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Laguna Beach Live! held successful live jazz event at The Promenade on Wednesday

Wednesday, July 8 saw the first of a series of performances from Laguna Beach Live! at the Stage on Forest, Forest Avenue Promenade. Safety measures are fully in place on The Promenade, which allowed listeners to relax and enjoy the lively performance. 

A much-needed and long-awaited Live! performance was given by Jazz Pianist Ron Kobayashi. To the delight of the audience, Jazz Vocalist Debi Raven joined Ron on stage for a couple of numbers. 

Laguna Beach umbrella

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Pianist Ron Kobayashi put on a stellar performance on Wednesday 

The series continues through September 2 on Wednesdays from 6 - 8 p.m. Next up on Wednesday, July 15 is pianist Dan Reckard.

Thanks to the City and the Arts Commission for creating this fantastic space, where Laguna Beach Live! can continue to provide outstanding music, give employment to its artists, and fulfill its mission of making Laguna a music town.

For more information on Laguna Beach Live!, visit www.lagunabeachlive.org.

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Festival Artists stay connected through color

The Artists Fund at Festival of Arts is presenting its “Connecting Through Color” show now through July 30 online and at Laguna Beach City Hall. Originals by 40 Festival artists are exhibited in 10 color groupings. Proceeds from sales support the hardship fund for artists in need.

“It’s really striking to see the gallery organized by color,” said Chris Brazelton, Artists Fund Board Member. “I especially like the green group,” he remarked about an abstract piece by printmaker Anne Moore, a fantasy painting of nocturnal creatures by Yuri Kuznetsov, and a geometric female figure by ceramicist Fred Stodder. 

Festival Artists wall

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Artist Chris Brazelton with his art display 

“Many viewers are surprised by all the sculptural pieces,” said exhibit curator Mike Tauber. Examples include a blue ice necklace by jeweler Sheri Cohen, a Hercules beetle in exotic wood by Casey Parlette, and an expressionist bird sculpture by Kate Cohen. The exhibit is highlighted by a custom wall installation of blown glass spheres titled “Happiness” by Christopher Jeffries. 

Color-themed poems, submitted by the public, will be added in mid-July. Fifty-seven poems were received and curated by Laguna Literary Laureate Emeritus Lojo Simon. “I was impressed by the quality of the writing!” she said. Selected poems, as well as the Curators Prize poetry winner, will appear at City Hall and in The Artists Fund newsletters. 

Festival Artists Bruce

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Artwork by Bruce Burr 

Art lovers everywhere are invited to cast votes for the People’s Choice award category. One voter will win a $150 buyers credit toward the purchase of any item in the show. Voters must be 21, and one vote per person is invited. To enter, email item number and artists name to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The deadline to cast votes is July 17.

The exhibit is supported by a grant from the Laguna Beach Community Foundation. To view “Connecting Through Color,” click the Online Gallery link at www.theartistsfund-foa.org or visit Laguna Beach City Hall, 505 Forest Ave, during regular business hours. Mask and distancing codes apply. 

For more information, call (949) 612-1949.

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Laguna Art Museum presents monthly Film Night online on July 16

On Thursday, July 16 at 6 p.m., Laguna Art Museum will host its monthly Film Night online for the premier screening of Tony DeLap: An Exhibition and All That Jazz. This documentary is on the late California artist and his 2018 retrospective exhibition at LAM. 

In late February 2018, Laguna Art Museum opened the acclaimed exhibition Tony DeLap: A Retrospective. Tony was an integral part of the design of the show, and nearly a year earlier he began planning the exhibition that would fill the entire museum and celebrate his long and influential career. 

Laguna Art Tony DeLap

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LAM’s Film Night will feature the premier screening of “Tony DeLap: An Exhibition and All That Jazz” 

Dale Schierholt took the opportunity to tag along, camera in hand, to witness as much of the process as possible. From early brainstorming sessions to the five days of installation, he was there to capture much of what went into the making of the exhibition.

Admission is pay-as-you-wish. Pre-registration is required.

To steam online, visit www.lagunaartmuseum.org.

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Laguna Playhouse postpones 100th anniversary season until early 2021

After careful consideration, and due to the ongoing challenges presented by COVID-19, Laguna Playhouse will delay the start of its centennial season to early 2021. 

Due to the delay of the season, the Playhouse will be making some changes to the previously announced lineup. While this still remains fluid, the artistic team remains dedicated to fulfilling its promise of delivering seven world-class shows during the Playhouse’s centennial season.

The Playhouse looks forward to sharing updated developments as they are confirmed.

Laguna Playhouse outside

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Photo by Mary Hurlbut

Laguna Playhouse postpones 100th anniversary season due to COVID-19 

In the meantime, the Playhouse is working on bringing the community its favorite artists virtually; the Playhouse plans on offering various virtual programming until it is safe to open the Moulton Theatre doors again. 

Like all theatres, the Playhouse can’t wait to welcome back staff and audiences, to celebrate the Playhouse’s 100th anniversary and enjoy and experience the art we all love so much. Details on virtual programming will be announced shortly.

For more information, visit www.lagunaplayhouse.com.

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New mural for Sawdust

New mural Julie

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Photo by Mary Hurlbut

As the reimagined Sawdust Festival readies for opening as an Outdoor Marketplace on July 17, fresh sawdust has been laid down, and the entrance features a new mural by Julie Setterholm. The Marketplace will run through September 6 on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

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JoAnne Artman Gallery opens second location with inaugural exhibit How The West Was Won

JoAnne Artman Gallery announces a new, additional location on gallery row in Laguna Beach at 346 N Coast Hwy. The new location opened with the exhibition How The West Was Won, featuring the imaginative works of America Martin, Billy Schenck, and Greg Miller. The gallery is open by appointment.

This exciting expansion will enable JoAnne Artman Gallery to continue offering the acclaimed and dynamic shows for which it is known, while broadening its development in showcasing further new arrivals and backroom inventory at its flagship Laguna Beach location. 

Looking to the future, JoAnne Artman will continue delivering thought-provoking exhibitions with exciting and innovative art by some of the world’s best talents in both Laguna Beach and New York.

JoAnne Artman exterior

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JoAnne Artman Gallery – second location at 346 N Coast Hwy

How the West Was Won is abundant in history, landscape, and folklore. The American Frontier was once synonymous with the cowboy’s take on the American Dream. The romance of the Old West and the temptation of corruption and vigilantism that juxtaposes its unbridled purity remind modernity of the freedoms it represents in our imaginations. 

The idealized West of shootouts and damsels in distress has been ingrained into the American identity, and its celebrated culture has tremendous influence on television, movies, clothing, art literature, and poetry. Examining how dime novels, pulp fiction art, comic books, and other forms of visual art created these fictional, often sensational, versions of people, places, and historical events of the West, artists America Martin, Billy Schenck, and Greg Miller examine these themes and incorporate the legacy and fantastical elements of Western Expansion into their art.

JoAnne Artman Martin

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“Untitled Native” by America Martin

L.A.-based artist America Martin draws inspiration from her Colombian heritage, the natural world, as well as the landscape of Southern California. Her work frequently features the human figure shown in relationship to nature, with animals and plants used analogously to traits of personality. Martin works in a variety of media including painting, drawing, printmaking, and sculpture, yet her unique use of line and portrayal of form is notable across medium. In her recent body of work, she returns to the subject of Native American portraits, mixing indigenous motifs with her signature style and featuring depictions of the human form as solid, grounded, and in tune with its environment and spirit.

JoAnne Artman Schenck

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“Virginia” by Billy Schenck

Billy Schenck utilizes specific frames of reference in his oil on canvas depictions of the American West, establishing visual links between notable moments of American and film history, along with the history of visual modes of production. Stark contrasts, use of pattern, vivid hues, and a pop sensibility imbibe the work with a contemporary edge, while taking on some of the most popular tropes of Hollywood’s film industry. 

Greg Miller’s mixed media approach ties together the history of Pop Art, the processes of collage and assemblage, as well as the concepts of urban decay and collective memory. Utilizing collected paper ephemera, Miller draws on his urban Californian roots to create tangible, evocative, visual narratives across his compositions through both image and text, with moments of poetic juxtaposition and historical allusion. 

JoAnne Artman Miller

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 “True” by Greg Miller

JoAnne and JoAnne Artman Gallery thank their award-winning artists, loyal clients, and everyone who has visited the gallery, for their continued support. They look forward to this exciting new chapter and continuing their relationship with the Laguna Beach community!

JoAnne Artman Galleries are located at 346 N Coast Hwy and 326 N Coast Hwy. To contact JoAnne Artman, call (949) 510-5481 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. 

For more information, go to www.joanneartmangallery.com.

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Artist Jenny Kallis and her new gallery Wax and Wood have ties to early Laguna Art Colony

By DIANNE RUSSELL 

Jenny Kallis, whose new gallery Wax and Wood is on the corner of Thalia Street and S Coast Hwy, has connections to early Laguna’s art scene in more ways than one. Not only is she related to an originator of the art colony, the location of Wax and Wood – her first gallery – circles back to that particular time and a house on Thalia Street.

Kallis says, “My maternal great-grandfather William Swift Daniell was one of the original Plein Air artists of Laguna. He arrived in Laguna around 1910 and built the old historic wood house that still stands on the cliff above the beach at Thalia Street. In a way, I am bringing back the art to the family’s original location on Thalia. I moved to Laguna last May to be with my mom who is 91 (and in great shape). She is very active in the Laguna community, theater, and museum. The Laguna Art Museum has a William Swift Daniell in their private collection.” 

After many years in the Venice Beach area, Kallis relocated to Laguna Beach in 2019. “Since I come from a family of artists including William Swift Daniell and my paternal grandfather Mischa Kallis, art was always present in our home and conversations. Although art has always been my first love, I built a career in architecture and design that spanned 30 years.”

Artist jenny exterior

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Location of Wax and Wood has ties to Kallis’ family

Unfortunately due to the timing of the opening of the gallery, many residents may be unaware of its debut.

“I did a soft opening in November but it was a cold winter followed by the shutting down due to the pandemic,” says Kallis.

However, she can now be seen in the window of Wax and Wood, creating pieces using an ancient technique called encaustic which involves using pigments mixed with hot wax that are burned in as an inlay.

“It has been challenging. But whenever I was open, I did sell (so that was encouraging) and I just remind myself that I am here for my mom and that I love sharing information about encaustic painting. Little kids love to learn about the bees and the history of encaustic. One day, I would love to do a demo session at the museum and maybe once a semester, do a demo at LCAD.”

The gallery is also Kallis’ studio and the storefront is set up as her ‘baker’s window’ where she creates in front of the public. “I am happy to answer questions about what I do and the history of encaustic which dates back to 800 BC and was used in the entombing of mummies,” she says. 

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Kallis works in the window

“I started with pyrography but due to a ‘happy accident,’ I began using wax to add color to my pyrography [the art or technique of decorating wood or leather by burning a design on the surface with a heated metallic point]. The unusual combination of wood burning and wax keeps me always diving into new ways of expressing my ever constant imagination and always trying to keep up with the abundance of ideas.” 

Kallis says that working with wax is a bit like being a scientist in the laboratory. “I mix my own colors from old oil paints I have both collected and inherited from my grandfather Mischa Kallis.”

“One of the beautiful characteristics of the wax is the suspension of the pigment molecules in the wax medium when it is cooled. When light shines on an encaustic painting the colors illuminate.”

“My artistic process using colored wax with burned wood was initially the result of a happy accident. When I was burning wood for an art piece, I used wax to camouflage a mistake in that process. That mistake soon became the doorway to the vast creative possibilities that the combined techniques of pyrography and encaustic offered.”

Artist jenny tower

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Lifeguard Tower by Jenny Kallis 

The wax could be colored, layered on in different textures, and then carved back out to reveal the wood burned image hidden below. 

“Though my subjects range from life in Venice, California to concepts from my imagination, the method of wax and wood speaks for itself. It is visual and tactile and engages directly with the viewer.” 

Kallis explains her process, “After laying out the image, I begin the burn. The hot pen essentially caramelizes the wood as it burns each line. The burning process takes time and patience. It is a web of fine lines taken together creating a story in image.

“I use 100 percent refined Beeswax and mix it with Damar (the crystalized sap of a trees found in India and East Asia). The Damar gives added hardness and luminosity. The beeswax is heated to approximately 180-220 F.

“Laying down the wax has to be done quickly before the wax cools. It can be manipulated while liquid or once cooled into its solid form. The methods of wax manipulation are endless.”

Curious about this technique? Walk by the window of Wax and Wood and wave to Kallis as she works, and remember, she loves to share information about encaustic painting, so just ask.

Wax and Wood is located at 899 S Coast Hwy, Unit #1.

For more information, go to www.jennykallis.com or call (949) 371-6081.

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LPAPA joins artist Peggi Kroll-Roberts in her new “Expanding the Universe Series 4”

LPAPA is delighted to announce registration is now open for Signature Artist Peggi Kroll-Roberts’ latest weekly Live Online Painting Class, “Expanding the Universe Series 4,” which kicks off on Thursday, July 9 and runs through Thursday, July 30.

Class prices (a portion of which is being donated back to LPAPA) have been greatly reduced as a way of giving back during these trying times. Peggi will lead live weekly discussions and painting demonstrations that explore fun and engaging topics such as: “String Theory,” “I’m Feeling Dizzy”, “The Space Between,” and “Upside Down and Turned Around.” After the class, students will have unlimited access to re-watch each week’s recording.

LPAPA joins monkey

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Peggi Kroll-Roberts’ art piece 

The Laguna Plein Air Painters Association (LPAPA) and its participating artists are committed to not only survive the pandemic but to find creative ways to help artists as well as the community stay engaged and continue to find their artistic muse. 

Whether you’re picking up a paint brush for the first time or want to take your painting skills to the next level, studying with a professional artist is a great path to take. 

LPAPA joins cups

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Peggi Kroll-Roberts’ painting 

Award-winning artist Peggi Kroll-Roberts (b. 1954), was trained at Arizona State University and the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, Calif. Peggi worked as a fashion and advertising illustrator before transitioning to fine art.  Using intense color and value to accentuate her subject, she moved into fine art with a bold palette, a love for small paintings, and a very loose style that achieves a lot with a few very energetic brush strokes. She prefers to suggest reality than render it. 

Peggi paints animated figures and breaks away from conventional still life with playful paintings of everyday scenes: cosmetics, the occasional coffee cup, or slab of butter. Peggi’s realist impressionist and expressionist styles are striking and she has won multiple fine art and plein air awards in addition to the Blackwell prize in painting.

The cost is $45 for the entire series of four weekly classes supporting LPAPA. Register at the link here.

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Laguna Art Museum partners with Laguna Beach Live! for a virtual concert featuring SAKURA on July 9

On Thursday, July 9, Laguna Art Museum will partner with Laguna Beach Live! for a “virtual concert” made possible by SAKURA.

The SAKURA cello quintet explores great music of the past through dazzling arrangements that offer fresh perspectives on familiar notes, and continually expands the five-cello repertoire into the future by commissioning new works. Join in from the comfort of home and click below for this concert’s program.

A unique and versatile cello quintet, hailed as “brilliant” and “superb” by Mark Swed in the Los Angeles Times, SAKURA is built on the artistry and virtuosity of its members: Michael Kaufman, Benjamin Lash, Gabriel Martins, Yoshika Masuda, and Peter Myers. 

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SAKURA will perform a special virtual concert on July 9 

Drawing from the rich heritage of a repertoire that spans eight centuries, inventive programs are constructed around conceptual threads, with a commitment to opening new vistas of beauty and expression by showcasing the great warmth and scope of five cellos.

Performance highlights have included Brett Dean’s Twelve Angry Men in Walt Disney Concert Hall as part of the Piatigorsky International Cello Festival, a world premiere of Thomas Mellan’s Concerto for Five Cellos with the USC Symphony, and concert appearances across the country. 

SAKURA was awarded two prestigious grants to commission new cello quintets: a Tarisio grant for five young American composers and a New Music USA grant for Donald Crockett. This season includes performances in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and New Orleans. The quintet also serves as Young-Ensemble-in-Residence of the Da Camera Society.

SAKURA explores great music of the past through dazzling arrangements that offer fresh perspectives on familiar notes, and continually expands the five-cello repertoire into the future by commissioning new works. In the tradition of the great chamber ensembles, the quintet distills its interpretations through time, reveling in the pure sonic pleasure of a unified and colorful sound. Its name honors the great mentor and artist Ralph Kirshbaum, with whom all five members studied: sakura (Japanese) and Kirschbaum (German) have the same meaning –  “cherry tree,” a plant whose flowers have five petals.

To watch the virtual performance, visit www.lagunabeachlive.org.

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Gallery Q at the Susi Q launches virtual exhibition

Gallery Q isn’t letting the isolation of the pandemic hinder artistic expression. To help local community artists, the gallery is announcing its first “virtual show” that can be viewed from the comfort of home. 

Gallery-goers can “meet the artists” and view their work at www.galleryq.org now through August 10.

The online viewing room features 85 pieces of artwork by over 40 artists and includes a wide selection of paintings, textiles, photography, ceramics, mixed media, and more.

Gallery Q Gibson

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“Happy Hour” by artist Bill Gibson

Longtime artist and Gallery Q arts coordinator Judy Baker recognized the need to keep discovering and supporting the arts community, while social distancing remains in place. 

“I like the expression ‘art soothes the soul.’ What a difficult time for art galleries and art festivals to be closed – not only for the artists but for the community as a whole. We provided this virtual exhibit at no cost to the artists and for the pleasure of all art lovers, wherever you may be.”

Many of the art pieces in the show are available for sale. Purchases can be made by contacting the artist directly through their listed email.

Gallery Q masks

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Handmade custom face masks by artist Debra Covern

Gallery Q is a public exhibition space dedicated to showcasing and celebrating the talent of emerging, semi-professional, and professional artists of all ages in Orange County. Gallery Q is located at the Laguna Beach Community and Susi Q Senior Center at 380 Third St. Five shows per year honor local artists and are kicked off with a public art reception. 

For more information about Gallery Q and Laguna Beach Seniors at The Susi Q visit www.thesusiq.orgor call (949) 715-8106.

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