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Autumn Flowers: Art blossoms in Old Torrance at The California Museum of Fine Art

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by Vy Nguyen

Dali Higa, “Staring into the Blue”

Dali Higa, “Staring into the Blue”

Ready for autumn? This Saturday, The California Museum of Fine Art opens its 2013 fall exhibition, with the downtown Torrance venue featuring works by Tom Balderas, Galust Berian, Nancy Crookston, Glenn Dean, Hollis Dunlap, Dali Higa, Terry Miura, Gregory Packard, Derek Penix, and Vadim Zanginian.

Brian Higa, the spokesperson for gallery, wants attending guests attending to know that they will be viewing exceptional art.

“We are featuring a diverse group of talented artists with eye-catching works,” he says. “We feel we have chosen the best artists from around the country and they are all our favorites. The 15 artists (including resident artists Millie Greene, Dan McCaw, Danny McCaw, John McCaw and Max Turner) featured in our Fall Exhibition Show were culled from hundreds of submissions.”

“Mother Nina,” by Vadim Zanginian

“Mother Nina,” by Vadim Zanginian

One of those talented artists is Dali Higa. Higa is originally from Hangzhou, China, and has a background in corporate business. However, art was always her passion. She has studied art in many places, including China, Paris, and the United States.

Higa describes her artwork as “dynamic, heartfelt, rich, passionate, honest and engaging.”

“Lifting,” by Glenn Dean

“Lifting,” by Glenn Dean

Her paintings reflect her love and hunger for seeing the world, and many of her pieces are inspired by the figures and landscapes that she sees during her travels.

One of Higa’s oil paintings, titled “Staring into the Blue,” is of a mother and son, and it was inspired during her trip to Guizhou, China. It depicts a mother in a bright blue shirt, and a small child harnessed to her back by some straps. The mother looks back at her child, while his attention is caught by something far away. The background of this painting is done with muted color as if to focus the attention on the bright colors of the mother and child.

“Connection,” by Hollis Dunlap

“Connection,” by Hollis Dunlap

“Dali travels to remote locations in search of indigenous people embedded in native settings,” her website states, “allowing her to capture unfiltered moments frozen in time. One may find her art in collections throughout the world.”

Like Dali Higa, fellow award-winning artist Glenn Dean also believes in the importance of location in this artwork. Despite the fact that he was a fan of art since he was only thirteen years old, it was not until his early 20s that he realized where his passion in the arts truly lies: in the works of the early California and Western landscape painters of the early 1990s.

“Their work,” he says, “emphasized the importance of seeing the color of light combined with interesting compositions of seemingly effortless designs while carefully observing the simple and basic characteristics of a specific location.”

Untitled, by Gregory Packard

Untitled, by Gregory Packard

Dean’s oil painting entitled “Lifting” demonstrates his inspiration and adoration of scenery art. It captures the simple beauty of nature, mainly using earthy colors such as brown and mossy green.

His website notes that he “feels that the landscape is a divine gift, and his goal as an artist is to honor The Creator through painting the best he can with the gifts and tools that have been given to him. Glenn feels that time in the field and in the studio are equally important.”

Most people would not see a connection between the words “art exhibition” and “entertainment,” but Brian Higa wants them to reconsider.

“If you appreciate fine art,” he says, “spend an entertaining Saturday evening in downtown Torrance at our opening. There will be a jazz band, wine, and light refreshments, and some of the artists will be present to answer questions about their work. Also, there are many fine retail outlets and eateries in the area to stroll to if you want to make it a date night.”

The California Museum of Fine Art’s fall exhibition opens Saturday with a reception from 4 to 10 p.m., located at 1421 Marcelina Avenue, Torrance. Admission is free for all guests attending the gallery. (323) 908-8909 or go to calmuseumoffineart.com.

 

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