Laguna Beach Art Walk: Our Favorite Galleries

For November’s Art Walk we feature three galleries that are elevating the Laguna Beach gallery scene (and one honorable mention) by exhibiting art and artists that stand out amongst the typical Orange County fare. Since the galleries are spread out along the coast we chose one  to represent North, Central, and South Laguna (maps and gallery descriptions below).

The current theme in Laguna Beach is Art & Nature though the artists we saw fused nature with industry or technology by using found objects, digital manipulation or mixing natural and fabricated materials.  What made this such and enjoyable evening was our ability to have in-depth conversations with the artists and owners who made themselves available to us. 

 

NORTH LAGUNA: Joanne Artman Gallery

The Gallery: The Joanne Artman Gallery features contemporary art that is approachable, lively and aesthetically pleasing. The gallery exhibits a range of eclectic art including sculpture, painting, photography and mixed media.

What is on view: No Ordinary Days featuring ten works by photographer and digital image artist Maggie Taylor. America Martin, James Verbicky, Robert Mars and Anja Van Herle are also on view.

We had a great conversation with: Maggie Taylor who took the time to explain the origins of the numerous objects she combines in Photoshop to create her dream-like collages, including her husbands aviator goggles, an old tape measure, photos of clouds from an airplane window, or real butterfly wings.

Maggie Taylor at Joanne Artman Gallery

Maggie Taylor at the Joanne Artman Gallery

The Burden of Dreams by Maggie Taylor

The Burden of Dreams by Maggie Taylor

Ripple Effect by Stallman at the Joanne Artman Gallery

Ripple Effect by Stallman at the Joanne Artman Gallery

CENTRAL LAGUNA: Peter Blake Gallery

About the Gallery: The Peter Blake Gallery is a well-designed contemporary space exhibiting high quality, abstract, minimalist sculpture and painting. We also enjoyed the black-dress Gallerinas carrying champagne and chocolate.

What is on View: The Nature of Abstraction: Sculpture and painting from Peter Alexander, Pontius Willfors, Jan Maarten Voskuil, Laddie John Dill, Stephanie Bachiero and several others. The work currently on view is engaging, aesthetically balanced and evokes the work of Ellsworth Kelley, James Turrell and Larry Bell.

We had a great conversation with: Venice-based artist Laddie John Dill responsible for sculptures that combine illuminated geometrically arranged glass, embedded in natural elements such as sand or basalt. We enjoyed his animated stories of being a New York City artist during the late sixties, crashing at Jasper Johns’ and Robert “Bob”Rauschenberg’s studios.

 

Dune by Laddie John Dill at the Peter Blake Gallery

Dune by Laddie John Dill at the Peter Blake Gallery

Laddie John Dill chatting with the OC Art Blog

Laddie John Dill speaks with the OC Art Blog

Hazel Blue by Jeremy Thomas at the Peter Blake Gallery

Hazel Blue by Jeremy Thomas at the Peter Blake Gallery

SOUTH LAGUNA: SALT Fine Art

About the Gallery: SALT focuses on contemporary Latin American artists.

Whats on view: Nature Human Nature: The photography of artist Luis Paredes and paintings of Amber Adela Rose, both artists of El Salvadoran heritage.

We had a great conversation with: Lively and energetic owner Carla Tesak Arzente who spent time discussing the forests of Denmark that are the setting of Paredes multiple exposure photography. The large-scale collages of hundreds of individual photos aptly convey the haunting, mysterious energy of a historical forest.

Gallery owner Carla Tesak Arzente in front of Estampida by Luis Paredes at Salt Fine Art

Gallery owner Carla Tesak Arzente in front of Estampida by Luis Paredes at Salt Fine Art

 

Polaris, by Luis Paredes at SALT Fine Art

Polaris by Luis Paredes at SALT Fine Art

Iberia, by Amber Rose at SALT Fine Art

Iberia by Amber Rose at SALT Fine Art

HONORABLE MENTION CENTRAL LAGUNA: CES Contemporary

About the Gallery: Across from the Peter Blake gallery CES Contemporary focuses on contemporary emerging artists, A relatively new kid on the block the gallery recently had it’s one-year anniversary. It is our first visit here and we look forward to seeing more.

What is on View: Natural Selection: A solo show by Robert Larson comprised of found objects collected in the streets and collaged into repetitive, geometric arrangements on canvas. Larson raw materials consists of discarded elements mostly related to smoking such as Marlboro and Camel cigarette packages and 7-Eleven matchbooks which are then meticulously arranged to create abstract geometric pieces. His work creates an interesting narrative of man-made, nature worn and subsequently repurposed materials.

We had great conversation with: Santa Cruz-based artist Robert Larson who described his 20 years of collecting discarded cigarette packaging, frequenting manufacturing areas and his recent attempts to pick up smoking.

(Note: Since this article was posted CES has moved to 709 &711 Mateo St. in Los Angeles)

Robert Larson, Camels Night And Day at CES Contemporary

Camels Night And Day, by Robert Larson at CES Contemporary

Collages of found art on canvas consisting of discarded 7-Eleven matchbooks, discarded Malboro and other brand cigarette packages by Robert Larson at CES Contemporary

Collages of found post-consumer packaging  on canvas consisting of  7-Eleven matchbooks,  Malboro and other brand cigarette packages by Robert Larson at CES Contemporary

Artist Robert Larson (Right) at CES Contemporary

Artist Robert Larson (Right) at CES Contemporary

 

OUR HANDY MAPS TO THE GALLERIES:

North and Central Laguna
South Laguna

Joanne Artman Gallery: 326 N Pacific Coast Hwy, Laguna Beach, (949) 510-5481

Peter Blake Gallery: 435 Ocean Avenue, Laguna Beach, (949) 376-9994

SALT Fine Art: 1492 S Coast Hwy, Laguna Beach, (949) 715-5554

Images courtesy of Joanne Artman Gallery and SALT Fine Art, Graphics by Jared Millar, Photos by Jared Millar and Natasha Shah

Comments
One Response to “Laguna Beach Art Walk: Our Favorite Galleries”
  1. Suzanne Walsh Suzanne says:

    Thank you Natasha for your energy and your efforts. We so loved you being there. Hope to see you soon!

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