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LACMA Art + Film Gala 2012 Honors Stanley Kubrick and Ed Ruscha

Two new exhibits and a gala pay tribute to legendary late filmmaker and pop artist icon.

August 22, 2012

FROM LEFT: Art + Film cochair Leonardo DiCaprio, 2011 honorees John Baldessari and Clint Eastwood, Art + Film cochair Eva Chow, and Michael Govan.

LACMA is set to present its second annual Art + Film Gala on October 27, honoring legends in both the art and film worlds. Taking the place of last year’s honorees Clint Eastwood and John Baldessari are the late filmmaker Stanley Kubrick and LA pop artist Ed Ruscha. The Gucci-sponsored gala will also welcome a mix of top fashion, art, and entertainment faces including Art + Film cochair Leonardo DiCaprio, and Steven Spielberg, who will give a special tribute to Kubrick.

As a complement to the event, LACMA introduces two new exhibitions, "Stanley Kubrick" (November 1) and "Ed Ruscha: Standard" (September 23). LACMA focuses Ruscha’s exhibit on the artist’s penchant for interpreting and examining everyday objects through art. Stanley Kubrick offers a look into the filmmaker's most influential work, including A Clockwork Orange, 2001: A Space Odyssey, and Eyes Wide Shut—the first comprehensive retrospective offered by a US museum. For 2012 Art + Film Gala tickets and table sales, contact Nicole Greene, 323-857-6160 or ngreene@lacma.org. 5905 Wilshire Blvd., LA

—Michelle Ward


Q&A: revelrié's Sonya Trejo

LA designer fashions the best all-weather sweaters.

August 22, 2012

Designer Sonya Trejo’s new revelrié brand, a collection of high-end, locally made all-weather sweaters, is set to debut this fall. Trejo—a 15-year fashion veteran—focuses meticulously on every detail, relating her design process to creating a piece of art.  Here, she shares on inspiration, how to style her sweaters, her love of LA, and more.

What made you want to start your own label?
SONYA TREJO: It was always my dream. One of the things I’ve enjoyed most is partnering with two very special factories here in Los Angeles and Peru. I know the people who knit the samples and work on the label. It creates community, and everyone who works on the product is invested and cares about the vision.

Why the focus on sweaters?
ST: Sweaters definitely found me—I started to work with them and became obsessed. One of the reasons I love LA so much is that it's the perfect sweater town. It is dry and cool in the evening, so you can pretty much wear one year-round.

How many sweaters are in the collection and how would you describe the line?
ST: Eight main pieces and a few novelty [ones] meant to really express the facets of a woman—to be timeless, but a youthful timelessness. They are designed with the idea of being passed down as heirlooms. Details like hand-painted yarns, hand-carved horn buttons, and special stitch techniques give the collection an heirloom feeling.

The collection is made from sustainable materials; what fabrics do you use?
ST: Silk, angora, and a lot Baby Alpaca, a high-quality yarn that pops the stitches beautifully and gives them a rich dimension. Also viscose yarn, but in this case, I make the designs [here], so it is a blend of sustainably made and locally made.

What’s a great way to style a sweater this season?
ST: I love to throw a sweater over a light feminine dress. The "And then he kissed me cardigan" looks amazing with a pencil skirt.

How has Los Angeles inspired your creative process and design aesthetic?
ST: I love how insanely creative the whole city is in such random ways, from puppet theater on the 405 to the graffiti art in the Arts District. LA is also perfect for my short attention span; I always say, if you don't like the vibe, drive for 20 minutes and you will be in a completely different universe.

What neighborhood do you live, and what do you love about it?
ST: Echo Park. I've heard people liken Echo Park to the Lower East Side of Los Angeles. It’s very vibrant and has that edgy, artist feeling to it.

revelrié is available for pre-order online at lifeinrevelrie.com.

—Michelle Ward


Sunset Strip Music Festival VIP Party

Music fans enjoyed a performance from The Doors at Skybar.

August 21, 2012

The Sunset Strip was transported back to the ‘70s this weekend when The Doors’ original members Ray Manzarek and Robby Krieger took the stage during the Fifth-Annual Virgin America Sunset Strip Music Festival Official VIP Party. Sponsored by Virgin America and held at The Mondrian Hotel’s Skybar, the event attracted fellow musicians and celebrity fans alike.

Rocking out to classic Doors songs were Nicole Richie and Joel Madden, Malin Akerman, Joe Manganiello, Kellan Lutz, and Jessica Stroup, as well as festival headliner Marilyn Manson. The event’s other big-name acts included The Offspring, Bad Religion, Steve Aoki, and Black Label Society.

—Michelle Ward


Glenfiddich Whisky at Mastro’s Ocean Club Newport Beach

Private tasting ceremony for prized whisky to be held August 30.

August 21, 2012

Possibly the most prestigious pour in California, the rare Glenfiddich 50 Year Old whisky is now being served exclusively at Mastro’s Ocean Club Newport Beach for $1,300 per one-and-a-half ounce dram. Since its debut stateside in December 2009, the award-winning single malt whisky has kept its California release to a minimum. Now, the upscale dinner-only restaurant will be the sole carrier in the state.

To celebrate the partnership, Mastro’s is holding an intimate tasting of the Glendfiddich 50 as well as the brand’s 1974, 21 Year Old, and 30 Year editions on August 30 at 7 PM. Glenfiddich’s brand ambassador Mitch Bechard will play host, and guests can enjoy complementary bites from Mastro's executive chef. The event only accommodates 20, so whisky aficionados would be wise to reserve a spot soon. To purchase tickets ($600 each), contact Jon Trainer of Mastro's Ocean Club Newport Beach at 949-376-6990. 8112 East Coast Hwy., Newport Beach

—Michelle Ward


2013 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class Redefines Luxury SUVs

Luxury SUV line introduces the ultimate in family cars.

August 20, 2012

When we were invited to join Mercedes-Benz on a recent vehicle launch program, I was given the assignment and immediately let my imagination run wild with the possibilities of testing and reviewing a super-luxurious vehicle from the German lineup. I envisioned a sleek autobahn killer such as their SL550 Roadster. Then I discovered the invitation was for the international launch of the 2013 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class SUV. Was I disappointed? Not in the least. Practically speaking, a luxury SUV with a third row was ideally suited for me. Who better to evaluate such a vehicle than the father of five kids involved in soccer, football, karate, gymnastics, and trumpet lessons?

The GL-Class comes in four levels including: the GL350 BlueTEC 4MATIC with its 3.0-liter single turbo diesel V6 producing a solid 240 horsepower and 455 pound-feet of torque; the GL450 with a 4.6-liter biturbo gasoline V8 capable of 362 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque; a GL550 with its direct-injection 4.6-liter biturbo V8 cranking out an impressive 429 horsepower along with 516 pound-feet of torque; and the GL63 AMG with its beastly direct-injection 5.5-liter biturbo V8 that pumps out 550 beastly horsepower and 560 pound-feet of torque—all of which will undoubtedly take care of getting the kids to practice and rehearsals in record-setting time.

But most intriguing of all was the GL’s third row seating. Yes, the famed "third" row seating that other manufacturers tout but fall short on. Was the GL's third row actually usable and, dare I say, comfortable? To answer this, I subjected myself to the third row in a GL350 while our driver hurriedly shuttled me to the airport—a drive filled with sudden braking, responsive acceleration, evasive highway maneuvers, and above-average speeds. Throughout this adventure, I experienced an unexpected level of comfort in the third row. The ride was so smooth that I failed to realize the actual speeds at which we were traveling. This was a true testament to the GL350’s performance and the very comfortable and enjoyable GL-Class third row.

The GL-Class does, however, suffer from what I would refer to as “multiple personality disorder.” The chiseled, aggressive front facade is bold, sporty, and athletic, while the flowing lines of the side profile comes across as sophisticated and modern. Its design will appeal to those sporty moms and dads who still want to ride in style for a date-night out on the town.

Out of the three GL categories experienced, I was most impressed with the GL350. The GL450 and GL550 are also absolutely solid performers, but often with an entry-level vehicle, you feel as through you're sacrificing or settling. This is absolutely not true with the GL350, especially when you factor in standard features such as the ATTENTION ASSIST, created to alert the driver and prepare the brakes for maximum stopping power, and mbrace2, which provides an array of vehicle diagnostics and concierge services. And with the estimated 600-700 mile range from the 26-gallon fuel tank, you may start to walk with a certain swagger thanks to the fuel saving provided by the smooth and uncharacteristically quiet diesel.

Additionally, there are a host of attractive features, such as the panorama sunroof, massaging driver and passenger seats, power outlets for your road-trip devices, optional electronic folding rear seats, Active Parking Assist, and Active Blind Spot Assist.

The 2013 GL-Class goes on sale this September, with the GL350 hitting showrooms with a beginning MSRP of $62,400, while the GL450 starts at $63,900, and the GL550 comes in with a starting sticker of $86,900. The wicked GL63 AMG version will become available during the first quarter of 2013 with pricing not yet available.

—Leon Brittain, automotiverhythms.com


St. Pucchi Launches in West Hollywood

Upscale wedding label debuts store on Sunset Boulevard.

August 20, 2012

Bridal couture brand St. Pucchi brings its elegant, avant-garde aesthetic to its first-ever flagship. Designer Rani Totman’s exquisite line of wedding gowns can now be tried on and tailored in a luxurious setting complete with veiled interiors, museum-inspired décor, and private entrances. Totman will also create from the space, with a section of the 2,000 square-foot store doubling as her design workshop.

The St. Pucchi boutique serves as a very welcome addition to LA’s bridal market—the gowns’ elaborate beading, frothy designs, and figure-flattering silhouettes have long been must-haves for Hollywood brides. Notable clients include Candace Cameron and Sanya Richards Ross, as well as Jason Priestley’s wife, Naomi Lowde, and Tony Romo's wife, Candice Crawford Romo. 8649 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood, 310-601-7604

—Michelle Ward


The Grammy Museum Honors Whitney Houston

Multi-media exhibit pays homage to late legend.

August 20, 2012

The Grammy Museum pays tribute to one of the music industry’s greatest with a new exhibit honoring Whitney Houston. “Whitney! Celebrating the Musical Legacy of Whitney Houston” comes six months after the superstar’s tragic passing and in accordance with the release of Sparkle, the last film starring the late singer.

A multi-media showcase of rare footage, personal photos, and private items from the Houston family, the exhibition highlights not only the singer’s musical prowess, but also her impeccable style. Stage costumes and famous gowns—including the white beaded dress she donned to accept the 1994 Grammy Album of the Year—are displayed. “Whitney! Celebrating the Musical Legacy of Whitney Houston” runs through February 2013. 800 W. Olympic Blvd., Downtown LA, 213-765-6800

—Michelle Ward
Photograph courtesy of The Grammy Musuem


Lindy & Grundy Hosts Vegan Cookbook Party

Butcher shop and revolutionary vegan cookbook join forces for launch event.

August 17, 2012

This Sunday, hip butcher shop Lindy & Grundy will host the launch party of Pure Vegan: 70 Recipes for Beautiful Meals and Clean Living (6-8 PM). Although the partnership seems unlikely at first, the book’s breakfast, lunch, dinner, and late-night dishes that focus on clean, healthy eating instead of overemphasizing the lifestyle’s politics, are sure to impress vegans and non-vegans alike.

Some recipes of note include chocolate truffles and herbal cocktails, but all are meat-, egg-, and dairy-free. LA-based author—and professional foodie—Joseph Shuldine will be on-site for the complimentary event. 801 North Fairfax, LA, 323-951-0804

—Michelle Ward


GenArt Hosts Party for Vena Cava's Fall Collection

Renowned fashion label celebrates with organization that helped launch its success.

August 16, 2012

Vena Cava fêted their fall collection with a stylish soiree at the Chateau Marmont on August 15 presented by GenArt—an organization that supports emerging artists, of which Vena Cava is an alum. Founders Lisa Mayock and Sophie Buhai rubbed elbows with Hollywood elite like Sophia Bush, Busy Philipps, and Malin Akerman. Guests were treated to poolside music courtesy St. Vincent and DJ Tennessee Thomas.

The line consisted of sophisticated dresses influenced by 1940’s film noir, menswear-inspired tailoring, and an ode to ‘70s “it girls” like Faye Dunaway and Charlotte Rampling. Available at Barney’s New York.

—Michelle Ward


Weekend Recommender: August 17-19

Help a beauty brand do good, shop a vintage sale, and travel to Pebble Beach for classic cars.

August 16, 2012

Stop by 45 Three Modern Vintage's Multi-Estate Sale for haute home furnishings.

Kiehl’s Manhattan Beach Village Grand Opening Celebration
Friday, August 17, 11 AM-1 PM
Actors Alan Cumming and Sam Trammell will join Kiehl's USA president Chris Salgardo in celebrating the skincare brand’s newest store. Held in support of Project Angel Food, an LA-based non-profit dedicated to delivering meals to those with life-threatening illnesses, Kiehl’s will donate a percent of all 2012 purchases from the Manhattan Beach Village location to the charity. 3200 Sepulveda Blvd., Manhattan Beach, 310-546-5556

45 Three Modern Vintage Multi-Estate Sale
Saturday, August 18, 10 AM-6 PM; Sunday, August 19 11 AM-6 PM
45 Three Modern Vintage
boutique hosts an expertly curated multi-estate sale this weekend. Owner Staci Cain’s collection of vintage home finds, catered to the mid-century modern and Hollywood regency set, will be sold at exclusive prices. 1051 S. Fairfax Ave. LA, 323-932-0832

The 62nd Annual Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance
Sunday, August 19, 9 AM-5:30 PM
Well worth a trip north, Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance features more than 200 of the most valuable collector cars and motorcycles in the world. The day-long, historic exhibition and competition will commence on the 18th fairway of the luxury Pebble Beach golf course. VIP packages ($600) and general admission tickets ($200) are available at theconcourstore.com. 1700 17-Mile Dr., Pebble Beach, 800-654-9300

—Michelle Ward

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