The Ida O’Keeffe exhibit of paintings, monotypes, and photographs far exceeded our expectations. A true highlight was the display of Ida’s large personal scrapbook, where she had kept newspaper clippings from her exhibits in the East and South, as well and items from Whittier.
This Bohemian Night image is one of the silk-screened posters that the Art Association used to advertise their Bohemian Night shows. The Whittier Art Association formed a partnership with the Whittier Civic Light Opera,
and what began as some humorous skits, performed in 1952, ended up as a very well attended annual event that lasted more than ten years.
Anna Hills of Laguna Beach, internationally known landscapist, dies of a heart attack.
Mabel George Haig exhibits at the Laguna Beach Art Gallery in July, 1930. Her water color painting, Shanty Town
is entry #18. Some of the other participating artists are George Brandriff, Benjamin Brown, Frank Cuprien, Elanor Colburn, Phil Dike, Clyde Forsythe, William Griffith, Anna A. Hills, Joseph Kleitsch, Hanson Puthuff, Edgar Payne,
and Donna Schuster.
Meeting called to form an Art Association.
Plans are made for the Pio Pico Mansion to become the home of the Whittier Art Gallery. Mrs. Myron Haig
“motors” with others to Laguna to seek advice from William Griffith. The Whittier Art Association opens a temporary gallery on Philadelphia Street in Whittier.
William A. Griffith, three times president of the Laguna Beach Art Association, exhibits his paintings at the
Whittier Art Gallery. Ruth Peabody exhibits her statuary.
William Alexander Griffith
𝘓𝘢𝘨𝘶𝘯𝘢 𝘉𝘦𝘢𝘤𝘩, 1927
Pastel on linen stretched to artist’s board, 15.75 X 20 in.
Laguna Beach Art Association past president, William Griffith, spoke at the gallery’s open meeting. “He
encouraged the members of the Whittier [Art] Association in the belief that Whittier too, can be made an
important art and cultural center”. He went on to say, “I wish you all the luck in the world, and Laguna will do everything possible to help you”.
Laguna artists William Brandriff and Ida May Sharpless exhibit at the Whittier Art Gallery.
Edgar Payne paints a demonstration picture at the Whittier Art Gallery. He was the first president of the Laguna Beach Art Association, and he is “one of California’s most prominent painters.
Edgar Payne exhibits 36 canvases at the Whittier Art Gallery. More than 100 people watch his painting demonstration on opening night. His paintings “bring to Whittier all the light and color and grandeur of the wide-open spaces of many places”.
The California Water Color Society exhibits 60 watercolor paintings at the gallery. Among the exhibiting artists were: Phil Dike, Hardie Gramatky, Mabel George Haig, Eduard Vysekal, Donna Schuster, and Lucille Hinkle.
Emil Kosa Jr. exhibits water color paintings and drawings at the gallery. Also exhibited are paintings by Alfred W. Johnston, sculpture by various artists, pottery by pupils of Glen Lukens, and pastels by Harry Muir Kurtzworth.
Mr. Kurtzworth is the director of the Los Angeles Art Association.
The Los Angeles Times Newspaper announces that the writing of the late Anna Hills, “How to Judge Pictures”,
will be read at a meeting of the Whittier Art Association. Anna Hills was one of the cofounders of the
Laguna Beach Art Center and Gallery.
Note: The correct title of the document is “How to Judge a Picture”, written by Anna Hills for a talk she gave about two months before she passed away in 1930.
The Whittier Art Gallery exhibits paintings by the late Anna Hills; water colors by Mabel George Haig, and
engravings by Paul Landacre. Harry Muir Kurtzworth will speak at the open meeting on “Art in Southern California”.
Anna Althea Hills
𝘚𝘶𝘯𝘴𝘩𝘪𝘯𝘦 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘚𝘩𝘢𝘥𝘰𝘸𝘴, 1915
Oil on board, 7 X 10 in.
The Whittier Art Association lost their temporary Whittier Art Gallery space on Philadelphia Street. After several months, they open a new “Gallery at Pickering and Broadway” in Whittier’s old Broadway School building.
The Broadway School was demolished six months after the WAA opened their gallery there. The WAA provided exhibits at the Whittier Woman’s Club House until they constructed their own galley.
Forrest Randall “brings a cosmopolitan opportunity to Whittier for his water colors have been exhibited in the
Feragil galleries in New York, and his wall paper designs in the Waldorf Astoria in that city.”
Work on the first unit of the Whittier Art Gallery will commence tomorrow. Donor Fred L. Pease, architect
William Harrison, and contractor Raymond Hunnicutt will attend. The Art Association secured a site on Painter Avenue which is one of the most attractive streets and one of the main entrances of the city.
Ground breaking exercises were held at 727 South Painter Avenue, attended by Art Association members and representatives of leading civic organizations. Mrs. Mryon Haig, president of the Whittier Art Association, accepted the deed of the property on which would be built the new home of the Whittier Art Center. She turned at least one shovel of dirt to speed up the actual building work.
Note: The gallery’s original address of 727 So. Painter Ave. was changed to 8035 Painter Ave. in the 1960s.
Construction of the first unit of the Whittier Art Center (Gallery) will be 36 X 36 feet facing East, so arranged that an ell can be added to the Southwest corner and then further galleries on the West end of the lot as the need develops.
Only the exterior of the gallery was completed until more funds were raised to complete the inside. “Friends of the Association” solicited funds. Whittier citizens who supported the cause are listed.
The Laguna Beach Art Gallery exhibits 76 canvases in the 12th Anniversary show. Some of the exhibiting artists
were William Wendt, Joseph Kleitsch, William A. Griffith, Mabel George Haig, Karl Yens, Frank Cuprien, and
The Whittier Art Gallery was given warm support from the Whittier Woman’s Club, Jr. Woman’s Club, East Whittier Woman’s Club, the Business and Professional Woman’s Club, the Parent-Teachers Association (PTA), and organizations in every school district, covering the entire community. The town’s businessmen also contributed.
Mabel George Haig was invited to exhibit at the World’s Fair on Treasure Island.
Whittier artist Forrest Randall designs fabric for one of Scarlett O’Hara’s costumes worn in the motion picture
“Gone With the Wind”.
The gallery has been designed with “special lighting effects”, and the walls will be of burlap.
“The building has been so constructed that…a wing or wings may be added.”
New Building of Whittier Art Group to Open Tonight.
“All is in readiness for the opening tonight at 8 o’clock of the galleries of the Whittier Art Association, South Painter Avenue and Moorland Drive. Members of the organization, aided by loyal friends, have labored months towards this achievement.”
Arthur Millier reports that 600 visitors attended the gallery’s opening night. He closed with, “Because the gallery is so fine, it has already been offered exhibitions of a quality which ordinarily Whittier would never have a chance to see. Whittier has shown Southern California the way”.
April 16, 1939, 𝘓𝘰𝘴 𝘈𝘯𝘨𝘦𝘭𝘦𝘴 𝘛𝘪𝘮𝘦𝘴
Phil Dike exhibits water colors with thirteen other artists at the Whittier Art Gallery’s
Note: Phil Dike was California Water Color Society President in 1938. He was employed by the Walt Disney
Studios 1935 – 1945, where he taught drawing composition. He contributed to both Snow White and Fantasia.
Phil Dike was a key figure in the development of California style of water color painting.
Art critic, Philip A. Ramus, the fine arts connoisseur of London and Hollywood, will speak about the Paris Bordone painting.
Painting of Renaissance painter, Paris Bordone, is displayed at the Whittier Art Gallery. The painting is valued at $125,000.
Visitors from London and eight states come to view the 400 year old Renaissance painting by Paris Bordone.
Rex Brandt and other artists from the Progressive Art Center of Southern California, exhibit “modern” paintings at the Gallery. Young artist Rex Brandt, became a nationally recognized artist and Associate of the National Academy
of Design. He returned to have a solo exhibit at the Whittier Art Gallery in December of 1957.
Paintings by conservative painters, Hanson Puthuff, Katheryn Leighton, Jessie Botke, William Wendt, Clyde Forsythe, George Brandriff, William Ritschel, Jack W. Smith, Carl Borg, and others, are exhibited. The paintings
were sent from the Biltmore Salon In Los Angeles.
The Whittier Art Association formed in 1934 during the depths of the Great Depression. The Art Association opened its first Whittier Art Gallery in the middle of Whittier’s business district, featuring exhibits by professional artists from Los Angeles to the art colony in Laguna Beach.
The Whittier Art Gallery provides its first Jr. Art Exhibit, December 5 through January 2 of 1948. It was a
competitive exhibit of student artwork from the Whittier City Schools.