April 23, 2011 |
In the gift shops of the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History, miniature statues of George Washington and Abraham Lincoln sit next to toy U.S. soldiers beckoning tourists to take them home. But despite their uniquely American character, those items and many others are made in China, rankling two lawmakers who have been fighting to get the publically financed Smithsonian museums to sell more American-made products. It started in January, when Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.)
March 12, 2011 |
When we debate the endlessly tricky subjects of cultural patrimony and looted art, the pieces that usually come to mind are marble statues from classical antiquity or paintings stolen and stashed away during wartime. Not street art. And certainly not manhole covers. But thanks to Banksy, the elusive London-based artist, as well as fresh questions about the fate of Chandigarh, the Indian city designed in the 1950s by Modernist architect Le Corbusier, preparatory notes for a new chapter in this long story have shown up in the press in recent days.
March 10, 2011 |
The Las Vegas Hilton has a sweet special good through the end of the year: Rooms start at $49.95 for a midweek stay and come with such extras as drinks, breakfast and a discount on gift shop purchases. The deal: The Escape to Vegas package includes a room, two free cocktails at the hotel's Tempo Lounge, two free breakfast buffets, two free passes to the fitness center and a 15% discount in the hotel's gift shop. It's good for midweek stays; a two-night minimum is required.
February 22, 2011 |
Heading into Sunday's Academy Awards, "Exit Through the Gift Shop" is undoubtedly the most buzzed-about film in the documentary feature category. But the uncomfortable question persists: Is it real? The movie is anchored by two of the least reliable narrators in memory: Banksy, the anonymous British street artist; and Thierry Guetta, an eccentric French émigré to Los Angeles whose obsessive filming happens to capture the world of high-concept graffiti. In alternating interviews, the two recount the rise of anti-establishment vandals into the upper echelons of the art world, where their work quickly became commodified.
February 20, 2011
THE BEST WAY TO CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA. From LAX , connecting service (change of plane) to Charlottesville is offered on United, US Airways and Delta. Restricted round-trip fares begin at $348. Monticello, 931 Thomas Jefferson Parkway, Charlottesville, Va., (434) 984-9822, http://www.monticello.org , is open daily, except Christmas. House tour and tickets: adults, $22 (March-October) and $17 (November-February); children 6 to 11, $8. "Saving Monticello: The Levy Family's Epic Quest to Rescue the House That Jefferson Built" by Marc Leepson is for sale in the gift shop.
February 17, 2011 |
Is Banksy in town, doing some unique publicity stunts for his Oscar-nominated documentary, "Exit Through the Gift Shop"? Street-art buffs and bloggers have been abuzz this week with sightings of new paintings that appear to be the work of the mysterious British graffiti master. There's the one in Westwood that's been dubbed "Crayola Shooter," on the back of an Urban Outfitters in the UCLA neighborhood. Then there's one known as "The Charlie Brown Firestarter," spotted on Sunset Boulevard, that features the Charles M. Schulz-created character with a cigarette in his mouth and a can of gasoline in his hand.
February 12, 2011 |
Whenever someone asks me if I want to do lunch, they always wonder if I have a favorite spot, and I always lie. I tell them about a funky steakhouse in Glendale, a bustling Chinese joint on Broadway, a bright Mexican diner in Pasadena. I never tell them the truth, because they couldn't handle the truth. I never tell them about my real favorite place, because it's my place, my secret, my unvarnished connection with this city's sporting soul, my midday siesta among this city's sports dreams, the darn near perfect spot for a sportswriter and his peanut butter sandwich.
January 1, 2011 |
If Americans are worried about high unemployment rates and a shaky economy, you wouldn't know that by the rate of spending by visitors to the Rose Bowl game and Rose Parade in Pasadena. Throughout Pasadena, tourists and football fans shuffled in and out of shops and restaurants, splurging at a pace that merchants say they haven't seen in years. "Most years we just have grazers," said Marci Toombs, owner of Lula Mae, a gift shop on North Fair Oaks Avenue. "This year people are arriving earlier and shopping.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 26, 2010 |
California's largest tribe has set its sights on obtaining a 1,200-acre slice of Redwood National Park, part of an ambitious plan to cobble together a new tribal park that could add eco-lodges, gift shops and water taxis into backcountry along the Klamath River. The Yurok Tribe envisions that its park would be managed as part of the chain of national and state parks that necklace the Redwood Coast from Mendocino County to the Oregon border, some of the most spectacular and contested landscapes in California.
December 22, 2010 |
If through happenstance or procrastination you're faced with last-minute Christmas shopping, Culture Monster brings tidings of comfort and joy: You can do it at a museum store, getting a jump start on the peace-on-Earth payoff to this hectic season by enjoying a calming hour or two in the galleries before getting down to the spending at hand. FOR THE RECORD: Museum gift guide: An article in the Dec. 22 Calendar section about gift suggestions from local museum shops identified Cim Castellon as assistant vice president of marketing at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Her title is assistant vice president of merchandising.