Students! Apply to work with an artist for the summer 2018. Deadline May 25

Students! Apply to work with an artist for the summer 2018. Deadline May 25

Four local artists of note have signed up to mentor four student artists this summer in the City of Ojai Arts Commission’s 5th annual Artist Mentor Program.  Now it’s time for student artists to do their own signing up so they can learn from these first-class artists.

Pastel artist Jannene Behl (pictured) has studied with legendary pastel artist Bert Collins; her students will study at Collins’ studio in the company of adult students to experience a community of artists. Sculptor and glass artist Stephen Dee Edwards is  world-renowned and a winner of many awards with international exhibits of his glass art. Printmaker Gail Pike Hercher will acquaint her student with the many artful and commercial uses of prints and will introduce her student to the concept of interning with other artists.  Patricia Anders, whose specialty is drawing, especially in symbolic imagery, also works in mixed media, both traditional and alternative. She will encourage her student to keep a journal of their work.

Over the summer, each student artist will work with the mentor for 50 hours learning the artmaking each mentor offers.  Past experience assures the program will be meaningful for the students. “It’s thrilling to hear the mentors talk about how exciting it’s been to see the students’ creativity expand in the course of the summer,” said Michael Addison, Chair of the Arts Commission. “It’s clear that the Mentors and Students have poured their hearts into their work together.”

Student Application form is below.

A student applicant must be in one of the high schools—private or public—in the Ojai Valley. Their parents must also live in the Valley.  The deadline for applications is May 25, 2018.  The Ojai Education Foundation has partnered with the City in sponsoring the program.

Artist Joanne Pavlak Finds Beauty in Nature’s Textures

Artist Joanne Pavlak Finds Beauty in Nature’s Textures

“Fields…Gatherings…Wanderings” An exhibit at Ojai City Hall Gallery featuring the work of Joanne Pavlak.

Joanne Pavlak, a resident of Ojai has an exhibit at the City Hall Gallery and the Ojai Valley Museum through May 25. The public is invited to an artist reception during Ojai’s Third Friday, April 20 from 5:30 – 7:00.

Pavlak’s work is finely detailed. Some might think it’s completely abstract, but as Pavlak explains, her work has a basis in the natural world:

As a child I was aware that the sky was big and wondered if it ever ended.  In my reachable, touchable world I looked at details, collected ‘specimens’ and played with worms.  As an adult, I worked in the Biological Sciences Department at USC and gained a basic understanding of  nature’s complex systems, and through an electron microscope, saw the secret world of organisms and plants. I still look at details, collect specimens, star gaze and imagine beyond the visible.  This is what fuels my art.

Pavlak  received  her BFA from the University of Washington.  In Seattle her work was shown at Francine Seders Gallery  in both solo and group shows.  She was also an invited participant in groups shows at Soil Art Gallery (Seattle), Gage Academy of Art (Seattle), Kirkland Arts Center (Kirkland, WA), Skagit Valley College (Mt. Vernon, WA), and  had a solo show at Pierce College Fine Arts Gallery (Lakewood, WA).  In 2010 she was nominated for and awarded a month long artist residency by the Jentel Arts Foundation in Banner, Wyoming. Pavlak is currently a member of The Ojai Studio Artists.


  • Joanne Pavlak D08-01
    Joanne Pavlak D08-01

Arts Commission Accepting Mentor Applications – 2018

Arts Commission Accepting Mentor Applications – 2018

ojai mentor program 2014Applications Due on March 23.

The City of Ojai Arts Commission is accepting applications for artists who wish to participate in the 2018 Artists Mentor Program. This is the fourth year for the successful program, which pairs working artists with students for a summer internship.

“Although this is for a summer internship, we are starting the process earlier this year. This will allow students more time to qualify without interfering with their year-end school activities,” said Ojai Arts Commissioner Michael Addison. “We are currently looking for four Ojai artists for the mentoring program. We are trying to make the process as easy as possible and they can complete their application online.”

Please fill out application below.

Arts Commission Awards $25,000 in Grants to Arts Organizations

$25,000 in grants was awarded among 9 Ojai-based arts organizations, it was announced today by Arts Commission Chairman Michael Addison. “We had 6 recipients last year and this year we’ve awarded 50% more grants for a total of 9. That’s very satisfying,” he said. “The word is getting out to local arts organizations that the City is committed to its artists.”

The nine recipients are: the Ojai Youth Opera, at $6,000, whose goal is to build on the success of their “Brundibar” production in Libbey Bowl last year; the Ojai Art Center at $5,250, which wants to increase production values of its theatrical season’s offerings, including the casting of some professional artists; Focus on the Masters, granted $3,000 to promote a critical thinking initiative they’ve created called Learning to See.

Also, the Ojai Music Festival, at $2,500, to develop its Family Arts Daycare Camp to stimulate children to make art; Performances to Grow On, the recipient of $2,000 which will allow them to created 3 performances especially for children; Ojai Performing Arts Theater at $2,000, which allows the theater-making organization to expand its season to 3 productions while encouraging a conversation between professional actors and those new to theater arts.

Madrigali, Ojai’s legendary early music chamber group, was awarded $1,650 to pay for artistic personnel performing at 6 at senior centers and public schools; and, at $1,500, the visual artist Brian Berman who would continue with his annual Peace Concert.

“Keeping it Cool in Ojai: Seekers and Dreamers” at Ojai City Gallery

“Keeping it Cool in Ojai: Seekers and Dreamers” at Ojai City Gallery

  • Myrna Cambianica "The Nest" 1st Place
“Keeping it Cool in Ojai: Seekers and Dreamers,” an open show featuring works by artists within the Ojai Valley opens Monday, January 15 and run through March 16, 2018.
The 1st and 2nd place winners works are exhibited at the Ojai Valley Museum. The winners are Myrna Cambianica for “The Nest” and Andreas Giesea for “Past and Future for the Present.” The exhibit was juried by Focus on the Masters founder and Executive Director, Donna Granta.
When judging a photography show I always look for the artist’s voice. I look for that uniqueness that stands out among the mundane. Great photography takes the ordinary and makes it extraordinary. It is the difference between a snapshot and a work of art. – Donna Granata
The public is invited to a reception for the artists during “Third Friday” from 5:30 to 7:00 pm at Ojai City Hall on Friday, February 16, 2018. The Ojai City Hall Gallery is located at 401 S. Ventura St., Ojai, CA.

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