Tuesday, January 31, 2012

the BEAT of the week: Weegee's 'Naked Hollywood' at MOCA.

The photographer known as Weegee (real name Arthur Felling) became famous for his stark and unflinchingly realistic pictures of crime scenes in New York. But in 1947, he moved to Los Angeles, and he didn't spare our fair city from his lens. Out came photos of Hollywood stars, strippers, costume shops and naked mannequins, in a style that could only be described as 'naked.'Link
"Naked Hollywood: Weegee in Los Angeles" is the first museum exhibition devoted to the work the photographer produced in Southern California. It tells the story not only of a photographer who worked diligently to portray an unashamed world, but also of that of the strange, strange world itself -- Los Angeles. You might be surprised to see what Weegee unearthed.

"Naked Hollywood: Weegee in Los Angeles" is showing until Feb. 27 at MOCA, located at 250 S. Grand Ave. in downtown.

-- Chau Tu

Photo credit: MOCA

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

the BEAT of the week: dineLA restaurant week.

It's that fabulous time of year again: dineLA's winter edition of restaurant week. For two (!) awesome weeks in Los Angeles, you can have a taste of what some of this city's best restaurants have to offer in the form of discounted prix-fixe (and totally fulfilling) dinners and lunches.

My picks for this time 'round? Cliff's Edge boasts a super-romantic jungle-like patio hidden in the middle of Silver Lake, and now also has a new chef -- James Beard-nominated Benjamin Bailly, a la Fraiche and Petrossian. There's also the brand spanking new Short Order, the latest offering from Mozza's Nancy Silverton. And then there is the completely buzzworthy Picca, where you'll surely be pleasantly satisfied by the creative and tasteful offerings (do yourself a favor and order that delectably smooth avocado cocktail too).

dineLA deals apply now until Jan. 27, then Jan. 29-Feb. 3. Check out the entire restaurant list here, and let us know where you're planning on grubbing. Happy eating!

-- Chau Tu

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Click It. BEAT picks of the week.

On a rainy (or, in NY, snowy!) weekend, staying in and reading is the best thing to do.

Simon Doonan, of Barneys fame, just released his fifth book, Gay Men Don't Get Fat.

A few other books in my "queue": Furious Love: Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, and the Marriage of the Century, Then Again (Diane Keaton's memoir), and The Beautiful and Damned (with the fancy cover!).

If you're heading to the movies, I recommend Contraband.

Girls in New York City generally wear darker nail polish than L.A. ladies do ... I followed suit yesterday with a manicure of Essie's Devil's Advocate. My favorite pale polish is Adore-a-Ball, also by Essie.

If you like Lana Del Rey, despite her much-discussed sort of awkward SNL performances last week, you can pre-order her album Born to Die on Amazon, out January 31.

If you're making snacks for the football games today, read these essential guacamole tips from Rick Bayless.

-- Leslie Anne Wiggins

Photo credit: Fragments via Dolly Rocker Girl

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

the BEAT of the week: Damien Hirst at the Gagosian.

From encasing a shark in formaldehyde to encrusting a skull with diamonds, artist Damien Hirst has become world-famous for his creative risks. But the guy also knows how to market.

Take his latest social experiment: Hirst is holding his exhibition "The Complete Spot Paintings: 1986-2011" at 11 different Gagosian Galleries across the world -- simultaneously. More than 300 of the well-known spot paintings are included in the exhibition, and apparently have been divided amongst the galleries according to locality.

And get this -- if you happen to take on the Complete Spot Challenge, which means visiting all of the galleries (including Hong Kong, Athens, Rome and so on) in a matter of about two months to see all of the paintings, you can recieve a signed spot print by Hirst, dedicated personally to you. Considering one of his pieces easily take in tens of millions of dollars, I'd wager that somehow could actually be worth the trouble.

But if you're not inclined to travel the world to see spots, you can simply visit our own Gagosian Gallery in Beverly Hills. The exhibit will continue until Feb. 10. Spot on!

Damien Hirst's "The Complete Spot Paintings: 1986-2011" is showing until Feb. 10 at the Gagosian Gallery, located at 456 N. Camden Dr. in Beverly Hills.

-- Chau Tu

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Click It. BEAT picks of the week.

Since discovering Clinique's Black Honey (above, far left) lipstick in the late 1990's, it has been a constant fixture in my makeup bag. Now, Clinique has expanded their "Almost" line by seven other shades--from pale pink Shy Honey (second from left) to a bright and punchy Flirty Honey (far right). I'm curious to try the more muted shades, like Chic Honey and Lovely Honey.

In the February issue of In Style, Faith Hill shares her beauty must-haves, including a BEAT favorite, Morrocanoil hair treatment.

A long weekend is the perfect time to catch a museum exhibit you've been meaning to see ... California Design, 1930 - 1965: "Living in a Modern Way" is at LACMA until June 3.

We love a getaway weekend in Vegas, and with some worthy upcoming concerts at the very stylish Cosmopolitan hotel, there's even more reason to head for the desert. David Gray on February 24, the Shins on April 13, and Snow Patrol on May 12. Tickets available now through Ticketmaster.

-- Leslie Anne Wiggins

Photo credit: via

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Click It. BEAT picks of the week.

I saw this dress at J. Crew today (it was sold out), isn't it perfect?

LudoBites is coming to Lemon Moon (I ate many lunches--and cookies!--from here in the summer of 2007, it's fresh and delicious) later this month and for most of February, make your reservations Tuesday.

Coldplay at the Hollywood Bowl (May 1, 2, and 4) tickets are going on sale, presale is Sunday 10:00 a.m. till 10:00 p.m., and the password is singer.

Chanel's spring 2012 nail polish colors (named April, May, and June (a coral-like pastel peach) are great!

Jeff Garlin (Jeff from Curb Your Enthusiasm) will be at Book Soup Sunday at 4:00 p.m. discussing and signing his new book, Curbing It.

-- Leslie Anne Wiggins

Photo credit:

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

the BEAT of the week: "Portlandia" streaming on IFC

The secret's coming out: Portlandia is how I spent my (non-)winter vacation. With a whopping total of six episodes, I whizzed through the first season (currently streaming on instant Netflix) in a simple matter of hours, and came out at the end pretty humored. It helped that I visited Portland earlier this year and was actually aware of some of its idiosyncrasies -- biking, hippies and major unemployment rate among them -- plus the season had a number of great guest stars like Jason Sudeikis and Aimee Mann, but I think keeping an open mind about its strange humor will get you some laughs. Fred Armisen isn't even one of my favorite people (is he really still playing Obama?), but Carrie Brownstein really steals the show. Riot grrls are funny, who knew?

But you decide for yourself. IFC is streaming a full episode of season two on its website right now, and already it boasts Jeff Goldblum and Eddie Vedder as guest stars. So take a trip to the lovely land of Portlandia, where the '90s never died. Season two officially premieres on Jan. 6th.


-- Chau Tu

ps. And if you love it just enough, Carrie and Fred are doing a Portlandia tour and hitting the Echoplex on Jan. 17th. It's sold out, but you can probably scout for tickets outside or on Craigslist.