Rod Serling's Night Gallery gets a tribute at Mountain View Mausoleum.EXPAND
Rod Serling's Night Gallery gets a tribute at Mountain View Mausoleum.
Courtesy Peekaboo Gallery

14 Best Things to Do in L.A. This Week

From an exhibit in a mausoleum featuring art from Night Gallery to a play about Frida Kahlo to free bagels and more, here are the 14 best things to do in Los Angeles this week!

fri 2/8

Continue Reading


Art Can Be Such a Nightmare

After The Twilight Zone ended its TV run, that's when Rod Serling really got weird. His follow-up was the three-season fantasy series Night Gallery, which Serling presented from an art gallery set, using original paintings as props for his story intros. Made by Thomas J. Wright and Jaroslav Gebr, each canvas was described as "a frozen moment of a nightmare, and served as a creepy portal to a dark, supernatural fable. Creature Features and Peekaboo Gallery celebrate the 50th anniversary of Rod Serling's Night Gallery by bringing the paintings to life — or rather, to death. They've transformed the Mountain View Mausoleum into a sprawling installation of original canvases by both series artists, along with fan art by notable contemporary painters, including a new work from Wright made specially for the occasion, plus extensive artifacts, props, historical ephemera and behind-the-scenes materials from the show and its cult. Mountain View Mausoleum, 2300 Marengo Ave., Altadena; Fri.-Sat., Feb. 8-9, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 10, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.; $10. peekaboogallery.com/rod-serlings-night-gallery. —Shana Nys Dambrot


Bringing Cave Paintings to Life

Chinese composer Tan Dun created the evocative scores to such films as Hero and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Conductor Gustavo Dudamel leads the L.A. Philharmonic in the U.S. premiere of Dun's Buddha Passion, an oratorio based on fables inspired by the Dunhuang Cave paintings in China. The 115-minute opus requires multiple pieces of percussion, gongs, chimes, sleigh bells, cymbals, Tibetan singing bowls and other unusual instruments, as well as vocalists Sen Guo, mezzo-soprano Huiling Zhu, tenor Kang Wang, bass-baritone Shen­yang and the L.A. Master Chorale. Expect Buddha Passion to contain moments that are alternately lulling, eerie, reverential and inventively percussive. Walt Disney Concert Hall, 111 S. Grand Ave., downtown L.A.; Fri.-Sat., Feb. 8-9, 8 p.m.; $20-$194. (323) 850-2000, laphil.com. —Falling James

Quote Unquote Collective in MOUTHPIECEEXPAND
Quote Unquote Collective in MOUTHPIECE
Joel Clifton


Speaking Through Dance

A hit at the 2017 Edinburgh Festival, MOUTHPIECE opens with two women singing in a bathtub. Amy Nostbakken and Norah Sadava, co-founders of Toronto-based Quote Unquote Collective, collectively portray one woman's struggles on the day after her mother's death. Combining movement, a cappella harmonies and text to explore universal themes through a specific woman's loss and search for herself, the work was developed by Nostbakken and Sadava with choreography by Orian Michaeli, in association with Toronto's Why Not Theatre. In keeping with Edinburgh's informality, the work is presented in a rehearsal room. UCLA Royce Hall, Rehearsal Room, 10745 Dickson Court, Westwood; Fri-Sat., Feb. 8-9, 8 p.m.; $49. (310) 825-2101, cap.ucla.edu. —Ann Haskins


Frida's Following

Fans of Mexican folk art goddess Frida Kahlo are sure to enjoy Frida — Stroke of Passion for its attention to detail concerning both her sex life and her physical and emotional strife, which inspired her powerful and vibrant paintings in different ways. Focusing on the last week of Kahlo's life, when she was homebound with an amputated foot and attempting to finish one of her famous self-portraits, the play shows how Frida (played by co-director Odalys Nanin) struggled with regret and uncertainty even as she was a strong woman and feminist whose art was vivid and unapologetic. Though there's lots of reminiscing, especially about bisexual relationships with female lovers including mariachi singer Chavela Vargas, Mexican film star Maria Felix and dance legend Josephine Baker, reviews from the show's previous run have noted that its tone is one of intimate expression, not exploitation. There's also exploration of her relationship with husband Diego Rivera, whom she surpassed not only as an artist but as a cultural icon, both while they were alive and in death. Casa 0101, Macha Theatre, 2102 E. First St., downtown; Fri.-Sat., Feb. 8-9, 15-16 & 22-23, 8 p.m; $20. machatheatre.org/frida_2019a.htm. —Lina Lecaro

Molly Jo Shea's "I'll Stop the World and Melt With You"EXPAND
Molly Jo Shea's "I'll Stop the World and Melt With You"
Richard Michael Johnson

sat 2/9


This Sounds Cool

While it's apparently not true that Walt Disney had his body frozen in the hope of being revived again at some point in the future — rumors claimed that his body was being saved underneath the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disneyland, or that his frozen head was improbably found floating in the ocean by fishermen — cryogenics remains a fascinating subject. In her new show, "I'll Stop the World and Melt With You," CalArts' Molly Jo Shea unthaws herself and mixes serious research about modern cryogenics laboratories with fanciful speculations about life, death and reinvention. "The performance is a defrosting seminar that teaches people how to adjust to the world after being cryogenically frozen," Shea tells the Weekly. The seminars culminate with a screening of Shea's documentary Cool as Ice on Feb. 23. Monte Vista Projects, 1206 Maple Ave., #523, downtown L.A.; opening reception Sat., Feb. 9, 7-10 p.m.; on view thru March 3; free. (520) 307-4107, montevistaprojects.com. —Falling James

14 Best Things to Do in L.A. This WeekEXPAND
Courtesy Noah's Bagels


Holey Heaven

What will be 2019's food fads? Oat milk? Harissa? Jackfruit? Who cares? The bagel, which dates back centuries to Poland and has become as American as apple pie, will outlive all food trends. National Bagel Day (which was National Pizza Day until this year) celebrates the boiled-and-baked dough icon. And though you might wanna visit your local mom-and-pop bakery, consider Noah's New York Bagels, which, with its 56 stores in California, offers more than two dozen flavors, from Ancient Grain to Six Cheese to Everything. You can eat your roll-with-the-hole plain, dress it up with one of 10 spreads, make it a sandwich or go bagel-adjacent and try something sweet. Today, each location offers a free bagel and shmear with purchase. Noah's New York Bagels, various locations; Sat., Feb. 9, various hours. noahs.com. —Siran Babayan


Brawling for a Cause

If you loved G.L.O.W., you'll flip for F.L.O.W., aka the Future Ladies of Wrestling, whose mega-brawl and mat match benefits the Women's Center for Creative Work (WCCW), an intersectional feminist community and arts space. WCCW is focused on cultivating a coalition of women and nonbinary artists and elevating their work and output for activistism, exposure and connecting. Joining forces with F.L.O.W. for an evening of "no holds barred" rough-and-tumble promises lots of rooting and raging. Bouts are scheduled with "inter-species" athletes including the audaciously monikered Diva Colada, Eruptia and Flesh Eating Corpulous. "F.L.O.W" also happens to be the acronym for one of WCCW's coolest programs, the Feminist Library on Wheels, a mobile lending library. Learn more about this program and others at womenscenterforcreativework.com. Zebulon, 2478 Fletcher Drive, Frogtown; Sat., Feb. 9, 1-4 p.m.; $30-$125. zebulon.ticketfly.com/event/1814219-future-ladies-wrestling-los-angeles. —Lina Lecaro

Adipocere in Stitch Fetish at the Hive
Adipocere in Stitch Fetish at the Hive
Courtesy the Hive


Thread Strokes

Embroidery, needlepoint, and occasional knitting may not seem not an obvious match with cheeky, naughty, occasionally full frontal erotica. But curator and thread artist Ellen Schinderman disagrees. For the seventh year she brings to the Hive "Stitch Fetish," which she calls "the most whimsical, least objectifying erotica show around." In an aesthetic ranging from old-timey pin-up to surreal nonbinary fantasy, with text, vintage sources and modern cultural references, the show features artists Adipocere from Australia and Matthew Monthei from Maryland, along with a couple dozen fellow thread-bearers. There's an ArtWalk reception (Feb. 14), a sex-toy workshop (Feb. 23) and a panel discussion on stitch art (March 3). The Hive Gallery & Studios, 729 S. Spring St., downtown; opening reception: Sat., Feb. 9, 8–11 p.m.; $5 suggested donation; on view thru March 3, Wed.-Sat., 1-6 p.m.; free. (213) 955-9051, facebook.com/events/354459742045814. —Shana Nys Dambrot

"Crumbling Empire" at the Wende MuseumEXPAND
"Crumbling Empire" at the Wende Museum
Courtesy Wende Museum

sun 2/10


The Axis of Appropriated Propaganda

If there's one person who knows all about transforming the visual tropes of empire and authoritarian patriarchy into truly subversive, progressive messaging, it's Shepard Fairey. But as his centrality in a new Wende Museum exhibition demonstrates, artists from the U.S.S.R. to the DPRK have been doing their best to encode rebellion in the Stalinist brand for generations. "Crumbling Empire" shows Fairey's works with a group of Russian dissident paintings and posters from the 1980s and '90s. "Upside-Down Propaganda" offers U.S. museumgoers their first look at the vibrant, bold, surreal art of North Korean defector Sun Mu, who worked as a propaganda-poster artist for the Stalinist state he eventually fled. Wende Museum, 10808 Culver Blvd., Culver City; opening reception Sun., Feb. 10, noon-5 p.m.; on view thru June 2, Fri., 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; free. (310) 216-1600, wendemuseum.org. —Shana Nys Dambrot

mon 2/11


Play It Again, Artists

With an interviewer like the literary and empathetic curator Hamza Walker and contemporary artists as diverse and interesting as Frances Stark, Lauren Halsey and Jim Shaw, even the most conventional gallery conversation would be compelling programming. But instead, they're doing this. Music critic Josh Kun is joining Walker for a series of crate dives (or maybe iPod spins) at LAXART in which the audience will play a newfangled game of Name That Tune, working off the contents of the artists' music libraries and some carefully chosen curve-balls. Shaw is this week's guest, in an especially meta invitation, since he co-founded art-house cult band Destroy All Monsters and regularly composes avant-garde sound elements for his interdisciplinary installations. LAXART, 7000 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood; Mon., Feb. 11, 7 p.m.; free. (323) 871-4140, laxart.org/events/name-that-tune-jim-shaw. —Shana Nys Dambrot


Hot on the Scent

Whether it's Essence of Detour, Eau de Mildred Pierce, or The Postman Always Smells Twice, you're sure to be shocked by what you come up with at today's Perfume Design Challenge, dedicated to fragrances created with film noir as their inspiration. The institute challenges you to create your own perfume with its custom-curated palette of scents ­— using top notes of intrigue, middle notes of betrayal and base notes of murder ­— no matter what your skillset or level of knowledge about doomed dames or growling gunsels. And if you do goof up while making your perfume, forget it. It's Chinatown. Institute for Art and Olfaction, 932 Chung King Road, Chinatown; Mon., Feb. 11, 5:30 p.m.; $30. (213) 616-1744, eventbrite.com/e/perfume-design-challenge-film-noir-tickets-53182786145. ­—David Cotner

Alex Hubbard, Hit Wave (2012), video stillEXPAND
Alex Hubbard, Hit Wave (2012), video still
Alex Hubbard/Galerie Eva

tue 2/12


You'll Go Gaga

House of Gaga is one of the coolest contemporary art galleries in Mexico City, on a tree-lined street in the Condesa neighborhood, showing a mix of genres and mediums that share a sort of late-Empire material breakdown and post-millennium enthusiasm for experiments. Last year, they set up a satellite space here, on a different kind of side street, near MacArthur Park. That's where a new large-scale video installation from Alex Hubbard takes over the whole space in an improvisational, site-responsive presentation called "Projectors." For Hubbard, his practices across video, painting and sculpture exist on a seamless continuum well-suited to installation. His video works record abstracted layers of his performative mixed-media manipulations of color, sound, found objects and production gear like lights and ladders. His paintings are made the same way and often executed on translucent polyurethane sheets that in turn mimic the look and scale of movie screens. House of Gaga Los Angeles, 2228 W. Seventh St., MacArthur Park; opening reception Tue., Feb. 12, 5-8 p.m.; on view thru March 23, Wed.-Sat., noon-6 p.m.; free. (213) 908-5033, houseofgaga.com. —Shana Nys Dambrot

Sally Wen Mao reads from her poetry collection Oculus.EXPAND
Sally Wen Mao reads from her poetry collection Oculus.
Luo Yang

wed 2/13


East Meets West

"Before I wake, I peruse the dead girl's live photo feed," Sally Wen Mao writes in "Oculus," the title poem of her new collection via Graywolf Press, which is based on the real-life tale of a girl in Shanghai who posted her suicide on Instagram. "Days ago, she uploaded her confessions: I can't bear the sorrow/captions her black eyes, gaps across a face/luminescent as snow." Elsewhere, Mao imagines a time-traveling Anna May Wong, talks to ghosts and considers the clash of cultures and histories in the East and the West. "If only recovering the silenced history is as simple as smashing its container," she muses in "Occidentalism." Skylight Books, 1818 N. Vermont Ave., Los Feliz; Wed., Feb. 13, 7:30 p.m.; free. (323) 660-1175, skylightbooks.com. —Falling James

thu 2/14


Expanding the Classics

There is still this ongoing myth that classical music is the exclusive province of European composers, and this evening violinist/concertmaster Margaret Batjer guides L.A. Chamber Orchestra through such traditional pieces as Hungarian composer Erno Dohnányi's Serenade for String Trio and Russian mastermind Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky's Souvenir of Florence. But LACO has long been interested in contrasting such classical warhorses with inventive new music, and Batjer presents the world premiere of Mexican-American composer Juan Pablo Contreras' Musas Mexicanas. Contreras' work, such as 2015's Silencio en Juárez, mixes classical ideas with an almost cinematic collage of sounds infused with festive strains of Mexican folk music. Ann & Jerry Moss Theater, 3131 Olympic Blvd., Santa Monica; Thu., Feb. 14, 7:30 p.m.; $49. (310) 828-5582, laco.org. —Falling James


All-access pass to the top stories, events and offers around town.

  • Top Stories