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Venice Artwalk and Auctions – The Original Venice Experience

Venice Artwalk and Auctions - The Original Venice Experience

Photography by Alan Shafer
At the time, Venice was still known as the “Appalachia by the Sea,” having been one of the city’s poorest neighborhoods for decades, but it had one attraction that no other neighborhood could match: its thriving artist community. Add to that the allegiance that many local artists felt to the cause of health care for the uninsured and the Venice Art Walk was born.

The idea – thanks to the vision of volunteers Irma Colen, Ruth Bloom, Mona Colman, Marj Fasman, Sheila Goldberg, Elaine Stone, Adele Yellin, and Meg Ross-Price – was simple: sell tickets for a private tour of select artists’ studios. The funds raised would benefit Venice Family Clinic, which was essentially the only place the neighborhood’s working poor could go to see a doctor. Recruiting artists was easy – many were already patients of the Clinic.

In its first year, the Venice Art Walk raised a modest $35,000. By 1983, however, it had not only helped bring Venice Family Clinic back from the verge of closure four years before, it had helped the Clinic purchase a permanent home. By 1986, it was contributing fully one-third of Venice Family Clinic’s annual operating budget, and the following year – less than a decade after it was created – it raised half a million dollars. Angelenos, it turned out, couldn’t get enough of Venice.

But the Venice Art Walk did not merely reflect the Venice art scene; it catalyzed it. Attendance quickly exceeded 5,000 per year, and artists leveraged the exposure to both launch and authenticate their careers. Big names—including Peter Alexander, Carlos Almaraz, Chuck Arnoldi, Larry Bell, Jonathan Borofsky, Laddie John Dill, Sam Francis, Frank Gehry, David Hockney, Ed Moses, Ed Ruscha—flocked to the event, establishing it as a veritable “Who’s Who” of the Southern California art scene.

By 2000, the Venice Art Walk had completely transcended its role as a fundraiser. It had created a new cultural event model, which was eventually adopted by countless galleries, neighborhood associations, chambers of commerce, even real estate developers. Within the next ten years, art walks would be ubiquitous.

But the Venice Art Walk & Auctions (the name updated in 2004) remained the only one that was a fundraiser. And for all the other neighborhoods that had developed thriving artist communities, no other could boast Venice as its backlot.

Venice’s demographics have changed dramatically since 1979, but the neighborhood is still packed with working artists, from those who put Venice on the art map in the 60s and 70s to mid-career names known the world over to up-and-coming talent working out of garages and other ad-hoc studio spaces. In addition, it has become a hotspot for architects, performing artists, special effects studios, video game developers, fashion designers, restaurateurs, and just about every other type of creative professional. Angelenos still can’t get enough of Venice.

And to this day, there’s no way to see more of Venice, the best of Venice, than the Venice Art Walk & Auctions. For a $50 donation, attendees enjoy access to more than 50 studios on the “Art Walk” proper, as well as several pop-up galleries and special exhibits, plus a shot at more than 400 original works in the Silent Art Auction.

All proceeds from the Venice Art Walk & Auctions, which also features three separately ticketed Art & Architecture Tours – two on Saturday, May 21, and one on Sunday, May 22 – benefit Venice Family Clinic, which is now the largest free clinic in the country, caring for more than 24,000 people annually.

“There’s more than anyone can experience in one day,” says artist Laddie John Dill, who helped launch the Southern California art scene and was on the very first Venice Art Walk in 1979. “People come back year after year because they know they will always find something they have never seen before.”

Images of past participating artists courtesy of Alan Shafer
Artists pictured from top: Kenny Harris, MB Boissonault, Frederick Fulmer

Beverly Hills Art Show–Affaire In The Gardens

The Beverly Hills Art Show– Affaire In The Gardens
Beverly Gardens Park in Beverly Hills – from Rodeo to Rexford Drive

May 21 and May 22, 2011
10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Hours: Saturday – Sunday, 10am-6pm

‘Wallpapered Dumpsters’ —Great Idea?!

C Finely, “Untitled Dumpster,” 2010, dumpster, flocked wallpaper

‘Wallpapered Dumpsters’

Don’t miss Artist C. Finley’s wallpapered dumpsters located outside of the Phoenix Hotel. The Wallpapered Dumpster Project is an inquiry into urban waste, free art, and notions of femininity, beauty and domesticity. This ongoing series of urban interventions will continue in select cities in America and Europe through 2011. Previous dumpsters have appeared in Rome and around Los Angeles and have remained wallpapered for up to a year, depending on use and environmental factors. Finley will also be exhibiting an interdisciplinary installation at ArtPadSF including paintings, drawings, sculpture, collage and video.

TEEN NIGHT 2011 at Art in The Streets AT MOCA

SATURDAY, MAY 14, 7—10pm

For one night a year, teens take over the museum for an extravaganza of art, music, and much more. Inspired by the exhibition Art in the Streets, this year’s Teen Night features live performances by Knockstudy, Giuliana Pebenito, Asia-1, The Trozos, Brutal Noodle, and Marley Blaze & Demon Mob., a local and international student art exhibition, art-making activities, and refreshments. Bring your friends, and join teens from all over Southern California for the biggest cultural arts celebration.

Teen Night 2011 is the ninth annual event at The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (MOCA), exclusively for students in high school. This year’s event will be held at The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA on Saturday, May 14, 2011, from 7–10pm. A student art exhibition designed by the MOCA Apprentices is a key feature of the event

Hosted by the MOCA Apprenticeship Program (MAP)
Submissions must be postmarked by May 6, 2011

INFO 213-621-1745 or 
FREE guardian waiver required


House Behind Trees

: Georges Braque (French, Argenteuil 1882–1963 Paris)
: House Behind Trees
: 1906–7
: French
: Oil on canvas
Overall: 14 3/4 x 18 1/8 in. (37.5 x 46 cm)
Robert Lehman Collection, 1975

Abstracionismo e Neoplasticismo

Música de fundo: Bolero de Ravel


“Specter,” 2011, oil on wood panel, 60 x 36″

Darren Waterston: Kingdom
Through May 28, 2011

Deborah Butterfield: New Sculpture
June 2 – July 30, 2011
Opening Reception: Thursday, June 2, 6-8pm

212 3rd Avenue South
Seattle, Washington 98104

Phone: (206) 624-0770
Fax: (206) 624-4031
Hours: Tuesday – Saturday, 10:30am-5:30pm

Through May 28, 2011

Greg Kucera Gallery is pleased to announce an exhibition of recent oil paintings on panel, sculptures and gouache paintings on paper by artistDarren Waterston. The exhibition, titled KINGDOM, will feature several large scale oil paintings depicting animals, some realistically rendered, others ghostly or minimally suggested, in abstracted, open landscapes alluding ambiguously to water, earth, and air. The works use the form of the animal to explore states of being and becoming, metamorphosis, dematerialization and decay.

The animals appear in landscapes that are in constant flux, the materiality of the animal’s body always marking the paradox of a being’s concrete existence in inherently unstable time and space. Freed from predictable cycles of birth, life, and death, the animals in the paintings may be victims of the atmospheric upheaval that surrounds them, or they may be products of it; but they are never ontologically apart.
-Darren Waterson

The twenty-three works on paper constituting the Bestiary, derive from the medieval bestiary tradition, in which a finite number of known species—as well as mythological creatures—were catalogued encyclopedically. Here the animal body itself is in a state of transition, in flux, and without boundaries. While the shapes of these animals are individually recognizable, their forms are stacked and tangled and begin to meld into one another. The exhibition’s three sculptures are similar in their stacking of flora and fauna and detritus from the natural world.

By turns monstrous, fanciful, or abstract, the animals merge into composite forms bringing forth strange fellowships between species normally separated by geography, time, or the line between fact and fiction.

As a genre, the medieval bestiary not only constituted a natural history of creation, but also participated in a rich tradition of the moralizing allegory, the animal kingdom providing apt figures for human behavior, human folly, and the stark reality of the postlapsarian human condition.
-Darren Waterson

Also, Darren Waterston will have an upcoming exhibition Forest Eater, at both the Contemporary Museum and Honolulu Academy of Arts in Honolulu, HI from May 27 – September 11, 2011.

June 2 – July 30
An opening reception for the artist will be from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m., June 2, 2011.

We are pleased to announce a special, two month exhibition of new sculpture by Deborah Butterfield, her 9th one-person exhibition with the gallery since 1991. Throughout the gallery, inside and out on our sculpture deck, we will show three large standing bronze horses and at least four small standing bronze horses.

Originally built of sticks and branches from the madrona, this work was patinated to resemble the deep reds and oranges of the bark of this lovely Pacific Coast tree. Butterfield has recently been experimenting with mixing quite large tree chunks and trunk pieces with smaller, more delicate branches in her work. This sculpture displays this extreme juxtaposition, rendering the horse both solidly concrete and airily abstract at the same time.

The gestural quality of the horse is enhanced by the painterly patina Butterfield uses to depict the particular beauty of madrona bark. It’s rare to see this much color, particularly red, in Butterfield’s bronze work.

“Bestiary No. 1,” 2010, gouache on paper,
14 x 10″

Deborah Butterfield, “Madrona,” 2009,
unique cast bronze with patina, 86 x 117 x 26″

Deborah Butterfield, “Untitled,” 2011,
unique cast bronze with patina, 31 x 33 x 11″