Festival of Arts not Recession Proof but in the Black


The recession not withstanding, the Festival of Art’s finances are sound. During last Thursday’s annual Membership Meeting, FoA President Fred Sattler reported that the festival had another successful year, largely due to the well-attended Pageant of the Masters which provides roughly 75 percent of the festival’s revenue. Sattler also credited its membership, strong art sales, prudent financial management and a cadre of tireless volunteers.

Revenues for 2010 totaled slightly more than $8.4 million while expenses hovered around $7.7 million, leaving a surplus of $563, 368.

That is a slight decrease from last year when revenue stood roughly at $8.7 million, expenses at $7.7 million and surplus totaled $1.1 million.

President of the FoA board of directors, Wayne Baglin reported that refurbishment of the festival grounds last season lead to further planned improvements like the enlargement of Pageant of the Masters participants’ showers and dressing rooms. He also revealed the festival’s planned alteration of its entrance façade and lease of 32,000 square feet of land on the slope above the Irvine Bowl.

Chair of the Scholarship Committee, Pat Kollenda, reported that the festival awarded $94, 400 in scholarship money for the 2010/2011 academic year to 17 LBHS graduates and 32 returning scholarship recipients in visual art, performing art, dance, writing and music.

Exhibits Committee chair Tom Lamb introduced the future opening of two satellite galleries, Festival of Arts South and Festival of Arts North.

FoA South is a gallery space operating in conjunction with the yogurt shop Active Culture. It is designed as a community outreach showcasing FoA art and the history of Laguna Beach. Its inaugural exhibit organized by gallerist Peter Blake featuring photography by Stillman F. Sawyer will open this week.

FoA North will serve as a research and storage facility for the festival’s permanent collection and is not open to the public.

Lamb also reported that the Festival had bought three pieces from the 2009 exhibit for its permanent collection by Sandra Jones Campbell, Pat Sparkuhl and Barbara Hendricks. It also received the complete collection of Stillman Sawyer photographs and $100,000 for curating and start up funds for the Sawyer Photographic Learning Center.

Diane Challis Davy introduced “Only Make Believe,” this summer’s pageant production and recognized Shar Vazant, Reg Raby and Frank Wales, a 39-year volunteer, with Life Membership awards. House Manager Marilyn Wood was recognized for 50 years of service.  And, since there were only three nominees for the Board of Directors, Pat Kollenda, Tom Lamb and Anita Mangels were reinstated without election.


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