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Wide Open Spaces

Some townhouses in this mountain community are so close together, one could reach across the backyard fence and use a neighbor's barbecue grill with a bit of effort. Bumper-to-bumper traffic at the lone traffic light frustrates old-timers and newcomers alike. And finding a parking spot near a favorite restaurant can be as challenging as finding one in Denver, 115 miles away. Getting away from it all is getting tougher in the West.
Ever since Skip Rogers moved into his loft in downtown Brea, he's developed a habit of redecorating. The latest creation of this grade-school computer teacher and aspiring photographer hangs in his living room. It involves 2-foot-tall wall sculptures of a pair of Twinkie snacks, a stadium hot dog in a bun and Planters' Mr. Peanut. Rogers' sofa seat cushions are wrapped in woven coffee bags. And his dining table is an outdoor patio set with bench seats and a massive green umbrella.
Slowly, and in single line--like complete strangers about to board a plane--Isaac Stern, Jaime Laredo, Yo-Yo Ma and Emanuel Ax shuffled dispassionately onto the stage of the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion after intermission on Wednesday night, ready to perform Brahms' G-minor Piano Quartet.
March 23, 2011 | Eric Sondheimer
When you walk onto the court at Sacramento's Power Balance Pavilion, formerly known as Arco Arena, the three-point line looks appealing to those high school players known for making threes. Then the game starts and they begin to understand how difficult it is to shoot in an arena setting. That's going to be one of the biggest challenges for the Southern California teams Friday and Saturday in the state basketball championships. "Whomever makes the most layups and jump shots is going to be victorious," said Los Angeles Windward Coach Miguel Villegas, whose team faces Richmond Salesian on Saturday in the Division IV boys' final.
January 25, 2012 | By Richard Verrier, Los Angeles Times
On a cold, wet afternoon two cowboys trudge across a muddy street in a western town carrying saddles on their backs as a loudspeaker blasts Jim Croce's hit song "I Got a Name. " The scene was being played out at the historic Melody Ranch in Santa Clarita, where director Quentin Tarantino was filming his upcoming western "Django Unchained," starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Jamie Foxx. "It's a blast shooting here," Tarantino said during a break from shooting. "Most other western towns look like dollhouses.
September 1, 2010 | By Richard Verrier, Los Angeles Times
It's a sweeping romantic moment set against the grandeur of New York's Grand Central Terminal, venue to countless poignant moments of tearful farewells. A forlorn young woman, suitcase in hand, buys her train ticket from the kiosk as her lover appears from out of the shadows to present her with a bouquet of flowers. The couple embrace and leave together on a horse and buggy waiting outside the station. Cut. The scene, from the Justin Timberlake romantic comedy "Friends With Benefits," is supposed to unfold in New York's renowned example of Beaux Arts architecture.
March 31, 2014 | By Christopher Knight, Los Angeles Times Art Critic
Last fall, when the big traveling retrospective of Los Angeles artist Mike Kelley (1954-2012) opened at MoMA PS1, the Museum of Modern Art's outpost in Long Island City, N.Y., the show looked smashing. Largely that was due to the intrinsic quality of Kelley's diverse work in a staggeringly wide range of media - sculpture, painting, drawing, installation, video, performance, mosaic - plus various mash-ups of just about all of them. Partly, though, it was serendipity. PHOTOS: 'Mike Kelley' exhibit A primary subject of Kelley's art is the way familiar social institutions of daily life - especially school and church, but also including art museums and other representatives of authoritative points of view - inevitably conspire to constrain, pressure and sometimes even warp the very adherents they seek to console and liberate.
July 31, 2005 | Paul J. Weber, Associated Press Writer
Martin Murray wanted to build something straight out of the 1950s. So he cleared 30 acres of pasture off Interstate 45 about 20 miles south of Dallas and built his Galaxy Drive-In like a museum to a mostly extinct industry. Cars squeeze between poles tethered with speaker boxes and campy, vintage commercials taken from Hitchcock-era reels roll before the main feature. "I wanted to take people back to a simpler time," Murray said. "You hit 1958 once you enter our driveway."
November 26, 2006 | Jim Robbins, Jim Robbins lives in Helena, Mont., and is the author of "Last Refuge: The Environmental Showdown in the American West," among other books.
For a long time, people settled in this country where the natural resources were, or along railroads and highways. That left giant swaths of American outback empty by default, and the Rocky Mountain West, with its mind-numbing distances and extreme environment, was, for a long time, among the emptiest. Thirty years ago, when I moved from upstate New York to Montana, it was still a high-country Brigadoon, hidden away from the real world by its location, climate and deficit of jobs.
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