For all of you Los Angeles county dwellers, today is election day! There are mayors to be picked, city council members to chosen, and district leaders to be discussed at length. While your votes shall forever remain anonymous, it's no secret that gloomy election days like these can drain people of their desire to do anything other than lay under the covers. That would be a shame, though, considering all of the great things that Southern California has to offer this week.
It's an art extravaganza all over town for the next few weeks, with influential new exhibits opening up all over town. First, a series of rare Andy Warhol Polaroids will be on display at The Luckman Fine Arts Complex in East L.A. The often candid snapshots offer a glimpse into Warhol's life and social circle, filled with unknown faces and familiar celebrities, usually in some form of revelry. At the noted Regen Projects, photographer Catherine Opie debuts her latest landscapes and portraits, each offering stark imagery and bold composition. Elsewhere, politically-minded artist Nery Gabriel Lemus opens at the Charlie James Gallery, and offbeat painter Richard Jackson colors up the Orange County Museum of Art in Newport Beach.
If you're more into moving images, PaleyFest 2013 continues this week in Beverly Hills, with sneak peeks and first looks at some of television's best shows. There will also be panels of writers, actors, producers and directors on hand to discuss their works at length, including the folks behind Nashville, Community and FOX's The Mindy Project. On Tuesday night, the ongoing KCET Cinema Series continues in North Hollywood with an early screening of Emperor, in which Tommy Lee Jones plays the curmudgeonly General MacArthur. Or, if you can hold out until Sunday, the Descanso Gardens will screen the new documentary Women in the Dirt, about the forceful females that have helped to change the face of architecture and landscaping in America today.
Over the weekend, you can also enjoy quirky discussions of culture and celebrity, thanks in part to Mike Tyson. The famed and often reviled boxer takes to The Pantages Theater for a short series of one man shows titled The Undisputed Truth, in which the fallen hero talks candidly about his rise from the streets, his time in the ring, and his stint in prison. The show is produced by Spike Lee. Or, on Saturday, enjoy a more high-brow discussion at REDCAT downtown, where the popular TEDx Talks will be taking root. The all-day event will host speakers such as noted culture jammers The Yes Men, as well as an array of public lecturers, scientists, directors and choreographers.
Assuming you've read this far, there's also plenty to eat and drink around town, beginning mid-week. On Wednesday evening, the Long Beach Taste of Downtown means the local restaurants will open their collective doors for a sip and bite of all the city has to offer. Local restaurants will be providing curated eats and signature cocktails, and the streets will be filled with live music and celebration. On Thursday, Foodfare 2013 falls on Santa Monica, with two different dining times (day and evening) that will feature some of the best food that Los Angeles produces. Famed restaurants like Lucques, A.O.C. and Waterloo & City will be providing the plates, with available drinks from breweries like Strand Brewing Co. and Brouwerij West.
So don't let the dreary day and looming political process get you down today. There's always light at the end of the tunnel, even if it's just a quick drink in Santa Monica or spending an evening with your favorite performers from some of the best that television has to offer.
For more weekly events visit kcet.org/events.