Malibu Sculpture 2010 celebrates outdoor art

More than 40 sculptures created by 14 different artists will be on display throughout Malibu during the summer months.

By Melonie Magruder / Special to The Malibu Times

Art dealer Carl Schlosberg subscribes to the same philosophy as the great philanthropist Jean Paul Getty-the idea that art is a civilizing influence on society and should be made available to the public free for education and enjoyment.

Accordingly, Schlosberg has curated another in his series of public sculpture installations throughout town this summer with “Malibu Sculpture 2010.”

Beginning June 27 and continuing throughout July and August, more than 40 sculptures created by 14 different artists will be on display throughout Malibu. Locations include the Malibu Civic Center, The Malibu Racquet Club and the Malibu Country Mart.

“I just love putting art and nature together out of doors,” Schlosberg said in an interview with The Malibu Times. “With our global community in such turmoil right now, I think that we in Southern California could use a lift. And the best way to boost your spirit is to enjoy some outdoor sculpture. All of the contributors shown here are true optimists as well as true artists.”

This summer represents Schlosberg’s fourth exhibit of outdoor art in Malibu. He and his wife, Judy, lived on Malibu Road for several years, and Schlosberg said he was always inspired by the beautiful vistas Malibu provides.

This year, the various pieces will be found displayed unexpectedly in fields you drive past everyday: Gwynn Murrill’s bronze deer can be seen at the intersection of Stewart Ranch Road and Civic Center Way. Originally commissioned for a city in Japan, it is the first time the whole herd has been displayed together in one place in the United States. Murrill said that she is enjoying seeing spectators “interact” with her pieces on display at the Malibu Country Mart, with children “taking a ride” on the back of her bronze coyote.

“I’ve always enjoyed working with Carl; he does such different stuff from other art dealers,” Murrill said. “He works hard to make it right.”

Bret Price, a longtime Schlosberg collaborator and friend, already has his 30-foot-tall, galvanized steel sculpture, “High Hopes” at the juncture of Pacific Coast Highway and Webb Way. Schlosberg said the piece was the inspiration for the whole exhibit.

“Carl is a wonderful friend and professional colleague,” Price said. “He’s quite the bandleader for great art, and has an innate sense of what is good and why. There’s an emotional component to viewing art and Carl is the perfect educator. He’s able to really explain to laymen what it’s all about.”

In fact, Schlosberg will offer guided tours of the whole show during the summer.

“Many of the pieces, like Bret’s and Gwynn’s, are site-specific,” Schlosberg said. “Outdoor art has to be able to withstand the elements, so we’re showing pieces in bronze, steel and stone. We also have some kinetic pieces that move in the wind. It’s a real marriage of art and nature, thanks to these great artists and the generosity of the land owners.”

An art dealer and curator for nearly 40 years, Schlosberg has long been involved in the Los Angeles art scene. He is a charter member of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and cofounder of both the Museum of Contemporary Art and the Skirball Cultural Center. He tapped his long association with internationally known artists to select the 40 represented in the final exhibit.

Many of the pieces will be on display at the Malibu Racquet Club, including those of Marlene Louchheim and Malibu artist Brad Howe.

A first-time exhibitor in the Malibu Sculpture show, Howe will be showing a stainless steel and polyurethane paint sculpture titled “Kukorica.” He said that he had waited “for years” to work with Schlosberg.

“I had always hoped to work with Carl and he finally asked me to participate this year,” Howe said. “Carl’s enthusiasm for art is infectious. And as a curator, he really knows how to put together harmonious themes.

Louchheim divides her time between Los Angeles and the big island of Hawaii, where she keeps a studio. She created her work titled, “Cascading,” by working with burlap that is treated with a zinc-based material, and is ultimately bronzed.

“We live in such a disposable society,” Louchheim said. “I wanted to take something you’d normally just throw away and turn it into something permanently beautiful.”

Another of her works, titled “Omega,” started out as a piece of Carrera marble before being bronzed.

“Carl is so creative,” Louchheim said. “No one does what he does or has his eye. Malibu is lucky to have him doing this.”

The show opens June 27 and will run through Aug. 31. Schlosberg will be on hand to lend his particularly enthusiastic knowledge of art and art history to personally guided tours (tours must be reserved).

“It’s great fun and people like to hear about the history and context of the work,” Schlosberg said. “This will be my summer vacation-talking about great art.”

Guided tours of “Malibu Sculpture 2010” can be obtained by calling 310.556.5430.

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