Santa Paula Times

Art society exhibit opens Sunday

August 02, 2000
Santa Paula News
One of the most anticipated art shows in the Santa Clara River Valley is coming to the California Oil Museum when the Santa Paula Society of the Arts presents its annual exhibit. “Distinctly Santa Paula: The Society of the Arts Paints the Town” opens Sunday, Aug. 6 with an opening reception sponsored by Santa Clara Valley Bank. The reception will be held from 1 to 4 p.m.The society’s exhibit offers a unique blend of outstanding art talent and like subject matter. The exhibit honors the concept of the first - now annual - Santa Paula Art Show held in 1936, with all paintings concentrating on scenes and subjects found within eight miles of Santa Paula’s downtown center.In this new exhibit, the rural beauty for which Santa Paula is known is captured in two dozen artworks created by members of the society, noted artists all who have taken brush in hand to recreate their favorite local scenes.But there is more, said SPSA President Virginia Gunderson. “We asked our artists to share some thoughts about the inspiration our surroundings afforded them and the society’s place in the art history of our region. They add a very nice touch,” to the exhibit.The exhibit honors the Santa Paula Art Show, first organized in 1936 by prominent river valley artists including Jesse Arms and Cornelis Botke as well as Douglas Shively (Gunderson’s uncle and art inspiration). That first show required that subject matter be confined to the area within eight miles of Santa Paula, a concept that was dropped for the subsequent juried art shows. The goal of presenting outstanding contemporary artworks has continued, with the past show garnering over 400 entries - including photography and mixed media - from throughout the nation.Formed in 1968 by students of artist Bette Palmer, the Santa Paula Society of the Arts meets regularly to advance and share their knowledge of art, offers Demonstration Meetings where noted artists display technique and provides scholarships to student artists.
The society has grown steadily over the years and members regularly show art at numerous venues throughout the city: long headquartered in the Depot, while the society awaits its return it has established a gallery (and a unique art rental program) in The Mill, sponsors revolving exhibits at Blanchard Community Library on the Douglas Shively Memorial Wall, and has works displayed at Santa Clara Valley Hospice and First Western Bank, among other locations.“Distinctly Santa Paula: The Society of the Arts Paints the Town” will continue at the museum - located on the corner of 10th and Main streets - through September 17.Museum hours are Wednesday through Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free but donations ($2 adults, $1 children) are requested.For more information, call the museum at 933-0076.