May 21, 2016
The Kick-Off Event gathered the featured artists, business owners, and ESAW organizers together for an informal introduction at South Bay Customs, an American motorcycle shop, and one of the Art Walk venues.
The inaugural ESAW took place last summer – it was scheduled for the third Thursday of the summer months – and those in attendance instantly recognized what a triumph it was.
A dedicated group of El Segundo locals, artists and business owners – spearheaded by artist, and local gallery owner, Holly Socrates – organized the event, which was inspired by the variety of creative businesses in town.
ESAW pairs artists with local businesses to display their work on the premises. Yes, it is an art walk, but the art is only half of the attraction. The venues are what make the event so unique. El Segundo has an abundance of remarkable and historic architecture, most of which house businesses not open to the general public. The opportunity to gain access to these distinctive spaces makes for an extraordinary experience.
The venues included Smoky Hollow Studios, Moto Art, Tyler’s Surfboards, Big Door Studios, Rockefeller Partners Architects, Old Town Music Hall, Ole Smoky Moonshine, South Bay Customs and over a dozen other creative businesses.
Participating businesses were scattered throughout the Downtown and Smoky Hollow districts and each had a supply of event maps, enabling guests to start wherever they liked. El Segundo is a pedestrian friendly town full of nooks and crannies – there’s a lot to discover just walking from venue to venue.
At each venue, the featured artists were on hand to discuss their work and answer any questions. The variety of art on display was impressive: sculpture, photography, paintings, carvings, graphics and more.
The proprietors delighted in being part of the event last year and took further steps to enhance the public’s first encounter with their business. Many provided bites, sips, performance art, food trucks, live music and DJs, and generously welcomed and engaged attendees. Have you ever walked by a business and wondered what they do? ESAW is a fantastic way to discover, and learn about, what local businesses offer.
This year’s Kick-Off Event gave attendees an opportunity to meet all the players. The artists had already been assigned the space for their exhibits but most had yet to meet the business owners they’d be working with or been inside their particular venue. Many cards were exchanged, and plans made, to get together and figure out how to showcase all parties at their best.
El Segundo Beach Cafe catered the event and treated guests to a delicious array of bites including pulled pork sandwiches, antipasto, roasted bell pepper soup, fruit cups and other tasty treats.
Guests sipped beer, wine, and everyone’s new favorite libation, Ole Smoky Tennessee Moonshine.
Live music was provided by Jean-Louis Boudreau and Tom Gramlich of Main Street Band.
ESAW will once again take place on the third Thursdays this summer – June 16, July 21 and August 18 – from 5 to 9 p.m. in the Downtown and Smoky Hollow districts. Over thirty creative El Segundo businesses will open their doors for studio tours and become a pop-up gallery displaying original art work of Los Angeles based artists.
Trust me, you don’t want to miss this…. put it on your calendar NOW. Oh, and did I mention, it’s FREE?
For additional information, visit the website at http://elsegundoartwalk.com/.