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February 7, 2014 | By Anne Colby
Tuscan, provincial and country-rustic looks are fading in popularity in kitchens and baths, and contemporary designs with clean lines, minimal ornamentation and easy maintenance are rapidly taking their place, according to a style report released this week by the National Kitchen & Bath Assn. The industry group surveyed its members about trends in kitchen and bath design. Other findings include: • Gray color schemes are expected to increase sharply in kitchens and baths in 2014.
February 6, 2014 | By Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
"The Lego Movie" is a massive collision of subversive humor, hyper-kinetic energy, mind-jangling design, spinning colors and about 15 million Legos, no exaggeration. It is very tempting to use the movie's pounding pop anthem - "Everything Is Awesome" - to put this insane sensory experience into sound-bite perspective. But that is no doubt the piece de resistance of the filmmakers' master plan. Or in "Lego Movie" speak, the Piece of Resistance. So in solidarity with that sentiment, I'll resist.
February 5, 2014 | By Philip Hersh
SOCHI, Russia - Ashley Wagner could not help but smile about the decor at the Olympic figure skating practice rink. “It's a very colorful venue ... very rainbow colorful,” Wagner noted, with a laugh, after finishing an early afternoon practice Wednesday. The reference was to the rainbow representing support for the LGBT community, and it does seem an ironic color choice in a country that last summer adopted national anti-gay legislation. Wagner, 22, the two-time national champion, has been one of the few U.S. athletes willing to speak out strongly and repeatedly against the law.  She will not refrain from such comments now that she is in Russia.
January 31, 2014 | By Christopher Knight, Times art critic
Found art, or paintings and sculptures not originally made by an artist or even with art in mind, is a modern phenomenon heading toward its formal centennial anniversary next year. In 1915 Marcel Duchamp coined the term “readymade,” annoying countless observers in the process, but today the strategy barely turns heads. That doesn't mean it's moribund. At China Art Objects Galleries, Morgan Fisher has made two suites of paintings based on paint chips commercially produced in 1935 to help American consumers decorate their homes.
January 15, 2014 | By Mikael Wood
Katy Perry is roaring back to business. After lying relatively low after the heavily hyped release last fall of her album "Prism," the singer announced Wednesday that she'll hit the road in North America this summer. The so-called Prismatic world tour, slated to play the U.K. in May, is to begin a Stateside run on June 22 in Raleigh, N.C. Forty-six concerts are scheduled, including stops Sept. 16 at Anaheim's Honda Center and Sept. 19 at Staples Center. Capital Cities, Kacey Musgraves and Tegan and Sara will take turns as Perry's opening act, with Tegan and Sara set to appear at the Southland shows.
January 15, 2014 | By Chris Kraul and Andres D'Alessandro
Argentine poet Juan Gelman, an exile whose writings were colored by personal tragedy he suffered at the hands of his country's brutal military dictatorship, died in Mexico City on Tuesday. He was 83 and had been battling leukemia. Gelman, a leftist with working-class origins, won the Cervantes Prize, perhaps the most prestigious Spanish language literary honor, in 2007 for his stark, soulful verse. But the son of Jewish Ukrainian immigrants also personified the tragedy suffered by thousands of Argentinian families under the 1976-1983 military dictatorship.
January 13, 2014 | By Steven Zeitchik
On a night when "American Hustle" cemented its status as an award-season front-runner, it was a number of lower-profile movies - including Spike Jonze's digital romance "Her" and the Italian drama "The Great Beauty" - that earned the designation of biggest surprises. Jonze won his first-ever Golden Globe over screenplay favorites "American Hustle" and "12 Years a Slave. " It was the only win for the film, and it seemed to bode well for it in the original screenplay Oscar category.
January 2, 2014 | By J.C. Gabel
Rafael Bernal, born in 1915 in Mexico City, doesn't come to mind when one thinks of great detective novelists of the 1960s. There is little about him on the Internet in English, and none of his other novels, plays, story collections or histories have been translated. Although he wrote dozens of books, his 1969 novel, "The Mongolian Conspiracy," is considered his masterwork, but it was difficult to procure even an old dog-eared copy - until this past fall, when it was reissued by the folks at New Directions.
December 26, 2013 | By John Horn
If you're among the small number of directors or actors who isn't white, there is finally some cause to be excited about what's happening in Hollywood. For the first time in Academy Awards history, a black man - British filmmaker Steve McQueen - may win the directing Oscar for his heralded, harrowing film "12 Years a Slave. " Besides McQueen, critics and awards voters are celebrating the work of other people of color, singling out "Gravity's" Mexican-born filmmaker, Alfonso Cuarón, the African American talk show host Oprah Winfrey from "Lee Daniels' The Butler," and a variety of black actors, including Chiwetel Ejiofor and Lupita Nyong'o ("12 Years a Slave")
December 19, 2013 | By David Pagel
Last year, Lorenzo Hurtado Segovia exhibited a series of dazzling abstractions that he had made by shredding works on paper into long, skinny strips and then weaving the strips into place-mat-style paintings that simultaneously evoked digital transmissions on the fritz, plaid fabrics stretched by swinging hips and banners flapping in the wind. This year, in a breakout exhibition at CB1 Gallery, Hurtado Segovia expands the range and intensifies the impact of his ingenious works. Making a mess of distinctions between painting and sculpture, not to mention art and craft, the L.A. artist who was born in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, invites visitors into a world where nothing sits still - least of all, your imagination.
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