In The Arts

LCAD students make art for Japan

When students at the Laguna College of Art & Design heard about the tsunami and earthquake that devastated Japan, they wanted to find a way to help.

On Sunday, the public is welcome to visit LCAD's main campus for a special art exhibit that benefits the country during the college's "Best of the Best" exhibit.

All the pieces on display — such as paintings and prints — are for sale and the proceeds will go to the American Red Cross' Japanese Disaster Relief Fund.

The college bought 200 small canvases for their students and all majors were encouraged to get involved with the project.

The works range from $30 to $70.

"The creative contributions of the LCAD community and the generous participation of the local community in purchasing the art will enable us to show support and solidarity with the people of Japan in this time of distress," Academic Affairs Vice President Hélène Garrison said in a statement. "We hope you will join us for the reception, buy some art, and support a truly worthy cause."

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Live Jazz at Hotel Laguna

Laguna Beach Live! is hosting the Eric Dries Trio on Wednesday at the Hotel Laguna as part of their Winter Series of live jazz performances.

The Catalina Room will host shows at 6 and 7:45 p.m. Reservations in advance are recommended.

Eric Dries, a jazz musician of 20 years, used to be part of the jazz group Rare Silk and has played at the Playboy Jazz Festival. He's also lectured on jazz piano and theory at universities in California and Connecticut.

For more information about the Winter Series, visit lagunabeachlive.org.

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Festival hosts 'Preview 2011'

The Festival of the Arts is giving locals a sneak peek of what's to come during this summer's festival.

"Preview 2011" — which runs now until June 24 — showcases 14 local artists who are part of the 28 new artists who have been juried into the festival. The festival has more than 140 artists this year.

"'Preview 2011' presents a group show of artists that are raising the bar on the quality and diversity that the Festival of Arts is noted for," Pat Sparkuhl, Festival of the Arts art collection specialist, said in a statement.

Everything from photography and oils to sculpture and mixed media will be on display at the Wells Fargo Bank, 260 Ocean Ave. The artists include Russell Jacques, Molly Lipsher, Agnes Copeland, Baldemar Fierro, William R. Brion, Fred Eck, Ryan Heimbach, Gretchen Shields, Nancy Holly, Susan Jarecky, Gar Cropser, Bill Drysdale, Barry Robin and Susan Wills.

The exhibit is free to the public. An artist's reception from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 9.

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Esther Wells Collection's last events

The Esther Wells Collection, which is leaving its post in Laguna Beach after more than 60 years, is hosting its last event during the April Art Walk. They will also be a part of the Laguna Plein Air Painters Assn. seventh annual "Best of Plein Air" juried exhibition and sale April 9.

Formerly the Laguna Art Gallery and the Challis Galleries, the Esther Wells Collection has to close its doors due to increased rent. Director M. Charlie Ferrazi said he plans to stay connected in the arts community.

The gallery plans to maintain a presence on the Internet and will still be reachable by phone.

For more information, visit the estherwellscollection.com or call (949) 494 2497.

The Esther Wells Collection is at 1390 S. Coast Hwy.

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Dance on the Art Walk

On April 7, the Art Walk won't just boast the usually array of art-related activities, but also special dance performances at galleries and spaces throughout the city.

The Laguna Dance Festival, which shows at the Laguna Playhouse April 14 to 16, will do four performances at the Laguna Art Museum, Swenson Fine Art, De Ru's Fine Art and [seven-degrees].

For more information, visit lagunadancefestival.com.

—Joanna Clay

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