New art galleries sprout up in Santa Margarita and Paso Robles

Monica_Jane2000@yahoo.comAugust 4, 2013 

You hear about reporters with sources who they will not reveal. You might not expect the visual arts columnist to have one, but I do. This source pops up from time to time via email or Facebook to let me know about interesting and worthwhile art happenings. Tips often come in the spirit of sharing. Other times the artist or event is my source’s client. Sometimes my source nudges friends and clients to contact me directly.

This week, I sussed out a bunch of new tidbits without this source. Or did I?

Thanks to local musician Don Lampson, I discovered that his favorite gal, Peg Grady, has opened a studio with fellow artist Heidi Petersen in Santa Margarita. They call their space at 22705 El Camino Real Studio Uproar. They’re busy with paint, fiber and clay.

Fiasco Gallery plans to open a stall in Studios on the Park in Paso Robles this month. The mysterious outfit invites people to like their page on Facebook to stay updated.

I found out about another new gallery in Paso Robles via an email of a screenshot from reporter Tribune reporter Tonya Strickland. Heritage West Gallery held its grand opening July 13 at 840 13th St. The gallery’s website promises they’ll offer the most extensive selection of fine art in Paso Robles. Susan von Borstel of Davis is the featured artist at the moment and works with oils on natural stone. A Scottsdale, Ariz., location called Heritage Gallery has been open since the 1960s.

Another new-to-me gallery is Amphora Gallery at 4070 Burton Drive in Cambria. “Birds of Summer,” works in clay and paint celebrating the beauty of birds, will be exhibited through the end of the month. Artists include Earthsea Pottery, Foxlo Pottery, Brenda Gale and Gary Gall.

A Muse Gallery at 845 Higuera St. in San Luis Obispo has a featured exhibit through the end of the month. Nipomo master wood craftsman Ken Frye makes large furniture pieces but also creates smaller works such as a jack-in-thebox that resembles a circus tent. Nipomo doll maker Mary Barrette created the porcelain doll that pops out and Frye says he spent 400 hours making the hand-carved pear wood and bubinga tent.

Frye volunteers with Big Brothers Big Sisters of San Luis Obispo County, which will receive a portion of sales.

The last tidbit comes from Annie Holdren, exhibitions curator with the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History. She is looking for landscape paintings depicting an actual, natural landscape from Monterey, San Benito, Santa Cruz, or San Luis Obispo counties. Artists from those four counties are invited to submit paintings for the juried exhibit by Sept. 30. For more information, see

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