The design extravaganza known as CABOOM II (yes, it's a sequel!) had its 2005 opening bash July 28th and, as expected, a large enthusiastic crowd came to meet some of the hottest designers in the cool structures and spaces they created just for this (pre)fab weekend show (continuing thru Sunday).
An array of architects, artists, gallery owners and speakers partied alongside VIP guests and media in a festive atmosphere. Sure, many enjoyed the early viewing of exhibits (ranging from architectural firms to a real estate broker to art-event fixture Create:Fixate to an inventor of a patented "modular construction system" to fun furniture factories). But attendees also enjoyed two open bars... a buffet of salad, pasta, tomatoes, provolone and desserts... excellent quesadillas... tunes by DJ Saru and DJ Valida... and, providing the live sonic soundtrack, Jazz from Rhythm Nathan.
The great thing about CABOOM is that it shows off the best in current design work in California (hence the CA in CABOOM), and does it all in one place, allowing cross-fertilization of architects and designers who are pushing the envelope of innovative products and spaces, showing their stuff in an environment that's stimulating and educational for professionals, amateurs and auteurs alike. You can see unique ideas for indoor and outdoor living (I liked Modern Shed in particular, a mini-room and porch combo that could make a fine addition to any house's backyard), and unusual/unique furniture (I loved some of the finely crafted curvy/asymmetric chairs, woven of wood or wicker or whatever, with wow factor galore, which seemed designed not to bore -- and also The Floating Bed, a large circular Hef-like bed, a really swinging (really!) mattress apparatus which can be installed indoors or out, and can hold up to 1000 pounds -- a fact that made me more at ease after indulging in such fine food). Styles from postmodern to retro redux all mixed merrily in a fest filled with live sounds and cool attendees -- and there even were free copies of the free-wheeling, fact-filled ReadyMade Magazine to take home to boot.
The Santa Monica Civic Center serves as CABOOM's main setting, on Main Street. Along with dozens of excellent exhibits are speakers and daily tours of private homes in the surrounding area. If you didn't make it to the Thursday soiree, the annual show continues Friday through Sunday at the Civic, on the corner of Pico and Main in Santa Monica. The hours are Fri, Sat 11 to 7; Sun 11 to 5. For more info, see www.caboom2.com .
Entertainment and Technology Writer
Writer/Editor, The Rose Review