Artwalk 2015 brings Santa Monica community together

The Santa Monica Cultural Affairs Division hosted their 9th annual Santa Monica Airport Artwalk this past Saturday displaying local artists' works for the public in a culturally-stimulating event filled with activities, food, music, and more. It was quite a bustling scene at the Santa Monica Airport Artwalk, satisfying the art lover's soul and bringing an accessible and free dose of culture and art to our community.

With food trucks lined up and live music that provided entertainment, visitors meandered through the event's studios and activities.

Sitting proudly by their works, the Santa Monica Airport Artwalk's host of artists diligently answered questions regarding their works, chatting up locals and mingling with other artists alike.

Studios displayed amazing and inspiring works of art from the likes of local artists like Claudia Concha, whose works she excitably and enthusiastically described as a "psychological and spiritual expression of the internal psyche and emotions - the subconscious."

Concha, born in Bogota, Columbia, received a bachelor's degree in Architecture from the University of Los Andes in Bogota Columbia. And after studying at both the Edinburgh College of Art in Scotland and the Lorenzo Dei Medici School of Art in Italy, she found a desire to express deeper emotions in her journey as an artist.

Participating in an abstract expressionism workshop with Rita Miranda, a renowned Colombian artist, Concha developed her own unique brand of art. "I paint with my eyes closed and my left hand to better capture the subconscious," explained Concha.

What makes the Santa Monica Airport Artwalk so remarkable is its emphasis on community. Activities like Paula Rosen's, a local jewelry wholesaler, jewelry-making station brought together the community in a mass of both lighthearted fun and art appreciation.

Santa Monica College hosted it's own unique participation in this conglomerate of art appreciation and presentation. The Art Mentor Program, led by SMC Art Department Chair Ron Davis and taught by Carlson Hatton, presented its select group of student's works from the SMC Art Department. In the program students are challenged to explore their own creative work and that of others in unique and innovative ways. Students create portfolios and are encouraged to present themselves as professionals in the visual arts community.

SMC's Ceramic Arts Department also participated in the event encouraging the community to "participate in a fun communal, ceramic piece." SMC students and alumni were there answering questions regarding the distinctive process of ceramics and demonstrating various processes throughout the studio to interested locals and fellow students alike.

Not only was art at the focus of the event but also the environment. The Bottle Cap Art Project with Resource, Recovering, and Recycling encourages both art appreciation and environmental conscientiousness in a unique way. In an effort to highlight the "City's expanding curbside composting program and household hazardous waste collection" a mural made entirely of bottle caps, organized by the Resource Recovery and Recycling Division, will be on display at the Santa Monica Festival in May. Participants, all smiles, happily glued and drilled bottle caps to the piece itself.

This event definitely captured the artistic soul that partially defines the city of Santa Monica itself. The Artwalk succeeded in bringing the community together to celebrate art.