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Island Passages: Artists Celebrate the Channel Islands

March 4 - May 29, 2006


(above: Susan Petty, Rock, Water, Air, oil)

Twenty-seven artists who spent the last year hiking, diving, and wandering California's rugged Channel Islands for inspiration will be featured in the exhibition Island Passages: Artists Celebrate the Channel Islands at the Ventura County Museum of History & Art in Ventura, California. The show will run from March 4 through May 29, 2006. A free opening reception will be held on Friday, March 3rd from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m (left: Anacapa Winter, photograph by Roger Conrad)

The Museum's exhibit features photography, painting, and three-dimensional work from selected Ventura County and Santa Barbara County artists which include Santa Barbara County artists Glenna Hartman, Patricia Hedrick, Sonya Fairbanks,William B. Dewey, Ray Hunter, Cathy Quiel, Pamela Kendall Schiffer, Shelly Johnson, Rick Schloss, Kate Yarbrough, and Laura Lynch, and Ventura County artists C.B. Claiborne, Mette Rubin, Jim Knowlton, Isabel Gomes, Roger Conrad, Paula Odor, Sylvia Torres, Susan Petty, Jack Rielly,Connie Jenkins, David Gallup, Roxie Ray-Bordelon, Dorothy Hunter, Greg Bressani, Tom McMillan and Gerri Johnson-McMillan

The work celebrates the 25th anniversary of the Channel Islands National Park and Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary, often referred to as "The American Galapagos."

Chosen from among nearly 200 applicants, participating artists traveled to the islands to create new works inspired by the landscape, oceanscape, history and ecosystems of the islands and the surrounding ocean preserve. The artists have taken dozens of day and multi-day trips to Anacapa, Santa Barbara, Santa Rosa, Santa Cruz and San Miguel Islands since March of 2005. They have explored, sketched, photographed, gathered radar and sonar measurements, picked up beach debris, and painted, while soaking up the feeling of these special islands.

By art medium, artists include sculptors Greg Bressani, Laura Lynch and Tom McMillin, as well as photographers CB Claiborne, Roger Conrad, William B. Dewey, Isabel Gomes, Jim Knowlton and Mette Beyer Rubin. Gerri Johnson-McMillin, a fiber artist, is a participant, as are Sonya Fairbanks, Glenna Hartmann and Patricia Hedrick, who work in pastel. David C. Gallup, Dorothy Hunter, Connie Jenkins, Shelly Johnson, Susan Petty, Roxie Ray-Bordelon, Jack Reilly, Pamela Kendall Schiffer, Richard Schloss and Kate Yarbrough are oil painters. Ray Hunter, Paula Odor, and Cathy Quiel work in watercolor, and Sylvia Torres paints with encaustic.

At least one work from each of the participating artists will be included in the exhibition. These and other works produced through this project will be on sale at the Museum at an event on Saturday, March 25th. A portion of the sale proceeds will benefit the Museum and the National Park. (right: Connie Jenkins, Anacapa, oil)

Nearly 18 million people live within 100 miles of the five islands and the surrounding one-mile of ocean that comprise the Channel Islands National Park. More than 2,000 terrestrial plants and animals are protected there, 145 of which are found nowhere else on earth. The park marine waters are refuge for over 1,000 species of fish, invertebrates, and algae and over 26 species of marine mammals, including the largest concentration of blue whales in the world. The islands support essential nesting and feeding grounds for over 90 percent of the seabirds in southern California.

Additionally, the oldest human remains in North America and the most intact specimen of a pygmy mammoth were found on Santa Rosa Island. The islands have more than 2,500 sites that record nearly 13,000 years of human occupation and a rich heritage from past ranching, fishing, hunting, and military activities.


Editor's note

RL readers may also enjoy West Coast Art: 20-21st Century and Photography: 18-19th Century, 19-20th Century, 20-21st Century, topics within Topics in American Representational Art, a catalog of TFAO

Read more articles and essays concerning this institutional source by visiting the sub-index page for the Ventura County Museum of History and Art in Resource Library.

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