5 design things to do this week

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Enjoy a puppeteer’s take on “hot urban issues”; see cars painted by Keith Haring, and furniture designed by Rick Owens; join a tribute to director Bette Jane Cohen at a screening of The Spirit in Architecture: John Lautner; and hear Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Chairman Dave Archambault II, Jane Fonda and others discuss the Dakota Access Pipeline. Plus, more holiday markets.

SparkleBlob’s whacky cast of puppets take on heady urban themes in this candy-coated holiday show. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

1) Sparkle Blob Presents: THE SNOWGLOBE OF PROGRESS: An Urban Puppet’s Contemplation

Follow the SparkleBlob puppets as they contemplate the ultra-hot issues in LA right now of housing, development, public transportation, losing/saving historic places, and even hipsters, all in its snowiest, flakiest splendor!  This wacky, original live theater show, directed by Julianna Parr, features a lively cast of puppeteers and performers, and a live band, The Dinglebell Hollies. Great for all ages.  Special show warning: watch out for flying gelt.

When: This Fri-Sun, Dec 16-18, multiple showtimes

Where: Art & Commerce Productions, 611 S. Glenwood Place, Burbank, CA  91506

Tickets: $20 (seniors, students and members $17).  Get tickets here.

Life was a canvas for 80's Pop Artist Keith Haring. Five Haring 'designed' cars will be on display at the Petersen Automotive Museum opening Dec 17
Five cars given a makeover by 1980s artist Keith Haring will be on display at the Petersen Automotive Museum. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

2) The Petersen Automotive Museum Presents The Unconventional Canvases of Keith Haring

Keith Haring’s star rose quickly and shined brightly until his life ended prematurely at age 32. His iconic figures and heavily lined shapes, with bright colors or black and white, took him to the top of the pop art world in the 1980’s and have found their place in timeless pop-culture art images.  Beginning Saturday, the Petersen Automotive Museum will display five vehicles painted or drawn on by Keith Haring.  This marks the first time these five objects will be together for an exclusive exhibit. There’s also a VIP opening on Thursday night at 8 pm featuring KCRW’s Edward Goldman and DJ Peanut Butter Wolf.

When: Opening Saturday, Dec 17.  Museum hours 10 – 6 daily.

Where: Petersen Automotive Museum, 6060 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles 90036

Tickets: Museum Admission $7-15

Jon Lautner’s extraordinary body of work is honored in “The Spirit of Architecture: John Lautner”, by director Bette Jane Cohen. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

3) Screening of “The Spirit In Architecture: John Lautner”

28 years ago the late John Lautner’s work was not widely known — even though some of his classic structures had served as movie bachelor pads — and his houses, many in disrepair, were selling for modest prices. That year a filmmaker named Bette Cohen joined a tour of some of his houses and was smitten. She approached the towering, sometimes curmudgeonly, Lautner with a proposal for a film about him and his work and, as she told DnA earlier this year, “I gave him my proposal and he goes, ‘well, seems like a worthwhile project and you seemed tall enough to do it,’ and that was it.” (Cohen was also very tall.)

In 1991 Cohen released The Spirit in Architecture: John Lautner and the film, which follows the architect from his days apprenticing for Frank Lloyd Wright at Taliesin, through his final work in Malibu, and includes commentary from historians, critics and Lautner himself, made a significant contribution to the understanding of the architect who now ranks as one of LA’s most admired.

On October 20, 2016, Bette Jane Cohen herself passed, after a long illness. Knowing her time was shortened, she set about re-mastering the film and adding additional interviews. This Saturday Laemmle’s Fine Arts Theater will host a screening of the film, which will also serve as a tribute to its director.

When: Saturday, Dec 17, 10:30 am

Where: Laemmle’s Fine Arts Theater, 8556 Wilshire Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90211

Tickets: Free; more information here.

Rick Owens’ aesthetic fuses brutalism with beauty. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

4) MOCA Presents Rick Owens: Furniture

Best known for his eponymous clothing line, Rick Owens brings his punk sensibility to furniture and sculpture. Owens, who studied and started his career in Los Angeles but now lives in Paris, draws inspiration from history, materials, and art forms — from minimalist and brutalist architecture to avant-garde dance to monochrome painting.  Rick Owens: Furniture at the Pacific Design Center is produced by his wife and “muse” Michèle Lamy, and presented alongside the work of the late artist and musician, Steven Parrino.  Parrino’s paintings, which served as inspiration to Owens, offer an opportunity to explore the formal and conceptual parallels in the two artists’ works.

When: Opening Saturday, Dec 17.  Daily Tues-Sun.

Where: Pacific Design Center Plaza, 8687 Melrose Avenue, West Hollywood, CA 90069

Tickets: Free; more information here.

Edward S. Curtis, The Rush Gatherer – Kutenai, Plate 255, 1910, Copper Photogravure Printing Plate, 13 1/2 x 17 1/2 inches. Courtesy Bruce Kapson Gallery. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

5) Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Chairman Dave Archambault II in Conversation with Jane Fonda, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Bruce Kapson at Depart Foundation

Depart Foundation describes itself as “an emerging arts organization predicated on the Discussion, Exhibition, and Production of Art.”
This Thursday it takes on one of the most emotive issues of recent weeks: the fate of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Chairman Dave Archambault II, Jane Fonda, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Bruce Kapson will discuss the pipeline, against a backdrop of Copper Photogravure prints of The North American Indian by Edward S. Curtis (part of The Depart Foundation’s exhibition Rediscovering Genius: The Works of Edward S. Curtis, curated by Bruce Kapson.)

The Foundation says that “although separated by 118 years, the Native American issues of concern to Edward S. Curtis and those of the protestors of the Dakota Access Pipeline at Standing Rock remain the same.  It is unclear how enduring the announcement by the Army Corp of Engineers ‘to look for alternative routes’ will be once President-elect Donald Trump takes office in January.” Tickets are available in limited number but the conversation will be live-streamed via Facebook Live, at Facebook.com/Depart.Foundation.

When: Thursday, December 15, 2016; begins promptly at 2:45 pm. Talk will last one hour with Q&A.

Where: Depart Foundation, 9105 West Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069. Valet Parking.

Tickets: Free; respond with interest to standingrock@departfoundation.org (capacity is limited and seats will be held on a first come first served basis); find information here.

You’ll find more than fruits and vegetables when the weekday Alameda Produce Market transforms into a shopping mecca at Smorgasburg LA. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

Bonus Item: More Holiday Shopping…..DnA-style

Find gifts galore at Artists & Fleas LA, a pop-up market selling art, design and fashion alongside a selection of vintage and upcycled merchandise. Open every Saturday with the Arts District Farmers’ Market at the corner of Traction and E. 3rd Street.

When: Saturday, Dec 17, 11 am – 5 pm

Where: The Arts District Triangle, 740 E. 3rd St.

Smorgasburg LA: Holiday Market

The site of the weekday Alameda Produce Market transforms into an urban shopping and gathering event to offer sophisticated shopping from the realms of design, craft, style, vintage, wellness, and more. Cultural events, pop-ups, and other surprise experiences await you.

When: Sunday, Dec 18, 10 am – 5 pm

Where: ROW DTLA, 777 S Alameda St., LA, CA 90021 (enter at Bay St.). Parking free for first two hours.