The Space Between Us at Glo Santa Monica

Every three years for just one night, Glow Santa Monica, an art installation based on the theme of light, is installed at Santa Monica Beach and Pier. This year was my first time in attending. Having only seen images here and there, I never knew fully what the audience participatory exhibit would be like. I imagined it to be more than it was–more artwork, more light, more glowing displays that would astound the mind. Fifteen exhibits were listed in all, but some were passing events that occurred only once, and others, such as a treasure hunt for coins throughout the Glow area, to me, was not art, it was a treasure hunt.

Shana Koenig, Solar Sea Sculptures hung from trees on Ocean Avenue, Santa Monica during Glo 2013

Glow did have some unique, and large, installations, such as the ring of fire that I expected to see Evel Knievel ride through at any moment. Named “6:43PM” by artist Mathieu Briand, visitors stood in line to go through a tunnel made of steel containers on which the fire ring sat upon. The line was much too long, so I didn’t get to experience it, but, according to the event brochure description, it was a “chamber of mystery from a past or future time.” “6:43PM” “salutes the power of the sun,” and was named for the descent of the sun below the horizon at that time.

Other so-called “exhibits” were existing structures on the pier, the carousel and the solar-powered Ferris wheel (maybe the city was trying to save money). The carousel was fun to ride at 2 in the morning. I’ve never seen a carousel filled solely with adults. The music, one clip representing each decade throughout the 20th century, filled the room and energized the experience.

There was one exhibit that did impress many. To me it made it worth dealing with the traffic and parking to get to Glo.  It drew a steady stream from the thousands of people who came to Santa Monica to see Glo. “The Space Between Us” by artist Janet Echelman looked like a huge, billowing sea net hung from the sky, which constantly changed colors, sometimes slowly morphing from one to another hue, and other times lighting up suddenly in a bright white or blue. When it went dark, occasionally little lights would run up and down the strings of the net, like stars, or glowing sea life, on the move. A shooting comet at one point caused the audience to ooh and ahhh. While it seemed there was a caution tape barrier around the entire structure, it was trampled down as the masses of people streamed toward the sculpture and climbed up the small hill and down into a bowl sculpted out of the sand below the artwork. Here bodies lined the bowl, gazing up at the billowing net above them. The piece was set to music the artist composed, which listened to later on her Website, echelman.com, sounds like water in variations states, included being flushed down a toilet. I overheard a couple asking, “Where’s the music.” While cliché, that would have made the experience truly fine. Here is a video below set to music by Pink Floyd.

Tantalizing Valentine’s Day Menus & Treats–Los Angeles

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If you want to make the right moves on Feb. 14, then check out these romantic spots with menu or treats that will delight his or hers taste buds.

Lovers in Paris–Westwood

Special Valentine's Day cocktails, like this Light Kisses martini, will be served on that special day at Ninethirty Restaurant at the W - Westood Los Angeles.

Chef Dakota Weiss especially created the Valentine’s Menu, “Lovers in Paris,” for NINETHIRTY Restaurant, at W Hotel – Westwood Los Angeles. The menu includes appetizers (amuse) such as cehvre foundue-boquerones, first plate (premier) dishes including herb de Provence gnocchi – american caviar and main entrees like winter legumes – sage – champagne beurre blanc  The decor is appropriately dark, and seating intimate and chic. If you want to go all out, book a room for the night at the W!  Prix fix menu: $70 per person.

Phone: (310) 443-8211. Website: ninethirtyw.com. 930 Hilgard Avenue W Hotels-Westwood, Los Angeles, CA 90024

 

Wine Garden and Chocolate Opulence –Santa Monica

Two things that are always a hit on V-Day is wine and chocolate. Get both at the Sonoma Wine garden and Chocolate Opulence at Santa Monica Place. The Sonoma Wine garden, on the 3rd level deck, overlooks the Pacific Ocean providing a perfect, romantic atmosphere for Valentine’s Day. The outdoor restaurant showcases signature dishes with Mediterranean flavor such as Sonoma’s own fois gras or lobster spaghetti. There’s a large wine selection ranging from the dryer Old World style wines of Burgundy to New World style wines from Sonoma wine country provided by Sonoma Wine Garden’s own sommelier.

Main Courses range $24-$28. 395 Santa Monica Place Santa Monica, CA 90401; (424) 214-4560
 
The Large Chocolate Opulence Gift sets have 12 chocolates with a large-sized chocolate shell heart. Price: $54.00

After dining, treat your love to some gourmet sweets at Chocolate Opulence at The Market where decadent gift sets are more than just your average box of candy. The master French chocolatiers offer unique, modern hand-painted designs with many exquisite flavor profiles such as cucumber vodka, earl grey, mango wasabi, pomegranate, hibiscus, curried kiwi sure to satisfy any palate.

395 Santa Monica Place  Santa Monica, CA 90401-2372 (310) 395-1707

 

Piper-Heidsieck's French Cancan Champagne bottle designed by Jean Paul Gaultier is $55 and can be purchased at luxury retail stores.

Champagne with Abandon–Malibu, L.A.

The French Cancan, true to Jean Paul Gaultier’s love of the sensual and shocking, is dressed in Piper-Heidsieck’s signature glossy red and black colors, adorned with Gaultier’s coquettish fishnet stockings and sealed with a sleek, latex sheath and shiny red eye-mask, epitomizing the abandon to passion and desire long represented by Piper-Heidsieck. The French Cancan bottle of Piper-Heidsieck Brut ($55), is available at renowned New York and Los Angeles restaurants,( including Malibu’s Moonshadows restaurant 20356 Pacific Coast Hwy. Malibu 90265), hotel bars and nightclubs in addition to select luxury retail stores, ensuring that all will be invited to surrender to their darkest desires this Valentine’s Day.

Love and Lust at Naya on Sunset in Silver Lake

The dining room at Naya on Sunset offers a unique romantic setting.

For those lucky to be lost in love, the dining room at the modern Indian cuisine restaurant Nayain Silver Lake seems made for a romantic Valentine dreamscape. Billowing white lace, white handmade leather booths, high gloss lacquered tables, low lighting and sexy world–inspired music set the stage for an intimate evening. With rose petals on the table and Indian bangles for the ladies, a five-course pre-fix menu kicks off with “Love”, a rose-water scented champagne cocktail. The five course menu is priced at $55 per person, and includes courses such as the Tandoori Garlic Prawns with Cumin-Carom Marinade and Pomegranate ChutneyEverest and Lamb Ossobuco with Onion-Tomato Demi Glaze and Naya Rice. The dinner also includes a complimentary after-dinner “Lust” cocktail in Naya’s next door lounge, where you’ll be treated to Indian burlesque dancers and sultry fire artists who will mingle among guests moving to the entrancing sounds of a live doumbek drummers.

Valentine’s Day dinner reservations begin at 6 p.m. and can be made on OpenTable or by calling 323-663-8268. Naya Lounge does not require reservations and will be open from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. Dancers and live music begin at 7 p.m. Naya is located at 3705 West Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles (Silver Lake), CA 90026.
 
 
Inside, Pink Taco offers a prix fix menu complete with Champagne and chocolate covered strawberries. Outside, singles looking for love can enjoy $8 margaritas during a round of speed dating.

Speed-date Your Way to Love at Pink Taco–Century City

Enjoy a romantic meal at famed Mexican restaurant, Pink Taco in Century City, for $45 per person. Prix fix menu includes a Trio of Lobster, Shrimp and Fish Ceviche, Pan Seared Golf Snapper served in a Chile Lemon Butter Sauce, and a Chocolate Brownie Sunday, along with a bottle of champagne and chocolate covered strawberries to share with your significant other. Pink Taco Century City will not only be serving a special menu for love birds inside the dining area, but they will host the exact opposite on their patio: “Speed Dating on the Patio – Singles Only.” This Taco Tuesday party from 3 p.m – 7 p.m. for the single ladies and gents will include $2-$3 tacos, $8 pink margaritas and 2 for 1 pitchers of margaritas, and, of course, match making.

Pink taco is located at 10250 Santa Monica Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA at the Century City Mall. For reservations, please visit www.pinktaco.com or call 310.789.1000.