Archive for February, 2014

We at the OQ, along with millions of fans of such superb comedies as “Groundhog Day,” “Ghostbusters” and “Stripes,” were saddened to learn that Harold Ramis, former Ojai resident, died this morning, Feb. 24.

Ramis lived for several years in Ojai at the beautiful and historic Libbey carriage house. The house was most recently owned (and sold) by Reese Witherspoon.




Whole Lotta’ Love On Display

KGartopen 185Whole Lotta Love – Love Potion #9 Art Exhibit at Gallery 525

By Demitri Corbin

Photo Credit: Mary M. Long

On Saturday evening, Feb. 8,  Gallery 525 hosted an artists’ reception for it latest exhibit, Love Potion #9.

The exhibit of small works measuring 9 X 9 inches boasts the work of 30 artists!  The artists took the Valentine-themed show to heart (truly no pun intended), producing vibrant and eclectic show highlighting artists from in and outside the Bubble.  The show’s curators are Gallery 525 owners Kelly Luscombe-Bea and Sooz Glazebrook.

The opening reception began at 5 and when I arrived after a great meal at Papa Lennon’s (they do such a great job!) a crowd was already gathering.   Within no time the crowd swelled and a spectacular event was underway.  I found Kelly and we stole away to the backstage area and had a quick chat.

DC:  I’ve been to Gallery 102 and Porch Gallery but I’ve not had a chance to get here before.  When did you open?

KLB:  2 years ago.  We started with a couple of artists and kept rolling.  There are a lot of deserving artists who are great but no one knows about them.  There are lot of Ojai artists that don’t feel comfortable in the art world here, so the purpose is to show the talent that Ojai has and give them exposure.  And we are selective …

DC:  We?

KLB:  Myself and Sooz Glazebrook.

DC:  Tell me about the beginning.

KLB:  The space opened in 2011 with different people who pulled out of the gallery 3 months in, so Sooz and I took over and began recognizing both emerging and established artists…we want to celebrate the fun and joy of creation, so Love Potion #9, the song inspired this show.  We wanted to do something fun for Valentine with the small works of 9X9 …

DC:  Give me an example of one of the emerging artists.

KLB:  Khalil Lennon, we found her working next door at Papa Lennon’s, she’s 21 or so.  She’s a wonderful new artist…we’ve did this same show one year ago.  Every year we have an open call for artists, everyone can submit.  This gives everyone in town a chance to submit once a year.

DC:  Give me some highlights in the show.

KLB:  Oh, there are so many … Carmen (Abelleira) always … Dianne Bennett, Bruce Samia – he’s up from Hollywood, and Nikki Sims, Ahde Lahti, Roberto Rodriguez … it’s about celebrating creativity, the genius in art. The gallery is also a music venue and small performance space.  It’s all about highlighting the talent that’s right amongst us.

The sound of applause alerted us to a performance starting onstage.

DC:  Thanks Kelly, I think we’d better get back to the party.

KLB:  Thank you, Demitri!

Love Potion #9, the 2nd Annual Small Works show features the work of over 30 artists, is on display at Gallery 525 through March 8.  Gallery 525 is located at 525 W.  El Roblar Ave., Ojai, CA.  For more information visitwww.gallery525.com

A Taste of the Ojai Chautauqua - February 1, 2014The Ojai Chautauqua’s first program – on GMOs (genetically modified organisms) drew a packed crowd to the Ojai Valley Inn & Spa’s Hacienda Room yesterday.

On the panel were three experts in their field, representing a full spectrum of views on this hotly debated topic.

• UC Riverside Professor Alan McHughen, a molecular geneticist and author of the award winning Pandora’s Picnic Basket: The Potential and Hazards of Genetically Modified Foods.

• Gregory Jaffe, an international expert on agricultural biotechnology and biosafety at the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI).

• John W. Roulac, the Founder and CEO of Nutiva® the world’s leading brand of organic hemp foods and coconut oil longtime advocate for holistic living. John is a former Ojai resident.

Our own Fred Bysshe, Ventura County Superior Court Judge, moderated the discussion, and Tom Krause opened the program.

For more information, and a wide range of resources about this issue, visit ojaichautauqua.org.

The purpose of the Ojai Chautauqua, as Krause said, “is a gathering of people and ideas about serious issues of common interest.” And while people’s minds may not be changed, they will leave better informed.

The Chautauqua Movement was born in the 1870s on the shores of the beautiful eponymous lake in western New York as a way to illuminate and entertain people. It represents an ideal of purposeful and engaging debate and information. The founders of the Ojai Chautauqua are planning a weekend event to be held at Libbey Bowl in the near future about agriculture and the issues and challenges it presents.