I listen to music all day, in my car, in my office, at the gym, while walking the dog or taking a hike.
Cubes of color intersected by bands, which the viewer can manipulate into arrangements within a grid framing the work; watercolors of narrow striations, punctuated by colors and shapes, transform abstraction from cool cerebral to emotional landscapes. Clothing made in Los Angeles but destined for the world, an ongoing narrative about fabric and color draped over the human form.
“Pacific Standard Time,” the sprawling multivenue consideration of Los Angeles art from 1945 to 1980, is, for the most part, a story of artists who thrived here. However, “Naked Hollywood: Weegee in Los Angeles,” which opened Nov. 13 at MOCA Grand Avenue, posits a different narrative, recounting the famed New York photographer’s sojourn in Los Angeles between 1947 and 1952 as a somewhat soured love affair. If Hollywood is indeed a boulevard of broken dreams, then the Weegee show is our tour guide.
Art exhibitions take many forms. They can be surveys of a time, place, artist or artistic movement. They may reconsider an artist through a new prism, or appreciate the familiar in a new or different way. All too rare is the exhibition that invites the viewer to share in the joy of discovery, engaging us as confidants in new revelations that suddenly seem self-evident. “Speaking in Tongues: Wallace Berman and Robert Heinecken, 1961-1976,” is just such an exhibition. At the Armory Center for the Arts in Pasadena, the show was co-curated by Claudia Bohn-Spector and Sam Mellon.
On the afternoon I attended the Annenberg Space for Photography’s latest exhibition, “Beauty Culture,” I was standing in the dark watching a series of fashion images projected in the digital gallery, when I was distracted by a woman who entered the room. I did a double take, as I recognized her as one of the iconic women featured in the exhibition, a former fashion model.
“2030: The Real Story of What Happens to America” (St. Martin’s Press) is Albert Brooks’ novel (in all senses of the word) take on our not-so-distant future. Anyone familiar with Brooks’ films, such as “Defending Your Life” or “Modern Romance,” will not be surprised that his debut novel is clever and entertaining. But it is also thoughtful, insightful and inventive about issues as diverse as health care, transportation, aging and politics. And funny — let’s not forget funny.
William Link, 77, was asking the question. Link is one of, if not the most successful producer and writer in television history, having put, with his late partner Richard Levinson, 16 series on the air, including creating “Columbo,” “Murder, She Wrote,” “The Cosby Mysteries” and “Mannix.” They also created any number of important TV movies, including “The Execution of Private Slovik,” which launched Martin Sheen’s career, “That Certain Summer,” which was the first sympathetic portrayal of gay men on television, and the 1988 “Terrorist on Trial: The United States vs. Salim Ajami,” which was hauntingly prescient.
Ever wonder how the movie industry went from five-cent nickelodeons in New York to the glamour of Hollywood with red carpet premieres and the highest of artistic aspirations? Or why a certain pagoda-like Hollywood movie theater in whose courtyard rest footprints of actors is one of the most beloved and frequented tourist sites on the planet?
Preservation Hall's formula was simple and is followed to this day: No reservations, no food, just music in a small room. Shows began at 8 p.m. Each set lasted around 35 minutes, and tickets were priced low (they're now $10 a show, Wednesday through Sunday)
Paul Schimmel, the Museum of Contemporary Art's (MOCA) chief curator, wants us to spend our summer looking back -- 50 or so years to around the time of his birth, and to the city where he grew up, New York, to focus on the remarkable work of a young, poor and not-yet-famous Robert Rauschenberg, who was gathering junk and detritus from his life (clothes, family photos, fabric) and incorporating them into paintings that then became three-dimensional constructs, which Rauschenberg called "Combines."
Scott Steindorff is a happy man. A successful movie and TV producer, his NBC series, "Las Vegas," just got picked up for another season; he won an Golden Globe for the HBO miniseries, "Empire Falls," starring Paul Newman, and produced the feature film of Philip Roth's "The Human Stain" with Anthony Hopkins and Nicole Kidman. Upcoming on Steindorff's slate are adaptations of Gabriel Garcia Marquez's "Love in the Time of Cholera," TC Boyle's "The Tortilla Curtain," Michael Connolly's "The Lincoln Lawyer," "Penelope" starring Reese Witherspoon and remakes of the classic films "Ikiru" and "Rififi." All this and he's only been in the film business six years.
By this point in the summer, I know that my devoted Tommywood readers are all wondering the same thing -- be they sitting by the pool at the Sociét? des Bains de Mer in Monte Carlo, on their yachts sailing off the coast of Turkey or schvitzing in their New York apartments or Los Angeles homes.
They all want to know: How is he going to come up with another column about Hungarians?
How does one create a literary community in Los Angeles?
Phil Rosenthal, the creator of "Everybody Loves Raymond," which will end its nine-year run on CBS on May 16, and I are fressing at Barney Greengrass in Beverly Hills high atop Barney's Department Store. It's not that eating sable is the way I mourn (how is it that a fish can be named after a fur coat my mother owned?) -- or that toasted bagels and cream cheese dulls the imminent loss of my favorite sitcom.