5 Design Things to Do This Week

Written by

Design debates in West Hollywood, sculpting wood with a chainsaw, and lost landscapes of LA in cinema. Your week in design events from DnA.

DnA's Frances Anderton interviews Frozen art director Michael Giaimo at last year’s DIEM.
DnA’s Frances Anderton interviews Frozen art director Michael Giaimo at last year’s DIEM. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

1) DIEM: Talks Design

DIEM: Talks Design is a one-day design symposium presented by the West Hollywood Design District offering panels and keynotes from leaders in the fields of design, decorative arts, fashion, architecture and fine arts. It’s entitled “The Future Is Now”  expect fireworks when Stefan Simchowitz and Carolina Miranda take on the topic of “Why Art?” (is art so dominant today because of the money or the content?), consider the question, “Is LA Losing Its Cool as It Becomes Cool?” — with speakers including Please Do Not Enter’s Nicolas Libert and sharp essayist Ann Friedman. We’ll look at spaces to grow old for people who don’t feel old, with architect Barbara Bestor, Elizabeth Timme and others. And we’ll hear from the forever fabulous Beatrix Ost on how to stay forever fabulous.  The 4th Annual DIEM is curated by design writer and curator Mallery Roberts Morgan and DnA’s Frances Anderton. Read more about it here.

When: Friday, Nov. 13th, 9:30 am through the evening

Where: Various locations in West Hollywood

Tickets: Register for events here.

J.B. Blunk “Untitled,” acrylic on redwood panel, c. 1990. In J.B. Blunk’s handmade house.

2) J.B. Blunk: painting, drawing, sculpture

Northern California artist J.B. Blunk (1926-2002) is known for his large-scale sculpture, furniture, and installations carved out of cypress and redwood. A collection of his paintings, drawings, and sculpture will form the inaugural exhibition at The Landing, a new gallery founded by Gerard O’Brien, owner of Reform Gallery, directed by Sam Parkerand located in a 2,800-square-foot space on Jefferson Blvd. Blunk studied ceramics at UCLA. After graduating in 1949 and serving in the Korean War, he traveled to Japan in search of the pottery he had loved as a student. A chance meeting with sculptor Isamu Noguchi led to Blunk’s first exhibition and an apprenticeship. After returning to California, he began earning a living as a furniture maker, using a chainsaw, angular grinder and chisel to carve redwood and cypress into massive abstract sculptures. Blunk’s had many solo exhibitions, including at Blum & Poe and the Los Angeles Craft and Folk Art Museum.

When: Opening reception is Saturday, Nov. 14th, 4-7 pm. Show is up until Jan. 9, 2016.

Where: The Landing, 5118 W Jefferson Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90016

Tickets: Free and open to the public. Click here for more info.

elysian park

3) From Rail to Park: On Foot from Union Station

The pedestrian advocacy group Los Angeles Walks has tapped National Park ranger Anthony Bevilacqua to lead this walk through downtown and neighboring areas. This walk will start from Union Station, continue into Elysian Park, and come back through Chinatown. Along this roughly six mile roundtrip walk the group will learn about the LA State Historic Park and more.

When: Saturday, Nov. 14th 10 am to 1:30 pm

Where: Union Station, 800 N Alameda St, Los Angeles, CA 90012

Tickets: $15 in advance/$20 at the ‘door’. Click here to register.


4) This is the City: Preserving Moving Images of Los Angeles Symposium

Los Angeles has been captured on celluloid since the dawn of cinema. The city keeps reinventing itself, and some past iterations are only accessible through nearly-lost visual fragments. For 50 years, UCLA Film & Television Archive has collected and conserved moving images of LA. The archive’s two-day symposium “This is the City” features screenings of rare footage and lively discussions relevant to our understating of race, place and space in LA, and the vital importance of preserving such media. Programs include the Italian midcentury modern time capsule of Los Angeles, “Smog” (dir. Franco Rossi, 1962), a retrospective of the beloved local television travelogue “Ralph Story’s Los Angeles” and much more. Rare films, newsreels, home movies and television programs will be shown, all documenting LA and its diverse communities.

Also be sure to check out two feature-length silent films made by archivist/filmmaker Rick Prelinger: “No More Road Trips?” at the Downtown Independent on Sunday, Nov. 15 and “Lost Landscapes of Los Angeles” on Monday, Nov. 16.

When: Screenings are Nov. 13-14

Where: The Billy Wilder Theater at the Hammer Museum, 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90024

Tickets: A $15 pass grants access to all symposium activities. More info here.

lamakes 2

5) Grand opening of LA Makes

LA Makes is a newly-founded collaborative design and fabrication space in Frogtown. They’re throwing a show of art, design and music to raise money for the current refugee crisis affecting Europe, Turkey, and the Middle East. Bands include Bloody Death Skull, Mr K and DJ Karrie K. Artists include LXG Photography, Yumna Al-Arashi, Valerie Noell, Erin Miller Williams, Ashley Sprankles, Kiddo Ink, La Fabrica, Ayse Arf, Hilary Bond, Adam Roth and Erin Horahan. The money will go to Small Projects Istanbul, Halkarın Köprüsü / The People’s Bridge, and Association for Solidarity with Asylum Seekers and Migrants.

When: Saturday, Nov. 14 from 6-10 pm

Where: 2918 Denby Ave, Frogtown

Tickets: $1 cover at the door. Click here for more info.