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The Art of Dr. Seuss Collection is a 20th anniversary celebration at Narrative Gallery, August 10 – September 16

Art dealer Robert Chase met Dr. Seuss’s wife, Audrey Geisel, a while back to discuss her late husband’s artwork. While the world knew of Dr. Seuss’s prolific children’s book illustrations, hundreds of major artworks spanning nearly his entire 70-year career had remained unseen. 

This archive included concept drawings and final line drawings painstakingly created for his children’s books, artwork created in the 1930s and 1940s for early commercial projects, and private paintings and sculpture done within the intimate setting of his studio. Both Chase and Geisel believed this Secret Art deserved to be seen and the historic project began nearly two years later, six years after Geisel’s death. 

Narrative Gallery in Laguna Beach will share a rare and compelling selection of artworks from 20 years of The Art of Dr. Seuss Collection. Visitors can explore and acquire works from Dr. Seuss’s best-known children’s books, as well as The Secret Art of Dr. Seuss, a mind-expanding collection based on decades of artwork, which Dr. Seuss created at night for his own personal pleasure.

The Art of Dr Seuss

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Submitted photo 

Perhaps the wackiest and most wonderful elements of the collection are Dr. Seuss’s three-dimensional “Unorthodox Taxidermy” sculptures with names like The Carbonic Walrus, The Two-Horned Drouberhannis, and the Goo-Goo-Eyed Tasmanian

Wolghast, to name a few.

Each of these Estate-Authorized limited editions has been adapted and reproduced from Theodor Seuss Geisel’s original drawings, paintings or sculptures.

Additionally, each work bears a posthumously printed or engraved Dr. Seuss signature, identifying the work as an authorized limited edition commissioned by the Dr.

Seuss Estate.

The Art of Dr. Seuss Collection has become one of the most comprehensive projects ever undertaken for a deceased artist. Nearly 300 gallery, museum, and public exhibitions have been mounted in this country and abroad over the past 20 years, garnering both critical and popular attention from the art world and the collecting public. Three major coffee table books have been published on The Art of Dr. Seuss Collection and 77 limited editions of Seuss imagery have now sold out. Most importantly, Theodor Seuss Geisel (aka Dr. Seuss) has taken his rightful place among America’s greatest artistic talents of the 20th century.

In her preface to the popular coffee table book on this collection, The Cat Behind the Hat, Audrey Geisel (Ted Geisel’s widow) writes: “I’m gratified to carry out Ted’s wishes and have these works revealed to the world.” 

Join the gallery for a fascinating glimpse into the unique artistic vision of Theodor Seuss Geisel. The exhibit runs from Friday, Aug 10 through Sunday, Sept 16 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Narrative Gallery, 417 S Coast Hwy. For more information, visit www.narrative-gallery.com.


Festival of Arts opening weekend kicks off with

Le PeTiT CiRqUe at Family Art Day on Sunday, July 8

Families and children are invited to enjoy a day full of art and entertainment at the Festival of Arts Family Art Day on Sunday, July 8. From 12 - 3 p.m., the grounds will be full of fun activities, hands-on art projects, and more. Family Art Day, sponsored by San Diego County Credit Union, is free with Festival admission, and children five and under receive free admission all summer long.

A special coupon booklet will be distributed to children upon arrival, while supplies last. Kids will be able to create their own works of art at the Festival’s ceramic and mixed media workshops.

Parents and children will enjoy a special performance by award-winning Le PeTiT CiRqUe, one of the most unique, innovative and inspirational shows in North America, recently seen on NBC’s “Little Big Shots.” This troop of world-class aerial/circus arts child prodigies in dance, music, karate and singing have mesmerized numerous audiences worldwide due to their impressive and empowering message, talent, skill level, and young ages.

Festival of LPC

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Le PeTiT CiRqUe performs again at Family Art Day on Sunday, July 8

Live on the Festival’s newly renovated concert stage will be Undecided Future, a pop/funk/R&B band featuring former students of Orange County School of the Arts. They have performed at numerous venues including the 2016 NAMM Show, Honda Center, House of Blues, Disneyland, Angel Stadium and opened up for the legendary band The English Beat at the Coach House.

The grounds will be alive with entertainment for all ages with an interactive treasure hunt throughout the Festival art exhibit, hat making, balloon art, temporary tattoos and more.

“Family Art Day is a great opportunity for families to work together on hands-on creative projects,” said Susan Davis, director of special events for the Festival of Arts. “The whole day is designed to introduce kids to different artistic processes and techniques and to encourage them to use their imagination. It’s always one of the most popular events of the summer!”

For a full listing of events, visit www.LagunaFestivalofArts.org. The Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters are sponsored in part by Southern California Acura Dealers, Fidelity Investments, KOST Radio 103.5, Pavilions and the Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel. 

Festival of building

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Family Fun Day, Sunday, July 8, is a day full of family fun and activities

Dates & Times: July 5 – September 1, Open weekdays: 12 p.m. – 11:30 p.m., Open weekends: 10 a.m. - 11:30 p.m., Early closing: Aug 25 at 1:30 p.m.

 Ticket Information: General Admission: Weekdays $10, Weekends $15.

Students & Seniors: Weekdays $7, Weekends $11. Children 6-12: Daily $5.

Free admission for children five and under, military, and Laguna Beach residents. 

Passport to the Arts: A special promotion (funded in part by Bank of America): Passport to the Arts can be purchased for only $29. Includes unlimited admission all summer long to the Festival of Arts, the Sawdust Art Festival and Laguna Art-A-Fair. Guests enjoy works of art by more than 500 artists, 300 hands-on workshops, dozens of special events, plus a one time, all-day free parking pass with each Passport purchased. Order online at www.LagunaBeachPassport.com. Passports are also available for purchase on-site at each festival location during the summer. Offer excludes Pageant of the Masters. Valid June 29 – September 2.

Sponsors: Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters are sponsored in part by

Southern California Acura Dealers, Fidelity Investments, KOST Radio 103.5,

Pavilions and the Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel.

Location: Festival of Arts Grounds, 650 Laguna Canyon Rd.

For Information & Tickets: (800) 487-3378, www.LagunaFestivalofArts.org.


LPAPA celebrates its two-decade legacy with plans for a book: Do you remember your first Invitational?

The Laguna Plein Air Painters Association is celebrating a special milestone this year – the 20th anniversary of LPAPA’s LB Painting Invitational. Each year the best plein air artists are invited to Laguna Beach to paint and celebrate the legacy of the those artists who first established Laguna as an art colony by founding the Laguna Beach Art Association (LBAA) and opening the first Laguna Art Gallery in 1918.

LPAPA celebrates

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Courtesy of LPAPA

2017 “Best in Show” Winner, “Before Sunrise” by LPAPA Signature Artist Aimee Erickson

LPAPA is considered the steward of this plein air legacy, and is dedicated to preserving the plein air tradition of painting for future generations.

To mark this anniversary, LPAPA plans to publish a hardbound book to tell the full story. This special book, to be authored by Mr. Jean Stern, the leading authority on plein air art, will be a recording of the Invitational history and the top award-winning artists who have helped celebrate Laguna’s artistic legacy and have become part of the tradition. 

If you remember your first invitational, a $30 donation will reserve your copy of the book and you can play a part in history and be in the book. If you make a donation of $250 or more, you will receive special donor appreciation packages, plus be named in the book as a supporter. 

A $30 donation will reserve a copy of your book below the retail price.

For more information or to donate, visit https://lpapa.org.


Festival of Arts, the premier showcase for the arts, runs from July 5 – September 1

Laguna Beach Festival of Arts will let creativity run wild this summer with the prestigious Fine Arts Show on Thursday, July 5 – Saturday, September 1 and Pageant of the Masters’ “Under the Sun” Saturday, July 7 – Saturday, September 1. 

Celebrating its 86th year, the Festival of Arts’ prestigious juried Fine Arts Show showcases original artworks from 140 of Orange County’s finest artists and offers interactive art workshops, demos, special events, live music, wine and chocolate pairings, guided art tours, and more. 

In conjunction with the Fine Arts Show, the Pageant of the Masters world-famous theatrical celebration of art recreated in tableaux vivants – “living pictures”– will awe audiences nightly with spectacular stage illusions choreographed to original, live orchestra performance and engaging narration.

Festival of Arts Fine Art Show runs from July 5 – September 1, weekdays noon – 11:30 p.m., weekends 10 a.m. – 11:30 p.m. There will be early closing on August 25 at 1:30 p.m. 

Pageant of the Masters runs from July 7 – Septemger 1, with performances nightly at 8:30 p.m.

Festival of Arts Painting

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Photo by Mary Hurlbut

Franz A. Bischoff’s painting, Catching Fish at the Beach, at the Festival of Arts Fine Art Show

Festival of Arts Fine Art Show tickets are available online at www.LagunaFestivalofArts.org. General Admission tickets are $10 on weekdays and $15 on weekends; Student tickets are $7 on weekdays and $11 on weekends; tickets for Children 6-12 are $5 daily; admission is free for Children 5 and under, Military, and Laguna Beach Residents.

For Pageant of the Masters ticket information and to purchase tickets, visit www.pageantickets.com. Tickets start at $15 per person. Pageant of the Masters ticket grants access to the Fine Arts Show.

Festival of Arts is located at 650 Laguna Canyon Road, Laguna Beach, CA 92651.


Community Art Project presents the colorful exhibition, Pastels

The Community Art Project (CAP) is presenting the exhibition “Pastels” from July 2 – August 8. “Pastels” gives viewers the ability to enjoy the vibrant to subtle colors found in the multi-hued palette of the pastel artist.

There will be a reception on Thursdasy, July 5 at the Laguna Beach City Hall, located at 505 Forest Ave, from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. 

Meet the artists and see works by artists Mary Aslin, Gianne de Genevraye, Mike Ishikawa, Margaret Lindsey, Sally Strand, Marie Tippets, Elizabeth Wallace, and David Wolfram. 

Admission is free. For more information on this upcoming event, visit www.caplaguna.org

community art mary aslin

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“Beckoning Spring” by Mary Aslin

community art lindsey

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“Playa Vista” by Margaret Lindsey

community art wolfram

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“Recreation Point, Laguna Beach” by David Wolfram

CAP’s mission is to increase the visibility and appreciation of Art and serve as a catalyst for Art Education. CAP provides ongoing exhibition in The CAP Gallery, in the Rotunda Gallery space located on the second floor of the Wells Fargo Building, 260 Ocean Avenue. 

The CAP Gallery is a unique space for juried, solo and retrospective exhibitions. For more information, visit www.caplaguna.org.


Art-To-Go is Red Hot at Festival of Arts

Art collectors who love red will enjoy the 2018 Art-To-Go collection at Festival of Arts. More than 100 exhibitors donated originals under the theme “RED HOT.” Works are available for purchase daily, now through August 26, during regular Festival hours.

Art To Go Cunningham

Photos courtesy Art-To-Go

Cunningham Haight’s Red Hot Mama

All media are represented, and subjects include Ferrari sports cars, firemen, sunbursts, and pepperoni pizza. Surprises include opposites – such as a moody photo of an ice cooler, and sexy portraits that convey a red hot theme. Visitors may cast votes for the People’s Choice artist through June 7. Ballots are available at the display. All buyers will qualify to win a two-night stay at The Tides Inn.

Art To Go Rivera

Red Hot by Hugo Rivera

Proceeds from Art-To-Go sales benefit The Artists Fund at Festival of Arts, providing hardship and disaster relief grants for artists in need. View the online gallery at www.theartistsfund-foa.org or call (949) 612-1949.

Festival of Arts and Pageant of the Masters is located at 650 Laguna Canyon Rd. For more information, visit www.foaapom.com.


Art-A-Fair VIP event was quite an affair to remember

By LYNETTE BRASFIELD

Photos by Scott Brashier

The happy crowd at the VIP opening of the Art-A-Fair this last Friday was having so much fun chatting and drinking that it took speaker and special guest Christian Okoye, Kansas Chiefs all-pro running back and NFL Hall-of-Famer, a while to catch their attention – but catch their attention he did.

He spoke about his childhood in Nigeria and how hard he had to work to achieve his goals – but how lucky he was to have people who urged him on. “This is what we try to do with our Foundation,” Okoye said. “We explain to kids that there’s a new way to set goals and it’s all about attitude.” The nonprofit, California Sports Hall of Fame, which hosts free athletic workshops for underprivileged kids, was the beneficiary of the event.

art a entrance

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The striking new façade of Art-A-Fair set the tone for the VIP event

Locals attending the celebration included the ubiquitous supporter of all things Laguna, the packaged dynamite that is Heidi Miller, as well as Leslie Mogul of the Playhouse, as well as several of the artists whose work is displayed at Art-A-Fair and their families, friends and fans.

Fifteen-year exhibitor Lynn Wiederman was impressed with the Art-A-Fair’s reinvigorated approach to marketing. “I love this area,” she said, gesturing toward the funky furniture that serves artistic as well as utilitarian purposes, connecting fine art with luxury home decor. “The new façade is a real change, too. It’s out of the box, which is what this festival is trying to achieve. It re-engages people.”

art a crowd

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The crowd was loud, happy to mingle with friends, colleagues and celebrities

Star of the show was not a person but a painting – an original Picasso curtained off from the crowd and a frequent backdrop used by the several photographers on hand to capture the moment with the mingling celebs.

Attendee and abstract artist Trudy Connor was checking the place out as a possible location to consider for her art. “The new entrance, it’s, well, it’s hard to miss,” she said. “It’s large, it’s colorful, and it attracts people.”

art a fair models

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Robert Palmer-esque models added glamour to the evening

Many of the people the affair attracted were beautifully dressed (one man was a symphony in pink), with several of the women (including Robert Palmer-style models) wearing stilettos to die for (or from, if a murderer were so motivated). Wide-legged jumpsuits were also much in evidence.

Petite hors d’oeuvres were provided by Maro Wood Grill, Nirvana, Newport Rib Company and Laguna Beach Brewery and Grill.

Art-A-Fair is located at 777 Laguna Cyn Road. For more information, visit www.art-a-fair.com.


Festival of Arts Foundation grant helps Laguna Beach Live! extend outreach programs to schools

A grant of $2,000 from the FOA Foundation supported the presentation of talented professional musicians at local Laguna elementary schools. 

Festival of Arts group

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The Argus Quartet

This past March, the Argus Quartet performed at Top of the World and students were thrilled by their playing and willingness to talk about their work and to answer questions. The Argus Quartet has been the Graduate Quartet in Residence at the Julliard School and recently made their New York recital debut at Lincoln Center. 

After the school visit, the quartet also performed at the Laguna Boys & Girls Club and then at the Laguna Art Museum as part of the monthly Live! at the Museum music series.


Laguna Playhouse presents End of the Rainbow with tickets at high demand: get 25 percent off now

On August 8 through Sepember 2, Laguna Playhouse will present the show End of the Rainbow. This highly acclaimed production tells the story of Judy Garland’s 1968 comeback as she undertakes an exhausting series of concerts at London’s premiere cabaret. 

Laguna playhouse summer

Ticket prices are available between $62.25 - $84.75, with show starting times ranging from 1 p.m., 2 p.m., 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. The average running time for this show is two hours and 15 minutes, including intermission. The show is recommended for audiences 12 and up. 

Due to the high demand of tickets, a 25 percent discount will only be available until end of day on June 30. 

Don’t miss out on this limited time sale; use the code SUMMER when purchasing your tickets at www.lagunaplayhouse.com/box-office/buy-tickets.


Suzie’s ARTiculation

Sawdust sizzles at 52, gets better with age

By SUZIE HARRISON

Sawdust Art Festival seems to get better with age. If Tuesday’s Preview Night is any indication, a barometer of this summer’s show, well, it’s my fave to date!

While checking out all the spectacular new art, the live music always adds to the cool vibe. Truly there are so many incredible artists, so little time…

To kick off my Sawdust ARTiculation, I interviewed two freshmen and two seasoned artists to get their perspective on the opening, preparation, their booth and their work.

Lisa Mansour, painting, first-year exhibitor

“I have wanted to be in the Sawdust for a very long time. Every summer I would bump into Tom Klingenmeier on the grounds and he would say “are you applying for next year?” Lisa Mansour said. 

Fast forward to this year her “Yes, I think so!” reply became definitive.

“I decided to take a leap of faith and submit my application last November for the 2018 Summer Festival,” Mansour said. “My preparations began from that point on.” 

Graduating last December from LCAD’s Post-Baccalaureate program, Mansour said she’s building on a series of paintings that she completed while studying at LCAD. 

“I tried to paint everyday, and finish at least one painting a week,” Mansour said. “Right now I have about 30 pieces of original art hanging in my booth, and about a dozen in the wings.” 

The charming tagline on her booth sign says “Donuts, Dress Forms, Other Delights.” 

“I love exploring the playful side of fine art and finding a balance between classic technique and exuberant expression,” Mansour said.

Sawdust Sizzles Mansour

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Photo by Scott Brashier 

Recent LCAD grad Lisa Mansour, excited to finally say yes to exhibit at the Sawdust, pictured joyfully with her husband John on opening night

Regarding her booth, “I chose my booth because it was on a shady corner on one of the main paths of the Sawdust, the one that leads to the glass blowing booth.”

She had it built with a triangle wall at the open corner and angled the wall so that when people are entering the Sawdust and walking down the path, they can readily see her work. 

“The great thing about the Sawdust is we can paint in our booths – in fact six hours a week of demo time is required of Sawdust artists,” Mansour said. “I plan on painting all summer long.”

Leading up to opening night, Mansour admits she was a little stressed out, but it turned out well. 

“My longtime dream to be in the Sawdust had arrived and I had art on the walls and donuts as my snack,” said Mansour. “So many friends and well-wishers were there – really the whole community of Laguna Beach – and it was such a warm and wonderful evening. It flew by.”

Catherine Reade, jewelry, 18-year exhibitor

Preparing for the Sawdust is not so literal – she does shows all spring, as well as the winter shows including Winter Fantasy. While she is preparing for the other shows she’s also preparing for the Sawdust summer show, with the end of May to the end of June, of course, the big push.

“I’m also making a lot of custom work, most people don’t buy ready to wear, they want something custom,” Reade said. “They want something that’s different, within my style more personalized to them, more intimate detail.” 

Sawdust Sizzles crowds

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Photo by Scott Brashier

Artist Catherine Reade loves the energy and the crowds, like on opening night

As for her booth, she’s coveted the same spot 14 of her 18 years in the show.

“The importance is to always have a corner booth and have my counter space, so people can walk up and have room to look at my work and spread out and talk to me,” Reade said. “My whole interest is to educate clients and prospective clients about what the materials are, how I’ve created this, what goes into it. I want them to walk away with a really positive feeling about my work.”

Because she is a fabricator she creates every piece from start to finish.

“Nothing is prefabricated. I make all my links, all my settings, I have to cast wax…so it’s all individually made, everything is a one-of-a kind piece,” Reade said.

Her booth is sort of minimalist. Reade said she just wants it to be clean and industrial like her jewelry.

“I love that space because it’s very energetic. I have all the energy from Studio One, across from me, with all these children and adults creating all these art projects,” Reade said.

“It’s very energized in that neighborhood. I love the energy, excitement and openness.”

Lisa Rainey, oil painting and painting, first-year exhibitor

“I started preparing last year before I submitted my artwork for review. I knew that I wanted to be in the show this year building a body of work the past few years since I moved back here from Chicago in 2015,” Rainey said. “There is a lot that goes into it. I always want to grow and I want my work to be authentic to who I am every moment I create.” 

Currently she has about 35 pieces and will be working in her booth all summer in oils and mixed media to create new work. 

“I choose the pieces that speak to me and make me feel something when I look at them,” Rainey said. “I constantly bring work home from my studio so that I can live with them for a while to see how they speak to me.”

She added, “Meditating on my subjects, I’ve learned more and more about color and finding techniques that were new and different.”

Sawdust Sizzles Rainey

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Photo courtesy of the artist

Lisa Rainey can’t wait to share her work as a new exhibitor at the Sawdust

Her large paintings, created within this last year, sparked something new in her. Rainey calls them dream-scapes.

“I mainly have worked in a style that I call impressionistic realism. I work from life so that I can really see the nuances of color and light in flowers and nature,” Rainey said. “I also have recently gone back to working in watercolors, I don’t want people to only see a pretty still life, I paint to tell a story.”

For her booth, Rainey wanted to have a light roof so the sun would shine through. 

“I wanted this space to be light and bright, a nice backdrop for the color in my work and choosing colors to help the work to stand out,” Rainey said.

“Opening night, I was nervous knowing how many people come to preview night, but once it got going I was feeling comfortable and having a great time,” Rainey said. “My friends came to support me, see my booth and my artwork. It was truly a celebration.”

Doug Miller, painting and photography, 48-year exhibitor

“This is my 48th summer at Sawdust – I got out of the Navy in 1971 and got a booth – I bought my booth space from a girl who was moving to San Francisco for $70, which was what she paid,” Miller said. “That was in the early Sawdust days before rules were adopted that would not allow such a transaction to take place.”

He’s been at the same location for 21 years, perfect to be near the music since Miller plays violin and with various musicians during the show. 

“I paint every day – I have painted every day without missing a day for 24 years. I number my paintings and record them in a book,” Miller said. 

His self-imposed rule is to at least begin a painting every day. 

A friend suggested that he record his pieces in a daily journal, that was the impetus he wanted to see how many days he could go in a row…24 years.

Sawdust Sizzles Miller

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Photo by Scott Brashier

Doug Miller is a staple at the Sawdust always wanting to make others smile

“I’m up past 17,500 paintings. There are days I have painted more than one. in fact, I painted an average of two pieces per day most of the time,” Miller said.

He paints about 400 to 1,000 acrylic paintings per year, mostly the small canvasses up to 6 x 8 inches. “I sell an average of about 500 pieces per year. My best year was 2008 when I sold 651 pieces, mostly beaches,” Miller explained.

Larger pieces go on the walls. “I finished painting of Crystal Cove in one evening, two days before the Opening party. A big quick piece that is a real attention-getter,” Miller said. “Opening night party, I sold five pieces and saw so many Laguna friends – several will come back and purchase during the show. They always do.”

Here’s the skinny on locals’ nights – interestingly, 15 places not Laguna Beach, such as Dana Point, the other Lagunas, and the surrounding cities, get in free on Sundays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays, from 5 to 10 p.m., whereas Laguna locals only get in free Mondays, Thursdays, also after 5 p.m., and the First Friday of the month all day.

To check out Sawdust central, including the live entertainment schedule, art classes and workshops, theme days, special events and more, visit https://sawdustartfestival.org. Sawdust Festival is located at 935 Laguna Canyon Road. For information, call 494-3030.

Until next time…so much Sawdust art, entertainment, socializing, and so little time!

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