5 design things to do this week

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This week you can: revel in Bellini’s religious paintings at the Getty; find out more about Lauren Halsey’s Crenshaw District Hieroglyph Project; listen to Thelma Golden and Gary Simmons talk about their careers in art; witness the power of political posters; and learn the technique of ‘light painting’ landscape photography, by night at the Arboretum.

Giovanni Bellini’s “Virgin and Child With Saint John the Baptist and a Female Saint.” (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

1)  Giovanni Bellini: Landscapes of Faith in Renaissance Venice/Robert Polidori photos of the Getty Museum

Among paintings protected from fire by the Getty Center’s design and air filtration systems (discussed here) are the precious works of renaissance artist Giovanni Bellini. And the holiday season is timely for checking out works by this Venetian artist that combined religious themes like the nativity, above, with evocative landscapes. While metaphorical and complementary to the religious subject matter, Bellini’s landscapes also reflected the region’s topography and natural light in a way not seen before. Bellini — yes, the cocktail is named in his honor — was one of the most influential painters of his time, says the Getty, presenting “characters and symbols from familiar sacred stories, set in a dimension of reality and lived experience to a degree unprecedented in the history of Italian painting.”

When: Ongoing through Jan 14, 2018

Where:  The Getty Museum, 1200 Getty Center Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90049

Tickets: Free. Parking $15 ($10 after 3pm). Click here for information.

Also, opening Tuesday, Dec 12 at the Getty,  check out the new show marking the center’s 20th year anniversay: Robert Polidori: 20 Photographs of the Getty Museum, 1997, featuring images of the Getty Center shortly before the opening in 1997, showing the galleries while art collections were being installed. 

Lauren Halsey’s winning idea for the Crenshaw community empowers the residents to author their own narratives. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

2)  Crenshaw District Hieroglyph Project

Since 2013, de LaB’s Making LA project, has brought artists, designers and urbanists together to consider solutions to LA’s biggest challenges.  The first initiative focused on Transportation, Water, Density and Community.  The second initiative, Making LA Together: Connect, Flourish, Thrive, Prosper put out a call for ideas that were voted on by a jury and the public. Crenshaw District Hieroglyph Project by artist Lauren Halsey, was one of four winning submissions. She will present drawings and mock-ups of her concept — 4, 16ft tall hieroglyphic towers where locals can etch their own stories of news, celebrations, memorials, police brutality, aesthetics — at the design office of Rios Clementi Hale Studios. The goal of her installation, to be up for three months, is to “reject the narrative of inferiority and stereotypes and puts in its place one of self-determination, affirmation and love.”

When: Tuesday, Dec 12, 7 – 9 pm

Where: Rios Clementi Hale Studio, 3101 W Exposition Pl, Los Angeles, CA 90018

Tickets: Free.  RSVP here.

Artist Gary Simmons’ large-scale installation Fade to Black in CAAM’s grand lobby. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

3) In Conversation: Thelma Golden and Gary Simmons

Thelma Golden, director and chief curator of The Studio Museum in Harlem, will sit down for a conversation with artist Gary Simmons, creator of Fade to Black, the large-scale installation in the grand lobby of the California African-American Museum, in which the artist applies his “erasure technique” of hand-smudged, wet paint to evoke the spirits of under-recognized or long-forgotten African American actors. Simmons and Golden have worked together on several projects including the powerful Black Male exhibition at the Whitney Museum in 1994; they will discuss Simmons’s CAAM exhibit in the context of his career.”

When: Wednesday, Dec 13, 7 – 9 pm

Where: California African American Museum, 600 State Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90037

Tickets: Free. RSVP here.

The Center for the Study of Political Graphics is opening a new exhibition of posters addressing police brutality and policing as racial oppression. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

4) To Protect & Serve? Five Decades of Posters Protesting Police Violence/Hollywood in Havana

For nearly three decades, The Center for the Study of Political Graphics, under the leadership of founder Carol Wells, has provided a venue for the passionate graphic art of protest. She has amassed a collection of over 90,000 political posters, giving unique voice to the documentation of struggles that might otherwise go unrepresented. They produced the fascinating Hollywood in Havana: Five Decades of Cuban Posters Promoting U.S. Films exhibition currently at Pasadena Museum of California Art. This week, the center is opening a new exhibition of posters at SPARC Art in Venice, addressing police violence and the infrastructure of racial, gender and other oppressions. The Mike Kelley Foundation was among supporters.

When: Opening reception Saturday, Dec 16, 6 -9 pm.  Exhibit runs through March 2, 2018.

Where: SPARC ART, 685 Venice Blvd., Venice, CA  90291

Tickets: Free. Click here for more information.

Photography instructor Frank McDonough will help you capture the beauty of nature at the LA Arboretum and Botanic Garden. (The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)

5 ) Garden Night Photography at the Arboretum

The Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Gardens offers events and classes throughout the year.  This weekend you can take a photography course with instructor Frank McDonough on capturing the beauty of the nature at night, with special emphasis on the “light painting” photographic technique, which uses a powerful mag-light style flashlight (bring one if you have one.)

When: Saturday, Dec 16, 7:00 – 9:30 pm

Where:  Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden, 301 North Baldwin Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007

Tickets: $40 (members $30).  To register please call the Education Department at 626.821.4623 or pay at the class. Click here for more information.