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New Artwork Added to Permanent Art Collection

///New Artwork Added to Permanent Art Collection

New Artwork Added to Permanent Art Collection

The Festival of Arts is pleased to announce the recent acquisition of five new pieces for the Festival’s Permanent Art Collection, as approved by the Board of Directors. The quality, diversity, and uniqueness of each of these approved artworks adds more depth to the Festival’s Permanent Art Collection of over 1,150 two-dimensional and three-dimensional work, dating back to the early 1900s.

“This was a particularly good year to take advantage of including a group of artists into the Permanent Art Collection. These are high quality examples of what the Festival has on exhibit this year,” said Pat Sparkuhl, curator of the Festival’s Permanent Art Collection. “I was amazed and excited that there were a variety of works, that were not so costly, but represented the uniqueness, excellence, and what I feel is the evolution of the collection.”

Out of the 140-juried artists in the Festival’s current 2016 exhibit, the selected artworks highlight the diversity and caliber of art in this year’s show. New additions include pieces by Noriho Uriu, Elizabeth McGhee, Mike Tauber, Mariana Nelson and Mike Ward.

“The Festival’s collection is the most comprehensive archive of the history of art in Laguna Beach. To be represented here is the greatest recognition an artist could ask for,” said 13-year Festival exhibitor Mike Tauber.

“I am both honored and humbled to have my painting included alongside the other artworks already in the Festival of Arts Permanent collection,” said Elizabeth McGhee. “It is a distinct privilege to have my art recognized and preserved as a part of the Festival’s cultural history.”

Fred Sattler, president of the Festival of Arts, commented on the strategic approach of the selection process, “The Festival seeks to expand the range and texture of the art collection, and through its acquisitions deepen and strengthen our commitment to supporting local artists.”

Noriho Uriu
Festival of Arts Acquisition: From Line to Color, Printmaking

Noriho Uriu was born and raised in Japan. She received BFA at Musashino Art University, Tokyo and at the Art Student League in New York City. There, she studied drawing and oil painting. After moving to California 13 years ago, she has switched her focus to printmaking. Uriu has shown her work at national and local juried exhibitions and at the Festival of Arts for 9 years.

Elizabeth McGhee
Festival of Arts Acquisition: Electric Love II, Painting

Elizabeth McGhee is a native of Southern California, from a family of artists from Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) and Scotland, as well as the local Laguna Beach art scene. She is a Festival of Arts exhibitor and has shown her work throughout the United States, and is internationally collected. A classical oil painter trained in the realist tradition, she graduated from Laguna College of Art and Design in 2009 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Drawing and Painting.

Mike Tauber
Festival of Arts Acquisition: Vernal Falls, Ceramics

Mike Tauber is a full-time professional artist specializing in painterly landscapes in tile. He completed his BA Degree in art at San Diego State University in 1985. He worked as an architectural illustrator and muralist throughout the 1990s and in the mid-2000’s, expanded into the ceramic tile medium for projects at public locations and exteriors. Tauber’s Golden State Tile collection includes California coasts, national parks, tree studies, and marine life. His landscapes convey a distant perspective, strong light source, and rich surface texture as seen in early California schools of painting. His tiles have been selected for many prestigious juried shows, private and public collections and has received multiple awards.

Mariana Nelson
Festival of Arts Acquisition: Mandala, Mixed Media

Mariana Nelson was born and raised in Southern California. She grew up in Newport Beach and moved to San Francisco in her early 20’s. In San Francisco she became involved in a thriving and inspired art community where she found her focus on reusing existing materials. After years of wrapping and practice she soon developed a pattern and way to wrap that was unique to her. Anything from lint and dog hair to found plastic and paper was wrapped with bright and colorful fiber, transforming literal trash into something completely unrecognizable. She has moved back to Orange County where she has exhibited her artwork at the Festival of Arts for three years.

Michael Ward
Festival of Arts Acquisition: Cash & Carry, Painting

When Michael was a teenager, his father gave him his 35mm camera, and he began wandering around taking pictures of stuff he found interesting at the time. In the early 1980s he tried making paintings of the photos. Michael has come to see his paintings as documents of things looked at but not seen, the ordinary environment that we live in but seldom examine closely. He believes that by close observation, which is necessary to translate source photographs to canvas, he can begin to uncover the grace that is hidden in the things around us. Michael is a self-taught artist and has exhibited at the Festival of Arts for four years.

The Festival’s Collection is housed at foaNORTH and includes approximately 350 paintings, 30 to 40 sculptures, and 500 to 600 photographic works, among other pieces. The earliest piece is a painting by Thomas Nash in 1913. One of the most significant piece of art in the Collection is one first paintings sold at the opening of the First Festival on August 13, 1932, called “Flower Stalls,” by Virginia Wooley. 


The Festival of Arts Permanent Art Collection is a tangible window to the Festival, Laguna Beach and the region’s rich art and cultural history. The collection is valued by the organization for its cultural and historical significance in relationship to the art, culture and its ability to tell the story of the birth of the Festival art scene and how the Festival became a major influence in the art world of Southern California.

2017-02-27T16:57:22-07:00Aug 01, 2016|News|