Summer’s finally here. Now what? From rock ‘n’ roll to wine tasting, here’s where to go, what to do, and (of course) what to wear this summer when soaking up some sun—and culture—in some of our favorite U.S. cities.
‘ART IN THE STREETS’
at the Geffen Contemporary, MOCA Los Angeles
May 19–June 12, 2011
With Shepard Fairey’s presidential poster and Banksy’s Oscar nod, it’s official: Graffiti, like punk rock and hip-hop before it, has gone mainstream.
A new exhibit at MOCA marks a huge step toward street art becoming a critical success, as well as a cultural one. Ironic, yes, but nonetheless exciting.
Freed from the risk of getting arrested, the artists went all out. Banksy’s larger-than-life installation, complete with a steamroller to squash his own work, is proof that great art not only makes a statement—it’s also seriously fun to look at.
MORE SUMMER EXHIBITS
Balenciaga and Spain: de Young Museum, San Francisco, through July 4
Alexander McQueen, Savage Beauty: The Met, NYC, through July 31
Chihuly, Through the Looking Glass: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, through August 7
WHAT TO WEAR
Art Appreciation (left)
Even your boldest fashion strokes won’t distract from the surroundings—so color-block to your heart’s content. Wear walk-worthy shoes if your plans include exploring the concrete jungle to observe street art in its natural habitat.
Museum as Muse (right)
Don a statuesque dress and avant-garde accessories if ‘Art in the Streets’ is the aperitif to a chic evening out. Go on a Saturday, when the museum stays open ’til 9pm, and you’ll have plenty to talk about over a late dinner at Kagaya or Sushi-Gen.
Shop Artistic Aesthetic
SEATTLE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
May 19–June 12, 2011
With 257 feature films from 74 countries, SIFF, Seattle’s annual film-buff fantasy camp, is the largest event of its kind in the U.S.
It’s also a built-in tour of quintessentially Seattle attractions. Find first-rate thrifting in the U District after Detention at the Neptune Theater. Explore inner recesses of a mazelike Capitol Hill bookstore before Gainsbourg at the Egyptian. Then stop by our flagship store downtown after Simple Simon at Pacific Place, on your way to the Sci-Fi Museum and Experience Music Project (with a new Nirvana exhibit)—perfect places to geek out even harder.
MORE SUMMER CINEMA
Rooftop Films: NYC, through August 15
LA Shorts Fest: July 21–29
Telluride Film Festival: Colorado, September 2–5
WHAT TO WEAR
Theater Hopping (left)
Pedal pushers and a fetching retro print strike the right balance of efficiency and fun for a day spent crisscrossing town in the name of indie cinema. Try public transportation to avoid heinous parking, and forget the umbrella—most natives don’t even own one.
Premiere Night (right)
Certain points in the festival call for an elegantly aloof twist on red carpet élan—like the tribute to ski-film legend Warren Miller at Benaroya Hall, and the annual ‘Gay-La’ in Capitol Hill, featuring LGBT-themed films and a highly anticipated after-party.
Shop Film-Fest Favorites
AUSTIN CITY LIMITS
September 16–18, 2011
Die-hard audiophiles in online chat rooms debate the pros and cons of festival lineups down to the last detail. But the truth is, you’re sure to see amazing acts no matter which major festival you choose.
That’s why this year, we’re factoring in location as criteria for our top festival pick—and were leaning toward Austin City Limits, set in one of the country’s coolest towns, before the lineup was even out.
The venue is a quick walk or free shuttle ride from downtown Austin—but consider staying at a hotel in nearby SoCo, where quirky vintage shops are a mecca of stylishly offbeat souvenirs.
MORE MUSIC FESTIVALS
Lollapalooza: Chicago, August 5–7
Outside Lands: San Francisco, August 12–14
All Tomorrow’s Parties: Asbury Park, NJ, September 30–October 2
WHAT TO WEAR
Dedicated Fan (left)
To navigate ACL’s eight stages in 100-degree heat, you’ll need flat boots, cool cutoffs, and a cover-up to stave off sunburned shoulders. Stay hydrated with free filtered water, and refuel between bands with the tantalizing lineup of local food vendors.
Backstage Pass (right)
Mash up genres by mixing boho glam with rugged workwear and quaint lace. You’ll look like you’re with the band, whether you spring for ‘VIP Grove’ wristbands or not (although with unlimited drinks and real bathrooms, it’s worth considering).
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FOOD & WINE CLASSIC IN ASPEN
June 17–19, 2011
If your kitchen cost more than your car and you compulsively DVR Food Network, Food & Wine magazine‘s epically indulgent, annual melting pot of industry insiders and culinary enthusiasts is your ultimate weekend retreat.
Between wine seminars and cooking demonstrations, you might find yourself rubbing elbows, and sharing rare bottles, with world-famous chefs. Should the mood die down after each evening’s Grand Tasting, your party can always migrate to one of Aspen’s farm-to-table watering holes. Just don’t stay out too late—you’ve got sparkling wines to sample tomorrow at 10am sharp.
MORE SUMMER FOOD & DRINK
Taste of Chicago: June 24–July 3
Good Beer Month: NYC, July 1–31
The Taste: LA, September 2–5
WHAT TO WEAR
Studious Foodie (left)
Crisp classics like eyelet tanks and linen trousers hobnob nicely with an upper-crust crowd. Pack a pen to take notes at Mario Batali’s seafood seminar, and a lipstick with built-in compact to check your teeth before meeting Michael Symon.
Toast of the Tents (right)
A mix of European chic and all-American prep is spot-on for this mingling of worldly libations nestled high in the Rockies. Even if your agenda is as simple as ‘have fun, get tan,’ you’ll still want to maintain some concept of time—it’d be a serious buzzkill to arrive tardy at tastings like ‘Spanish Grapes’ at 10am, ‘Napa Cabernet’ at 2pm, and ‘Modern Bordeaux’ at 3:30pm.
Shop Epicurean Essentials
Items shown are available at selected Nordstrom stores, but may not be online. Call 1.800.282.6060 for information.
Apparel photos by Morgan Talbot and Alison Katica Blomgren.
Additional photo credits:
Art: Corbis Images.
Film: Courtesy of Seattle International Film Festival.
Music: Jack Edinger, Dave Mead, Nick Simonite.
Food: Missy McLamb, Riccardo Savi, Corbis Images.