Friday, May 16, 2008

Your Social Life Outside Of The Art Box

Sorry I didn't post yesterday about your eagerly anticipated weekend activities, I was out looking at art. But today's YSL (not to be confused with a famous French designer brand) won't take you look at too much art.
Because, you know what? It's way too hot this weekend to go gallery-hopping in decent-watering-holes-deprived Chinatown and Culver City. Yes, I know about The Mountain Bar, The Mandrake and Royal T., but do those scream "Summer! We want cool! Not dark and confined!" Not really, eh.
What you guys should do, aside from the obvious BBQs, beach parties, pool parties and so forth is go out and have ice cream.

Being European, I have trouble with US-type hard rock, sugar-laden concoctions. Me, I want my gelato. Eastsiders are lucky, since the best ever, hands down, is Bulgarini in Altadena.
If you're in town and you're stuck with a non-working AC in your car, you can limit the trek and your CO2 emissions by trying Pazzo in Silverlake. It's open late for our hipster friends.
Closer to Mid-City (Hi my 'hood!), hmmm, Andre Gelato's is somewhat decent, and an oddity: it's located in the Italo-American style cafeteria right next to the Whole Foods at 3rd and Fairfax.

Of course you cannot spend the entire weekend eating gelato (well, you can), so I'd suggest you get a good book or two, find a spot of shade and enjoy a good read. If you are backyard deprived, cafes are good for you, or even better, bakeries such as my fave La Maison Du Pain, where Carmen and Josephine have used me as their official macarons-tester and are churning out heavenly pieces of pure joy. Their latest is the pistachio one, which manages to upstage my previous favorites, chocolate and blackberry. The only downside is the pistachio macaron is filled with pistachio butter, so in this heat it doesn't travel that well, meaning you should eat it "for here" as opposed to "to go". That's OK, because they also serve tea, coffee, French lemonade and Orangina.

Now, if you absolutely insist on fulfilling your art duties this weekend, you'd better go to AC-equipped spaces: I recommend the Jonathan Herder show at Daniel Weinberg (if you missed your chance to buy a Mother's Day present there, you can still catch up and get a Father's Day dollar bill drawing. It's recession-proof). Then you can also schlepp to LAXart and go see not only Michelle Lopez sculptures, but the fabulously well-installed, smart and funny video installation by Vishal Jugdeo. That's where I was yesterday, and it's the best show in CC. Think of is as if Stan Douglas suddenly had a sense of humor, would conflagrate with Buster Keaton AND Jesper Just, with some great sculpture/props thrown in the mix.
You could also head over to LACMA if you haven't done it yet, and go see not only Phantom Sightings but also the great Ensor show , which hasn't had any review yet that I know of, but is a little gem of an exhibition. Just avoid donating your money to the Patina Group and go eat/drink elsewhere after.
You can also go to the Hammer and see the Kara Walker show, and ponder Gary Garrels departure to SFMOMA if you're an art world gossip whore, but I personally think it's too hot to ponder anything this weekend but global warming.

I know you East Side people will be suffering in the scorching heat, and will need a bit of distraction. You can go admire the series of performance/screenings curated by Julie Lequin at Outpost for her final appearance in Los Angeles, and also tonight head over to Glendale for a bit of contemporary poetry and literature at the Poetic Research Bureau. I'm not sure whether it's their inaugural event or not, but take note, as they are on your way to future events at the Gendale College Gallery or at Another Year in LA.

Pix: 2 installation shots of Vishal Jugdeo's piece at LAXart, Michelle Lopez sculpture, same location, and a poor abandoned stuffed animal screaming for ice cream in Silverlake. Hipsters, follow your heart and take the poor thing to Pazzo!
all pix Your Truly.

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