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5 Artsy Things to Do

Five Artsy Things to Do This Week, Including the Longest Film Ever Made

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Thu, Jan 26, 2012 at 10:32 AM
click to enlarge A still from Modern Times, Forever, which might be the longest film ever made - COURTESY 1301PE GALLERY
  • Courtesy 1301PE Gallery
  • A still from Modern Times, Forever, which might be the longest film ever made

Pacific Standard Time's performance-art festival continues through this weekend, but there are a few great exhibitions to see as well. One in Chinatown is almost therapeutic, while another, on Wilshire, seems low-key at first but becomes more and more ominous.

5. SoCal's greatest, most boring composer

John Cage, the composer who believed silence could be music and boredom could be beautiful, graduated from Los Angeles High School and went to Pomona College, so it's no surprise PST would single him out as a symbol of SoCal's specialness. Friday at SCI-Arc, four performances by contemporary California artists and composers will explore Cage's influence. Re:Composition; SCI-Arc, 960 E. Third St., dwntwn.; Fri., Jan. 27, 8 p.m. (213) 613-2200, k-pst.org.

4. Lesbian separatist tea

Vaginal Davis' My Pussy Is Still in Los Angeles (I Only Live in Berlin) will be a "lesbian separatist tea party" in Southwestern Law School's Tea Room. The queer performer, whose name pays homage to activist Angela Davis and whose whose exaggerated persona has silenced a city block, plans to celebrate 1970s feminism her own way: combatively and extravagantly. Tickets are expensive, but Davis is exceptional. (See our interview with Davis in GoLA.) Bullocks Wilshire, 3050 Wilshire Blvd., 5th Floor; Sun., Jan. 29, 1-3:30 p.m.; $50. (626) 793-1504, westofrome.org.

3. Have I been here before?

Emilie Halpern's pitch-perfect exhibitions keep proving that art and artists can be well-adjusted, levelheaded and still interesting. Her second solo show at Pepin Moore, called "Jamais Vu" (which means "never seen" and is the reverse of déjà vu phenomenon, because it makes something you've experienced before feel surprisingly unfamiliar), includes a small hole in the wall, a puddle that never dries up, a lightning rod and two photos of the artist's sleeping mother. All of it together is meant to conjure that eerie "I know I've been here before" feeling, and it does. 933 Chung King Road, Chinatown; through Feb. 18. (213) 626-0501, pepinmoore.com.

2. Performing in the dark

No one knows exactly what will happen at Liz Glynn's Black Box performances, held until 2 a.m. at a warehouse in Hollywood each night of Pacific Standard Time's Performance Festival. That's exactly what makes them attractive. 830 N. Highland Ave., Hlywd.; 8 p.m.-2 a.m. through Jan. 29. laxart.org.

1. The longest demolition that never happened

The Danish collective SUPERFLEX built a life-size McDonald's replica, then flooded it for the 21-minute film they made in 2009. The collective's new exhibition, right across from LACMA at 1301 PE, has a much subtler feel than the McDonald's flood, with framed posters downstairs and tastefully designed black "safety" lamps hung upstairs. But the quiet, slow-moving film that plays out on an upstairs wall is actually fairly aggressive. Entitled Modern Times, Forever -- at 240 hours long, it's the longest film ever made, the collective claims -- it simulates the demolition of Stora Enso, a massive modernist office building in Helsinki. Originally, the film played for its 10-day duration on the street in front of its subject, so you could see modernism persisting and disintegrating at the same time. 6150 Wilshire Blvd.; through March 3. (323) 938-5822, 1301pe.com.

Follow @cgwagley and @LAWeeklyArts on Twitter.

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