|Cecil Beaton's portrait of Katharine Hepburn appeared in the July 1935 issue of Vanity Fair.|
Image was everything
THROUGH MARCH 1
"Vanity Fair Portraits: Photographs 1913-2008": The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is the sole US venue for this gathering of portraiture from the pages of VF, that glossiest of monthlies. The magazine has had two incarnations (both high on swank and luster). The original, which operated from 1913-1936, used the work of such classic photographers as Edward Steichen, Cecil Beaton, and Imogen Cunningham. Their images helped set a template for celebrity presentation that largely remains in place today. Broadway was still the Great White Way, Hollywood was just becoming Hollywood, and so much of our conception of glamour and style were formed by, say, Steichen's portrait of an alluringly veiled Gloria Swanson or Beaton's photograph of gloriously vexed Katharine Hepburn. That black-and-white world had exploded into color by the time VF reappeared, in 1983. Its starry stable of photographers has included the likes of Helmut Newton, Mario Testino, and the photographer most closely associated with the magazine over the past 25 years, Annie Leibovitz. Her 1996 group portrait of Martin Scorsese, Steven Spielberg, Francis Ford Coppola, and George Lucas is at once a throwback to the VF of yesteryear and an emblem of its role as Who's Who of contemporary Hollywood. 5905 Wilshire Blvd., 323-857-6000, www.lacma.org.
Audubon Insectarium: Last year this museum dedicated to the planet's most populous and pervasive inhabitants opened in the old US Custom House on Canal Street downtown. The largest freestanding institution devoted to arthropods, it's the first major cultural establishment to open in New Orleans since Hurricane Katrina. Exhibit highlights include an enclosed butterfly garden, a gallery devoted to insect metamorphosis, displays on bugs indigenous to the Crescent City and Louisiana swamps, and a selection of (ahem) insect cuisine offerings. 423 Canal St., 504-581-4629, 800-774-7394, www.auduboninstitute.org/site/PageServer?pagename=Facility_Insectarium_v2.
JAN. 27-APRIL 19
"Pierre Bonnard: The Late
FEB. 18-MAY 17
"Van Dyck and Britain": Sir Anthony van Dyck (1599-1641) dominated British art during the 17th century. Royalty has rarely looked so royal as when portrayed by him. This Tate Britain exhibition not only brings together numerous van Dyck portraits from various British collections but also examines his influence on the portraiture of such later masters as Joshua Reynolds and John Singer Sargent. Millbank, 011-44-20-7887-8888, www.tate.org .uk/britain.
The European Fine Art Fair: For 10 days in March, this Dutch city of 120,000 near the German and Belgian borders becomes the world capital of art. Some 220 dealers offer $1 billion worth of art and antiquities in displays covering 330,000 square feet of exhibition space. Maastricht Exhibition & Congress Centre, Forum 100, 6229 GV Maastricht, 011-31-411-64-50-90, www.tefaf.com.
MARCH 17-JUNE 28
"The Century of Jazz": The Musee du Quai Branly has gathered more than 1,000 items - everything from paintings and photographs to recordings and scores - to examine the relationship between jazz and the arts as a whole. The primary focus is on traditional visual arts (artists with works represented include Picasso, Matisse, and Mondrian), but attention is also given to the impact of jazz on literature and film. 37 quai Branly, 011-33-1-56-61-70-00, www.quaibranly.fr/en.
APRIL 30-JUNE 28
"Waiting for Godot" Having starred together in the "X-Men" films, Ian McKellen (as Estragon) and Patrick Stewart (as Vladimir) are reunited in Samuel Beckett's absurdist classic. The production begins a six-week British regional tour on March 5 before opening at London's Theatre Royal Haymarket at the end of April. Haymarket, 011-44-845 481-1870, www.trh.co.uk.
Events are sometimes canceled, rescheduled, or sold out; check online to confirm. Mark Feeney can be reached at email@example.com.