California Cool a Great Success

On Saturday, February 4, Laguna Art Museum’s annual Art Auction fundraiser with works by over 100 California artists reached sales of over $366,000 [see my video story from the event above].  Proceeds from the event benefit the museum’s exhibitions and education programs. The highlight of the evening was the much anticipated live auction led by Aaron Bastian of Bonhams.  The museum once again partnered with Paddle8, the leading online auction house, and absentee bids from near and far added a further element of excitement to the competitive bidding.

Highlights of the live auction included eager bidding on Lita Albuquerque’s Emanation, John Baldessari’s Octagon, and Andy Moses’s Morphology 725.  Other notable live auction works included Ed Ruscha’s artist book On the Road and Bradley Hankey’s The Beginning, the signature work of this year’s Art Auction.  The live auction raised over $145,000.
The evening also included a Fund-A-Need campaign, presented by Laguna Beach High School Art Department Chair Bridget Beaudry-Porter and Laguna Art Museum Curator of Educator Marinta Skupin, which raised $18,000 specifically to support the museum’s K-12 children’s education programs.
Art Auction 2017: California Cool’s silent auction component featured an additional 95 museum-curated works of art and was highly successful with over $147,000 in sales.  From February 6 to 12, unsold works from the auction will be available for purchase at their minimum bid price (50 percent of stated value).  The works can be viewed online here.
In addition to the great art, 350 guests enjoyed the culinary talents of West Coast Event Productions, wine by Wine Gallery, desserts by Simply Sweet Cakery, and specialty coffee and teas by Urth Caffé.  A classic Hollywood ambience featured floral designs by Laguna Nursery, event lighting and production by The Showpros Group, and upbeat music throughout the evening.  Guests mingled with fellow collectors, the museum’s curators and executive director Dr. Malcolm Warner, and 26 of the featured artists, including Jeremy Kidd, Kristin Leachman, Andy Moses, Phillip K. Smith III, and LG Williams.
The Art Auction 2017 team was led by co-chairs Sara Heeschen and Deborah Lake; committee members Tina Cook, Jeannie Denholm, Ruben Flores, Vanessa Helin, Lauren MacLaughlin-Brinker, and Karen Morally; and Laguna Art Museum’s Director of Special Events, Sarah Strozza.
Laguna Art Museum’s Art Auction, its 35th year, is the longest running art auction in California and one of Orange County’s most exciting art and social experiences.  The event is a major annual fundraiser for the museum’s exhibitions and education programs, with proceeds supporting the museum’s dedication to collecting and preserving California art, presenting critically acclaimed exhibitions, and enhancing art education programs for all. To learn more visit