5 design things to do: Jan 30 - Feb 5

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S ee the brutally delicate work of Chuck Moffit; support site - specific performance art at Sowden House; go to two events from Materials  &  Applications: watch a performance of construction set to music and participate in the choreography of a gym; browse and shop Bhutanese furniture; and listen to  a rchitect Dominic Leong discuss his work.

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1) Armor / Amor

From his glass and steel studio adjacent to his home in the San Gabriel Mountains, artist and furniture designer Chuck Moffit ensures his work is continuously connected to nature. “I am always reminded of scale and the interdependence of things,” Moffit has said. This is evident in his work, which balances brutalist processes with delicate notions - like his Oshibana table (above) inspired by the Japanese art of floral arrangement and composed of a steel base and bronze petals.

Moffit's latest works are inspired by his interest in Japanese armor, and appreciation for the nuance in this ancient craft tradition. As the title of the show hints, Moffit continues to be moved by juxtaposition, the austere and the delicate, protection and vulnerability found in nature. In addition to casegoods, tables, seating, and lighting, the show will also debut a series of sculptural tabletop works in bronze.

The collection will be presented at JF Chen on Highland, a massive, industrial antiques showroom for midcentury furniture, accessories and art.

When: Opening Thursday, Jan 30, 6:30 - 9 pm; Exhibition runs through Feb 29.

Where: JF Chen, 1000 N. Highland Ave, Los Angeles 90038

Tickets: Free. If you'd like to attend the opening, email rsvp@theculturecreative.com


2) homeLA Benefit

Since 2013, homeLA has presented dance-centered performance in private spaces for the public.  The program supports the development of new works and one-of-a-kind performances in response to the architecture, history, and ethos of residential living in Southern California.  The result is intimate, salon-style, site-sensitive performances that provide unique experiences to a mobile audience.

This year homeLA is piloting a youth initiated dance program to provide free immersive master classes in site-specific dance for Los Angeles high school students. For their inaugural fundraising benefit, they have created a program for the renowned Sowden House in Hollywood. The event will be an evening of dance and architecture with performances by Rebecca Bruno with Flora Wiegmann, Odeya Nini, Tyler Matthew Oyer, Zaquia Mahler Salinas, and Cheng-Chieh Yu, as well as media work by Delaram Pourábdi and Rebecca Bruno.

Ticket sales and funds raised from the silent auction will go to support homeLA’s 2020 programming and initiatives, which include: paying artists a living wage; professional documentation; and dance education. Funds raised will not only underwrite these initiatives but will also support LA’s dance and performing arts communities and provide memorable, intimate, unique, and affordable experiences for a public of all ages, means, and backgrounds.

When: Saturday, Feb 1, 6 - 8 pm (VIP 5 - 8 pm)

Where: Sowden House, 5121 Franklin Ave, Los Angeles 90027

Tickets: General admission $200, VIP $300. Discounts if you buy 2 or more. Buy tickets here.

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3) Materials & Applications x 2:  Scoring, Building: Iteration I plus Slow Dance x Budget Gym 

Scoring, Building is a new installation by architect Michelle JaJa Chang that investigates architecture as allographic work. The project is a temporary and durational intervention in the courtyard of the Mackey Apartments. The project proposes an architectural instantiation from the basis of a score, written by the architect, which is then translated into instructions for the construction of the installation itself. The project is action-based, slowing down and reframing the activities of conventional drywall construction to focus on-site preparation (marking); framing construction (stacking, ordering, assembling); and drywall installation (scoring, affixing, finishing).

SLOW DANCE x budget gym is a participatory performance by Virginia Swenson. Designed for stock-a-studio.’s installation, SLOW DANCE consists of dual audio tracks that guide participants through individual exercises, creating a cohesive choreography within the budget gym. When ‘dancing’ we are prompted to question the relationship between ritual and vulnerability, between individual and collective experience, and between our bodies and the gym.

When: Scoring, Building on Saturday, Feb 1, 7 - 9 pm; Slow Dance on Sunday, Feb 2, 5 - 7 pm

Where: Feb 1 at Mackey Apartments, 1137 S. Cochran Ave, Los Angeles 90019; Feb 2 at Materials and Applications, 1313 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles 90026

Tickets: Free. More information here.

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4) Bhutanese Furniture

Possibly the first store in the country of its kind, tour operator Benchan Khenpo (Khala Mebar Tours and Treks) is bringing Bhutanese furniture to Santa Monica. Pieces include custom, handcrafted, and traditional designs never before seen outside of Bhutan. Opening on Main Street in Santa Monica on Sunday. 

When: Opening reception Sunday, Feb 2, 11 am

Where: 2711 Main Street, Santa Monica 90405

Tickets:  Free. For more information, email khalamebar@gmail.com.

Image Not AvailableThe Los Angeles LGBT Center’s Anita May Rosenstein Campus in Hollywood. Leong-Leong Architects, 2019.

5) Lecture: Dominic Leong

Founding partner of architecture firm Leong Leong - the other partner is brother Chris - Dominic Leong is also currently serving as Adjunct Assistant Professor at Columbia GSAPP. Known for a practice that values the creation of community, one of Leong Leong’s strength is in defining the desired engagement and then designing an inspired environment that establishes and sustains that vision. The firm has projects all over the world and recently completed the Los Angeles LGBT Center’s Anita May Rosenstein Campus in Hollywood, which opened in 2019.

When: Monday, Feb 3, 6:30 pm

Where: UCLA Perloff Hall, 365 Portola Plaza, Los Angeles 90095

Tickets: Free. More information here.