November 3, 2010 |
Music and noise, art and politics, sound and vision: Composer, musician, occasional actor and environmental activist Ryuichi Sakamoto says we're living in a world in dire need of reconciliation. Sakamoto, who performs at El Rey on Friday, is best known as the founding member of Japan's genre-defining techno- pop band Yellow Magic Orchestra who went on to great acclaim as the composer of film scores including "Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence," "The Sheltering Sky," "The Last Emperor," "High Heels" and many others.
September 12, 2009 |
Eight time zones ahead of Los Angeles, Brian Eno's cellphone is ringing. He's cycling along the Thames River towpath, savoring the shank of a summer afternoon. "Could you call back in an hour?" he asks politely. The appointed moment arrives and Eno is ready to chat, having come to a temporary halt in the tranquillity of his London home. Like his fellow harried humanoids, the British multimedia artist intimates that he's constantly trying to carve out a few minutes of quiet, contemplative space for himself within the manic, tech-driven modern world.
HOME & GARDEN
August 1, 2009 |
Sometimes, stress begets success. Take the genesis of the Manana floor lamp by Marie-Louise Gustafsson. While doodling to relax, she drew an armless stick figure that later became the basis for this kicked-back light for Design House Stockholm. The lamp leans against a wall, secured by a nail that fits into a hole in the tubular upright. Five and a half feet tall and equipped with an adjustable shade and dimmer switch, it's ideal for reading or ambient light.
December 31, 2008 |
Much of the best music to come from Los Angeles in 2008 was about obscuring, misdirecting and pressing forward in the dark. The five standout acts (and one bonus selection) below nod to local traditions -- punk ballistics, free jazz, feral psych and heat-wave hip-hop -- but are more interested in breaking them down and rebuilding them in difficult new ways. Expect to hear more from these groundbreaking Southern California artists in 2009. If your band writes songs under two minutes long, employs a stockroom worth of noisemaking gadgets and enjoys the tasty vegan snacks of Crops and Rawbers, you probably had a good 2008.
HOME & GARDEN
February 14, 2008 |
LLADRO, Waterford, Villeroy & Boch -- they're venerable companies whose names evoke images of fussy figurines, classic crystal and traditional china. So then what's this? A teacup with a horse-leg handle? A goblet with Indian etchings? A soup bowl shaped like some modernist sculpture? Convention-defying surprises set the mood at Ambiente, the tabletop-heavy design show that ended Tuesday at the Frankfurt Fair and Exhibition Centre.
February 7, 2002 |
Barbra Streisand, according to columnist Liz Smith, once entered a party at a friend's house, froze, took her host aside and said, "Overhead lighting? Come on, can't we do something about this?" The lighting was quickly dimmed to be more flattering to her. You don't have to be a celebrity to suffer from harsh overhead lighting. "Everyone should invest in inexpensive dimmer switches for the home," says lighting designer Robert Tant of Monrovia.