5 Design Things to do This Week

Designing digital billboards for the Sunset Strip, a symposium on men's fashion, the Expo Line finally arrives in Santa Monica, and Venice hosts its annual art walk. All this and more for design events in LA this week.

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Rendering of concept for Sunset Spectacular by Zaha Hadid Architects with JC Decaux.

1) Sunset Spectacular: Zaha Hadid, Patrik Schumacher, Tom Wiscombe and Weho’s Competition for a Digital Billboard

Do you hate digital billboards? A lot of people do, and so the City of West Hollywood, in a bid to create a lovable digital billboard on a site it owns on the Sunset Strip, has created a design competition for ideas. It invites the general public to watch presentations by the four shortlisted teams, comprising designers and sign companies, on Wednesday night.  One of the competing teams is the office of the late Zaha Hadid (with JC Decaux), whose petal-like form (above) she designed before her recent death; she will be represented by her longtime design partner Patrik Schumacher. The others are Orange Barrel Media/Tom Wiscombe Architecture/MoCA; Outfront Media/ Gensler/MAK Center; Tait Towers Inc.

Patrik Schumacher and Tom Wiscombe, a teacher at SCI-Arc known for “mysterious figural features and tectonic inventiveness,” are both vocal members of the world of ideas in architecture. On Tuesday they go mano a mano in a discussion entitled, Duel + Duet, at SCI-Arc at 7 pm in the Ray Kappe Library.

When: Wednesday, May 18, 6 pm (presentation boards will be on show in the lobby starting at 5 pm)
Where: City of West Hollywood’s Council Chambers/Public Meeting Room, 625 N. San Vicente Boulevard, West Hollywood.
Tickets: Free and open to the public. More information here.

Metro will be celebrating the opening of the Expo Line to Santa Monica Friday and Saturday with free rides and station celebrations.
Metro will be celebrating the opening of the Expo Line to Santa Monica Friday and Saturday with free rides and station celebrations.

2) Opening of Expo Line to Santa Monica

What’s old is new again. Not since the demise of the Pacific Air Line in the mid-20th century have Angelenos had the option of taking the train to the beach. And with today’s traffic-gridlocked landscape, they’ll be able to take the train from Santa Monica to downtown and beyond. Free rides will begin at noon on Friday at all Expo Line stations from 7th Street Metro Downtown to Santa Monica. On Saturday, free rides will begin at 4:42 am. Station celebrations will take place at Downtown Santa Monica, 17th St/SMC, 26th St/Bergamot, Expo/Bundy, Palms and the Culver City Station. Get all the info about the launch and how to use Expo, here.

To consider the significance of the Expo Line Extension, MRad Architecture will host a discussion at 6pm Friday at their office near the Jefferson/La Cienega station; DnA’s Frances Anderton will talk with Eric Geier, Community Relations at L.A. County MTA; Amanda Slavin, catalystcreativ; David Fishbein, Runyon Group. Get all the info here.

When: May 20 and 21. Free rides beginning at noon on Friday through 2 am Sunday. Station celebrations Saturday 10 am – 4 pm.
Where: Free rides along the entire Expo Line from Downtown to Santa Monica beginning at noon on Friday, station celebrations at Culver City, Palms, Expo/Bundy, 26th/Bergamot, 17th/SMC and Downtown Santa Monica
Tickets: Free and open to the public. More information here.

Reigning Men at LACMA, on view through August 21
Reigning Men at LACMA, on view through August 21

3) Symposium: Reigning Men: Fashion in Menswear, 1715-2015

And to think some people think fashion is for women, or perhaps just a recent discovery of modern hipsters. Any questions on this matter will be put to rest during this one day symposium to explore 300 years of men’s style, the fashions themselves and the designers who created them. Gregory Peck, an icon of men’s fashion, will also be discussed. Panelists include “Reigning Men” co-curators Sharon S. Takeda and Kaye D. Spilker, Assistant Curator Clarissa M. Esguerra, as well as Anthony Peck, writer and producer and son of actor Gregory Peck. “Reigning Men” runs through August 21st.

When: Saturday, May 21, 10 am – 4:30 pm
Where: LACMA, 5905 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036
Tickets: General public $25. Get tickets here.

Aris Janigian is a psychologist, professor and author who has written several books set in the world of architecture and design.
Aris Janigian is a psychologist, professor and author who has written several books set in the world of architecture and design.

4) L.A. Forum Presents: In the Gutter: Waiting for Lipchitz at Chateau Marmont, Book Signing and Reading

A riches to rags story set amidst the Hollywood machinery and the world of Architecture, “Waiting for Lipchitz at the Chateau Marmont” offers a bold and acerbic critique of the California dream. Aris Janigian was senior professor of humanities at Southern California Institute of Architecture from 1993 to 2005 and has published in genres as diverse as poetry, social psychology, and design criticism.

When: Saturday, May 21, 3:30 pm
Where: Neutra VDL House, 2300 Silver Lake Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90039
Tickets: Free and open to the public. RSVP here.

Photo from Venice Art Walk, 2013
Photo from Venice Art Walk, 2013

5) Venice Art Walk

Venice is known for its arts community and each year the neighborhood comes together to raise funds to support the Venice Family Clinic, which serves 24,000 low-income, uninsured and homeless patients. Hosted at Google Los Angeles, the event includes an imagination station for kids, artist booths, a “barking lot” for dogs, beer and wine garden, live art, live music, restaurant booths, food trucks and ticketed artist studio tours.

When: Sunday, May 22, noon – 6 pm (artist studio tours until 4 pm, silent auction and community celebration until 6 pm)
Where: Google Los Angeles, 340 Main Street, Venice, CA 90291. Parking $12 at Westminster Elemetnary School (0.4 miles) 1010 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Venice. Free parking is available at Walgrove Elementary School (1.8 miles away), 1630 Walgrove Ave., Los Angeles.
Tickets: Main event is free and open to the public. Artist studio tours $50 by donation. More information here.