Harold Fox and Lonesome Town

Photo by Elise Thompson

You have probably spotted a piece of abandoned furniture, a chair, a couch, a TV, with a sad cartoon face and sometimes a party hat. These Sad Clown Public Installations are part of a project known as Lonesome Town. Last weekend, the artist, Harold Fox held his last exhibition in Los Angeles at La Luz de Jesus.

Sadly, this means there will no longer be the thrill of finding any of his abandoned “affable hobos and menacing clowns,” as La Luz described them. I should have taken them home, but I wanted everyone to be able to enjoy them. You can enjoy these photos taken by Mike Guerena at the show plus a bonus street find.

“These poor little things…it’s just a dream, go back to sleep :'( ”

Posted in Art, Photo Essays | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Favorites from The Taste 2018: Saturday Night

The Borlongan sisters of Wanderlust Creamery offers samples of their demo’d gelato during the Taste’s Saturday Night program. All photos by Bob Lee for the Los Angeles Beat.

The Taste has become a favorite LA food tradition for Labor Day Weekend. Having spent so many holiday afternoons and evenings experiencing sensory overload in the artificial streets of Paramount Studios, I can now spot them in commercials and TV shows as if they were actual LA streets. “Look honey, that insurance guy is standing right where the Bulleit Bourbon tent goes!”

More is usually more when considering the bang-for-buck value of different events, but this year’s edition of The Taste saw a couple of edits that were actually beneficial. The last few events in the space have featured a separate grassy square off to the side that was easy to either miss or to get stuck in. That section of the lot was fenced off this year, with all vendors set up in the main area, which stretched out a little past its former boundaries. The change of layout allowed us to circle the grounds more easily, a blessing if you are the type of person who likes to eat strategically, like walking around eating nothing but seafood and salads for half an hour before getting into the red meat, or poking around to find the perfect salad to pair with the plate of meat you just got from another stand.

And unlike prior years, this weekend had no daytime events scheduled, sparing attendees from having to stuff themselves amid triple-digit temperatures. Night-time food events have their own vibe to them–generally looser, drinkier, wilder than those held in the glare of daylight–which suits this particular crowd quite well.

Continue reading

Posted in Cocktails, Beer & Wine, Events, Food, Photo Essays | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Random LA: The Blab Show at Copro Gallery

Random LA: The Blab Show at Copro Gallery. Photo by Jordan Schwartz

Posted in Miscellanious | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

‘This Is (Not) L.A.’ at The Natural History Museum

If, like me, you’re a little tired of having to defend L.A. from people who like to call it shallow—and/or base their entire L.A. knowledge on one neighborhood—then you might be interested in a new book from Knock Knock called This Is (Not) L.A. Written by Knock Knock founder Jen Bilik and Kate Sullivan, a long-time transplant and a native, respectively, the book addresses 18 typical claims about L.A. and debunks them with the help of experts on the history and culture of the city. The book also features a foreword written by the late Jonathan Gold.

The Natural History Museum is celebrating the book’s release on Thursday, September 20th from 6-9pm with a panel of other knowledgeable locals and transplants, curated by Bilik and followed by a Q&A. Here are the panelists as listed on the event site:

“Patty Rodriguez: Radio producer (On Air with Ryan Seacrest), publisher (Lil’ Libros), author, and first-generation Mexican American
Lynell George: Journalist and essayist (After/Image: Los Angeles Outside the Frame, KCET)
Alissa Walker: Urbanism editor at Curbed, journalist, and public transportation activist
Ed Leibowitz: Veteran magazine writer (LA Magazine, The Atlantic, Smithsonian) and PEN USA journalism award recipient.”

Posted in Books, Events, Miscellanious, Upcoming Events | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Favorites from Friday Night’s Taste from the LA Times

Pacific Dining Car’s “Classic Steakhouse Plate” with ribeye steak, creamed spinach and mashed potatoes. All photos by Elise Thompson for The LA Beat.

It was nice to return to the now-familiar Paramount backlot with its small-town storefronts and New York tenement buildings, which still make me think of the cover of Physical Graffiti. In spite of the continuing hot weather, it was evident at The Taste Friday night that Autumn is slowly creeping towards us. A number of restaurants served warm comfort food, and beef was everywhere.

Farmhouse, a farm-to-table restaurant in Corona Del Mar, proved that dishes don’t have to be complicated when you have superior ingredients. I would love to eat a big plate of their comforting short ribs and polenta on a rainy night. The restaurant is all about sourcing, so they naturally namechecked Kenter Canyon Farms polenta and Creekstone Farm’s premium Black Angus beef. Another super homey and delicious plate was the mini Fried Chicken Dinner from an old favorite, Poppy + Rose. While Gus’ World Famous Fried Chicken might be too hot for Mom’s home cooking, it was definitely a welcome addition to the feast, and dessert can’t get more comforting than the banana pudding pie from Sherry Yard and iPic .

Rao’s, a classic red-sauce restaurant transplanted from New York, served their famous beef, pork, and veal meatballs. We are so grateful we don’t have to wait for someone to die for a table to become available like they do on the East Coast Rao’s where standing reservations are handed down like family heirlooms.

Continue reading

Posted in Miscellanious | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Movies Till Dawn: September Super Shock Show Edition

Hereditary” (2018, Lionsgate) A pair of deaths – one by natural causes, the other a horrible accident – appear to herald the arrival of a monstrous and possessive presence in the lives of an emotionally troubled family. Deeply unsettling feature debut/endurance test from writer/director Ari Aster has plenty of grisly effects and hard (some near traumatizing) shocks, but lands its strongest punches in decidedly non-genre scenes where the family crumbles under the weight of fresh and long-unattended pain alike; it’s abetted immeasurably by a uniformly excellent cast, with co-producer Toni Collette and Alex Wolff doing Herculean work as a fragile mother and son, though Milly Shapiro and Ann Dowd also make deep impressions as the family’s eccentric daughter and a seemingly benevolent stranger, respectively. Lionsgate’s Blu-ray/DVD combo includes a detailed making-of doc, deleted scenes (mostly focused on Wolff and dad Gabriel Byrne) and a photo gallery of the creepy art made by Collette’s character – an artist who reworks scenes from her life in miniature- in the film.

Continue reading

Posted in Movies | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

Scorpions with Queensrÿche Rocked FivePoint in Irvine for ‘Crazy World 2018’

Matthias Jabs of the Scorpions at the FivePoint Amphitheatre in Irvine, California, Sunday, September 2, 2018. Photo by John Gilhooley.

The best sex I never had was to the Scorpions—all in my mind—as I listened to their music on the radio when I was young. Their guitar-playing and singing sounded so much like what I had yet to experience: good sex. So I felt anticipatory in a way I hadn’t felt since I was a teenager, fantasy merging with music, when the band began their hit-making, radio-careening career, and I first heard the Scorpions.

A German rock band formed in 1965 by rhythm guitarist, Rudolf Schenker, singer Klaus Meine soon joined. Lead guitarist, Matthias Jabs, joined the band in 1978, and those three have formed the consistent nucleus of the rock ballad sound of the Scorpions. Drummer Mikkey Dee and bassist Pawel Maciwoda pound it out with them in their current line-up.

The band, with over 100 million records sold around the world, according to their website, and a chart-topping omnipresence on the charts during the 1980’s and 1990’s, returned to America in August 2018 for tour dates through September. They had to cancel several shows because of the singer’s laryngitis, but they’re back now, rocking us like hurricanes! Continue reading

Posted in Events, Live Music, Music | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

TODAY: ‘Kusama Infinity’ opens at the Nuart, Filmmaker Q & A Moderated by Flea of the Chili Peppers on Saturday

This story was UPDATED: 9/7/18 10:00 a.m.

Best known for her polka dots, Yayoi Kusama is the “world’s best selling female artist,”  according to BBC Arts and Entertainment. Her “works have sold for over 65 million dollars… putting her 13th overall,” according to MutualArt.

Born in Matsumoto in the Nagano prefecture, in Chuba, Japan, Kusama has been creating her art since she was a young girl, breaking social norms and familial expectations in both her art and her life.

The film “Kusama Infinity” documents Kusama’s upbringing during a turbulent World War II Japan, her repressive childhood home life, the struggle with mental illness, early life as a woman coping with racism and sexism in a male-dominated art worldeven in the freewheeling life of the 60s and 70sthe groundbreaking and taboo-pushing in her work and in her Nude Happenings, and the male artist contemporaries who often stole or “mirrored” her ideas mere months after her exhibitionsand  you will be surprised at the artists who did this. Continue reading

Posted in Art, Events, Miscellanious, Movies, Music, Upcoming Events | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Random LA: Simpsons Table Read

Photo by Brian Donnelly

Posted in Miscellanious | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

LA Food and Wine Best in Show: The Bear and Star

Bear and Star. Make your choice! All photos by Elise Thompson for The LA Beat.

The Bear and Star restaurant from Los Olivos owned the tasting events at this year’s LAFW. Located at the Fess Parker Wine Country Inn, the restaurant makes full use of the 14 acre Fess Parker Home Ranch, raising Wagyu cattle, chickens, quail, rabbits, pigs, and bees, and cultivating heirloom and organic fruits and vegetables.

When I tried their Tex-Mex taco at Saturday night’s Heat on the Street, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. The smoked Wagyu brisket was so tender and flavorful, it was as if it came from some magical beast I had never before eaten, like unicorn meat maybe. If you had told me that it was made from babies I would have said, “That’s monstrous!” and then I would have kept eating the taco. They also highlighted the best of their garden with an heirloom tomato pico de gallo.

The animal may not be magical, but it is a legend. Bubba the bull was judged to have the best marbling in an international competition. (How do they do that with a live bull? Take a core sample?) Bubba has sired every single cow on the ranch, making the best beef possible for the Bear and Star chefs. I asked one of the ranchers if the “new cow” theory is true—that bulls won’t mate with the same cow twice, to the point that ranchers have to trade bulls once in a while to give them new cow. I was informed that the “new cow” theory is absolutely not true. Take that, Ashley Judd!

Continue reading

Posted in Miscellanious | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment