santa Monica. R.S.V.P., (310) 394-9779, ext. 1.