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Arts & Culture

Cultural Hits For The Month Of July

La Sera is "Kickball Katy" Goodman, also of the band Vivian Girls. La Sera plays Soda Bar this week.
Magda Wosinska
La Sera is "Kickball Katy" Goodman, also of the band Vivian Girls. La Sera plays Soda Bar this week.

Cindy Sherman

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) will host the only West Coast presentation of "Cindy Sherman," a traveling retrospective of photographer Cindy Sherman. It’s been 15 years since the last major retrospective of Sherman and if I could I would camp out in SFMOMA from now through October. Acting as both the model in front of the camera and the artist behind the camera, Sherman creates works that are often more complicated than they appear—there’s a strange familiarity to it all. This is one exhibition worth journeying up the coastline for. '"Cindy Sherman" runs through October 8.

Frank Ocean ‘Channel Orange’


Frank Ocean, R&B singer-songwriter, has long been associated with hip-hop collective Odd Future (OFWGKTA). Ocean’s smooth vocals long stood out amongst the angst and roar of Odd Future’s other members. However, with the release of Ocean’s debut album “Channel Orange,” along with Ocean recently coming out via Tumblr, comes a greater attention paid to an alternative talent in the hip-hop community. While there’s an endless supply of sweet sounds for the summer, it’s nice to hear something mellow and honest, all against an urban Southern California setting.

The Room

"The Room" has quickly risen to cult status (à la "The Rocky Horror Picture Show") and has been called “the Citizen Kane of bad movies.” The 2003 film was intended to be a romantic drama set in San Francisco and stars the mysterious Tommy Wiseau, who also wrote, directed and produced the film. It’s hard to know exactly what’s going on amidst the shaky green screens and disappearing characters. One thing’s for certain: "The Room" will never let you down, but it may tear you apart. "The Room" will screen at midnight on Friday, July 20 at the Ken Cinema.

Herb Ritts: LA Style

Iconic photographer Herb Ritts revolutionized black-and-white fashion photography of the 1980s and 1990s, and is best known for his work with Cindy Crawford, Madonna and Michael Jackson, among many others. Ritts’s works are noteworthy for their stark, black-and-white contrasts and often classical approach to the nude model. From celebrities donning Versace, to a male model wearing nothing but an octopus, Ritts bridged art and fashion to create something of his own. “Herb Ritts: LA Style” is at the Getty Center through Sunday, August 26.



Surf pop band featuring a San Diego native Wavves is known for rambunctious, high-energy shows, filled with angsty songs of surf, lost love and taking your brain to different levels. The band recently received a San Diego Music Awards “Best Alternative Album” nomination for its 2011 album "Life Sux." But, the band has left a larger mark on the music world, with lead singer Nathan Williams recently appearing alongside girlfriend Bethany Costello of Best Coast on a controversial Spin magazine cover. In spite of their rise to the top, Wavves still delivers a frenzied live experience like no other. Wavves play on Friday, July 20 at the Del Mar Racetrack after the races as part of the Del Mar Summer Concert Series.

Rookie Road Trip

Sixteen-year-old Tavi Gevinson rose to fame five years ago with her fashion blog “Style Rookie.” With her quirky style, distinct looks and original voice, Tavi quickly became a fashion muse and was invited to be a special guest at New York Fashion Week. This year, Tavi launched an online publication for teenage girls called “Rookie Mag” with a variety of pieces—from advice on drinking and weekend playlists, to the popular ‘Ask a Grown Man’ series, featuring Jon Hamm and Judd Apatow. At the end of June, Tavi and the Rookie crew kicked off the “Rookie Road Trip,” traveling across the country for meet-ups and misadventures with other Rookie readers. Tavi may be young, but she’s made her mark—Rookie seems to resonate beyond those angsty teens. The Rookie Road Trip wraps up in Los Angeles Saturday, July 21 through Saturday, July 28.

La Sera

“Kickball Katy” Goodman makes up one-third of the Brooklyn noise pop trio Vivian Girls, who played a rambunctious show at the Casbah recently. Her solo project La Sera is a dreamier alternative, but still delivers songs of heartbreak in an equally crazed way. The video for her single “Please Be My Third Eye” is a wonderfully strange bubble of magnetic dance energy. Maybe it’s her striking red hair, or maybe it’s a mix of all the right ingredients, but “Kickball Katy” proves that she can hold her own in both bands. La Sera plays Thursday, July 19 at Soda Bar in Normal Heights.

Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee

The trailer for Jerry Seinfeld’s new web series, “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee,” premiered on YouTube earlier this month. The premise is simple: Jerry Seinfeld drives around in a fabulous car with other comedians, together on an adventure to get coffee. Not a drink, not dinner. Coffee. Larry David and Alec Baldwin are some of the featured guests on this so-called “show about nothing.” I couldn’t be more excited for the banter to ensue, along with Alec Baldwin sipping a cappuccino and Larry David spitting out coffee in a fit of laughter.

Twin Shadow’s ‘Confess’

Twin Shadow’s latest album “Confess” was released this month. To hear “Confess” is to enter a mellow world of 1980s new wave, with synths that echo long after the songs are over. New York native George Lewis Jr. is Twin Shadow and his sophomore efforts follow his debut album “Forget.” In a recent interview with Pitchfork, he shared that inspiration for “Confess” came from a motorcycle accident eight years prior. Whatever the inspiration was, it’s clear that the balance of dance party and washed-out vocals is just right.


DimeStories are three-minute stories (prose) read by the author and are regarded as “fictional or factual, they’re always true.” DimeStories have been around for years and served as the inspiration for NPR’s “Three-Minute Fiction” series. What’s exciting about this reading series is that anyone can read their work, as long as they abide the strict three-minute rule. Often contributors plug their latest book, but each reading is different. And with the freedom to read any piece of prose and the mystery of each DimeStories happening, a small wonder could indeed be among you…or at least a good story. San Diego DimeStories occur the first Friday of every month at Lestat’s on Park Boulevard in University Heights.