Serving Larchmont Village, Hancock Park, and the Greater Wilshire neighborhoods of Los Angeles since 2011.

Weekend Buzz – Events for December 9-10, 2017

The open streets Ciclavia event returns to “Iconic Wilshire Blvd.” this Sunday.

No, it’s not your imagination – the holiday season is CRAZY busy.  This is one of our longest weekend events lists ever (and we still probably missed a few!).

As usual, Saturday starts early this week, with several fun shopping opportunities.

First up, Blackman Cruz, the “gallery-atelier-emporium” of Adam Blackman and David Cruz, is having a bienniale sale of its curated collection of furniture, lighting and art at its warehouse showroom at 6077 Willoughby, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday.  Bellinis will be served…and all sales are final.

Click to see larger version of flier.

Next, Lavender Blue, local purveyors of gifts, home accents and linens from Provence, is also having a holiday sale to benefit the Los Angeles Orphanage Guild, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, at 1258 S. Ogden Dr.  See the event link for map and details.

Finally for shopaholics, there’s also a big estate sale this weekend, running from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 115 North Rossmore Ave. The eclectic list of items for sale includes “quality accessories,” a 1967 vintage Cadillac El Dorado, Brown/Jordan outdoor furniture, bedroom sets, china, crystal (Baccarat /Bohemia), fine silver, sterling and plated for entertaining, Italian and French antique furniture, fine rugs, original 18-19th century art chandeliers, vintage ladies’ clothes, vintage and newer shoes, scarves, vintage handbags, belts, mens’ casual clothes, and more.

Later, at 1 p.m., you can take a break from retail and enjoy an art talk at LACMA. “Sun and Shadow: Imagining Los Angeles and Mexico City, c. 1950,” which is also part of the city’s larger “Pacific Standard Time” events, will feature Keith Eggener talking about how both L.A. and Mexico City were imagined and grew in the post-WWII era.  Eggener is Marion Dean Ross Professor of Architectural History at the University of Oregon, and has published books and essays on art, architecture, landscape, urban design, cinema, photography, and material culture, primarily of 20th-century Mexico and the United States. He is also a columnist for Places and editor of The Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians. The event is free, but tickets are required.

After the lecture, you can head over to the John C. Fremont Library, 6121 Melrose Ave., for a free “Readers’ Theater” reading of Hugh Wheeler’s acclaimed bittersweet comedy of 1960’s New York intellectuals, Big Fish, Little Fish at 3 p.m. (Reader’s Theater is the dramatized reading of a play, but doesn’t require memorization, costumes or sets.) Directed by critic/playwright Rick Talcove, this is the first offering of the L.A. Play Reading Theater.

For more free cultural fun, there’s also the 37th Annual Black Doll Show: Jubilee, Celebrations in Color, which runs from December 9 through February 17 at the William Grant Still Arts Center, 2520 S. West View St., with an opening reception from 3-6 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 9. The show explores cultural image as depicted through the beauty and diversity of dolls, with this year’s installment seeking “to reshape the dialogue on Black life and identity as portrayed in mainstream American media and in dominant narratives. The exhibition creates a counter narrative through highlighting how the Black community sees itself as portrayed in the traditional rites of passage and cultural events.” The exhibition also includes hand painted murals by Patrick Johnson and AISEBOURNE, and the opening reception will feature a drum procession leading into the galleries, followed by live music by the Marcus Miller Freedom Jazz Ensemble. Admission is free.

The LaunchLA gallery will also hold an opening reception on Saturday, from 6 to 9 p.m., for its new shows Axel Wilhite – Virtual Memory and Susan Feldman – Crossed Sections.  Axel Wilhite contrasts environment and observation with a reliance on modern technology in his new series of paintings. Rendering meticulously small-scale paintings on top of discarded random-access memory (RAM) chips, Wilhite emphasizes the divide between the real and virtual in today’s technology driven society. Susan Feldman constructs a spiritual journey of ladder-like frameworks through the layering of materials in her structured sculptures, which act as three dimensional landscapes, evoking the stratified, fragmentary nature of history and memory. Using found objects including distressed wood, colored string, and old photographs printed on plexi-glass, Feldman dignifies these discarded materials as environments of observation. The event is free, but please RSVP to [email protected] if you’d like to attend.

If you’re in more of a holiday mood on Saturday evening, and want to spiff up in your best formal finery, sign up for the annual Holiday Ball at the Ebell of Los Angeles.  The gala evening, which begins at 6 p.m., includes cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and live Renaissance-style music of Les Plaisirs Champetres…then a gourmet dinner with wine pairings, and dancing and live music by The Esquires.  Tickets are $90 each, available at the link above.

For a less formal celebration, but one still chock full of music and good cheer, check out Big Sunday’s 4th Annual In It Together Night of Music, at the Big Sunday headquarters, 6111 Melrose Ave., starting at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday.  The event features a wide variety of talented musicians in the Big Sunday community: David Yorkin & Co. (Mary McCloud, Kurt Kussulke and Ched Tolliver), Deena Rubinson (with Danny Strauss), jackbenny, David Levinson, Michelle Mayne-Graves, and The Hollywood Forever Bluegrass Band (Mark Drop, “Utah Bob” Rosenfield, Maddie Eaton, Ulrich Sinn, and Brian Mastalski). Please note that this event is for ages 21+ only; beer & wine will be served. Seating is limited. For more info and to sign up, see the link above. Admission is free, but please bring pairs of new socks to help Adam B., a veteran of many Big Sunday projects, with his sock drive for homeless youth at My Friend’s Place.

On Sunday, the events just keep on coming.

First up is the Westside Jewish Community Center’s Second Annual One. Healthy. Community. 5K Run & Walk  It’s a great a great chance to spend the day with the WJCC community walking, running, and promoting health and wellness. There will also be a Kids Fun Run, Kids Fun Zone, Health & Wellness Expo, free food and drinks, and more. All participants receive a shirt, finisher medal, goodie bag with community discounts and offers, and there are placement medals for all age groups. Note that pre-race registrations close tonight (Friday) at midnight, but you can also register in person on race day.

Early risers on Sunday could also enjoy the monthly Petersen Museum Breakfast Club Cruise-In, this month sponsored by Turo and The Auto Gallery, which will provide complimentary Turo credit to drive some amazing cars.  There will also be scheduled ride and drives of the new Alfa Romeo Stelvio.  The event starts at 8 a.m. on the third floor of the Petersen parking structure, and everyone is invited to show off their classic, custom, exotic or contemporary cars and motorcycles.  There will also be free parking bagels and coffee, as well as early access to the Museum for members.

The really big event on Sunday is Ciclavia – the quarterly open streets extravaganza in which large swaths of a major boulevard are closed to vehicles and open for biking, walking, running, and other forms of non-motorized transport.  This installment, running from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday, returns to “Iconic Wilshire Boulevard,” from downtown to Western Ave.  There’s no official start or end point, and it’s not a race – so you can join when and where you want, and explore the route at your own pace.  Traffic flows in two directions, just as when cars are present.

For those with energy to spare after Ciclavia, the Facebook group “Guide to the Stairways of Los Angeles” is hosting a “5 1/2 Mile Windsor Square-Larchmont Loop” walk, starting at the Wiltern Theater at Wilshire and Western (one end of the Ciclavia route), at 12:30 p.m.  The walk, hosted by Bob Inman, author of “Finding Los Angeles by Foot,” will “make a lazy, flat circle north and west…through the Windsor Square and Larchmont neighborhoods. Most of the walk is on quiet residential streets and we’ll pass places that historically were homes to Howard Hughes, Nat King Cole, the Chandlers’ of the Times, O’Melveny’s and Bullock’s – and, of course, the Mayor’s mansion as well. We’ll also take in the row of splendid of residential apartment buildings on Rossmore and the Scottish Rite Temple that is now the Marciano Art Foundation gallery. We’ll talk briefly about architect/design luminaries like the Heineman Brothers, Millard Sheets, Milton Black, Paul Williams and the Judson Studios.”  The walk is paced at about 2 mph, so good for moderate exercise.  It’s also free.  To sign up or for more information, see the link above.

Later on Sunday, from 3 to 5 p.m., you can get back in the holiday groove at Big Sunday’s 8th Annual Holiday Party & Sing-a-long. Each year people from all walks of life join the Big Sunday staff and volunteers to eat, sing (with a live band!) and enjoy the holidays. As always, the guests of honor are kids from Ability First.  They’ll also be joined by friends from Sunset Hall, Covenant House, the Long Beach VA, and more. Volunteers are also needed to help spread the holiday cheer. There will be singing, and participants will deck the halls and light a menorah, too. Of course, there will be loads of arts & crafts and delicious holiday treats…as well as collections of toys for kids, winter coats for kids and adults and non-perishable for Big Sunday’s End of the Month Club. For more info and to sign up, see the link above.

Also later on Sunday, you could wind down by heading back to LACMA for another art talk, “The Thirtieth Annual Michele and Peter Berton Memorial Lecture on Japanese Art: Bachelors’ Passions and Ladies’ Crazes: The Gender of Japanism,” at 3:30 p.m. Japanism—the emulation of Japan in the West—is often gendered feminine, referred to as a “fashion” or even a “craze,” with the implication that it need not be taken too seriously. This talk approaches Japanism from another perspective, examining its role in expressing modern forms of masculinity in the West. Speaker Christopher Reed is liberal arts professor of English and visual culture at the Pennsylvania State University. He edited the catalog for the 2016 exhibition JapanAmerica: Points of Contact 1876–1970, and his Bachelor Japanists: Japanese Aesthetics and Western Masculinities was recently published by Columbia University Press. The event is free and open to everyone.

And finally, back in the celebration spirit, City Council District 4 stakeholders are invited to join City Council Member David Ryu and his staff for the CD4 Holiday Party, starting at 4 p.m. at Ryu’s Hollywood District Field Office, 6501 Fountain Ave. Attendees are encouraged to join in supporting homeless women by bringing a feminine hygiene item, socks, or sweaters to donate.  E-mail [email protected] for more information, or RSVP at  Everyone is welcome!

Have a great weekend!

(Oh, and don’t forget – there will be another full weekend closure of Wilshire Blvd., between Western Ave. and Manhattan Pl., from 8 p.m. tonight (Friday) through 6 a.m. Monday…for Purple Line subway work.   See the link for details.)

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Elizabeth Fuller
Elizabeth Fuller
Elizabeth Fuller was born and raised in Minneapolis, MN but has lived in LA since 1991 - with deep roots in both the Sycamore Square and West Adams Heights-Sugar Hill neighborhoods. She spent 10 years with the Greater Wilshire Neighborhood Council, volunteers at Wilshire Crest Elementary School, and is the co-owner/publisher of the Buzz.

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