Ventura County Prevails for their 16th National Arts Program®

Artists Emily Harris took home the Art Education Award for her teen category work entitled 'Junior Year Interrupted'.
Margaret Travers, Executive Director of the Ventura County Arts Council, coordinated their National Arts Program Exhibit® once again. Amazingly they pulled off a very successful sixteenth annual show after dealing with some unbelievable natural disasters that occurred during their timeline. The exhibit which included over 130 pieces of art was on display from December 1st through January 10th with the award reception taking place on December 15th. The first challenge they encountered was the worst fire in California recorded history which started on December 4th and was not fully contained until January 12th. Then they were hit with 7-8 inches of rain which caused massive flooding and mudslides in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties. As Margaret explained, Ventura was then cut off from Santa Barbara and the 101, the only direct driving route between the two adjacent counties, for more than a week. Many artists live on the far side of the mudslides and could not get to work or pick up their artwork. Air quality issues and various degrees of evacuation orders also plagued the county during the planning of the exhibit.
 
Regardless of these extreme challenges, Margaret successfully hung 139 pieces of art submitted by Ventura County employees, retirees and their immediate family members. This long-standing program has once again provided a showcase for these talented artists to shine and a joyous awards reception was had by all, at a time when many really needed it.