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LA bus videos that inspire you to breathe during your commute


Whenever I am swinging my arms — a simple warm-up exercise as part of the practice of qigong, which cultivates energy by aligning mind, breath, and body — I imagine that I look like a repenting soul performing self-flagellation to random passersby.
I’ve mused for a long time about creating an urban opera involving scenes of bus riders spontaneously starting to hurl their arms in …

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Tens of thousands hit the street for Wilshire CicLavia


The weather was gorgeous and the riders came out in force for L.A.’s 9th CycLavia event. No one knows for sure how many people hopped on their biked or skates to join to the fun yesterday, but organizers say turnout was higher than the last time the event was held on Wilshire Boulevard a year ago. The event covered six miles of Wilshire between …

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L.A. considers boosting sales tax to fix broken streets


L.A. City leaders may ask voters to approve a half-cent sales tax increase to fix thousands of miles of deteriorating streets and sidewalks. But it’s far from clear whether Angelenos will agree to the tax hike. It’s estimated that 35 percent of the city’s roadways – a total of 8,200 miles – is either failing or close to failing. An even higher percentage of …

Arts & Culture, Environment, Headline, Issues, Politics, Sports, water »

Many Dodger fans facing ‘blue-out’ as games begin


The Dodgers new Time Warner cable TV station has debuted just in time for the team’s first spring training game today against the Arizona Diamondbacks. For fans who can’t get enough the boys in blue, it’s a 24-hour network. But as of now, most denizens of Dodger nation are blacked out. That’s because Time Warner has yet to reach deals with many of the …

Arts & Culture »

100 year old Angeleno trips out on joy, ego with first gallery exhibition


It’s been quite a year for Morris Markoff. First, LA Times columnist Steve Lopez paid him a visit and wrote a profile of Markoff’s adjustment from Silver Lake to Downtown LA. A couple months ago, national press swooped in on the occasion of his 75th wedding anniversary to wife, Betty. Now, this just-turned-100-year-old is having his first art show. (t must be a trend! A few weeks …

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Found objects made into art: Timothy Washington’s long-overdue solo show

Washington's sculptures often contain noisemakers and moving pieces. This one, a futuristic animal inspired by Harley Davidson motorcyles, can carry the weight of the artist himself.

Read the news and it can be easy to think that art is all about money and glamor: splashy openings, $142 million paintings and rapper Drake snapping selfies at the L.A. County Museum of Art.
But an exhibition at the Craft and Folk Art Museum in Los Angeles is a reminder that art is also about dedication. For decades, one L.A. artist has been quietly …

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No snow? No problem! The art of the snowboard in the concrete jungle of DTLA


This weekend, if you want a taste of winter sports here in the land of drought and far from Sochi, you can head downtown to a new gallery on Mateo Street called CES Contemporary. Snowboarders/artists Mike Parillo and Corey Smith commissioned a series of boards from a dozen artists which they then hand-painted and finished. (Some were even given a test run at Baldface Lodge …

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Remembering folk icon Pete Seeger

Pete Seeger at age 88 photographed on 6-16-07 at the Clearwater Festival 2007 by Anthony Pepitone (Wiki commons)

Below, Warren talks to David King Dunaway, an oral historian and radio producer whose many books include, “How Can I Keep from Singing?”, a biography of Pete Seeger.
Legendary folk singer Pete Seeger, who fought for social justice through music and activism has died at age 94. He wrote ”If I Had a Hammer,” “Turn, Turn, Turn” and “Where Have All the Flowers Gone,” and inspired a …

Arts & Culture, Headline »

Migraine? An artistic attempt to ease the pain


Like three million other Americans, artist Rachael Jablo suffers from chronic migraines. One episode that began for her in 2008 lasted a grueling 4 and a half years. “Without medication, the pain makes me lose the ability to speak,” she writes. “With medication, I have side effects that cause me to forget words.”
To help make sense of the jumble, she took to the medium she …

Arts & Culture, Featured, Interviews, News »

MOCA’s French twist

The new chief of MOCA

His name is Philippe Vergne, and it’s official: He’s MOCA’s new director. He’ll come to Los Angeles from New York, more specifically, the innovative DIA Art Foundation. (Same old stomping grounds as LACMA’s director, Michael Govan.)
The French-born Vergne was the choice of the search committee charged with replacing the embattled Jeffrey Deitch. Among those selecting Vergne were four prominent artists who stepped down from MOCA’s …

Arts & Culture, Commentary, Zocalo Public Square »

Can art save lives?

The Keiskamma Altarpiece, shown here at UCLA, is a powerful declaration of hope and solidarity in the fight against HIV/AIDS. (Photo courtesy )

Twenty-five years ago, I was foraging through a museum bookstore and came upon an eye-catching title: “AIDS: Cultural Analysis/Cultural Activism.” The word “AIDS,” rendered on the cover in large font, seemed more than slightly dangerous in 1988, when so many lay sick and dying and there were no effective treatments on the horizon. Equally attention-grabbing was the book’s cover photograph of “Let the Record …

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David Lynch on painting, meditation, and LA weather

"Woman's Dream" by David Lynch

David Lynch is well known as an experimental filmmaker, directing such cult classics as Eraserhead, Blue Velvet and Mulholland Drive, and the surreal TV series Twin Peaks.
He’s also a musician, with two studio albums under his belt, including this year’s The Big Dream, which he performed songs from on Morning Becomes Eclectic.
But Lynch is less known as a visual artist, even though he studied …

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LA’s east side, as seen by a transplant, and rendered in watercolor


Like most people who move from the east coast to the west, artist Jenny Ziomek approached LA with a mix of wonder and confusion. She was mesmerized by the open skies and the neighborhoods, and has created a charming body of watercolor, pen, and gouache artworks of East LA storefronts.
Starting tonight, her work will be up on display in one of them, in fact–not at …

Arts & Culture, News, Zocalo Public Square »

There’s an art gallery in my ear

Photo: Ruben Diaz, courtesy of TIF SIGFRIDS

It’s a stymieing truth that a large percentage of people attending an art opening don’t see any art. Like showing up for roll call and sneaking out of the classroom the moment the teacher turns to write something on the blackboard, we think we deserve credit just for showing up to these things; looking at the art is serious extra credit. It’s often more fun to …

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Drones over Burning Man

The sets at Burning Man

Burning Man is the 27-year-old bacchanalia held in the Black Rock Desert in northern Nevada — part party, art show, and social experiment. It’s also a place where people play with technology, like solar and wind power.
This year, the newest geek magnets were drones. Not the unmanned million-dollar military aircraft, but hobbyist remote-controlled planes and copters with cameras.
“There’s always been an experimental technology undercurrent …

Arts & Culture, News, Video »

‘Station to Station’: Riding the art train from Barstow to Los Angeles

The Station to Station train at the platform in Barstow.(Photo: Carolina Miranda)

For the last twenty days, a group of writers, singers, artists and photographers have been making their way across the country in an old Amtrak train — staging rock concerts and performance art in cities from New York to Barstow. “Station to Station,” as the project is called, was the brain child of Doug Aitken, a prominent installation and video artist based in Los …

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Filner preparing City Hall comeback amid recall drive; Coastal Commission power play; Mulling L.A.’s murals

Official portrait of Bob Filner, mayor of San Diego

Filner saga. Embattled San Diego Mayor Bob Filner is expected to return to work either today or tomorrow after two weeks of behavioral therapy. Protestors will be waiting for the mayor, who’s accused of sexually harassing more than a dozen women and committing other offenses.
A petition drive to recall Filner launched yesterday. Backers have an uphill battle on their hands. They need to collect …

Arts & Culture, Headline, News »

Artist Daniel Knorr turns potholes into art


Imagine a man driving the streets of LA, bottles of water in tow, in search of potholes.  Big, juicy potholes. Artist Daniel Knorr says the biggest difference between our holes-in-the-ground and those in Berlin, where he lives, is that we don’t get much rain here.
So, for him to turn the pothole into an art piece, or a “depression elevation,” as he calls them, he …

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Never Built: Was there something fishy about DisneySea?

An artist's rendering of Port Disney

“Never Built” is a fascinating new show at the A&D Museum in mid-Wilshire featuring fabulous, sometimes visionary plans for Southern California that never happened. As part of KCRW’s Design and Architecture coverage, we produced this four part series  on some of the most fascinating projects  that were never built. 
If you lived in Long Beach in the late 80′s, you heard a lot about Port Disney – a gigantic development slated for the …

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Photos: In ‘Nothing Left,’ artist Adriana Salazar finds art in what our bodies leave behind

A close-up of one of Salazar's installation tables at the Grand Central Art Center in Santa Ana. Seen here: an array of hip replacement pieces.
Credit: Carolina A. Miranda

For centuries, artists have been obsessed with death. From elaborate Egyptian tombs to early Christian paintings of martyred saints — to contemporary artists, who use everything from dead sheep to stuffed goats in their work.
One artist, however, is taking the practice a step further. Adriana Salazar creates work that examines what happens to our remains after we die. Enter the back room at the Grand …

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