A Selective Guide to the Arts in Los Angeles

programs_subgroups_image_1252062516The Santa Monica Museum of Art’s Halla Gala promises a clever way to celebrate art and Halloween on Saturday, Oct. 31, from 7 to 11 p.m. The museum’s website beckons: “Come as your secret self – your alternate identity or inner persona – to an evening of fantasy, fashion, and fun to benefit the Santa Monica Museum of Art.”

Your secret self needs an appropriately surreal and festive environment, and this party will not disappoint. In addition to a Surrealist photo booth, Fellini-esque movies, and a Magic Carpet walk-off, there will be the mandatory libations and cuisine. DJ Eddie Ruscha will provide the evening’s soundtrack. Tickets start at $350 (it is a benefit). But as the price soars, so do your own benefits; donors in the $1,500 to $25,000 range get various exclusive treats, including “your secret self immortalized in a private session with photographer Leonard Nimoy” (yes, the “Star Trek” star; he and wife Susan are honorary hosts for the occasion). Other goodies include limited-edition portrait prints: “Butch” by Barkley L. Hendricks and “Lovely Six Foota” by Mickalene Thomas. Patrons donating $10,000 or more earn the opportunity to have their secret self costume created by high-profile designers like Brett Westfall/Unholy Matrimony/Commes des Garçons, Brian Lichtenberg, Edith Palm, Jenni Kayne, Pamela Barish, Scout, Society for Rational Dress, or The Row.

Art on view will include installations by Miriam Wosk and selected photographs from “Secret Selves,” Nimoy’s July 2010 exhibition at MASS MoCA (in North Adams, Massachusetts). Plus, “Allen Ruppersberg: You and Me or The Art of Give and Take” continues through Dec. 19. Ruppersberg, who (along with conceptual artists John Baldessari, Douglas Huebler, and Bruce Nauman) helped redefine art in the 1970s, created two installations specifically for the museum. Both of them incorporate items from the artist’s collection of 20th-century cultural ephemera and are interactive. “The Never Ending Book Part 2/Art and Therefore Ourselves” includes more than 15,000 pages of Xeroxed images from Ruppersberg’s book collection, and visitors are encouraged to take a few pages home to create a “book” of their own. “The Sound and the Story/The Hugo Ball Award for 20th Century Graphics” invites guests to rearrange materials on pegboards to create their own narrative.

Purchase tickets to the Halla Gala online; call (310) 586-6488, ext. 116; or email anna.nickila@smmoa.org.