LAM reveals new Art + Nature programs, launches call for artists


The Laguna Art Museum’s (LAM) 11th annual Art + Nature gallery exhibitions are currently on view, including Escape – Route by Luciana Abait and Burghers of Cali: A Ballad of Redwood Spirits by Andre Woodward.

The museum has announced its new Art + Nature public programs, including an innovative art workshop, illustrated lectures led by featured artists, and an open call for artists’ submissions to participate in the 12th annual Art + Nature.

Escape – Route, Luciana Abait (left). Burghers of Cali: A Ballad of Redwood Spirits, Andre Woodward (right). Courtesy of Laguna Art Museum.

The Art + Nature Festival is the museum’s largest public program of the year, bringing together tens of thousands of participants to foster an appreciation of nature, raise environmental awareness and discover cross-sections between nature and the arts.

Escape – Route by Luciana Abait

On view through March 8, Abait’s narrative installation immerses viewers in a road trip through the American West. A sculptural map underscores our world’s physicality and interconnectedness, while striking images guide the audience through diverse environments, ultimately leading to water as a symbol of life and renewal.

Burghers of Cali: A Ballad of Redwood Spirits by Andre Woodward: 

On view through Feb. 4, Woodward’s installation centers on California’s Coastal Redwoods, examining complex human relationships with nature. These ancient trees, facing threats from historical wood harvesting, highlight the current climate and environmental challenges. 

Saturday, Jan. 27 at 6 p.m.

Join an artist talk featuring renowned multimedia artist Luciana Abait. Abait, whose exhibit is currently captivating audiences as a highlighted element of this year’s program, will lead an illustrated lecture where she will provide insights into her artistic journey, creative process, and the profound themes of climate change, environmental fragility, and their interconnectedness with immigration. Following the talk, a curated Q&A session with the artist will allow guests to engage intimately with her work in the museum’s mezzanine gallery.

Saturday, Feb. 3, at 6 p.m.

Join an artist talk between featured Art + Nature artist Andre Woodward and renowned art critic, Shana Nys Dambrot, Arts Editor at L.A. Weekly. Woodward’s Art + Nature installation at the Laguna Art Museum, Burghers of Cali: A Ballad of Redwood Spirits, whimsically references Rodin’s The Burghers of Calais and poses penetrating questions about our complex human relationships with the natural world and, specifically, California’s Coastal Redwoods, the tallest trees on earth able to live to be 2,500 years old. Shana Nys Dambrot brings her voice and insight to help further our understanding of this encounter of art and nature as we shift from celebration to urgency.

Andre Woodward is a Southern California artist whose work examines our complicated relationship with nature. Born in Newport Beach, he received a masters degree from California State University, Long Beach, and a bachelor’s from the University of California, Irvine. Woodward’s work has been shown in alternative and traditional sites around California, including Southern California galleries, the Torrance Art Museum, and the Huntington Beach Art Center. He has received a Hoff Foundation Grant and the 2011 Visions from the New California award. Woodward is interested in biodiversity and complexity theory, and the unique balance they embody. His sculptures attempt to personify the ecological facilitation between nature, technology and humanity using a mixture of manmade and natural materials. His carefully composed objects highlight the urban environment in relation to the natural world. 

Sunday, Feb. 11, at 1 p.m.

In this workshop, Luciana Abait will lead participants to create a surreal landscape working with a mixed media technique similar to the one she uses in her works. Abait will speak briefly about surrealism and the language of dreams and will explain how that relates to her work. She will then invite participants to create their own artwork to express their dreams or what they would like to dream of.

Participants will be provided with several photographs of landscapes, laser copies of minute objects that they can cut out to insert into the landscapes to create a surreal scene, and acrylic painting to add texture and mood to the collage and turn the work into a mixed media piece. 

Saturday, Feb. 22, at 6 p.m.

Join Laguna Art Museum and Grace Farms for a stimulating panel discussion with three prominent figures in California’s sustainable realms of food, fashion, and architecture: Camilla Marcus, the visionary Founder of West-Bourne; Shilpa Shah, the dynamic CEO and Founder of Cuyana, and Sharon Johnston, the accomplished Partner at Johnston Marklee Architects.

Panelists will delve into the motivations that drive entrepreneurs to become changemakers, unravel the essence of sustainability in everyday language, and explore actionable steps toward shaping the world we aspire to witness. 


Call For Artists: 12th Annual Art + Nature In 2024

Laguna Art Museum invites visionary artists to participate in the 12th Annual Art + Nature slated for November 2024. This dynamic program encompasses a multifaceted celebration that converges outdoor installations, performances, exhibitions, workshops and leading thinkers at the intersection of creativity and the environment.

For over a decade, the museum has sought proposals from artists for outdoor works to be displayed in Laguna Beach’s public spaces surrounding the museum for approximately four consecutive days during the first week of November. Reflecting on previous years, notable artists have contributed remarkable projects, transforming these spaces into evocative experiences. 

The museum seeks Letters of Interest from artists, including their biography/CV, examples of previous work and an artist’s statement explaining how their work aligns with the ethos of Art + Nature. Letters of Interest must be received by LAM no later than Tuesday, Jan. 30. Artists can submit their proposals to Victoria Gerard at [email protected]. 

Selected artists will advance to the Request for Proposal (RFP) stage. Submissions during the RFP stage will undergo review by the museum’s panel based on concept merit and feasibility.

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