Festival of Arts Celebrates 85th Anniversary with Renovation, Art, Special Events and More July 5 – August 31, 2017
The Festival of Arts Fine Art Show celebrates its 85th anniversary July 5 through August 31, 2017 in Laguna Beach, California. The Festival has been rated one of the top festivals in the nation and each year hosts 140 of Orange County’s most talented artists. Recent accolades include Orange County Register’s Best Place to Buy Original Art, Art Fair Calendar’s Top Five Art Fairs in the West and Top 5 Art Festival in the nation voted by USA Today readers. Live music, hands-on art activities, exhibitions of local student artwork and a wide variety of special events round out one of southern California’s favorite outdoor summer event.
“Avid art collectors and festival-goers will have an outstanding variety of fine art to browse and purchase as they walk among the artists displays,” says Marketing and Public Relations Director Sharbie Higuchi. The Festival of Arts is a professionally juried fine art show featuring a diverse selection of artwork including paintings, sculpture, photography, ceramics, jewelry, and more from artists around Orange County. Since opening in 1932, thousands have shown and sold their artwork at the Festival and many have their work featured in the private collections of leading art collectors, celebrities, and museums around the world.
In addition to the variety of artwork, the Festival of Arts offers a wide range of daily activities that the whole family can enjoy. The 2017 events calendar includes nightly live music, jazz concerts, wine and chocolate pairings, guided art tours and art workshops. Several special one-day events return this year, including the Festival Runway Fashion Show and Family Art Day.
In 2017, the Festival of Arts debuts its brand new $10 million facility which features a new layout for the art exhibit area, workshops, gift shop and concert stage. Last remodeled in 1964, the renovated grounds have been updated to meet accessibility standards and incorporate progressive sustainability features. The plans also call for additional and updated restrooms and wider pathways. Tensile roof pavilions shelter artwork from sun and rain, the green lawn where patrons picnic and enjoy concerts is nearer to the entry, the gift shop is relocated and expanded, and the junior art exhibit has a prominent location near the entrance.
“The Festival of Arts grounds have been completely transformed and modernized as a result of this extensive renovation,” said Board President Fred Sattler. “We look forward to sharing our new ‘digs’ with our patrons and the community this summer during our 85th anniversary celebration.”
The very first Festival of Arts started on August 13, 1932. To celebrate 85 years of art, the Festival is having a birthday bash on August 13, 2017 and admission to the art show is free all day. There are plans for a birthday cake, music, proclamations and much more honoring the Festival’s rich history.
Also in celebration of the organization’s milestone anniversary, the Festival introduces a new event on Sunday afternoons. “A Salute to the Arts” is inspired by the original Festival of Arts, which featured a variety of artistic endeavors including theater, literature, dance and more. In 2017, each week will spotlight a different art form. Also as a nod to the first art show, the Festival is adding tea for patrons to enjoy during its fascinating Art Talks with artists every Wednesday. On Fridays, the Festival introduces a new music series, “Step into the Spotlight,” which brings to center stage some of those amazing voices that are usually seen (and heard) in the background. There’s an extraordinary lineup of back-up singers or backgrounds vocalists who “step into the spotlight” this summer.
“Looking back at the original Festival of Arts in 1932, there was something for everyone to enjoy. That tradition continues today,” said Higuchi. “With beautiful art, nightly live music, workshops for all ages, and unique events, the Festival is truly a full arts experience.”