The Gaviota Coast Conservancy, the Naples Coalition, the Southern California Artists Painting for the Environment (SCAPE) and art photographer Reeve Woolpert held an art exhibition and fundraiser titled "Visions of the Gaviota Coast" last Friday at Bacara Resort & Spa in Goleta.
The two-day exhibit of more than 100 works of art, painted and photographed on the Gaviota Coast, assisted the Naples Coalition and GCC in raising funds and awareness in their efforts to preserve and maintain the beautiful rural character of the Gaviota coastline.
Last year’s show raised more than $14,000 for the two conservation nonprofits, and organizers hoped to exceed last year’s proceeds with the help of the 350-plus crowd of attendees. Bacara Resort & Spa was a major supporter, donating lobby and outdoor patio despite the crowded Easter weekend occupancy.
“Bacara is honored to call the Gaviota Coast our home," general manager Kathleen Cockran said. "We have pledged our full support to organizations such as the Gaviota Coast Conservancy for the important work they do to preserve the beautiful rural character of this coastline."
SCAPE artists donated 40 percent of the sales of their art to the GCC and Naples Coalition. This was the second year for this exhibition, and it was unique for SCAPE in that photographer Woolpert and his fine art photography was included again in this year’s show.
Some of the silent auction items included an Island Packers & Aquasports Kayak Adventure Package for two to Santa Cruz Island, original art by Leigh Sparks, Dan Chrynko and Jake Early, a stay at El Capitan Canyon Resort, a guided hike at Naples for 20 people, and more.
Reception guests enjoyed live music by Susan and Sierra Reeves, Bruce Goldish, and Paull E. Rubin & the Guinness Brothers. The female duo Small Yet Powerful entertained guests on the outdoor patio as the sun was setting.
The "juried show” was directed by well-known plein air artist and juror John Iwerks.
"The upcoming SCAPE Art Show will expose our community to the beauty of the Gaviota Coast, and Naples in particular, as seen through the eyes of artists," said Phil McKenna, president of the Gaviota Coast Conservancy. "These talented artists are adept at capturing the emotions of being there, and their inspiring works will offer us the opportunity to own beautiful representations of the places which make our community worth living in. Through their art we see what is at stake. Purchasing this art not only furthers the cause of conservation, it enriches the buyer with a reminder of the beauty of this place.”
The artist exhibit also included screenings of a film by Beezhan Tulu called Selma Rubin and Community Life and Shaw Leonard’s trailer of his newest film, Gaviota, the End of Southern California. Question-and-answer sessions with the filmmakers followed the screenings.
The Gaviota Coast Conservancy, located in southern Santa Barbara County, includes the coastal watersheds between Coal Oil Point in Goleta to Point Arguello on Vandenberg Air Force Base, and the remainder of Vandenberg's coast to Point Sal. The portion down-coast of Point Conception constitutes about 15 percent of Southern California's coast, yet contains approximately 50 percent of its remaining rural coastline.
Expanding urbanization has displaced agriculture on fertile coastal plains along Southern California's coastline, reduced public beach access, and stressed coastal watersheds and marine ecosystems. Rapid population growth in the region has led to dramatic loss of native biological diversity, and a general decline in the health of ecosystems we depend on.
To meet these challenges and preserve our coastal heritage, the Gaviota Coast Conservancy is dedicated to long-term strategies to permanently protect the Gaviota Coast. For more information, click here or call 805.683.3381.
SCAPE was founded in 2002 and has grown to more than 200 members, a diverse group including nationally known and local artists, students, patrons and even gallery owners. Membership is open to everyone who wants to participate. SCAPE’s goals are to have exhibitions to help raise money to protect open spaces, to increase public awareness of environmental and conservation issues, and to promote camaraderie and provide education for artists. Membership is open year-round. Call 805.570.9195 or click here for information.
The Naples Coalition is a Santa Barbara-based public benefit, tax-exempt corporation that includes leadership from a number of local nonprofit groups including the Gaviota Coast Conservancy, the Los Padres Chapter of the Sierra Club, the Santa Barbara Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation, the Santa Barbara Chapter of the Audubon Society, the Citizens Planning Association of Santa Barbara County, the Santa Barbara County Action Network and the League of Women Voters of Santa Barbara. The Naples Coalition is dedicated to the preservation of the rural character of the Naples property on the Gaviota coast. Call 805.683.3381 or click here for more information.
— Noozhawk contributing writer Rochelle Rose can be reached at [email protected]. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkSociety, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Become a fan of Noozhawk on Facebook.