Lookie-Loo Weekend: Ojai Studio Artists Tour

Picture strolling 50+ studios and chatting with the people who create within.

Cindy Pitou Burton

THAT CREATIVE CITY: While many a California town has transformed into a destination for thinkers and innovators and painters and dreamers over the decades, Ojai has long held the easy vibe of doin' its own thing. That thing could be holistic studies or the writing of poems or grape-growing or beer-making or what-have-you, but Ojai has always been very "what-have-you" friendly. One could retreat to the Ojai Valley and ponder a next step, a big change, or pursuing a dream. That this is the Ojai way isn't to be taken lightly; the cities that welcome and encourage creativity and exploration as a core tenet of life are too few to take any for granted. It's also given Ojai a wealth of talented citizens, artists and creators who call the beautiful Ventura County town home. Maybe the nightly Pink Moment -- when the mountains turn the color of papaya, ever so briefly -- helps draw those in the visual arts, or the general natural beauty of the area. But the what-have-you-ness is strong in the city, which lends comfort to every creative person, truly. Over 50 of those creators will welcome visitors into their studios, where all of that sculpting and jewelry making and fashioning of prints goes down, over the second weekend in October.

OJAI STUDIO ARTISTS TOUR: The studios hang out the proverbial "Welcome" signs from Friday, Oct. 11 to Sunday, Oct. 13. A slide show and talk are part of the proceedings, or you can just leg it -- or drive it -- around, seeing what you'd like to see and chatting up the artists within. The glass and stone sculptures of Brian Berman, the face-fantastic sculptures of Ted Gall, and and the paintings of Ruth Farnham are three highlights. Plus? Getting to enter a space where clay and canvas become rather magical things. Too much? The use of the word "magical"? We don't think so. After all, this is Ojai, a pretty magical burg. Have you ever seen a Pink Moment? You, too, will start applying the word "magical" more liberally to the arts and people of the valley.

TICKET AND TOUR... info can be found this way.

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