In the Arts

Mural in Canyon to come

The gray wall outside the Laguna Canyon Winery that once displayed the artwork of Laguna College of Art & Design will once again have a student mural, which will be decided upon using public input.

LCAD instructor Mia Tavonatti launched a campaign this year called the Power of Words Project. It's an online community where members can vote on a word that encapsulates the future of their city, Laguna Beach.

"The winning word will become the theme of the new mural in Laguna Canyon," Tavonatti said.

The voting is open now and will end in January. Shortly afterward she will announce the winning word and students will get to work.

The website,, has photos, video and a blog describing the project.

The mural was painted over by the winery, a tenant of that building, in the spring, which led to a backlash from the community.

The property owner had allowed the mural with a joint agreement between the city and the school. The agreement would have to be nullified in order to receive permission to destroy it, the city said. The winery has since apologized and agreed to foot a portion of the mural's costs.

"After what was done to our mural, I knew this was the right time and place to launch this project I've been thinking about for five years," Tavonatti said in an email. "It's a way to heal the damage that was done, while planting seeds of higher consciousness within the community."

—Joanna Clay


Taking Off on Saturday

Mike Machat, an aviation artist, historian and publisher will be the special guest at an event being hosted on Saturday at the Aviation Arts gallery in Laguna Beach. Machat will introduce his oil paintings and will be on hand to sign or inscribe any of his books, prints, lithographs and other items.

He will be joined by "Jack" Broughton, a retired Air Force colonel who flew combat missions during the decades of the Cold War, according to a news release.

The event will go from noon to 6 p.m. at the gallery at 533 S. Coast Hwy.


Festival poster art on display

The Wells Fargo branch in downtown Laguna Beach is exhibiting posters from past Festivals of Arts through Jan. 31.

The exhibit, on the third floor of the bank at 260 Ocean Ave., offers a retrospective on official posters from past festivals.

According to a news release, these include the "Crystal Cove Cottages" poster by Michael Obermeyer for the 2001 Festival of Arts, the "Rockpile and Laguna Beach" poster by Mark Jacobucci for the 2005 festival.

The Wells Fargo building is open to the public from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays and from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays. Free admission.


Make holiday ornaments

Laguna Beach artist Maggie Spencer is offering a series of classes for people who want to learn to make fused glass ornaments for the holidays.

The classes at Spencer's studio, 2707 Laguna Canyon Road, will be held from 10 a.m. to noon and 2 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, and 2 to 4 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday. The tuition fee is $45 to make three ornaments from a range of designs, including stockings, wreaths, holiday trees, snowmen and icicles, according to a news release.

Reservations can be made by calling Spencer at (714) 264-5617. Her website is


Local gallery to take part in Los Angeles art fair

JoAnne Artman Gallery, at 326 N. Coast Hwy. in Laguna Beach, has been selected to participate in the Affordable Art Fair L.A. from Jan. 19 to 22 at L.A. Live in Los Angeles, according to a news release from the gallery.

The fair will be held on the Event Deck at L.A. Live, 1005 Chick Hearn Court. For more information, go to


The Big Tuba

Gene Pokorny, principal tuba player for the Chicago Symphony, will be the featured guest musician at the Laguna Concert Band's performance on Feb. 19 at the Laguna Playhouse, according to a news release.

The concert at 3 p.m. is being billed "America the Tubaful."

Tickets to the show cost $10 and can be purchased by calling (949) 497-ARTS (2787).

The Laguna Beach Community Foundation has also awarded the Laguna Concert Band a $2,000 grant, which will go toward the all-volunteer band's programs and operations, the release said.

The band is a 65-member concert band, including two 18-piece big bands and smaller ensembles, which play during the year in the Laguna Beach area.

The grant was one of 27 grants awarded to local nonprofits on Dec. 1 at the home LBCF Trustee Don Clurman, according to the release.

"Laguna Beach is world renown for art," band President Matt Wood said in a prepared statement. "Our goal is to raise the musical arts to the high standards which the visual and performing arts have achieved…."

—Imran Vittachi

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