Artists to open studios for annual Labor Day weekend tour
Santa Barbara Studio Artists proudly announce the return of their annual Open Studios Tour on Labor Day weekend, Saturday through Sept. 5, with an opening reception from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday at the Community Arts Workshop, 631 Garden Street.
The largest and most prestigious event of its kind on the Central California Coast, the tour is also one of the most-anticipated annual events in the regional art world.
Collectors, gallery owners, fellow artists and art students flock to the open studios to chat with the artists, see their latest works and get a glimpse into their creative process.
Open studios are marked by yellow flags, and a map of their locations, as well as tickets, are available online at www.santabarbarastudioartists.com.
Maps and tickets will also be available at the Community Arts Workshop during the reception and throughout Labor Day weekend.
Tour hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, and 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday. Tickets are $25, children under 12 free.
This year’s beneficiary is Alpha Resource Center of Santa Barbara, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to empower individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities by supporting families, creating opportunities and fostering belonging.
In addition to its full spectrum of services, including children and family support, youth programs, an adult day program and a culinary arts education program, Alpha also operates the Slingshot Art Studio and Gallery as a creative space for adults with IDD to make and sell their art. Presently, the studio provides space, materials and facilitation to more than 35 artists.
For more information about Alpha’s programs and thrift stores, visit www.alphasb.org.
Santa Barbara Studio Artists is a nonprofit trade organization of professionals who maintain working studios in Santa Barbara. Members are selected for the quality of their work and exhibition history. Most of the artists have gravitated to Santa Barbara from all over the United States and abroad as well as from many different schools because they find it a congenial and inspiring environment in which to conduct their business.
Seven artists are being featured at this year’s event: Danuta Bennett, Dorothy Churchill-Johnson, Cheryl Doty, Angela Ferraro, Betsy Gallery, Rob Robinson and Eric Saint Georges.
Ms. Bennett is a Polish-born artist specializing in expressive, evocative realism. Her work continually moves between abstract representations, surrealistic images and realistic lines in her search for personal artistic vocabulary. Her fascination with geometric aesthetics comes from her scientific background and early graphic design work.
Ms. Churchill-Johnson, a working artist in Santa Barbara since 1976, is known for mural-size contemporary realist oil paintings, and Ms. Doty travels the world for inspiration that is incorporated into her paintings, which include abstracts, portraits, still life and figurative work.
Classically trained in tenebrismo (light and shadow) oil technique in Italy, Ms. Ferraro has also studied watercolor, collage and printmaking and creates portraits, landscapes, still life and assemblages.
Ms. Gallery is a mosaic artist who combines classical handmade Italian glass smalti and 24-karat gold tesserae with recycled porcelain, ceramics and found objects.
Mr. Robinson is the grandson of the late Mildred Bryant Brooks, a prominent etcher of the early 1900s, and son of the late Frank Robinson, a respected Santa Barbara architect. Drawn to the work of California’s 20th century impressionists and West Coast plein-air artists, he picked up a paint brush as an adult, an act that changed his life.
Mr. Saint Georges was born in France, where he studied drawing and sculpture at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux Arts in Paris and then trained with famed French sculptor Petrus, from whom he learned the foundation of his clay technique. After a 35-year career in electrical engineering, he returned to art full-time, focusing on charcoal, ink and watercolor drawings, and water-based clay for his sculptures, which he casts himself in bronze.
The complete list of participating artists includes Wendy Brewer, Jane Hurd, Onno “Ron” Kok, Pamela Larsson-Toscher, Laurie MacMillan, Kimberly Pratt. Joan Rosenberg-Dent, Francis, Scorzelli, Ann Shelton Beth, Susan Tibbles, Dorene White, Pamela Benham, Kevin Gleason, Francine Kirsch, Marilyn McRae, Cathy Quiel, Ann Sanders, Kerrie Smith, Marlene Struss and Gerry Winant.