Life of Cameron Tanja M. Laden's account of the fascinating life of L.A. artist/occultist Cameron had readers turning pages last week ("Cameron's Connections to Scientology and Powerful Men Once Drew Headlines, But Now Her Art Is Getting Its Due," Oct. 10). Pan69 writes simply, "Wonderful." Rafael Calderon agrees, writing, "An enthralling account of a woman living her life, neither asking nor giving quarter." But...
While the Nightmare on Elm Street series went from “One, two, Freddy’s coming for you” to “Nine, 10, Robert Englund’s at a convention again,” it started out as a frightening look at small-town America, a place that was, in its way, just as ruined as the face of its serial-killer villain, Freddy Krueger. Wes Craven’s visionary work of horror struck directly at one of the most potent aspects of the human experience — dreaming — and transmogrified it into deeply personal violence, which, when paired with sick humor, took up a special place in the hearts of fans. By the time Don’t Sleep: An All-Nighter on Elm Street (Pts. 1-7), a 35mm marathon of the films, wraps up, you’ll stumble blinking into the daylight. Just don’t sleep through these movies — you might wake up in a multiplex chased by a spool of film that wants to have its way with you. Also scheduled: special Elm Street guests TBA, and if you’re lucky, maybe the resident Cinefamily DJs will play DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince’s “A Nightmare on Elm Nightmare on My Street” so you can really start dreaming of death.More
Rare is it that reality television substantively changes lives, but one reason you’re going to experience An Evening With Alan Cumming is that Cumming recently appeared on the British genealogy series Who Do You Think You Are?. Talk about plot twists: Thanks to the show, the acclaimed Cabaret actor learned that his violent, abusive father wasn’t his biological father. This, of course, led to a series of re-evaluations of his past and present as Cumming marched onward to a horizon bordering the psychic countries of Total Relief and Now What? This is a question that will be addressed in tonight’s discussion tied to Cumming’s new memoir, Not My Father’s Son, which is as much an event for the fans of this preternaturally multifaceted actor (playing Nightcrawler and Macbeth is one hell of a career arc) as it is for people who have suffered at the hands of one tyrant or another. After all, one of the most powerful narratives that exists is: It’s not your fault. Aero Theatre, 1328 Montana Ave., Santa Monica; Mon., Oct. 20, 6:30 p.m. reception, 8 p.m. discussion; $20/$30/$43/$95. (310) 260-1528, livetalksla.org. —David CotnerMore
Based on San Francisco’s wildly successful Litquake, Lit Crawl L.A. is a literary take on the bar crawl. Now in its second year, the NoHo Arts District event consists of three “rounds” of literary events at 7, 8 and 9 p.m. (plus an after-party at 10 p.m. on the upper floor of the Federal Bar), all free and walking distance from the North Hollywood Metro station. Start the night with an unmistakably Hollywood crowd of writers — Annabelle Gurwitch, Richard Kramer (My So-Called Life), Peter Mehlman (Seinfeld) and Stephen Tobolowsky (Groundhog Day) — at Po§ch. Stay for the whole round (until 7:45) or continue your crawl for Poesia Para la Gente at the Metro station, a mini–Literary Death Match with Lara Marie Schoenhals (White Girl Problems) at XMA, a “poetry three-way” at Romantix Adult Boutique, or reimaginings of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and A Ghost Story at the Antaeus Company Library (it’s almost Halloween!). Grab a drink between rounds and then catch Red Hen Press’ comedic poets at Tamashii Ramen, or magic literature plus Magic Castle magicians at Bow and Truss. For round three, check out stories paired with specially created dishes at the Art Institute Culinary School. Dine and dash so that you can make it to Spinder, a literary version of dating app Tinder, at Big Wangs. If these events aren’t setting your mind on fire, don’t worry — the whole point of the Lit Crawl is to hop from venue to venue (of which there are 30!), sampling a uniquely L.A. lineup of bookish events. Various North Hollywood venues, see litcrawl.org/la/schedule for schedule; Wed., Oct. 22, 7 p.m. litcrawl.org/la. —Sascha BosMore
Back when a group of Internet-savvy bloggers created the first HallowMEME party in New York in 2009, it was mostly an excuse to throw a costume party where fellow attendees would actually appreciate their clever get-ups based on obscure memes, GIFs and YouTube videos. “Back in the days of Three Wolf Moon,” event producer Andrea Rosen says, referencing a popular meme based on ironic T-shirt reviews on Amazon.com, “popular culture was mostly unaware of Internet culture.” Five years later, “There’s almost no differentiation between the two, so the event has grown as memes have made their way into mainstream.” Costumes at last year’s soiree brought to life memes involving sharknados, emojis, cronuts, Beliebers and Kim Kardashian at the Met Ball. This year, Forced Meme Productions’ first party on the West Coast ought to be just as fun, and it culminates in a highly competitive costume contest judged by Internet professionals IRL. Silverlake Lounge, 2906 Sunset Blvd., Silver Lake.; Thu., Oct. 23. 8 p.m.; winners announced at 10 p.m.; free, RSVP required: 2014-la-hallowmeme.eventbrite.com. (323) 663-9636, hallowme.me. —Jennifer SwannMore
When it comes to the life of Bruce Haack, separating truth from fiction is not easy. The groundbreaking electronic music composer and inventor is said to have taught himself to play piano by age 3. By 8, he apparently was escaping his abusive mother's wrath by sneaking off to Indian...
Visual allure often isn't a virtue we value when chasing obscure flavors in L.A.'s international neighborhoods. In fact, adventurous diners tend to appreciate the opposite: The grungier the location, the more accomplished we feel for having sought it out. Looks be damned — let the fireworks happen on the flavor...
The Los Angeles art world has been saying a collective "hallelujah" since the arrival in January of Philippe Vergne as MOCA's new director. Although some East Coast commentators condemned the appointment — citing in particular a budget crisis scandal in which Vergne resorted to selling off a number of works...
Lily Simonson does serious research for her paintings. She studies specimens or goes on expeditions (she's on her way back to Antarctica this fall). But her paintings, like the ones in her "On Ice" exhibition at CB1, don't necessarily read as scientific. They read as intuitive, painterly explorations of what rock forms, icicles and iciness feel and look like. They're the kind of things you just like. And the way the main gallery is black-lit and her paintings glow seems to shrug off the gravitas of both art and science. 207 W. Fifth St., dwntwn.; through Oct. 26. (213) 806-7889, cb1gallery.com.More
It's just math. With ever more overflowing arts districts and only so many Saturday nights a month, a bumper crop of shows opens tonight in Culver City — and several galleries are ringing in the new season by showing off their marquee rosters. Exact hours and show durations vary, so you'll want to check gallery sites for complete details. Promising and must-see highlights include Brooklyn-based artist KAWS at Honor Fraser, offering new work extrapolating from the Peanuts comics. The artist styles these images to the point of abstraction with his trademark bold color schemes, along with more gestural, black-and-white works (through Oct. 31). Also Kehinde Wiley's World Stage series at Roberts & Tilton (through Oct. 25) continues with an iteration based on Haiti's pageant culture, using the artist's iconic portraits of everyday folks rendered in his lavishly regal style. Zackary Drucker & Rhys Ernst's Post / Relationship / X at Luis de Jesus (through Nov. 1) surveys their years-long transgender love affair and artistic collaboration with recent photos that debuted at Paris Photo L.A., as well as a brand-new video piece. Sandow Birk at Koplin Del Rio (through Oct. 17) presents the third in his aesthetically and emotionally intense series transcribing the entire Koran and illuminating it with images of contemporary secular life in America. Rebecca Farr offers haunting mixed media paintings on canvas and the release of her new book at Klowden Mann through Oct. 18). The Miaz Brothers take on "The Masters" in a new series of ghostly, witty paintings at Fabien Castanier (through Oct. 11), in the Italian sibling-collaborators' first U.S. show. Tim Gratkowski at Walter Maciel (through Nov. 1) shows new two- and three-dimensional, retro-slick and expressively abstract mixed-media collages. Patricia Chidlaw at George Billis Gallery (through Nov. 1) installs a diverse suite of urban landscape paintings, which go beyond photorealism to show us our common world in an uncommon light. Honor Fraser Gallery, 2622 S. La Cienega Blvd., Culver City; thru Nov. 1; free. (310) 837-0191, honorfraser.com.More
Jake Paltrow's Young Ones is a dustbowl Western with a sci-fi twist. It looks and sounds like the past: The plains are barren, the people wear cheap cotton and the score, by Nathan Johnson — all vibrating, beautiful melancholy — could be layered over any John Ford flick. But when...
Among its many attributes, Justin Simien's exuberant debut feature, Dear White People, proves that we're not yet living in a "post-racial America": Forget for a moment that there are so many vexing problems entwining race, class and economics that we haven't been able to put a Band-Aid on, let alone...
A Fuller Life is a family affair, produced and directed by Samantha Fuller, in honor of her late father, Samuel Fuller, the great journalist-turned-filmmaker (Forty Guns, Pickup on South Street, The Naked Kiss).
Reminiscent of Koyaanisqatsi in both form and content, Anlo Sepulveda and Paul Collins's experimental documentary Yakona tells the story of the San Marcos River — or rather, lets the river share its own origin tale and life story.
Perhaps Ruben Östlund's most sophisticated thought experiment yet, the provocative and wise Force Majeure is a penetrating study of that most ludicrous of social pretenses — masculinity, toxic and ubiquitous.
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It was a twisted-sister ride on the road to becoming a clothing designer
for Jeffrey Sebelia, whose line Cosa Nostra is infused with rebel wit and messed-up
elegance a glamorously decadent rock & roll spirit. Oh, he was always interested
in fashion. In awe, really. He even learned to sew when he was a tyke after his
parents split up and he was dividing time between Pasadena, where he was born,
and New York and Alabama.
I was a 9-year-old with no friends. My grandmother in Monrovia would take care of me, and the sweet old lady who lived next door taught me to sew. I would make bags, almost like little treasure bags for coins and things, and sweaters and jackets with her.
But then he discovered punk rock the 80s made me everything I am and Sebelia started learning guitar. And like any righteous punker kid, he tricked out his clothes with patches, spray paint and some judicious scissor work.
Next thing you know, its the early 90s and hes the bass player for the heavy power-pop trio Lifter, who had an indie hit with 402. The song led to the band getting signed by Interscope in that frenzied time of the Silver Lake scene, when Beck, Extra Fancy, Possum Dixon and the Geraldine Fibbers were scoring major-label deals.
But rock god-dom was not to be, although they gave it a heck of a try for five years. It was fun but theres nothing worse than three guys in a van circling the country, just hoping to make it big and everyone telling you that youre going to be huge and then at the end of the day realizing that it doesnt matter to them whether youre huge or not. Youre a tax write-off.
Still, all that driving around did give Sebelia plenty of time to sit in the back and read fashion mags a pastime not shared by his very macho bandmates.
Fast-forward through six years of him doing art direction and production design for music videos, and we find Sebelia burned out. He decided to investigate what fashion was all about, enrolling in L.A. Trade Tech to see if he still liked to sew.
I loved it. More than music and more than any other design I have ever done.
After two semesters at Trade Tech, he won a contest in fall 2002 to be in a fashion show and started making samples reconstructed leather, fur and denim coats. He partnered up with stylist Michel Berandi the two were part of Gen Arts The New Garde show in April 2004 who co-designed the line until last fall (they were briefly joined by Nashville Pussy bassist Corey Parks, who was designing her own line, for a few months in the beginning).
He and Berandi showed the samples to a friend who got the pieces into Fred Segal, where all sold as one-of-a-kinds. A business was born. Two, you could say.
While dropping off an order of womens pieces at Fred Segal, the mens buyer caught up with Sebelia who was then working out of his living room in Highland Park and asked if he had any menswear. I didnt, but I said, Oh, yes, but its all out. Two weeks later, he did. Production work was boot camp for doing anything. The line, now manufactured in a downtown Garment District studio with six employees, is evenly split between mens and womens, and he makes some footwear and jewelry.
Sebelia exudes a kind of Cali-cool dudeness, complete with post-ironic shag and an armful of tats (which his mom has been known to airbrush out of the family Christmas photos), but he radiates in an understated way, of course when recounting a phone call he got from a salesperson at Maxfield: John Galliano, his biggest design inspiration, had just bought one of his jackets. It made me really feel good.
So why the name Cosa Nostra? It came from one of my favorite albums by Johnny Thunders The Cosa Nostra World Tour. And from knowing my sordid family history and background with Jewish-Italian crazy fuckers on the East Coast. It means this thing of ours in Italian. At the time, there wasnt a lot of this crazy reconstructed stuff happening. I felt like I was doing that frame of mind for fashion. It was rock, it was Johnny Thunders, it was a little fucked up and it seemed to make sense.
Cosa Nostra is available at Maxfield, 8825 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood;
(310) 274-8800 or www.cosanostrainc.com.
Leah wears a leather jacket with knit trim and denim shorts (boots model's
own). Joshua is in a leather jacket with rabbit-fur lining, cotton velvet
pants, cotton tank top, and silver charm, dagger and skull necklaces.
Joshua wears a wool and leather trench coat with zipper trim, cotton
T-shirt with appliqué, denim pants, and silver skull and charm
Leah is in a wool-blend jacket with hand-painted lace ruffle, wool-blend
pants with custom patches and hand-stitched details, and a silver charm
necklace. Joshua wears a wool-blend jacket, vest and pants with custom
patches and hand-stitched details, and silk-rayon shirt.
Recently, Facebook started cracking down on users who don't use their real names on their personal profiles. As a result, numerous drag queens have had their pages taken down. Though they've fought back, it doesn't look like Facebook is going to budge. So now in solidarity a number of musicians...
Be sure to check out our constantly updated concert calendar! Monday, June 30 Ronnie Spector: Beyond the Beehive THE ROXY Former Ronettes lead singer Ronnie Spector has a lot of fascinating stories to tell, from her days touring with The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, to being virtually imprisoned in...
A mob-connected drug trafficker was living right under our noses in Beverly Hills, helping to stash kilos of cocaine, make deals with the Sinaloa drug cartel and move millions of dollars worth of drugs for the Rizzuto organized crime family of La Cosa Nostra. Those are the facts of the...
Leah wears a suede, lace silk and tulle dress with safety-pin details,
a tulle shawl, silk-and-tulle veil.
Leah is in a wool and tulle trenchcoat with silk lining, and leather
and cotton velvet motorcycle boots.
Leah is in a silk jacket with tulle overlay and collar button details,
wool and tulle skirt with vintage knit, a silver dagger necklace, and
leather and cotton velvet motorcycle boots.
Photographs by Michael Powers
Hair/makeup: Alma Anguiano (MK Artists)
Models: Leah Fitzgerald (Photogenics) and Joshua Lasater (Q)
Fur felt riding cap (on Leah, third photo), and velour fedora with grogram and feathers (on
Joshua, third photo); fur felt hat with quail feathers (on Joshua, first photo) all
by Ariane, 9528 Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills; (310) 276-9021.