5 design things to do this week

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This week, you can learn how to play more even while working, join a Utopian marathon, attend the opening show of rug designs by multi-talented designer Elena Manferdini, attend an accessible art fair, and take a trip through historical Los Angeles of the mid-20th century.

Game designer and philosopher Ian Bogost writes and talks about how to bring ‘play’ to even the most mundane parts of our lives. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

1) Hammer Conversations: Ian Bogost “Play Anything”

They say all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. But game designer and philosopher Ian Bogost believes that play can and should be infused into everything we do.  In his new book Play Anything, Ian Bogost, whose creations include Cow Clicker and A Slow Year, uses Internet culture, moral philosophy, ancient poetics and modern consumerism to reveal how today’s chaotic world can be tamed – and even enjoyed.  Book signing to follow.

When: Tuesday, January 24, 7:30 pm

Where: Hammer Museum, 10899 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90024

Tickets: FREE; get more information here.

Utopian City
What is your Utopia?(The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

2) The Night of Ideas – Utopia(s)

What is your Utopia? Creative and philosophical minds from around the world converge on Bergamot Station Thursday night for this seven-hour marathon of talks, live performances, readings, screenings and music around the topic of Utopia(s), past, present and future.  Speakers include critics and philosophers, curators and artists, poets and composers — among them Francois Perrin, Norman Klein, Yuval Sharon, Christopher Hawthorne, Laure Murat, Celine Spector, Myriam Mechita, Alain Mabanckou, David Rosenboom and many more!  Hosted by the French Institute in Paris, this event will take place in 30 cities simultaneously around the theme “A World in Common”.

When: Thursday, Jan 26, 7 pm – 2 am

Where: Bergamot Station, 2525 Michigan Avenue, Santa Monica, 90404

Tickets: FREE.  There is free parking located at the venue and it is also accessible by taking the Expo Line to 26th Street/Bergamot Station. Find more information here.

Architect and engineer Elena Manferdini infuses aesthetics of the digital age into her rugs. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

3)  Elena Manferdini Urban Fabric Rugs at ToCo Haus Gallery

“Architects have a seemingly unlimited faith in the power of the grid, a mastering system that has become dominant in a significant portion of the modern American cityscape,” says Elena Manferdini, architect, engineer and SCI-Arc Graduate Program Chair. Manferdini first made waves in Los Angeles with a line of shapely dresses with laser-cut patterns, all entirely conceived on the computer. Her latest foray into product design is a line of rugs — commissioned by Andrei Zerebecky from Urban Fabric Rugs — that taps the aesthetics of the urban condition. The  collection will be unveiled at the ToCo Haus Gallery in Los Angeles Friday evening.

When: Exhibit Opening: Friday, January 27, 6 pm; Exhibit up through end of March.

Where:  ToCo Haus Chinatown Gallery, 443 Jung Jing Road, 90012

Tickets: FREE

Startup Fair
Rooms at the Hollywood Highland Gardens Hotel will be transformed into art galleries by 39 independent artists at StARTup Art Fair Los Angeles. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

4)  StARTup Art Fair Los Angeles 2017/Art Los Angeles Contemporary

In the event you thought there could not be any more art fairs, here is one intended to give independent artists, without traditional gallery representation, the opportunity to showcase and sell their work directly. Founded in 2015 by artist Ray Beldner, his goal for the stARTup Art Fair was to provide art enthusiasts and professional alike a unique opportunity to interact directly with the artists and see their work in a very accessible way. NOTE: this coincides with Art Los Angeles Contemporary, a gathering of gallerists, and one of the more highly regarded LA art fairs, taking place January 26-29 at Barker Hangar in Santa Monica.

When: Friday, Jan 27 – Sunday, Jan 29.  Schedule of events.

Where:  Highland Gardens Hotel, 7047 Franklin Avenue, Los Angeles, 90028

Tickets: $10-$30.  Get tickets here.

Lost Landscapes
Home movies get new life to tell an old story in Rick Prelinger’s film, Lost Landscapes of Los Angeles. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

5)  Lost Landscapes of L.A.

After taking this road trip through Los Angeles’ past, you will better understand and appreciate the Los Angeles we live in today and quite possibly start thinking about the Los Angeles you want for the future.  This is the hope of filmmaker, archivist and professor Rick Prelinger, who watched over 5,000 home movies (of other people’s families!) and reviewed hours of studio outtakes to get source material for Lost Landscapes of Los Angeles.  With no soundtrack, the film takes us on a silent journey through Los Angeles as it changes from a Western outpost in the 1920s to a post-war urban/sub-urban center of interconnected freeways in the 1960s, bringing history to life along the way.

Check out DnA’s 2015 interview with Rick Prelinger here.

When: Saturday, Jan 28, 8:30 pm (doors open at 8)

Where: Bob Baker Marionette Theater, 1345 W. First St. Los Angeles, CA 90026

Tickets: $15.  Get tickets here.