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Superfine! Art Fair returns to LA for second year

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Image courtesy Superfine!

Aspiring art collectors take note – the Superfine! Art Fair, which made a spectacular LA debut last year, is returning to DTLA next week, offering a chance to peruse the works of over 60 top Angeleno artists and their global counterparts, in a welcoming environment where the focus is diversity.

Created by partners James Miile and Alex Mitow in 2015, Superfine! was launched as part of Miami Art week five years ago, after the pair had grown frustrated by their experiences in the world of traditional art sales.

Mitow, who spoke to the Blade last year, explained, “James is a photographer. He was navigating the art world as an emerging artist, and I was sort of an outsider who had been around art for a long time but was never really in it from a business perspective, and I started to see what was going on.  The market wasn’t really accessible to the people who could be buying art.”

The couple’s solution was to devise a better way for regular people who are excited about art to connect directly with artists, in a welcoming environment where their work can be made available at an affordable price tag. They made it their mission to “empower collectors at all stages of their journey” and provide “the ability to take home work that they love, within their budget,” as well as to bring “joy and excitement into the art of collecting art.”

Superfine! was the result: a brisk, fun sales atmosphere for exhibitors and collectors to come together, which evolved as Miille and Mitow built a team of driven arts professionals to make the magic happen year-round. In addition to Los Angeles, the fair now has editions in New York, San Francisco, Seattle, and more.

 

A work by Scott Froschauer, one of the artists on display at Superfine! LA (Image courtesy Superfine!)

One of the keys to the Superfine! approach is diversity. As Mitow told us, “There’s a lot of discrimination in the art world – about who is an art collector. We’re about redefining the profile of who loves art and wants to put it in their homes.”

In order to challenge the assumptions about who buys art, the Superfine! shows strive to create an inclusive exhibitor base, cultivating relationships with what Miltow calls “an outsized proportion of female artists, LGBTQ artists, and artists of color.”

“We create programming that’s geared toward the audiences that we serve,” Mitow says.

This year’s Superfine! Art Fair, which happens at The Reef in DTLA, promises an exciting lineup of work by prominent artists, where art lovers can come face to face with the artists themselves as they shop for that one perfect piece that will complete (or begin) their collection – or as they simply browse and admire.

Some highlights include:

  • An immersive installation of signature works by iconic LA artist Scott Froschauer, whose mirror-reflective street signs make for irresistible selfies.
  • The first west coast presentation of Mexican artist Cuevawolf’s “Viva La Loteria MX,” an installation offering a new perspective on the famous game of the Mexican lotería while conveying the artist’s vision of a contemporary Mexico.
  • A 20-foot-long interactive mural by artist Rob Anderson, from Queens, NYC.

 

A work by Cuevawolf, one of the artists on display at Superfine! LA (Image courtesy Superfine!)

In addition, 75% of the art at this year’s LA event will be by female artists. Bespoke cocktails will be available from LA’s only lesbian bar, The Fingerjoint, with a portion of the proceeds going to local non-profit, Women’s Center for Creative Work.

The Second Annual Superfine! LA is happening from February 6-9 at the Reef in DTLA. For more information and for ticket packages, check out the Superfine! wesbsite.

 

A work by Rob Anderson, one of the artists on display at Superfine! LA (Image courtesy Superfine!)

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Theater

LA’s hidden gem- Fountain Theatre premieres its Outdoor Stage June 18

Tucked away in a quiet neighborhood is a hidden gem, one of the Los Angeles region’s premiere regional live theatres

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The Fountain Theatre Photo Credit: Google Earth screenshot

EAST HOLLYWOOD – Tucked away in a quiet neighborhood on Fountain Avenue just off Normandie Avenue is a hidden gem, one of the Los Angeles region’s premiere regional live theatres. Founded in in 1990 by co-artistic directors Deborah Lawlor and Stephen Sachs the theatre has garnered an impressive resume and reputation in the theatre world for reflecting a unique cultural voice and serving the distinctive ethnic communities that make up the LA metroplex.

Over the past thirty-one years of its existence the theatre has staged over 35 world premieres; and also 31 U.S., West Coast, Southern California or Los Angeles premieres. On its website the Fountain points out that Fountain Theatre projects have been seen in  New York City, San Francisco, Santa Barbara, Seattle, Chicago, Massachusetts, Florida, New Jersey, Minneapolis, London and Edinburgh UK, among other cities and countries.

Like most of the region and certainly the entertainment world in LA, the House lights went dark at the Fountain as the coronavirus pandemic tore through Los Angeles and California. Undeterred, the artistic directors forged ahead and in January the theatre received approval from the City of Los Angeles to install a temporary outdoor stage for the purpose of presenting live performances and other events during the pandemic.

“Pandemic permitting, we hope to open our first outdoor production by late spring or early summer,” says Fountain artistic director Stephen Sachs. “We’re planning an exciting Los Angeles premiere that dramatizes urgent social issues using the Fountain’s signature bold and theatrical approach.”

For the past several months work has progressed in installing a stage in what is now the theater parking lot. The new performance area will be able to accommodate 50 to 84 audience members. It will feature seven rows of chairs, each six feet apart, as well as 12 high-top tables positioned six feet apart for use by patrons from the same “bubble” households. Every aspect of the outdoor performance area will meet COVID-19 safety guidelines.

Fountain Theatre Outdoor Stage Photo Credit: Lucy Pollak

The wait is now nearly over as the stage is complete and the final touches on the performance areas are being finalized. This past week the Fountain announced that casting is complete and rehearsals begin this week for the Los Angeles premiere of a radical, incendiary and subversively funny Obie award-winning play by MacArthur Foundation “Genius Grant” recipient, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, a playwright who identifies as a Black queer but whose plays aren’t chiefly about LGBTQ life.

Performances of  ‘An Octoroon’ will inaugurate the new outdoor stage at The Fountain Theatre on June 18.  Performances run June 18 through Sept.19, with performances on Fridays, Saturdays,  Sundays and Mondays at 7 p.m., except Saturday, June 19, which will be at 5 p.m. and will be followed by a special Juneteenth event, and July 30 through Aug. 2 and Aug. 27 through  Aug. 30 which will be dark.

Playwright Branden Jacobs-Jenkins
Photo courtesy
John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Four preview performances will take place on June 11, June 12,  June 13 and June 16 at 7 p.m. There will be one press preview on Thursday, June 17 at 7  p.m. Tickets range from $25–$45; Pay-What-You-Want seating is available every Monday night  in addition to regular seating (subject to availability).

The Fountain tells the Blade that it is proud to count L.A. City Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell, and Mayor Eric Garcetti as supporters, reflecting the company’s successful history of partnering with the City’s government.

Artist’s conception of finished and fully dressed out performance area of the Fountain Theatre

In addition to being a Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs grant recipient for decades, the Fountain launched a groundbreaking program that brings celebrity actors to L.A. City Hall to perform one-night free public readings in the City Council chambers.

The Fountain Theatre is located at 5060  Fountain Avenue (at Normandie) in Los Angeles. For reservations and information, call (323)  663-1525 or go to www.FountainTheatre.com.

Construction of the Stage in a Time Lapsed video:

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a&e features

Ellen Degeneres sits down with NBC’s Savannah Guthrie

Ellen chats with Savannah Guthrie on Today about her leaving daytime television

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Ellen chats with NBC's Savannah Guthrie on Today about her leaving daytime television

BURBANK – Ellen DeGeneres announced yesterday that she will end her talk show after next season. NBC’s Savannah Guthrie speaks with DeGeneres Friday about the decision, which comes 10 months after DeGeneres faced accusations of allowing/running a toxic workplace.

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Ellen discusses her departure with Oprah Winfrey

The two powerful women television celebrities shared how each came to the decision for their shows to end

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Ellen and Oprah discuss Ellen's decision to end her show after 19 years. (Screenshot via YouTube)

BURBANK – After Ellen DeGeneres announced she would be ending her talk show with Season 19 this week, she had a discussion with invited special guest Oprah Winfrey on Thursday, whose iconic talk show wrapped in 2011 after 25 seasons.

The two powerful women television celebrities shared how each came to the decision for their shows to come to an end, and Winfrey divulged what she misses about her show, and DeGeneres revealed what she will miss about hers.

Winfrey also talked about her new Apple TV+ mental health docuseries “The Me You Can’t See,” which she co-created and executive produces with the Duke of Sussex, Prince Harry.

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