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Joel Luks, head shot, column mug, April 2013

Joel Luks

Listings Editor

Arts/Entertainment, Food/Drink

Joel Luks, a native of Lima, Peru, moved to Toronto, Canada, upstate New York, and later Houston in a never ending quest for enlightenment through higher learning. A classically trained flutist at the Eastman School of Music and Rice University's Shepherd School of Music, Joel developed a love for the arts, arts education, and diverse cultural experiences.

Food and cooking became an obsession early in life, as his mother introduced him to perfectly cooked scrambled eggs. The curiosity of how ingredients metamorphose into delectable dishes translated into a fetish for learning and experimenting with different cuisines, flavors and techniques.

After working at McDonald's through high school, Joel transitioned slowly into a vegan lifestyle. While abstaining from animal products, he reinvented his definition of a meal and developed alternatives — sometimes nutritious, sometimes sinfully indulgent. Joel takes a personal interest in developing vegan recipes that satisfy the vegetable lover and the carnivore alike, challenging the stereotype that vegans and rabbits share similar sustenance. His concoctions can be found on Vegan Good Eats

Joel joined the CultureMap contributor team in May 2010. In January 2011, he joined the CultureMap editorial staff as the Listings Editor.

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All articles by this author.  40 Results. Showing 1 to 20
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Laverne Cox's Trans Truth

Beyond transitions: Orange Is the New Black transgender star finds her own truth

By Joel Luks

"Human beings aren't supposed to live like this." The quote is one of Sophia Burset's most memorable lines. The transgender character in the Netflix original series Orange Is ...


Austin Wins Again

Austin might be over, but Forbes says we're still No. 1

By Joel Luks

Austin might be out of fashion according to the Washington Post, but we just can't stop being No. 1 in just about everything else. Most recently, Austin crowned  Forbes ...


CultureMap Video Adventure

Painted churches of Schulenburg hold the sacred tales of ancestry and perseverance

By Joel Luks

Beyond the shoulders of the Interstate 10 corridor, at the point where the flat grasslands that characterize of Houston's topography transform into the gentle rolling terrain of the Texas ...


Fad diets

Obesity epidemic's new felon: 8-Hour Diet blames breakfast for bigger waistlines

By Joel Luks

The arrival of the new year ushers pledges of self-improvement, better health habits and, of course, ambitious weight loss goals. Fad diets that promise dropping pounds by consuming only protein ...


Stop, Look, Listen

Beyond the Bible Belt: Sacred Spaces of Texas uncovers spiritual treasures across the Lone Star State

By Joel Luks

The photography exhibition Sacred Spaces of  Texas examines ecclesiastical architectural treasures in the Lone Star state. This audio photo essay explais why they're special.  


CultureMap Video Tour

Texas suburban dad takes on an American-made electric car: Behind the wheel of the Chevy Volt

By Joel Luks

For a commuter city in the Lone Star state that values largesse, and that includes oversized gas guzzlers that fit everything from children to dogs to the kitchen sink, can ...


Day Tripping

The road less traveled: Taking refuge at Galveston Island State Park — Dutch pirates, slave traders & liquor smugglers included

By Joel Luks

It's no mystery that the west side of Galveston Island remains somewhat uncharted by many visitors. Blame that on the Gulf Freeway and how conveniently it lures drivers down ...


One golden girl

Thank you for being a friend: Betty White reveals her "ditsy" life in Brilliant Lecture Series

By Joel Luks

It's not uncommon for actors to be better known for the characters they portray rather than the people who they are. While fans associate Betty White with Sue Ann ...


Audio Photo Essay

Unlock the secrets of 250 Years of American Art through new MFAH exhibit

By Joel Luks

In this audio photo essay, curator Christine Gervais unlocks the secrets of the exhibition, American Made: 250 Years of American Art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston,


Exploring Texas

Wild adventures in Anahuac: Mega spiders, a dummy alligator & neon waters — don't forget the bug spray

By Joel Luks

Though I am of the mind that anything that controls the mosquito population deserves pious adoration, I am not particularly fond of any critters that have the potential to bite ...


The Texas Lyceum

Texas values: Buffalo Altar: A Texas Symphony celebrates the Lone Star spirit — where oil & water mix

By Joel Luks

"But like I said, I ain't complaining," C.L. Pettigrew Sr., an 81-year-old oilman, asserts while looking back at six decades of drilling for black gold. He reminisces about ...


wine orgasm? yes, please.

Lusting for Lenoir: When daytripping to Messina Hof blows your moonlit mind

By Joel Luks

It felt like an embrace from someone who promised that everything was going to be OK, that life would turn out just as it should. Perhaps by that familiar stranger ...


CultureMap Video

85-year-old artist returns to high school: David Adickes reinvents himself and talks "band camp"

By Joel Luks

Pretending his student days were not long ago, 85-year-old artist David Adickes ambles through the halls of the former Huntsville High School building in Walker County, reminiscing about teenage shenanigans ...


Day tripping

A wine orgasm? Yes, please — a trip to Messina Hof will blow your moonlit mind

By Joel Luks

It felt like an embrace from someone who promised that everything was going to be OK, that life would turn out just as it should. Perhaps by that familiar stranger ...


Audio Photo Essay

A global world of colors: Stunning art travel photos and the amazing stories behind their hunt

By Joel Luks

Hunter Gorham never dreamed of a career in the arts. His studies focused on finance, technology and business. But life had different plans.


Singularity Transmissions

Postponing her wedding for art: A Burning Man story that tests inspiration — and love

By Joel Luks

Asking a bride to postpone her wedding day is a recipe for disaster. But not for costume designer Amberry Jam; she's not your typical gal. She never cared for ...


A Day In The Life

The bee whisperer: A third-generation Pearland honey man lets you into his vanishing world

By Joel Luks

It's the kind of place where much business is discussed over chicken fried steak and mashed potatoes, and the occasional Caesar salad for those watching their figure. The newly ...


CultureMap Interview

Restoring hope in America's teenagers: Mariachi High lauds education beyond the notes

By Joel Luks

Think of a world where teenagers are responsible, where after school hours they head home to tell their parents about their day, where they volunteer to help others, and where ...


Technologically bi

Confessions of an Apple addict: I'm glad Microsoft's Surface is here (but I won't buy it)

By Joel Luks

It was roughly six years ago that on a whim I splurged on my first MacBook Pro. An unexpected pay bonus, a couple of lunch margaritas and the urge to ...


Art doing good

How one "Grace" inspired a movement: Singer's chance encounter gets homeless teens off the streets

By Joel Luks

Editor's note: Some last names have been kept confidential in this story to protect the subjects from potential harm. In the fast-paced milieu of a busy performing artist, going ...


All articles by this author.  40 Results. Showing 1 to 20
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