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C A N V A S

VOLUME 3 ISSUE 2

JANUARY + FEBRUARY 2013 publisher

DANTE COLOMBATTI

editor-in-chief

REBECA ARANGO

art director

ERIN DENNISON

art + books editor

SHANA NYS DAMBROT

design + production director RACHEL MANY

designers

JORDAN ROMANOFF MELANIE SMITH

photography

CAPTAIN GRANT YOSHINO STEVEN YATSKO RACHEL MANY

chief account managers MATT OLSON JANESSA MOLINA

contributors

ROSS GARDINER EMMA GOGONOVSKI BARBARA YNIGUEZ

events

MAX EHRLICH JANESSA MOLINA

editorial assistant JULIE ROTH

social media director VI NGUYEN

social media

ASHLEY TUTTLE KRISTA SANTIAGO

+crew

COLE WESTERHOLM RONALD PRE MITCHEL DUMLAO EMILY BRADLEY AJA DAVIS OLIVER

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T H E C A N V A S

ART MUSIC

artist CHELSEA WOLFE playlist RAIN SONGS Q&A: IN THE VALLEY BELOW venue GRAMMY MUSEUM

STYLE (CONT...)

28 32 34 37

designer STUSSY store THE WELL #TRENDING: THE METHOD

78 84 91

FOOD

ISSUE ART

LA STREET ART artist JAY MARK JOHNSON artist DEVIN + GOSHA ART EVENTS gallery PROJECT GALLERY + ESPRESSO book PUNK: AN AESTHETIC

38 40 42 48 51 53

STYLE

editorial KIDS ON GOOD BEHAVIOR editorial THE WITCHING HOUR editorial BACK TO BASICS

57 62 72

chef MATTHEW KENNEY food scoops SOUPED UP restaurant CORTEZ drink HOT CHAI POSSET

94 100 103 105

&

NOTED photo story BETWEEN THE CRACKS Q&A: KEEP YOUR PANTS ON calendar JANUARY calendar FEBRUARY last look ALLISON TORNEROS

20 106 122 124 126 142

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THE PROPER / CLASSICS COLLECTION / AVAILABLE AT SELECT RETAILERS AND ONLINE. ENQUIRIES +1 800 874 1850

C A N V A S

EDITOR’S NOTE editor-in-chief

REBECA ARANGO

“Never underestimate how much assistance, how much satisfaction, how much comfort, how much soul and transcendence there might be in a well-made taco and a cold bottle of beer.” -

Tom Robbins, Jitterbug Perfume

Even though I campaigned hard for “Apocalypse Later,” we decided to go with “The Art Issue.” Could we have chosen a more hopelessly indefinite theme than “Art”? Is every issue of LA CANVAS not an “Art” issue of some sort? Yes, and here’s why. As I write this from back in mid-December, I’m finding that my shady spot beneath the tree of doom may actually be the perfect place to ponder the function of Art. When survival is no longer an option—let alone a concern—how will you choose to elevate your final moments? Will you crank Vivaldi and pirouette around your living room while sipping outrageously expensive wine and gorging on bacon-wrapped dates? Or perhaps break into that reserve supply of Bud Light and fire-up the taco-matic as KLOS bids you farewell with nothing but the classics? Don’t get me wrong—I’m not peacing-out to Madagascar upon completion of this letter. But no matter how thoroughly it’s been debunked by accounting errors (leap year) or whatever qualifies as science (Susan Miller?), a looming Mayan prophecy produces at least a whisper of wonder in even the best skeptic. And I’m only an average-to-satisfactory skeptic, which means I plan to carpe diem on apocalypse-eve, as it is the best excuse for a morbidly decadent meal I’ve had to date (Y2K, please). Ultimately, what all of this final-countdown indulgence reinforces is the idea that creations become Art by way of how we experience them—a statement so subjective as to inflate the definition to an even more incircumventable size than I had previously imagined. Let’s break it down. Classically, anyone who channels their passion into the creation of a surplus, ideally transcendent* experience might be an “Artist;” whereas someone who skillfully improves a vital or commercial experience might just be a “Designer,” an “Artisan,” or a “Cook.” But a lifestyle publication like LA CANVAS can’t help but dig for holes in that distinction when looking for value across all forms of production. Especially because as notions of highbrow and lowbrow inch towards a truce, people seem primed to find meaning in the most inane things. For example, in one of Earth’s most ubiquitous art forms, popular music, the past few years saw artists frequently seeking pre-apocalyptic transcendence via “the Party,”—the last hurrahs of a doomed yet invincible youth.* So as I sit here deliberating what to eat on 12/20/12, I can’t help but wonder if even Kim Kardashian is kind of an artist in a very post-Art way. (I mean, have you seen her instagram?) I don’t have all the answers,* but ultimately, what I can say is that as always this issue features a group of LA artists—or whatevers—that we are decidedly proud to present. Between drone-folk-metal singer Chelsea Wolfe (p. 20), mad genius photographer Jay Mark Johnson (p. 28), the designer of one the world’s most iconic street wear brands, Stussy (p. 46), and Raw Food pioneer Matthew Kenney (p. 54), there is more than enough art to break up the “Eh.”*

*1 Defined simply as surpassing the usual limits of ordinary experience. *2 See “Till the World Ends” by Britney Spears, “We Are Young” by Fun, “Give Me Everything” by Pittbull. *3 But because I care, I will tell you that the first person to make a sound after the question is posed has the box. (You’ll thank me later.) *4 Math. Earth – art = eh.

NOTED ECHONOMIX What kind of band is handpicked to open for Nine Inch Nails at their final show and then proceeds to perform before No Doubt? Riding on a rather Japanese wave of pastel freakiness, LA electro duo Io Echo are poised to bridge the gap between goth-art gloom and quirky princess pop. To add more famous names to the mix, they’ve recently had two music videos directed by Natalie Portman’s ballet-genius baby daddy Benjamin Millepied. And did we mention they scored James Franco’s new movie? Only in LA. IOECHOMUSIC.COM

CARNIVOROUS You mean the bacon is—in—the burger? Finally, mad-genius SoCal burger lab Slater’s 50/50 hits a bit closer to home with a new location in Old Pasadena. Aside from the famous 50% beef, 50% bacon burger Slater’s is named for, the new spot boasts over one hundred beers on tap and a thorough menu of over-the-top comfort food suitable for any diet—yes, veggie and gluten-free fiends are welcome. But who can stick to a regimen when there’s the option to have a Bacon Cheeseburger Salad followed by a B’B’Bacon burger finished off with 50/50’s Famous Bacon Brownie and washed down with a Bacon Old Fashioned? Dreams really do come true. SLATERS5050.COM

EXCUSE ME, MSTR “Meister” is of course the German word for “Master,” and it also happens to be the name of our favorite new series of contemporary unisex timepieces. Valuing craftsmanship over trend, Meister watches are what our post-apocalypitc accessory dreams are made of. Carbon fiber, stainless steel, and an assortment of leathers? Yeah, we fux with that. MSTRWATCHES.COM

THE FACTORY The Great Art Factory is home to half-a-dozen artists and LA-based clothing brand S.O.Terik. Local artists collaborate to produce one-off t-shirt runs along with vintage silk pieces cut in seasonal patterns to guarantee every garment’s unique design. All items are sewn alongside sponsored artists at S.O.Terik’s creative space in the heart of DTLA, right around the corner from the Starbucks with the best cake-pops. SOTERIK.COM

21 PAPER CHASE Following Hurricane Katrina, a teenaged Jesse Woodard, a.k.a Chase N. Cashe, relocated to LA and started teaching himself to make beats. Apparently it didn’t take long to graduate from MPC school, because just a few years later in 2009, Chase landed an enormous break producing the much-anticipated Eminem and Lil Wayne collab “Drop the World.” Now firmly established as a major hip-hop producer and member of LA artist collective the Surf Club, Mr. Cashe is busy making a name for himself as a rapper. His latest official album Charm dropped this past November; it features appearances by A$AP Rocky and Lolah Brown with beats by araabMUZIK and Jahil Beats alongside Cashe’s own. (Ed note: We left his set at CMJ in a daze and with considerably less clothing than we arrived in.) CHASENCASHE.COM

HAIR RAISING Rat’s nest or lion’s mane, sure—but on the microscopic scale your hair actually looks more like a DNA chain. And what happens when you dunk it in sodium hypochlorite and then try to set it on fire is that links in the chain get lost, and your hair becomes damaged. Luckily, we live in the Future, where the people who brought us Keratin in the 70s are back with a new discovery. Tapping into knowledge learned from the Human Genome Project, the smarty-pants scientists and stylists over at Joico have formulated a revolutionary Bio-Advanced Peptide Complex that replicates your hair’s exact missing amino acids in the exact order, reversing damage better than ever before. The best part? The molecular miracle cure can now be found in all Joico products,including the new pro stylers, shampoos and conditioners. JOICO.COM

BEST FR3NEMIES To this day, the best quote we ever overheard in a Silverlake coffee shop is still, “he’s very Buddhist.” And when we found out our favorite spiritual/urban clothing line and twitter crush FR3NEMY finally launched their collection to buy online, we put our debit cards where our mouths were. So if you’re into religious tolerance, truth, and coexistence, peep their collection for the swaggy indigo baby in your life this Valentine’s Day. FRENEMYCLOTHING.COM

COMING A/W 2013

SOMETHING BETTER CHANGE

www.thecomume.com

23

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ON LACANVAS.COM >>

MORE: FOOD SCOOPS

The best falafel we’ve ever had hits Fairfax at Urban Garden, plus housemade breads, pasta and salami at DTLA’s latest Italian restaurant, Bestia.

>>

Q&A: IN THE VALLEY BELOW

The up-and-coming electro-folk duo gives us the scoop on their series of strange, cinematic music videos.

>>

Q&A: CLAM LAB

Etsy's top artisan Claire Castillaz tells us about her collection of handmade ceramic wares.

>> BEHIND THE

SCENES: #FASHION

Photographer Raymond Molinar and stylist Marissa Peden give us some insight into their creative process.

IN THE E-ISSUE >>

FEATURE: BETWEEN THE CRACKS

LAC photographers Rachel Many and Christopher Captain capture the unseen faces of our city.

>> FEATURE:

KEEP YOUR PANTS ON

Filmmaker Drew Denny chats with LAC about her latest movie, The Most Fun I’ve Ever Had With My Pants On.

>>

MORE: RACKS ON RACKS

Extended fashion stories by Raymond Molinar, Nancy Schoenmakers and Grant Yoshino.

>>

FEATURE: FALLING WHISTLES

We catch up with founder Sean Carasso to find out the real story behind the brand’s campaign for peace in the Congo. D O T C A N V A S

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25

W H O ’S

text REBECA ARANGO photo STEVEN YATSKO hair SIENREE @ CELESTINE AGENCY makeup LEIBI CARIAS

On one of the first truly rainy days of the season, a nearly-six-foot-tall Chelsea Wolfe arrives at the LA CANVAS studio in head-to-toe black, her inky locks drawn like drapes around her wide, glacier eyes. Born and raised in Northern California, Wolfe has been in Los Angeles for a little over two years now, though from the sound of her music you’d never guess she grew up on a diet of vitamin D. Always walking on the dark side of pretty, Wolfe’s electrified drone-

AFRAID OF

folk records can be melancholic as a light-gray drizzle or heavy as a slow evening storm. As it turns out, today’s inclement weather has disrupted what was supposed to be a

busy morning at the end of an even busier year for the singer. In 2012, she toured Australia, Europe, the US and Japan; wrote and recorded a new album to be released this Spring; and unveiled a collection of eerily beautiful acoustic songs titled Unknown Rooms. “I’m not big on dream interpretation,” Wolfe tells us in a cautious, deceptively tiny speaking voice. “But it comes from something I read, that when you dream about unknown rooms, or when you create rooms or spaces in your dreams, it’s representative of something about yourself that you haven’t been ready to fully explore or become comfortable with, and I think maybe making an acoustic record was something I wasn’t ready to do until then.” In a sense, the obstacle of becoming comfortable with herself has shaped the entire course of Wolfe’s career. Her initial apprehensions manifested themselves in early gigs; she used

CHELSEA

to perform wearing a veil, not quite showing audiences her face until mid-2011. And while Wolfe has been making music since the age of nine (when she would borrow her country-musician father’s home studio to tinker with Casio beats and record herself singing “weird” covers), it took a lot of exploration to come to terms with the idea of being a musician in the public eye. In 2010, after much encouragement from friends, Wolfe finally released her debut

album on nu-goth style house Pendu NYC. The Grime and the Glow was a disjointed yet compelling collection of lo-fi eight-track recordings, culminating in a gently creepy rendition of “You Are My Sunshine.” After a year on the road, she came back with Apokalypsis, an album filled with idealistic reflections on the state of the Earth as humanity and nature struggle to coexist. Named after the Greek root of the word apocalypse, the title translates to “a lifting of the veil.” On the cover, Wolfe gazes upwards through whited-out eyes, representing the

WOLFE?

moment of epiphany that precedes destruction. Recorded with professional musicians in a studio, Apokalypsis reached a new level

of aesthetic cohesion and sonic clarity. The sound was still gritty, distorted, and swampy, but the subtleties of Wolfe’s vocal performance were allowed to surface above the noise—which is crucial, because her voice is truly her instrument. Like a guitarist switching between stomp-boxes or pickups, she warps and stretches her tone and pronunciation from song to song without diluting its recognizable idiosyncrasy. Exploring the ghostly spectrum between angelic and demonic, she uses it to play ugly against pretty, rough against smooth. “I’m constantly playing with contrast. The beautiful and the horrible are always

WITH PLANS TO RELEASE HER FOURTH ALBUM IN AS MANY

YEARS,

CHELSEA

juxtaposed in life,” Wolfe tells us later that night from her LA home. Set against the relentless California sun, it makes sense that Wolfe has always considered herself a musical outcast. After all, our state’s definitive pop legacy was built by the Beach Boys; and even today, when compared to their British, Scandinavian, or East Coast counterparts, LA musicians radiate a relatively sunny disposition.

WOLFE COMES INTO HER OWN.

But there is a vision of California in Chelsea’s music, it’s just one you don’t often

hear. In the abstract paintings of her words, the vulnerable or ominous cry of her voice, and the smoky doldrums of her sound, there’s a space of sharp edges against a dangerous ocean, of an ancient, wild landscape, and of dry emptiness stretched around pockets of criminal overpopulation. “There’s constantly a ton of cars, a ton of people, everywhere you go. And I’m sort of a solitary person, so sometimes that can be hard for me…but there are also a lot of creative people here who are willing to work hard and get things done, and I like to get things done.” So misfit or not, she doesn’t plan on leaving any time soon.

CHELSEAWOLFE.NET VISIT LACANVAS.COM FOR A VIDEO INTERVIEW WITH CHELSEA WOLFE

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CHELSEAWOLFE.NET VISIT LACANVAS.COM FOR A VIDEO INTERVIEW WITH CHELSEA WOLFE

,

RAIN DANCE Finally. It’s grey and wet and except for the serious athletes, nobody’s gone surfing. So let’s just stay inside and have some tea. Maybe take a nap. Sniffle. Have a little cry even. Because that’s what people in Portland do when they’re not hiking or at the bookstore, right?

“Tesselate” Alt-J

“Kill Yourself” Chase N. Cashe

“Kiss Me Dead” Magic Wands

“Hurricane” MS MR

“Outsiders (Slow Version)” Io Echo

“Flatlands” Chelsea Wolfe

“Running Back” How to Dress Well

“Theia” Hundred Waters

“Break Yr Heart” ooOoO

“I’m A Mess” Body Language

“A Dedication” Washed Out

“Stark Weather” Icky Blossoms

STREAM THE FULL 32-TRACKS OF GLOOMY GOODNESS ON THE LA CANVAS SPOTIFY

I N T H E VA L L E Y BE LOW

TH E N E W E LECT RO-FOLK DUO ON THEIR AUDIO-VISUA L INSPIRATIONS

35 Somewhere in the cross section of 70s psychedelia, prairie frontier nostalgia, and lo-fi synth-pop, LA duo In the Valley Below have built a strange world all their own. Following the release of their debut self-titled EP this Fall, vocalist Angela Hail and vocalist/guitarist Jeffrey Jacob collaborated with director Laurent Michel Moreau to create a two-part video for their songs “Take Me Back” and “Palm Tree Fire,” scored a residency at the Bootleg, and went on tour with Mates of State. We caught up with the LA transplants to find out a bit more about their new project.

HAVE YOU GUYS EVER MADE A QUILT? ARE YOU AVID QUILTERS? ANGELA: I tried to make a quilt once, it nearly drove me to madness. Respect to the Amish. JEFFREY: I have a Quaker quilt from the 70’s on my bed. HOW DOES THE CULTURE, LANDSCAPE AND IMAGERY OF THE OLD AMERICAN WEST INFORM YOUR MUSIC? A & J: Growing up in Michigan and Tennessee, the west was always a mild fairy tale and it still intrigues us. Also, there’s plenty of that landscape here to work with. CAN YOU TELL US MORE ABOUT THE CONCEPT BEHIND THE “TAKE ME BACK” VIDEO? WHAT CAN WE EXPECT IN PART TWO? ANGELA: It was pure collaboration when we met Laurent Michel Moreau, an odd character with a very strange and beautiful mind. He splits his time between Paris, Berlin and LA, and I think he brings that influence to the video. One evening we were having visions of how the video looked with all these women. The concept becomes more clear in part two. You can expect a little more bedlam. DO YOU ALSO DRAW NARRATIVE INSPIRATION FROM CULT HISTORIES, FRINGE SOCIETIES OR THE OCCULT? THERE SEEM TO BE TRACES OF THAT IN THE VIDEO. ANGELA: I tried a couple spells in my life and got freaked out, so I have a respect for the Occult. Cults and religions (same thing?) are profoundly fascinating. So much power and emotion is involved, and when a group concentrates that energy it can be catastrophic or magical. It’s a phenomenon of nature like auroras and earthquakes. So, yes, it interests us. YOU’VE MANAGED TO MARRY A DIGITAL, ELECTRONIC PRODUCTION STYLE WITH A NOSTALGIC, OLD-TIMEY VISUAL AESTHETIC. HOW DID THAT HAPPEN? A & J: It wasn’t really a planned thing. We just kind of look this way and gravitate towards the visuals of the prairie frontier. When we started ‘In The Valley Below’ we used 80’s Synths as our altar, most notably, the well named Prophet 5. We built our sound around that. We try and write songs that are both interesting and epic. Most everything is recorded at home or in our rehearsal studio Downtown. HAS LIVING IN LOS ANGELES SHAPED OR CHANGED YOUR APPROACH TO MUSIC OR YOUR SOUND? A & J: I think it pushes us to be more creative. There are a lot of great bands here, and we have to dig deep to come up with something original. Los Angeles is full of darkness despite the sunshine. The ghosts of the city creep in and whisper to us. ANGELA, YOU LIVED IN A SMALL BOAT IN THE WEST INDIES. WE’RE INTRIGUED. CAN YOU TELL US MORE? ANGELA: My ex and I decided to sell everything we owned and buy a sailboat. We intended to sail around the world, and got as far as Dominica. A friend gave me an old warped classical guitar, which I brought along and found that writing songs was easier and more rewarding than learning songs. Eventually El Nino crept in and blocked the Pacific, our empty pockets turned us north, and Los Angeles split us apart.

interview REBECA ARANGO

TO

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CK &

They were ready to change the world. But first, they would change each other. Before they were the Beatles, five rowdy working class lads from the docks of Liverpool rocked out eight days a week in the raucous clubs and red-light seediness of Hamburg, Germany, creating an epic new sound. Direct from London, Backbeat thunders with live rollicking classics like “Twist and Shout,” “Love Me Do,” “Long Tall Sally,” “P.S. I Love You,” “Rock and Roll Music,” “I Saw Her Standing There” and so many more! Based on the Universal Pictures film.

January 20–March 1 Ahmanson Theatre Pick your exact seats online!

CenterTheatreGroup.org/Backbeat 213.972.4400 season sponsors

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37

BEHIND THE MUSIC

THE GRAMMY MUSEUM PRESERVES AND CELEBRATES MUSIC HISTORY THROUGH INTERACTIVE EXHIBITS, ARTIFACTS, AND INTIMATE LIVE PERFORMANCES text REBECA ARANGO Keeping up with the incessant onslaught of recorded music is hard

also a smattering of weird pop-artifacts: stage costumes—like the little pink get-up

enough—how can we be expected to know what Muddy Waters was up to in

Beyonce wore to sing “Purple Rain” with Prince, a collection of Michael Jackson’s

the 1940s, or how many records the Beach Boys released before they ditched

signature jackets, and even an original blood-stained Andrew WK outfit—are

the surfboards and took a trip to the petting zoo? How can we understand the

presented alongside hand-written lyrics—Brian Wilson’s scrawl of “God Only

relationship between Jazz and Third Stream when we’re so busy deciphering

Knows” in blue pen (suspect)—as well as original albums, label contracts, early

Chillwave from Witch House? Does anyone have the time to keep track of this stuff?

recording devices, instruments, sketches, and artwork.

Apparently, yes. The Recording Academy has been actively

But that’s not to say the Grammy Museum is all inanimate objects;

celebrating and documenting popular music since 1959, with the 55th

it’s a space for live humans too. Annie Lennox, Tom Morello, Stevie Nicks

annual Grammy Awards taking place at the Staples Center this February. At

and Yoko Ono—just to name a few—have all been featured in the program

the Grammy Museum, you can sift through the entire archive of televised

“An Evening With,” in which legendary musicians are interviewed on

shows, starting with the inaugural event at the Beverly Hilton that awarded

stage, engaged in an audience Q&A session, and then invited to perform

Ella Fitzgerald, Count Basie, and Perry Como, among others.

in the intimate, 200-seat Clive Davis theater. Other performance series, like

While you could spend hours perusing epic performances and searching for train-wreck acceptances speeches, the viewing room is only one small part of

“Homegrown” and “The Drop,” focus on up-and-coming or local artists, while “Reel-to-Real” screens music documentaries followed by panel discussions.

this four-level building. Inside, you’ll find futuristic audio-visual exhibits like the

So as soon you and Ross Geller are all done brushing up on fossils,

big colorful touch-table linking together almost every genre imaginable (though we

set your next field trip for LA Live. Gearing up for a game of trivial pursuit or

don’t think they’ve added Witch House yet), interactive maps exploring American

not, a day at the Grammy Museum is a foolproof way to get your music-history

V

music by city, and short video docs analyzing social trends by decade. There’s

IQ up. (And, they have synthesizers.)

E N

800 WEST OLYMPIC BOULEVARD A245 LOS ANGELES, CA 90015 GRAMMYMUSEUM.ORG

U E

ART ST REET

powered by

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photos provided by COLORS IN LOS ANGELES // COLORSINLA.COM LA STREET ART GALLERY // LASTREETARTGALLERY.COM

ADVENTURES IN SPACE & TIME ADVENTURES IN SPACE & TIME ADVENTURES IN SPACE & TIME ADVENTURES IN SPACE & TIME ADVENTURES IN SPACE & TIME

PHOTOGRAPHER JAY MARK JOHNSON BREAKS HIS CAMERA AND BLOWS YOUR MIND

text SHANA NYS DAMBROT

THE THING ABOUT PHOTOGRAPHY IS ITS TRUTHINESS.

Digital-age machinations aside, the camera enjoys a

reputation for providing trustworthy, unmediated depictions of the real world, more or less as it actually appears. Whatever filters or post-production technologies abound, the basic idea remains that you can look at a picture and know what something looked like in a recognizable world. But when it comes to the photographs of Jay Mark Johnson, that presumption is turned on its head. His pictures look nothing like the world as we know it, and they are not really meant to. Yet still, their brain-melting relationship to the truth remains unassailable. The best thing to do is just relax, and let art and science blow your mind. Instead of recording the optical contours of what a place looks like, JMJ has figured out a way to record the temporal events that happen there. Instead of what a person looks like, he records the evidence of what they’ve done—in a unique process he calls Spacetime that produces fixed-point images depicting objects and figures as time passes. The overall effect is ironically surreal and abstract, considering the hyper-accuracy of the information the images contain. There is a certain conceptual kinship with the work of video artist Bill Viola —who also manipulates time and sees the drama of motion as central to an event’s meaning. In Viola’s case, he dramatically slows down time to set a seemingly still image in motion; in JMJ’s case, he converts motion into a still image. Basically by “tricking” a moving camera lens into taking still images in a process not unlike what happens when your scanner breaks, objects in motion appear still, while stationary surroundings appear as stripes of pure color. Yet even though you don’t “see” the backgrounds, they play a huge role in the images’ energy, giving liminal subconscious cues to the eye as to the urban, natural, bustling, or remote location. He’s the only guy I know that has the surf report and the CalTech particle physics lab on speed dial. His subjects range from ferris wheels that appear to corkscrew; waves that carve out infinitely receding spaces; architecture that collapses; roads and rivers that straighten out their bends; mining towns enveloped in dust storms. His travels take him to Rome, Cambodia, Ojai, West Virginia, South America, the Venice boardwalk, and Belgrade —no small feat considering the miniature space station he carries around with him. Besides the ten-pound camera and hefty tripod in its own case, we’re talking 100-150 pounds of equipment in titanium briefcases wherever he goes, and the TSA guys stop him every time. On the ground, he relies on local drivers and guides up for driving around for hours “in Terminator scan mode” looking for the perfect shot. From train depots to dance studios, rain forests to recycling plants, what JMJ is really documenting are the innate, inescapable underlying patterns of the universe, the stripped-down coordinates of where beauty comes from—but try explaining that to your average random cabbie. He was once abandoned in a Cozumel alligator reserve, but still he isn’t daunted. “I’m hoping this year to shoot the Wildebeest migration in Masai.” Drivers wanted.

CATCH JMJ'S SPECIAL PROJECT EXHIBITION AT JANUARY'S PHOTO LA ART FAIR. JAYMARKJOHNSON.COM

O F F T H E WALL LA ARTISTS DEVIN LISTON AND GOSHA LEVOCHKIN JOIN FORCES TO PAINT A POWERFUL NEW HOLLYWOOD MURAL

TEXT ROSS GARDINER PHOTO CAPTAIN

“I’ve been playing around a lot with telephone lines,” said

“We see it being about conscious and subconscious states,”

Gosha as he pointed out the thin silhouettes of pylons poking up from

said Devin, gazing off, trying earnestly to form what was clearly a

the half-finished mural. They were connected by a single line moving

powerful aesthetic vision into words that people could directly relate to.

across the entire wall, transcending moods and scenes in its path

“But within that there’s the battle between nature and industry, man

around us. “I’m fascinated with how everyone in the world is connected

and machine, connect and disconnect.” The mural does exactly what

now. But I’m forever puzzled with how lonely everyone seems.”

a great collaborative piece of work should: it simultaneously divides

In the acidic LA drizzle, falling on us like someone spitting as they

and unites the artists. Though they have distinctly different styles, they

spoke, we all stood on top of The Audience building in Hollywood and looked

have managed to blend their work together perfectly, utilizing Gosha’s

at the sprawling dreamscape that spread across the once expressionless grey

tremendously steady hand and vivid characterization to complement

wall. Devin Liston, formerly of LA-based art collective Cyrcle, and Russian

Devin’s striking realism and acute understanding of depth, creating a

watercolor painter Gosha Levochkin tried to explain the narrative that nudged

vibrant dream world that seems to claw at you from the wall.

along the characters and colors that burst from the cold damp canvas.

“THIS BUILDING REMINDS ME OF RUSSIA. FUCKING NICE TO PUT SOME COLOR ON IT!”

Connected by the single black telephone line, themes of

to talking about their art, exchanged information and quickly became

diminishing social relevance and evolving and devolving environments

very close friends. As they got deeper into their portfolios the two found

wrap around one another, playfully strangling the textured central figure

that their styles complemented one another. “Since I met him I wanted

that bears the proverbial weight of the city on his head. Around him, beasts

to collaborate with him,” said Devin, “I was blown away by his art.”

devour semblances of positivity while eerie silhouettes of strangers, lacking

But soon after, Devin became preoccupied with Cyrcle, the

description but for their reddened eyes, brush past one another without a

much-lauded art and design trio responsible for some of the boldest murals

glance. Opposing the blaring dissonant city is the loosely layered image

in Los Angeles, and plans to collaborate with Gosha were temporarily

of a young Vietnamese girl topped with a volcano. Her soft, damp eyes

shelved. Giving almost all of his time to the Cyrcle project took its toll, and

seem to stare down the chaos on the opposite wall from her simple, serene

he recently left the group to pursue his own path, finally allowing time for a

environment, yet the imminent destruction of that environment is palpable. 

serious collaborative venture with the young Russian painter.

The artists met around five years ago in an art supply store.

“This building reminds me of Russia,” said Gosha, as he

Gosha was working, and Devin was buying paints and canvas. They got

looked around and the sterile straight lines and the damp dark grey

walls of the building we stood on, “Fucking nice to put some color on

Despite the fact that their stylistic compliments stem from

it!”Levochkin’s family arrived in Los Angeles from the Soviet Union

stark differences, there is a conceptual outlook that binds the two artists

seventeen years ago. Influenced by a mixture of Japanese and American

strongly together. Both believe in inspiring people to create, addressing

animators, he first got a taste of their colorful cartoons on Sunday

the individual rather than society as a whole, and encouraging a spatial

nights as a child. “There was one TV station that would play American

awareness that travels to the very edges of the worlds they depict.

and Japanese cartoons, and they would run from 5pm to midnight on

As Devin and Gosha work towards hitting that stride and

Sundays. I remember how much more color they had than the Soviet

finding the perfect balance between their talents, they’re quickly

cartoons. Russian cartoons are bleak.”

building up a body of work for their first show, “Pressure,” opening at

Gosha paints the vivid watercolor worlds that he treads in his

the Soze gallery on March 1st. And given the work they are producing

imagination, polarizing both the overbearing, morose landscape of his

this early into their collaborative venture, you can be sure of a unique

birth and watercolor’s more typical roots in realism. And it’s this reaction,

creative experience when the opening night finally comes round.

fueled by an ethereal optimism, which defines his vast body of work.

SILVER LAKE. STUDIO CITY. MAR VISTA. COSTA MESA. SEAL BEACH. SAN MARINO.

HOLLYWOOD. SANTA MONICA. 3RD AND FAIRFAX. REDONDO BEACH

GALLERY OPENINGS MARC FICHOU: CONTENANT CONTENU Robert Berman Gallery January 5 - February 16, 2013 Opening: January 5, 6-9pm Marc Fichou produces cross-platform work investigating the relationship between time, image and matter that combine video, painting, sculpture and photography. His new exhibition is part of the city-wide program Ceci n’est pas…Art between France and LA, organized by the Cultural Services of the US French Embassy. robertbermangallery.com ANDREW SCHOULTZ: Fall Out Mark Moore Gallery January 12 - February 9, 2013 Opening: January 12, 6-8pm For his first solo show at Mark Moore, SF-based artist Andrew Schoultz translates the motifs in his frenetic two-dimensional works into a real scale three-dimensional installation— presenting an interrelated combination of painting, sculpture, drawing, and collage drawing aesthetic inspiration from 15th Century German map making and Indian miniature paintings. markmooregallery.com LA EXISTANCIAL Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE) January 16 - March 3, 2013 Opening: January 16, 8-10pm LA Existancial, organized by curator Marie de Brugerolle, is an ambitious group exhibition that brings together international artists across generations, media, styles, and disciplines to explore LA as myth as well as a site of cinema and crime. The show is part of the Ceci n’est pas…Art between France and LA programs. welcometolace.org FREE ENTERPRISE: THE ART OF CITIZEN SPACE EXPLORATION UC Riverside Arts Block January 19 - May 18, 2013 Opening: January 19, 6-9pm The first contemporary art exhibition in the US to explore implications of civilian space travel, which represents a major political and cultural shift away from sponsorship by the federal government and toward a free-market, private enterprise model. This exhibition focuses on artists who have had a deep engagement with space exploration issues throughout the course of their work. sweeney.ucr TILT: ALL YOU CAN EAT Fabien Castanier Gallery January 19 - February 17, 2013 Opening: January 19, 7-10pm Fabien Castanier Gallery is proud to present “All You Can Eat,” a solo exhibition by Tilt. Recognized internationally as a traditional graffiti artist, Tilt began as a youth on the streets and train cars of Toulouse, France. Most intersted in conveying the action of graffiti throw-ups and tagging, Tilt’s style retains this classic hip-hop ideology. Tilt will present new work for his solo exhibition. castaniergallery.com SCRATCHING THE SURFACE: CONTEMPORARY WOOD SCULPTURE Craft and Folk Art Museum (CAFAM) January 27 - May 5, 2013 Opening: January 26, 6-9pm An exhibition featuring the works of nine contemporary sculptors who capitalize on the naturally occurring textures and irregularities of wood. Using both machine-cut and natural surfaces, each shares a proclivity for working with the grain of wood surface via sawing, bleaching, sandblasting, and exposure to the elements. cafam.org LLYN FOULKES Hammer Museum February 3 - May 19, 2013 One of the most influential yet underrecognized artists of his generation, Foulkes makes work that stands out for its raw, immediate, and unfiltered qualities. His extraordinarily diverse body of work—including impeccably painted landscapes, mixed-media constructions, and deeply disturbing portraits— resists categorization and defies expectations. hammer.ucla.edu

CHRIS OATEY: SOME THINGS I’VE BEEN THINKING ABOUT. CB1 Gallery February 24 –March 31, 2013 Opening: February 24, 5-7pm Half of the gallery is dedicated to a solo show Chris Oatey, whose drawings, sculptures, and installations riff on obsession, repetition, and pattern. The other half features the group show “Performing Methods,”curated by Oatey, with dynamic work by Amelie Chabannes, Marc Philip van Kempen, Joey Kötting, Pascual Sisto, Maria Walker, Joe Winter. cb1gallery.com

GET MORE OF L.A.’S BEST OPENINGS AT LACANVAS.COM

THE ART OF COFFEE

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PROJECT GALLERY + ESPRESSO ADDS AN AROMATIC NEW DIMENSION TO THE ART GALLERY EXPERIENCE

text EMMA GOGONOVSKI photo CAPTAIN Unless you’re there for an opening party or a little afternoon

As for the art, Project is focused on showcasing established

art-shopping (NBD), walking into a gallery can be a bit intimidating. Enter

and emerging artists in the genres of Contemporary, Street, Lowbrow, Pop

Project Gallery + Espresso, the latest art space to grace Cahuenga Boulevard

Surrealism, Photography, and Installation. Zio Ziegler’s Lost Illusions set the

in Hollywood. With an artisan espresso bar tucked neatly inside, Project

tone for the program with a fitting showcase of color-drenched, large-scale

manages to bridge the gap between the highbrow art patron and the average

canvases and murals. Creating an illusion of simplicity from afar, Zio’s work is

passer-by.

incredibly intriguing, drawing you closer (coffee in hand) to discover intricate

The brain child of Sarah Gough, originally from Kentucky via

Miami, Project opened last November with an inaugural show by young San

patterns and stories.

Francisco-based artist Zio Ziegler.

closes; but Zio’s work is now ingrained into Hollywood, his murals dotting the

Sarah imagined the concept while working in various art galleries and observing the way the museum-like spaces left audiences apprehensive.

It will be a bittersweet moment when Lost Illusions

walls along Cahuenga. Next to Project is Venice local Cari Lee, followed by Facebook HQ’s in-house artist and muralist Ian Ross.

“Project started as a multifunctional space,” Sarah tells LAC. “I wanted it to be

So the space is great and the art resonates, but what of the coffee?

all about the art, yet with something else added into it.” Sarah has succeeded

Sarah’s “Espresso Master” Toby believes Project has all the makings to be the

in creating a welcoming space; warmth is emanated through exposed brick and

best espresso in LA, with beans sourced from a micro roaster and blended

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the barn wood bar that holds the magnificent espresso machine in the rear of

specifically for the gallery. But whether it rules the city’s roast-race or not, Project

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the gallery. The aroma of coffee drifts out onto Cahuenga, drawing you in, while

is an exciting moment for the LA art and coffee worlds alike. It is a space for all,

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the small act of holding a coffee cup allows you to stay just that much longer.

with infinite possibilities to walk out feeling all the richer.

L E R

1553 N CAHUENGA BLVD. HOLLYWOOD, CA 90028 PROJECTLA.NET

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B O O K OF

PUNK RIZZOLI’S NEW PUNK: AN AESTHETIC GIVES A HIGHIMPACT SURVEY OF PUNK ROCK’S VISUAL LEGACY. text SHANA NYS DAMBROT

Graphic violence and violent graphics are the order of the day in

This lavish eye-feast of expertly archived and contextualized

Punk: An Aesthetic. Rizzoli’s hefty new tome revisits the proliferation and

culture is framed by suitably pop-academic texts from, among others, post-

perfidy of the punk era, roughly 1975-84, and in the process illuminates

modern science-fiction luminary William Gibson, author of Neuromancer and

the enduring, fresher-than-ever legacy of those years not only on our

All Tomorrow’s Parties (yes, like the song). His essay is called 1977, and is

music, but on our film, visual art, and design.

centered on the Velvet Underground, Patti Smith, and xeroxing. “Punk was

The visual art associated with the punk movement was just as

the last pre-digital counterculture. The last thing I thought about punk, in

important as the music and the clothes; embodying the same raw rush for

1977, was how amazingly old-fashioned the technologies it took for granted

total freedom of expression and reckless disregard for authority that exploded

would seem. I’d never seen a fax machine, or a PC.” Ironically, the dead sexy,

on stages and in back alleys from London to Los Angeles and the Lower East

high production value of the book is, itself, about as far from a DIY object

Side. Intertwined and inextricable, the incendiary painted, photographed,

as punk can ever get, with a fineness of reproduction the 70’s could only

and printed matter was frequently made by the same people that made the

dream about. Yet this poshness is only fitting, as the occasion for the book

music—especially when it came to concert posters and fan zines. Raymond

is the official creation of the Cornell University Punk Archive, founded on

Pettibon’s early work for Black Flag is legendary and he is well represented in

the extensive collections of punk-era art and ephemera bestowed by Johan

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the book, alongside other artists who went on to become fine-art giants, like

Kugelberg and Jon Savage, the book’s editors. High-end irony aside, crushed

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Larry Clark, Malcolm McLaren, and Gary Panter.

beer cans and spiked boots never looked so good on your coffee table.

O K

RIZZOLIUSA.COM

BREN NECKLACE $68

BRANCH BANGLES $95

CARLY NECKLACE $78

LIFE LINK BRACELET $100

DISC-O-BALL NECKLACE $85 BLESSED RING $95

photo GRANT YOSHINO styling SARAH PERILLO hair JAKOB SHERWOOD @ Artists by NEXT NY makeup MARGINA DENNIS assistant makeup CASSIE KURTZ models NICOLA WINCENC @ Request / NOMA HAN @ Fusion / GORGIA @ Wilhelmina

ON GEORGIA dress by Again / motorcycle jacket vintage

good e h av i o

kids on

ON NOMA shirt and denim by Commune / denim Jacket by Commune

this page ON GORGIA jumper by Again / denim vest vintage

opposite page ON NICOLA shirt and leather jacket by Nudie Jeans / denim by Commune ON GORGIA dress by Again / denim jacket vintage ON NOMA shirt by Comune / denim by Comune

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U PHOTOGRAPHY RAYMOND MOLINAR PHOTO ASSISTANT ALEX SCHMIDT STYLING M A RISSA PEDEN HAIR + MAKEUP JENNA KRISTINA MODELS MEGHAN + SABI N E @ NEXT MODELS

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DRESS BY AGAIN / HAT BY BRIXTON

BONNETS BY WESTERN COSTUME COMPANY, VINTAGE / SHOES BY JEFFREY CAMPBELL

LOS ANGELES

SAN FRANCISCO

S A N TA M O N I C A

W W W. S H O P W A S T E L A N D . C O M

STUDIO CITY

BA ICS S

back

After an opulent, barouque-inspired fall, a minimalist spring peaks its well manicured hand around the corner.

photography STEVEN YATSKO hair + makeup JEFFREY BAUM model ALEX NOIRET @ VISION MODELS LA

to

THE STYLING RAUL GUERRERO ASSISTANT STYLIST SARAH PERILLO GROOMING TIFFANY LEIGH PATTON MODEL MICKY AYOUB @ REQUEST NY

STUSSY’S ROOTS IN SURF AND STREET CULTURE BEGAN IN 1980, WHEN SEAN STUSSY HAPHAZARDLY SCRIBBLED HIS NAME ONTO ONE OF HIS CUSTOM SURFBOARDS, UNWITTINGLY CHANGING THE STREET WEAR LANDSCAPE FOREVER. TODAY, THAT SAME HANDWRITTEN LOGO STANDS FOR A BRAND WITH A GLOBAL CULT FOLLOWING COMPRISED OF SURFERS, SKATERS, INDIE KIDS AND HIP-HOP HEADS ALIKE. LAC SAT DOWN WITH STUSSY HEAD DESIGNER NICK BOWER FOR A LITTLE INSIGHT INTO THE ICONIC BRAND’S IDENTITY, PERSPECTIVE AND EVOLUTION.

ETRIBE WHAT MAKES STUSSY SO ICONIC? CAN YOU TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THE

WHAT CAN’T YOU LEAVE THE HOUSE WITHOUT?

STUSSY “TRIBE”?

It depends on how long I’m leaving the house for. For a day, there’s nothing

As a brand, Stussy played a major part in the birth of a worldwide youth style.

that important, but for a week I have to have a quiver of shoes.

The OG Stussy Tribe were like-minded kids from LA, NY, London and Tokyo

that were the early style makers. They recognized that the gear Shawn Stussy

DO YOU WASH YOUR JEANS?

was making was what they wanted to represent. Tribe was a title Shawn gave

Nope, I’m only interested in indigo rigid denim. When my denims get to the

this crew who were mostly kids he had met in NYC and became his friends.

point where even I can smell them, I wash them with water only, inside out. After that happens twice, I’m over them.

HOW HAVE YOU EXPANDED THE BRAND WHILE STAYING TRUE TO STUSSY’S ORIGINAL CULT FOLLOWING?

STUSSY STARTED IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA WITH SURFBOARDS. HOW WAS

Our distribution in the USA is not that different from what it was some years

THE BRAND ABLE TO ADAPT AN EAST COAST SENSIBILITY?

ago; we don’t sell to a lot of stores that would like us to. The expansion

In the interest of clarity, Shawn Stussy started with surfboards, shaping

over the last ten years was in Japan, where quality and design is part of

and selling them. The brand Stussy was born when Shawn started making

their national character. More recently we’ve expanded our presence online

clothing. Stussy was originally designed for California with Reggae being the

through our own site and collaborations.

musical influence. Then in the mid 80’s, the musical influence became more

HOW CAN YOU MAKE STREET WEAR DAPPER?

Dapper is not gear, it’s a style. If that’s your thing, and you put it together right, I guess street wear could be made dapper.

DO YOU SKATE OR SURF? HOW DID YOU BECOME INVOLVED WITH THE BRAND?

I surf. I was loosely involved, not so much with the brand, but with Shawn because we both lived in Laguna Beach in the 80’s.The job of designing for

Stussy wasn’t offered to me till 97—two years after Shawn had left. I joined Paul Mittleman in the design department.

about Hip-Hop—the Beastie Boys, Run DMC. It was this influence that had an impact on the Stussy gear and made it relevant on both coasts.

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN EAST COAST AND WEST COAST STREET STYLE? WHICH DO YOU PREFER?

Not much difference. The internet has changed all that. There’s a common language to streetwear worldwide. There are obviously groups within street

style that see themselves as “local” and wear their own style, but in the big picture we don’t design for it.

WHAT ITEM OF CLOTHING DO YOU WEAR MOST OFTEN?

WHAT’S NEXT FOR STUSSY?

Solid poplin shirts.

Making sure we stay relevant, everything will follow on from that.

STUSSY PLAYED A MAJOR PART “ BIRTH OF A WORLDWIDE YOUTH

IN THE STYLE. THE OG STUSSY TRIBE WERE LIKE-MINDED KIDS FROM LA, NY, LONDON AND TOKYO THAT WERE THE EARLY STYLE MAKERS.

G E T W E L L

G E T W E L L

URBAN LEGEND THE WELL OPENS ITS FIRST PERMANENT LOCATION DOWNTOWN

G E T W E L L

text ERIN DENNISON photo GRANT YOSHINO assistant photo DIANE JONG styling TON AGUILAR hair JEFFERSON NTYS makeup BARBARA YNIGUEZ models JEREMY YUGE CLINTON @ PHOTOGENICS BROOKE @ VISION MODELS LA BRANDON @ VISION MODELS LA

opposite page ON BROOKE TOP BY CLOVER CANYON / NECKLACE BY AVANTE GARDE this page ON BRANDON JACKET BY CHAMBERS / TOP BY ROARK COLLECTIVE

What do you get when you cross an events space, salon, photo

candy-colored hair product and wooden wave-shaped walls. Embedded

studio, and clothing store? The Well. Our favorite underground party

flat screens streaming fashion videos lined the inner consul next to Nail

hosts and creative types have collaborated with some of their closest

Swag’s art manicure station. The Well’s brightly-lit futuristic ambiance was

fashion friends to bring Angelenos a retail experience they haven’t even

impressive on its own, but enhanced by the notion that just the night prior,

dreamed of yet. Emerging from the ashes of their former warehouse digs,

we were shuffled to the back through a revolving door and into a 3,000 sq ft

The Well has finally opened its doors in the heart of Downtown LA.

warehouse space where we moshed to Juicy J until our gel-eyeliner got all smudgy.

Walking in on the day of the shoot, we discovered an expertly

Needless to say the Well has graduated from underground

cultivated array of designer garments lining the space’s custom-built

warehouse jump-offs to a high-concept design experience, and we’re more than

racks to the left, while to our right, five salon chairs sat facing rows of

just a little excited to see what this team of creatives has in store for us next.

GETTWELL.LA

ON JEREMY TOP BY UNIF / BOTTOMS BY PUBLISH ON CLINTON TOP BY UNIF

THE METHOD Ever considered the alchemy and architecture behind handmade jewelry design? These kids have. Here’s a brief rundown of our favorite LA-based precious metal masters.

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BONES AND FEATHERS COLLECTIVE The brainchild of Nicole Morral and Natalie Mauro, BFC is conceived and produced in the lovely Jewelry District in Downtown LA. The girls began designing fresh flowered headpieces in 2010 and have since transitioned to molds of puzzled bones and pieces made of recycled bullet casings. Nicole and Natalie’s combined Hawaiian/Midwestern/ Manhattan influences are especially felt in the line’s goth-inspired utilitarian boho-chic FW’12 collection. BANDFCOLLECTIVE.COM // @BFCOLLECTIVE PHOTO BY ROBERT SIGLER

B.LO Blake Hardy and Logan Stanton are the real life couple of model-slash-designers who joined forces to create re-worked vintage jewelry in 2010. After two years of swap-meet thugging and exponential demand, the sartorially-inclined duo are producing their first major collection, slated to drop this spring. BLOJEWELRY.COM // @BLOJEWELRY PHOTO BY ALEX STONE

DEAR RAYMER It takes up to 48 hours of labor to make one of Jared Tate Johnson’s custom metal pieces. Based in the warehouse district of Downtown LA, the jewelry artisan behind Dear Raymer has earned a loyal following over the past six years for his raw and geometric, yet streamlined aesthetic. By using hand

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oxidized precious metals, a draping technique more often used in fashion/textile construction, and

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soldering up to 100 jump rings per piece for strength and functionality, Johnson’s taken a step

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away from the mass-produced norm and built a personalized genre of accessory design.

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DEARRAYMER.BLOGSPOT.COM/ //@DEARRAYMER

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PHOTO BY GREG GAINOR

text ERIN DENNISON

A space filled with memories, designer collectibles and a variety of items that fit any style or budget.

Hudson | BB Dakota | One Teaspoon | Joie | Joe’s Jeans | Eberjey 1410 Abbot Kinney Ste. 101, Venice, CA 90291 310.399.3988 - gossamershop.com - facebook.com/gossamershop

HOW HAVE THE TECHNIQUES CHANGED SINCE YOU STARTED?

CAN YOU THINK OF ONE DISH THAT EXEMPLIFIES THE NEW TECHNIQUES AND

When I first got into raw food, everybody had a blender and a dehydrator. Over

EQUIPMENT?

the last six years, we’ve started to incorporate more types of fermentation; we

Sure, we have this very simple dish on our lunch menu—or it appears to

use something called an ultrasonic homogenizer, it’s a multiplication. And we

be simple. It’s a salad, but it’s got a coconut bacon that’s smoked with

do a lot of smoking, and we use thermal immersion. So we’re incorporating

our smoking gun, and it’s got this Portobello mushroom that’s prepared

all these modernist techniques that allow for different textures and lighter

under vacuum-sealed pressure in a machine called the thermal immersion

ways to prepare the food with less fat and less nuts. It’s changed from one-

circulator, and that allows us to keep all the moisture inside the mushroom

dimensional, completely raw or dehydrated recipes to utilizing the modernist

while still tenderizing it, or “cooking” it, at a low temperature whereas if

equipment and all the new ingredients that are available in the market. If

you dehydrated it, it would get dry. So that dish combines the smoking, it

people ask how we do what we do, I say the best ingredients, really innovative

combines the thermal immersion, and it’s still a salad.

techniques and equipment, and a lot of creativity.

WWW.MATTHEWKENNEYCUISINE.COM

DO YOU HAVE ANY FAVORITE RAW RE-INTERPRETATIONS OF TRADITIONAL DISHES

IS IT POSSIBLE FOR A DEDICATED PERSON TO CREATE AN INTERESTING RAW DIET

OR THINGS YOU LOVED GROWING UP?

USING WIDELY AVAILABLE INGREDIENTS? WHERE DO WE START?

I always loved pizza; we don’t call it pizza but we do a flatbread with a topping,

One of the programs we’re doing here is a guided cleanse. We have a nutritionist

it’s more of like a hummus-type of topping with fennel. And I always loved Italian

on our staff, and you can do a week-long or a month-long cleanse, and people

food, so we have this heirloom tomato lasagna, which incorporates zucchini

have the option of us preparing the food, or we can give them a digital guide

instead of pasta, but it still has pesto and tomato sauce and a macadamia nut

to let them know what they have to shop for and how to prepare it themselves.

cheese.

And we do dumplings, but they’re entirely different than a typical

There’s also my book Everyday Raw Express; all the recipes in there are done

dumpling because we’re using a young Thai coconut wrapper colored with

in less than a half hour, it doesn’t require any fancy tools, there aren’t any Thai

spinach juice, spread thin and dehydrated just enough to give it that texture.

Coconuts—you just need a good blender—so that’s a really good place to start.

Then it’s filled with kimchi, cashew, ginger, green onion and a little bit of chili.

We’re also doing a weekend intensive program here, it’s a twelve hour class, so that’ll give people a really thorough understanding of how to get started.

VISIT LACANVAS.COM FOR A VIDEO INTERVIEW WITH MATTHEW KENNEY

SOUPED UP It may be rare compared to your biweekly fro-yo craving, but a hankering for a bowl of hot, savory, slurp-able goodness can be very downright dire. Whether triggered by dreary days, the sniffles, or plain old nostalgia, here are some of your best bets for scratching that old soup itch. WEST LA

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NONG LA CAFE

SPOT: A Vietnamese eatery isn’t so easy to find on the Westside, so it was pretty exciting when Nong La moved into Little Osaka last year. The home-spun food—soups, rice dishes, bahn mis and appetizers—is as comforting as any apple pie. SOUP: If the Pho craving strikes, any of Nong La’s five flavors will surely satisfy. But there’s also the Bun Bo Hue, a Central Vietnamese broth of lemongrass, beef and chili oil served with a heap of pork patty and some nice juicy brisket. 2055 Sawtelle Blvd Los Angeles, CA 90025

VENICE

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“Break Bread. Share Wine. Feed the Soul.”

FARMHOUSE KITCHEN

SPOT: Started by two farmer’s market pros, Farmhouse Kitchen is the latest bastion of the local food movement, now serving up hearty but healthy food from a window on Ocean Front Walk in Venice. SOUP: Every day the kitchen cooks up a whole slew of organic soups from their market haul. Alongside traditional favorites, you’ll find inspired creations like Pomegranate Beef Stew, Curried Squash Soup and their signature Sloppy Jake’s. 1827 Ocean Front Walk Venice, CA 90291

CULVER CITY, BEVERLY HILLS + HOLLYWOOD o M CAFE SPOT: Macrobiotic bungalow M Café is famously a favorite among health-conscious celebrities, but even omnivores can get down with M’s potently yummy and diverse menu listing everything from macro burgers to bi-bim-bop. SOUP: A rotating selection of seasonal soups like Mushroom Barley, Butternut Squash, or Curried Lentil accompany the miso that’s available daily. Any option succesfully warms up a combo of two deli salads. Three locations; visit mcafedechaya.com

HOLLYWOOD o THE BOWERY SPOT: LA’s first ever gastropub, this dark and cozy joint brings a little bit of NYC to Hollywood, boasting a menu of on-point modern comfort food—burrata and butternut squash salad, burger with red onion confit, gravy fries with brisket—and the bar to back it up. SOUP: There’s only one on the menu, but it’s the quintessential one—perfected. Bowery’s Roasted Tomato Soup topped with an Herb Goat Cheese Crouton may just be the best tomato soup in the city, and you can have it at lunch or dinner. 6268 Sunset Boulevard Los Angeles, CA 90028

SILVERLAKE o FORAGE SPOT: This minimalist-modern Silverlake staple is familyowned, sourcing ingredients from the local farmers they’ve known for years. You can compose your own meal from their daily-made seasonal salads and sides, and finish it off with one of their stunning pastries. SOUP: Through the winter months, you’ll find one soup special daily (except Mondays, when Forage is closed). Recent favorites include the Butternut Squash with creme fraiche and pumpkin seed oil, as well as the made-to-order Chicken Pozole with salsa roja. 3823 West Sunset Boulevard Los Angeles, CA 90026

DOWNTOWN

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SAI SAI NOODLE BAR

SPOT: Chances are you’ve already waited in line at Daikokuya or Shin Sen Gumi, and while they may be the reigning king and queen of DTLA ramen, Sai Sai is definitely the unsung hero. SOUP: Sai Sai is only open for lunch and happy hour, so pop in before seven for some Kimchee Pork Belly or Lobster Miso Ramen and some sake, beer or wine. And don’t forget to start with spicy edamame and end with a selection of specialty mochi from Bubbies in Hawaii. 501 South Olive Street Los Angeles, CA 90013

GET MOR E OF L.A.’S BEST FOOD SCOOPS AT LACA N VAS.COM

600 S. Main Street Los Angeles, CA 90014 www.artisanhouse.net 600 S. Main St., Los Angeles, CA 90014 213.622.6333

Open daily 11am - late 515 West 7th. st. LA, CA 90014 213 985-4332 www.masmalorestaurant.com

EURO TRIP

text REBECA ARANGO photo RACHEL MANY

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CORTEZ BRINGS OLD WORLD GASTRONOMY TO ECHO PARK Food shopping in Los Angeles rarely means strolling to the

As with Cookbook, Cortez is focused on simplicity, agricultural

neighborhood green grocer and picking up a few essentials. Unless you live

sustainability, and curatorial integrity. The streamlined menu is inspired by

in Echo Park, where Martha Teegan’s tiny shop Cookbook stocks a small,

Spanish cuisine with all its Middle Eastern influences, and the kitchen turns

careful selection of responsibly grown produce, meat, dairy, freshly-baked

out an ever-changing list of about twenty items each night. Plates are shareable,

bread, artisanal delicacies, and house-prepared goodies.

but not too small, and ultimately they feel homespun and comforting rather than

Elegantly contained and never crowded, Cookbook takes you back to a

pretentious. While the food is old in spirit, it’s still contemporary in style; and

time before towering aisles of plastic packaging, long cash register lines and thirty-

often, simply executed dishes are elevated through an unexpected twist—like

two-pack toilet paper. And because just one magic tollbooth to the old world is a

the supremely tasty pickles we found tucked beneath a spicy Merguez sausage

bottleneck waiting to happen, Teegan did the smart thing and introduced another.

on soft grilled flatbread, or the crisp hazelnuts and savory, gooey roasted apples

You can catch a glimmer of Cortez as you dart past the Super 8

dressing up our Brussels sprouts.

on Sunset Boulevard, where floor-to-ceiling windows on the slope of Allison Avenue reveal a warmly lit dining room barely larger than a Beverly Hills master bath. The sparsely decorated space whispers a modern version of rustic, with rectangular terra cotta tiles sitting beneath bare walls in stark white and exposed brick. You can grab a stool at the modest bar offering a view into the kitchen, or pull up a chair to one of two communal tables. Space is limited, and reservations are not an option. Because going to Cortez is less like your typical LA dining experience than it is like going over to Martha’s to sip from her fabulous collection of wine and sample whatever fantastic thing

Meanwhile, the concise drink menu is all Belgian beer and rare family-vineyard wines listed from light to heavy. And the servers will not

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only guide you towards the right bottle, but regale you with stories about the

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people and places it comes from. Naturally, the bulk of Cortez’s collection is

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from Italy, France or Spain, where the art of wine has been perfected over

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centuries and historical practices are being actively preserved. So if the food

A

isn’t enough to transport you into the old world countryside, fear not—you can

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always pour another glass.

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she’s managed to do to Brussels sprouts this week.

A N

1356 ALLISON AVE LOS ANGELES, CA 90026 RESTAURANTCORTEZ.COM

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SOME LIKE IT HOT

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text REBECA ARANGO photo CAPTAIN

1886 BARTENDER GREG GERTMENIAN SHOWS US THE RIGHT WAY TO MAKE A HOT COCKTAIL

RECIPE

It’s tempting to keep 1886 our little secret. This intimate cocktail bar tucked into The Raymond’s backroom is a favorite hideout haunted by a

Chai-infused Steamed Milk

colorful history. Once the caretaker’s cottage to the old Raymond Hotel during its turn-of-the-century heyday, the lovingly restored building is now home

5 cups Whole Milk

to some of LA’s most innovative mixologists. And so on a particularly dreary

4-5 packs sugar in the raw

winter night, we turned to 1886’s Greg Gertnenian for a lesson in hot booze.

3 bags of the fresh, high-quality Chai tea (make sure spices are listed as ingredients)

As soon as we arrived, Greg began heating our glasses by pouring in hot water. “Making sure all the ingredients are as hot as you can reasonably make them before you combine them is really important,” he explained,

Heat on medium in a saucepan for 15 minutes until milk is toffee-colored,

adding, “No one wants a warm toddy.” We learn that a hot toddy is traditionally

stirring frequently. Transfer to a teapot.

just hot water, a spirit, and a sweetener (boring), but that Greg’s been busy Hot Chai Posset

playing around with fresh green tea and Japanese whiskey; fig-infused rye

1 oz Plantation 5-year old Grand Reserve Rum

and maple syrup; and most interestingly, something called a Posset.

Dash whiskey-barrel aged or angostura bitters

“The Posset is a drink from hundreds and hundreds of years ago. It was traditionally made by heating milk and mixing it with ale or wine to curdle

Nutmeg-infused whipped cream (Add grated nutmeg to whipped cream to taste)

it. You would then separate the whey and spice it.” Okay—curdled anything

2 oz Chai-infused Steamed Milk

sounds terrifying, we know. Thankfully, Greg’s Hot Chai Posset is a modern twist on the medieval punch, with spiced milk tea, nutmeg-infused whipped

Heat the teacup by pouring in boiling water and allowing it to sit for a few

cream, and a healthy dose of dark rum.

minutes. Empty the glass, then pump in whipped cream to taste. Add the rum

The resulting concoction is ideal for winding things down like only a mix of rum and melatonin can. First, a warm, milky aroma crawls up your

and a dash of bitters. Pour Chai-infused steamed milk on top. Garnish with grated nutmeg and another dash of bitters on top of the whipped cream.

nose and gives it a hug. A hearty swig will then leave a sweet, spicy kiss on your tongue and a soft bite in the back of your throat. Make a big batch of spiced milk and keep the rum coming; you’ll be either blissfully ready for bed

D

For more of Greg’s toddy tips and to learn how to make his Green Tea Toddy with Japanese whiskey, visit LACANVAS.COM

or passed out in front of your iPad with the fireplace app running. 1250 SOUTH FAIR OAKS AVE. SOUTH PASADENA, CA 91105 WWW.THERAYMOND.COM

R I N K

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PHOTOS BY CHRISTOPHER CAPTAIN

r u o y p e ke

s t n a p on

FILMMAKER DREW DENNY CHATS WITH LAC ABOUT PERFORMANCE ANXIETY, DARK HUMOR AND THE ABSURDITY OF THE HUMAN CONDITION. interview ERIN DENNISON

Performance artist, songwriter, actress, and screenwriter Drew Denny’s first feature film, The Most Fun I’ve Ever Had with My Pants On, was undoubtedly one of our favorites screened at this year’s AFI FEST in Hollywood. The film, a quasi-autobiographical comedy-drama follows Denny, or rather, “Andy,” and best friend “Liv” as they spread her recently deceased father’s ashes across the Southwest. The duo’s aesthetically compelling journey from Los Angeles to Austin beautifully captured the dark period in her life with sincerity and a sense of humor. We caught up with Denny after the film festival to get a little more insight.

HAVE YOU ALWAYS BEEN ABLE TO NAVIGATE BETWEEN PERFORMING AND

DESCRIBE YOUR RELATIONSHIP TO BOTH HUMOR AND ART? HOW ARE THEY

DIRECTING? WHICH CAME FIRST? CAN YOU DESCRIBE THE PROCESS WHEN

RELATED? HUMOR AND TRAGEDY?

YOU’RE MAKING AND STARRING IN A FILM?

Humor is a brush and art is the frame—a mode of manifesting meaning and

Performing definitely came first! I performed as a musician and performance

its context, regardless of medium. In EMT school I learned that cardiac tissue

artist for years before making this film. In both music and performance art, I

cut from two different hearts will start beating on the same rhythm if placed

negotiate a desire to be completely swept up by the performance and a need

near one another. That’s how I think of humor and tragedy—composed of the

to occasionally exit my body and view the piece from afar to make sure I’m

same substance, pulsing with the same life but representing different destinies.

communicating with the audience… In many ways, that’s easier to do in live performance because I can feel the response and resonance in the room. I’d

HOW IMPORTANT IS STRUGGLE IN NARRATIVE? ARE YOU ABLE TO CREATE

never really acted before making this film, so it was exciting and a bit scary to

WITHOUT GOING THROUGH SOMETHING DIFFICULT?

work with a pro like Sarah Hagan! She’s so natural and easy-going though, and

Struggle is the skeleton of narrative, right? Our attempts to meet our needs, to

a brilliant improviser so my, um, “performance anxiety” subsided eventually. I

manifest our desires, even if that’s as simple as wanting to be loved or to feel

placed a huge amount of trust (and pressure!) on my collaborators Clay Jeter

okay. That quest is the foundation, and everything else hangs on to that. I’ve

and Will Basanta. Sometimes scenes were shot with just Will and me so I had

never written a happy song but I’ve written a sad song in a major key. My movie

to ask him not only if we got the shot we needed but if I got the performance

doesn’t have a happy ending, per se, but my desire to celebrate life, love and

we needed. Most scenes were shot with a crew of four or five led by Clay, who

friendship is apparent in every frame—at least, I hope so. And the end is about

worked closely with Will as well as with Sarah and me. I can be a bit of a control

making peace with memories, remaining present, and celebrating the collective

freak - requesting to see the monitor before every take so I could check the frame

nature of existence despite the absurdity and tragedy of life… I don’t know

for production design or lighting or our blocking – but Clay and Will knew just

what kind of artwork or stories I’d make if I hadn’t enjoyed the totally fucked

when to tell me to stop thinking about the frame and submit to our performances.

up life that I have! I’m kidding. But you know, being a runaway, a drop-out, experiencing abuse and all that… becoming friends with my dad just in time to

HOW DO YOU THINK YOUR GRIEVING PROCESS WOULD HAVE BEEN DIFFERENT

watch him die. The difficult bits shape my perspective but optimism colors it.

HAD YOU NOT HAD THE OUTLET OF MAKING THIS FILM? I can’t imagine the grieving process without the filmmaking process. Art-

WHEN MAKING/THINKING ABOUT/WATCHING A FILM, WHAT COMES FIRST, THE

making and storytelling are the processes by which I understand the world

PICTURES OR THE WORDS? WHICH DO YOU CONNECT MORE WITH?

and my relationship to it and to my own experiences. A philosophical quandary

This project arose as text embedded in the landscapes of the American

regarding humanity’s representation of nature becomes a series of installations;

Southwest. I think it reads almost like theater because of that, which could

a break up becomes a song of course; my father’s death becomes a film...

be due to my history in live performance and probably has a lot to do with the fact that it’s my first film. My next one is written with the language of imagery,

HOW WERE YOU ABLE TO GET SUCH EPIC FOOTAGE AND PHOTOGRAPHY ON SUCH

so it will be a very different experience to make and view. I think that’s the

A TIGHT BUDGET?

goal of cinema because the power of imagery is much more subliminal and

Will Basanta, Clay Jeter, Matt Chavez, Naveen Chaubal! Our incredible

can be much more emotional than language. But I’m a writer and am very

cinematographer, creative producer, AC/grip/gaffer and PA who had to do a little

critical of the manipulation inherent in the filmic medium so there will always

bit of everything. Will, Clay and I discussed the look of the film for hours and hours

be some textual experimentation and self-reflexivity involved in my projects.

over the weeks preceding our shoot. We watched tons of movies together and looked at photography, paintings, and performances. We share a passionate love of

WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOU? ARE YOU CURRENTLY WRITING?

landscapes – both as physical environments and as a photographic form. We share

I’m writing two features and a series, hoping to get started on one of them

a common philosophy. Our tastes align for the most part but, again most importantly,

this year. I’m also starting to go out for auditions. It’s a very odd sensation,

I trust their instincts completely. It was that trust that allowed us to show up to a

coming from the worlds of art and music into the TV/film universe… but it’s an

location, let’s say a cliff in Sedona, and be able to block performance and camera in

interesting experience and I’m very excited to challenge myself as a performer.

a couple hours so we could shoot before the monsoon chased us out.

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PARTY DROP THE LIME @ DIM MAK STUDIOS

16 CONCERT ANDREW BIRD @ LARGO, THROUGH 1/18

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CONCERT CALEXICO @ THE EL REY

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EVENT DINE LA RESTAURANT WEEK, THROUGH 2/1

EVENT INAUGUARTION DAY

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THEATER BACKBEAT THE BEATLES MUSICAL @ THE AHMANSON, THROUGH 3/1

ART OPENING ALLISON TORNEROS SOLO SHOW @ THINK TANK GALLERY

FOOD A NIGHT IN NEW ORLEANS! @ NOLA’S

ART FAIR PHOTO LA @ THE SANTA MONICA CIVIC AUDITORIUM

CONCERT LET’S DRIVE TO ALASKA @ THE CENTRAL

17 ART OPENING ROGUE WAVE PROJECTS: GRANT STEVENS: SUPERMASSIVE @ LA LOUVER

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CONCERT NIKI AND THE DOVE @ THE EL REY

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CONCERT LOCAL NATIVES @ THE FONDA

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THEATER GANESH VERSUS THE THIRD REICH @ FREUD PLAYHOUSE

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CONCERT RAQUEL AND THE BIG GUYS @ WITZEND

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ART FAIR ART LOS ANGELES CONTEMPORARY @ BARKER HANGAR, SANTA MONICA, THROUGH 1/27

CONCERT KID INK @ KEY CLUB

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CONCERT JESSIE WARE @ THE EL REY

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CONCERT MS MR @ THE ECHO

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THEATER RAIN @ PANTAGES

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ART FAIR LA ART SHOW @ LA CONVENTION CENTER (1/23-1/27)

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CONCERT THE WHO @ THE STAPLES CENTER

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TALK DIEGO LUNA: SHOOTING REFLECTIONS @ MARK TAPER FORUM

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CONCERT PAPA @ THE BOOTLEG

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ART TOUR ART TOUR @ BREWERY ARTS COMPLEX

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COMEDY PATTON OSWALT @ LARGO

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MUSIC FESTIVAL FEAR OF MISSING OUT 2013 @ THE ECHOPLEX

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MARATHON NEW YEAR NIGHT RACE MARATHON

PARTY HAIR, FASHION & MUSIC EVENT @ ESSENSUALS SALON

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PARTY 1ST FRIDAYS W/ WILDCAT! WILDCAT! @ THE NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM

COMEDY HA HA VERY FUNNY: COMEDY NIGHT @ ACE HOTEL PALM SPRINGS

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DEAL $2 BURGER MADNESS @ MALIBU INN (THURSDAYS)

EVENT DOWNTOWN ON ICE @ PERSHING SQUARE

11

CONCERT TYCHO + DOOMBIRD @ THE TROUBADOR

13

COMEDY ROB DELANEY @ LARGO

10

ART OPENING CARI LEE : THE STORY OF A HURRICANE @ PROJECT GALLERY + ESPRESSO

CONCERT FEEDING PEOPLE @ THE ECHO

9

CONCERT TAKEN BY TREES @ THE ECHO

8 9

ART TOUR ART WALK @ DTLA

DEAL ALL NIGHT HAPPY HOUR @ MICHAEL’S (WEDNESDAYS)

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PARTY DUB CLUB @ ECHOPLEX

COMDEY DOUG BENSON LOVES MOVIES @ UCB THEATER

DEAL ALL NIGHT HAPPY HOUR @ COLE’S (TUESDAYS)

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CONCERT COCKNEY REJECTS WITH YOUTH BRIGADE @ THE EL REY

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CONCERT BUKE AND GASE @ THE ECHO

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SPORTS LA LAKERS VS. BOSTON CELTICS @ STAPLES CENTER

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CONCERT INDIANS @ THE ECHO

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15 16 SPORTS HARLEM GLOBETROTTERS @ THE STAPLES CENTER

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THEATER SPANK! THE FIFTY SHADES PARODY @ CLUB NOKIA

OPEN HOUSE OPEN HOUSE @ LA FILM SCHOOL

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COMEDY SOCK PUPPET SITCOM DOES AB-FAB @ THE ECHO

PARTY CHECK YO PONYTAIL 2 WITH UNKNOWN MORTAL ORCHESTRA @ THE ECHOPLEX

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COMEDY CONCERT RISK! LA GALACTIC @ MELTDOWN @ THE EL REY COMICS

28 28

CONCERT JUKEBOX THE GHOST @ THE ECHO

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PARTY LOW END THEORY @ THE AIRLINER

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COMEDY EMPIRE STRIKES SUNDAY @ GROUNDLINGS

ART OPENING LLYN FOULKES AND THE MACHINE @ THE HAMMER

23 ART OPENING ENDS AND EXITS @ LACMA

23 THEATER JEKYLL AND HYDE @ PANTAGES

CONCERT THE RESIDENTS @ THE EL REY

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PERFORMANCE ART JOEY ARIAS @ THE BOOTLEG

FOR MORE EVENTS, VISIT LACANVAS.COM

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TALK PATTI SMITH @ USC BOVARD AUDITORIUM

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PARTY IT’S A SCHOOL NIGHT @ BARDOT

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FILM OPEN PROJECTOR NIGHT @ THE HAMMER

FOOD FLAVORS OF THAI TOWN FOOD TOUR WITH CHEF JET TILA @ THAI TOWN

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CONCERT TEGAN AND SARAH @ CLUB NOKIA

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PARTY GASLAMP KILLER + DJ SODAPOP @ THE NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM

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PARTY CHINESE NEW YEAR FESTIVAL @ THE HAMMER

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8 ART OPENING IAN ROSS: HYPERORGANIC @ PROJECT GALLERY + ESPRESSO

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CONCERT CHELSEA WOLFE @ FIRST UNITARIAN CHURCH

9

FILM FLUX SCREENING SERIES @ THE HAMMER

8

CONCERT THE BLIND PETS @ THE CENTRAL

ART OPENING FIFTY WORKS FOR FIFTY STATES @ MOCA (THROUGH 11/7)

CONCERT RA RA RIOT @ THE EL REY

CONCERT ELLIE GOULDING + ST. LUCIA @ THE WILTERN

CONCERT KAN WAKAAN @ THE ECHO

ART OPENING SHINIQUE SMITH: FIRSTHAND @ LACMA

solo exhibition by TILT

All You Can Eat

January 19 - February 17, 2013 Opening Reception | Saturday, January 19 7-10pm Fabien Castanier Gallery

12196 Ventura Blvd. Studio City, CA 91604 t.818.748.6014

w w w.c as ta nie rg alle r y.co m

NEW WORKS BY

CHARLIE ANDERSON JONONE SEEN SPEEDY GRAPHITO RERO TILT

BARRAS-ba’hass

Blowout Tuesdays $30 Blowouts ~ All Day

A Full Service Salon barrassalon 5607 North Figueroa St. Los Angeles, CA 90042 • 323 257 8493

142

STRAIGHT FROM THE HUEMAN’S MOUTH

text SHANA NYS DAMBROT photo CAPTAIN

COVER ARTIST ALLISON TORNEROS BLURS THE BOUNDARY BETWEEN STUDIO AND STREET Allison Torneros is part of a new generation you might call Post-Street. Perhaps it was inevitable given the recent passion for Street Art style, but younger artists coming into their own under its heady influence are incorporating its raw vibrancy and pop-culture puckishness into their studio work, whether or not they’ve ever climbed a ladder with a bucket of wheat paste. Growing up in the Bay Area, Torneros has been looking at graffiti, murals, and throw-ups since childhood. She was fascinated by “beautifully executed artwork on cold walls and rough surfaces and environments. I think that's partly why I like juxtaposing different styles and elements: spontaneous splatters, dripped backgrounds, dense details, tight subjects, the beautiful and grotesque.” Her 2004 move to LA, where Street Art is impossible to avoid, influenced her art even more profoundly. Eight years later and with a slate of successful gallery shows under her belt, she’s all up on that ladder, executing an ongoing series of murals across the city.

“I

LIKE THAT OLD SAYING, ‘IF THESE WALLS COULD TALK.’ I FEEL I'M GIVING THE WALLS AND ENVIRONMENT A VOICE. Her paintings begin with an energetic, free-form

splattering of paint, then a step back, allowing imagery to emerge from the primordial chaos. “For my Design Matters show, I painted a giant woman taking her shirt off, and a small man standing next to her, pointing a gun. I saw those characters in the paint, but the viewer puts together their own story by reading their body language.” Translating the splatter-actionism to the size and verticality of a wall isn’t easy, but she’s learning to love freestyling with latex and spray. One of the most impressive things about her art is its consistency of style, detail, and delicacy that transfers seamlessly from canvas to mural. And her trademark glossy plump lips look, if possible, even hotter on the big walls. “I like that old saying, ‘If these walls could talk.’ I feel I'm giving the walls and environment a voice. And sometimes that voice is a raspy, sexy one!” And it’s not just the walls, but her true inner self that gets a voice in these works—hence the advent of her alter-ego, Hueman. “For a long time I was working in web design, spending crazy hours staring at a computer screen. I was dying to create art, and live life. I would literally repeat to myself, ‘I'm human, not a robot!’ Going by the name Hueman marked a transformation point for me; it represents being true to yourself and going after what you really want in life.”

ALLISONTORNEROS.COM

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