Art LA Contemporary returns for its eighth year at Barker Hangar and Jewish Women’s Theatre/Braid Performance and Art Space gear up for a busy season.

In its 8th annual iteration, Art LA Contemporary is local and global in scope, featuring established and emerging galleries, helping to cement L.A.’s position as one of the world’s preeminent art capitals. More than 60 local and international galleries will showcase top artists, and a section called “Freeways” highlights eight new galleries, all less than four years old, including Club Pro, EIGEN + ART Lab, Jenny’s and Queer Thoughts.

From January 26—29, explore contemporary art from galleries in Los Angeles and London, Hong Kong and Seoul, Berlin and Bucharest, New Zealand, New York, Paris, Oslo, Montreal and more. But it’s not just on the walls; a full program of performances and conversations will take place in the ALAC Theatre onsite.

Alongside famed dissident artist Ai Wei Wei, Huang Rui is a founding member of Stars, which led to the creation of China’s contemporary art scene. On Thursday, Jan. 26 (opening night) at 7:30 p.m., he presents his performance “Ping Pong,” about how ping pong helped thaw relations between China and the U.S.

In “Iggy Pop Tried to Kill Me,” storyteller Todd Gray shares the tale of a near-death experience while living with Jim Osterberg (aka Iggy Pop) on Wonderland Avenue in Laurel Canyon in the mid 70s; Friday, Jan. 27 at 1:30 p.m..

At 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 28, the film collective Veggie Cloud presents a screening of Rick Prelinger’s “Lost Landscapes of L.A.” Culled from Prelinger’s renowned archives of “ephemeral” footage such as home movies and studio produced background “process plates,” the film presents a socio-topographical study of L.A. as cityscape and myth.

South LA-based performance artist Jasmine Nyende’s inspiration for her “Lost Angles” comes from found footage through her childhood and a decade of social media, featuring L.A. as the stage and the lost, untold stories the city forgets. Saturday, Jan. 28 at 4 p.m.

At 5 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 28 experimental composer William Basinski presents a live performance of a new sound work incorporating his use of analog and obsolete recording technologies. He’s best known for his “Disintegration Loops,” made from an extensive archive of tape recordings in varying stages of degradation.

On Sunday at 3 p.m. Veggie Cloud presents a conversation with Roger Corman and Mary Woronov, both icons of independent cinema. Corman is renowned for making fast, cheap movies that Woronov, a writer and artist, appeared in. Following the conversation with Ian Bernie, the Corman-produced film Death Race 2000 will be screened.

Details and tickets for Art LA Contemporary are here: https://artlosangelesfair.com

 

MATZO BALL DIARIES

Throughout January and February, The Jewish Women’s Theatre (JWT) presents an art exhibition, performance salons and a special author/cookbook talk and demo honoring the cultural culinary connection between food and Jewish life. Events take place at The Braid Performance and Art Space in Santa Monica, the Skirball Cultural Center and in private homes throughout L.A. “The Matzo Ball Diaries,” “Nourishing Traditions” and “Bagels and Bestsellers” share the secret stories of food and home, the power of food to nourish, heal or move us to action.

“Matzo Ball Diaries” performances take place Jan 21 — 31 at The Braid and in homes and other venues in the South Bay, Westside, Valley, Beverly Hills/Hancock Park and Fairfax neighborhood. Performed by a cast of professional actors, the stories range from a reminiscence of childhood obesity caused by over-indulgence in the dreaded K foods (kreplach, kishka, knishes); to Jewish struggles with anorexia; to cultural glimpses into Iranian chicken pluckers and the etiquette of accepting pistachio treats; to making one last tomato omelet before leaving a lover; to the fascinating story of how the International House of Pancakes was started.

For a triple whammy, attend the opening night of the art exhibition “Nourishing Traditions,” at The Braid on Saturday, Jan. 21, beginning at 6:30 p.m., featuring an Art Talk, a dessert buffet before the premiere performance of “Matzo Ball Diaries,” plus a post performance Q&A with the cast and writers.

“Nourishing Traditions” is on view through March 5, featuring work by Penny Wolin, a renowned photographer who has explored Jewish themes in her work, alongside printmaker Judy Dekel; mixed media sculptor Harriette Estel Berman; visual artist/educator Benny Ferdman; chiaroscuro painter Harriet Glaser; designer Betty Green; sculptor Marleene Rubenstein; and painter/Braid Gallery Director, Marilee Tolwin, whose work often features Hebrew text. Tolwin says, “Our show will give viewers an inside look at how each artist uses food to convey emotion and to connect food to Jewish tradition and community.”

And on Sunday, Jan. 29 at the Skirball Center, “Bagels and Bestsellers” features local legend Judy Zeidler discussing her culinary journey from gourmet Jewish cooking, to cookbooks full of kosher recipes, to international cuisine, to her latest publication, Ciao Italy.

Tickets are $45 and include a copy of her book, a light brunch, an author talk, a cooking demonstration and samples of her famous biscotti. Advance purchase required.

Zeidler and her husband founded the Broadway Deli, Capo and Cora’s restaurants in Santa Monica and she consults with Zeidler’s Café at Skirball Cultural Center.

For all JWT/Braid info and ticketing, visit www.jewishwomenstheatre.org.

 

Sarah A. Spitz is an award-winning public radio producer, now retired from KCRW, where she also produced arts stories for NPR. She writes features and reviews for various print and online publications. Contact her at culturewatch@www.smdp.com.

 

Photo Caption

Print courtesy M&B Gallery; David Gordon’s Summer Onions (2016)