Sunday, November 19, 2017

Yayoi Kusama's Infinity Mirrors and more wonders at The Broad in DTLA...

On Friday night I finally made it down to The Broad museum in Downtown L.A. to enjoy some spectacular art installations.

Infinity Mirrors by Yayoi Kusama
Yayoi Kusama Infinity Mirrors The Broad
A good friend had managed to score six tickets to the in-demand art exhibition of the season, Yayoi Kusama's Infinity Mirrors.
Yayoi Kusama Infinity Mirrors Broad
After some negotiation with the ticket staff at The Broad, as our friend had been called away that week on business to Europe and we didn't realise he had to be there in person otherwise none of us would be allowed in, we finally got to experience the delights of the iconic Japanese artist.
Yayoi Kusama Infinity Mirrors The Broad
The temporary exhibition was a spectacle of light, mirrors and soft sculpture and was really a revelation to behold.
Yayoi Kusama Infinity Mirrors Broad
Regardless of what the photographic evidence may suggest, I didn't take too may photos in the mirrored rooms and tried to soak it all in first (which actually made taking snaps tricky as it was almost a blink and you'll miss it experience).
Yayoi Kusama Infinity Mirrors Broad
By the time you shuffle into the rooms in twos or threes and get your bearings, it's almost time to come out again and let the long line of pole behind you in to take a look.
Yayoi Kusama Infinity Mirrors Broad
I really wish there had been more time to just absorb the experience, especially with the light show rooms, they were incredible and over too quickly.
Yayoi Kusama Infinity Mirrors Broad
In addition to the mirrored installations there really was some weird and wonderful art on display within this special retrospective of the artist's work.
Yayoi Kusama soft sculptures Broad
I have to say I'd like to see it all again, but getting these tickets seems slick a fluke in the first place, so maybe it'll have not be in another time or another city.
Yayoi Kusama art sculptures Broad
Like I said earlier this was the first time I've made it to The Broad which houses some of the private contemporary art collection Eli and Edythe Broad.

Balloon Dog (Blue) by Jeff Koons (1994-2000)
Jeff Koons Balloon Dog Blue Broad
We'd made a dinner reservation for after our Infinity Mirrors time slot at Otium beside the museum, so we didn't have that much time to look around upstairs, but we couldn't resist taking a gander at some of the amazing works like Jeff Koons giant mirror-polished stainless steel Balloon Dog.

Michael Jackson and Bubbles by Jeff Koons (1988)
Jeff Koons Michael Jackson Bubbles Broad
I was equally enamored and creeped out by this Jeff Koons sculpture of Michael Jackson and his pet chimp, Bubbles, who were immortalised in porcelain and gold paint.

Untitled (You are a very special person) by Barbara Kruger (1995)
Barbara Kruger Untitled You are a very special person Broad
Meanwhile this silkscreen on vinyl crown artwork by Barbara Kruger appealed to the queen in me.

Eat, Sleep and Drink by Richard Prince (1989)
Richard Prince Eat Sleep Drink Broad
And finally this acrylic and silkscreen on canvas work by Richard Prince summed up pretty much what I feel about politics at this moment in time.

This whirlwind trip through the permanent galleries has inspired me to book some tickets for a return visit when I can pursue them at my leisure in the daytime.

If you're lucky enough to make it to this special Infinity Mirrors presentation you're really in for a treat, just remember that the person who booked the tickets will need to be there with you in person, not may be, must be.

Always read the small print. Another life lesson learned...

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Absolutely super costume displays around L.A...

Awards season is almost upon us, but there's still more than a few blockbuster superhero movies trying to grab our attention in L.A., so here's a collection of movie costume exhibits celebrating the comic book adaptations and some other feature films hoping to attract cinema goers these past few weeks.

Justice League costume exhibit
at ArcLight Hollywood cinema
Justice League costume exhibit
First up is this collection of cinema statues for DC's new Justice League movie at ArcLight Hollywood. I was disappointed that these weren't the actual costumes designed by Michael Wilkinson for 'Cyborg', 'The Flash', 'Wonder Woman, 'Batman' and 'Aquaman', but they still allow for some good costume reference for fans.

Thor: Ragnarok movie costume exhibit
at ArcLight Hollywood cinema
Thor Ragnarok movie costumes
Meanwhile the God of Thunder is back for a threequel in Marvel Studios latest live-action movie, Thor: Ragnarok, which I've seen twice so far and think is good fun (although I'm hoping not every Marvel movie becomes such a comedy fest in the future).

This trio of costumes from Thor: Ragnarok at ArcLight Hollywood included the Son of Odin's new gladiatorial look, plus 'Valkyrie' and 'Loki' costumes designed by Mayes C. Rubeo.

Last Flag Flying costume and prop exhibit
at ArcLight Hollywood cinema
Last Flag Flying movie exhibit
To promote Richard Linklater's new comedy-drama, Last Flag Flying, this U.S. Marine dress uniform and flag exhibit is currently on display at ArcLight Hollywood, with Kari Perkins Costume Designer on the movie about a man reuniting with his old Vietnam buddies to go to his son's funeral who has died serving in Iraq.

Suburbicon movie costume exhibit
at ArcLight Hollywood cinema
Suburbicon movie costumes
And finally, George Clooney's Suburbicon may have not done so well at the box office but these cool 1950s-themed costumes and props from the movie were cool to see at ArcLight Hollywood this past month. Be sure to take a closer look at the Suburbicon costumes worn by Matt Damon and Julianne Moore and designed by Jenny Eagan.

With a lot more dramas seeking awards consideration on the horizon I expect to see many more costume exhibits at the cinema in the coming weeks, so watch this space...

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Liberal snowflakes enjoy West Hollywood's 2017 Halloween festivities...

Last night it was time for West Hollywood's annual Halloween Carnaval and to join the hordes of revelers along Santa Monica Boulevard for some costume hijinks.

West Hollywood Halloween political costumes
Following all the terrorist attacks around the world, the day's events in New York and carnage in Las Vegas, it does make you think twice about going to these big public events where you could easily be a target, but isn't that the point, you can't let terrorists and fearmongers stop you from living your life, enjoying freedom and liberty, so I'm glad we had a safe and fun Halloween without incident.
Liberal Snowflake Halloween costume West Hollywood
After the waking nightmare and global embarrassment of the past months since Trump became the Buffoon-in-Chief, this year I wanted, or rather needed, to make a political statement with my Halloween costumes, and when did being a liberal become such a demonised thing anyway, hence my glittering look.
West Hollywood Halloween Getting deported by Trump costume
This year I thought the only problem would be if I had a costume malfunction and it started falling apart as it got jostled by the crowds, but turns out the emergency came when my camera's flash wouldn't work, so it was off back to my condo to pick up my spare camera with fully functioning flash to capture these photos.
Weho Halloween Pennywise clown costume
Clear costume winners last night by sheer volume were IT movie-inspired looks like 'Pennywise' and 'Georgie' in the yellow rain jacket with their red balloons
Halloween IT movie Pennywise clown costume
If you want see actual costumes from the horror film, be sure to check out these original IT movie costumes and props on display.
West Hollywood Halloween IT movie costumes
There were also more than a few individual, couple and group costumes inspired by The Handmaid's Tale roaming the streets of West Hollywood.
WEHO Halloween Handmaids Tale costumes
Plus loads of anti-Trump and politically-inspired costumes, like this 'Fake News' media costume.
West Hollywood Halloween Fake News Media costume
Being on a Tuesday work night the festivities certainly seemed a bit quieter and calmer than previous years, but judging by our neighbourhood experience everyone seemed to be partying over the Halloween weekend.
Weho Halloween hair-raising costume
There were a lot of great costumes walking the boulevard, but there were many more spectators there to see the sights, more than to be the sights it seemed.
Chucky costumes West Hollywood Halloween
As always there were some great group costumes, like these 'Chucky' impersonators, topical Statues of Liberty and even a classic Wizard of Oz trio.
West Hollywood Halloween Statue of Liberty group costumes
There seemed to be a lot of people inspired by the movies, from classic horror to newer entries like The Purge, plus even TV revivals like Twin Peaks, with 'Audrey Horne' finding multiple versions of 'Dale Cooper'.
WEHO Halloween Wizard of Oz costumes
This year instead of opting for a store-bought offering and customising it as I have in the past, I decided to get crafty and create my own costume.
West Hollywood Halloween Purge costumes
I tried to source as much locally as possible from craft and Halloween stores, but ultimately resorted to online shopping to pull it all together. I even used a hot-glue gun for the first time, which was a  learning experience and felt inspired by all my RuPaul's Drag Race and Project Runway viewing.
Twin Peaks costumes West Hollywood Halloween
I really should learn to sew properly as I'm sure that would really allow my creative juices to flow for future Halloweens.
West Hollywood 2017 Halloween costumes
Even though there were more than a few scary sights over the evening, I always felt totally safe walking the closed off boulevard and want to thank all the police, firefighters, paramedics, city officials and staff that made this public event possible and allowed us all to express ourselves freely and enjoy the witching hour.
West Hollywood Halloween monster costume
Obviously these are not the police officers I am referring to, although everyone throughout the night was a good sport to pose for photos.
West Hollywood Halloween sexy cops costumes
I was surprised this year that there weren't as many 'Wonder Woman' costumes as previous years, her iconic costume is a always popular.
Wonder Woman Queen Hippolyta costumes weho Halloween
As regular visitors will know I have a fondness for the warrior woman and I have dressed as Wonder Woman in past (plus as a zombiefied version too).
Nightwing Robin costumes West Hollywood Halloween
But there certainly seemed to be more DC Comics characters than Marvel heroes in attendance, like this 'Nightwing' and 'Robin' crime-fighting duo, and more than a few cosplayers methinks.
Halloween Charlie Brown Great Pumpkin costume
Speaking of the Boy Wonder, last Halloween I created a Dead Robin costume to stalk the city streets.
West Hollywood Halloween horror costumes
This year I loved when anyone understood my look and the penny dropped and they shouted out, high-fived and laughed at my 'Liberal Snowflake' costume.
Weho Halloween Beauty Beast costumes
In the U.K. Halloween costumes tend to be more spooky like witches, skeletons and vampires, but in America you really can be anything you like on this night, so kudos to everyone who dressed up and enjoyed themselves, becoming their favourite fairytale characters, royalty, superheroes and more delights besides.
West Hollywood Halloween 2017 costumes
L.A. is such a creative town being the capital of the TV and film entertainment industry, and you can tell people love to show off their talents on a night like this.
West Hollywood Halloween Parking sign costumes
If you like all these frightful looks from this year's Carnaval, make sure you also check out all these spooktacular costumes from West Hollywood's Halloween celebrations in the past.
West Hollywood Halloween 2017 costume
West Hollywood always does such a good job of cleaning up after these big events, whether it be Pride, Halloween or protest marches, and all that was left of last night's festivities were feathers, sequins and glitter littered along Santa Monica Boulevard.
Freddie Mercury costume West Hollywood Halloween
As you can see, by about 10pm my costume had taken a bit of a battering, and so it was time to fight our way through the crowds to wash off all the glitter and count all our candy.
Liberal Snowflake C3PO costumes West Hollywood Halloween
I had a blast last night, but just like that Halloween is over for another year, so I guess I'd better start planning my costume look for next October...

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