Forging past and present with the arts

Laguna Beach artist Marsh Scott is painting the town Orange.

The multimedia artist will install her latest public art piece, “Orange in Motion," for the City of Orange and Orange County Transit Authority on Monday at the Pedestrian Tunnel in Old Towne Orange.

The colorful three-layer installation "” her largest to date "” consists of two stainless steel sculptures on a painted graphic background, each measuring 36 feet in length, with a color scheme of oranges, reds and yellows on one side and a cooler color scheme of greens and blues on the other.

Between the two sides are “history ribbons," which have historical facts about the city pierced through them. Scott said the concept is to bridge the past and present.


“The tunnel was contemporary and Old Town Orange is about reflecting the past," she said. “By combining the history of the city with contemporary images of oranges and their leaves and flowers, I blended these themes while indicating movement and creating a bright, colorful environment."

The commission is the second major installation Scott has been awarded this year, following another piece, “Cyclic Synergy," which she designed for Oklahoma State University.

The grand opening celebration for “Orange in Motion" will take place from 4 to 9 p.m. Aug. 27.

Scott, who has three public art displays in Laguna Beach "” “Steps in the Sand" at Crescent Bay Villas, “Greetings from Laguna" at Old Pottery Place and “Wave Dance" on Wesley Drive "” said she enjoys working on public art commissions.


“Art in the public realm is so different from private collections," she said. “It belongs to everyone and creates a sense of place and identity."

Her other commissions have been for hospitals, commercial buildings, residences and airports, and include paintings, photography and sculptures.

A 10-year exhibitor at the Sawdust Art Festival, Scott showcases her stainless steel sculptures, encaustics, paintings and photographs, and has even added jewelry to her collection this year.

“They are sculptures you can wear," she said. “Stainless steel is industrial and hard and the challenge has been not only to make it small but fun, unique, and wearable."