by Garth Meyer
The tenth and final CA 101 art show holds its opening night Friday at the Redondo Beach Historic Library.
Artists checked in Aug. 18, aided by a group of 10 volunteers and the show’s founder and curator, Nina Zak Laddon. The next day she decided placement for each piece, making adjustments after a Public Works crew arrived to board up all the windows due to approaching Tropical Storm Hilary.
“Every window. We were installing in the dark, basically,” said Laddon.
Volunteers continued to put up artwork Monday and Tuesday, followed by labeling next. This year’s exhibit includes 250 works, representing 18 percent of submissions.
Entrants pay no fee. The public pays no fee to see the show, and special workshops during the two-week run are free too. These include live figure drawing, indoor Plein Air, travel sketching and more.
CA 101 debuted in 2012 at the Palos Verdes Inn, later missing two years due to the pandemic. The decision for the 2023 show to be the last was shared.
“My team of volunteers had reached their limit, as well as me…” said Laddon. “I’m also tired of begging for money in fundraising.”
The series was held at the Redondo Beach Historic Library for the first time last year. The 1930 building was leased to a catering/event company until 2020.
“The city has been unbelievable to us the last two years,” Laddon said. “This building is just magical.”
Sponsor support for CA 101 has come mostly from individuals, giving $25 to $1,000.
“We don’t have large businesses in Redondo Beach,” said Laddon. “Other than Northrop Grumman, and they’re into science, not art.”
For this year’s show, specific areas of the old library will feature marine-themed art; social, political and environmental art, photography, fabrics, mosaics, and sculpture.
“There is art in every corner of this building,” Laddon said.
Born and raised in Israel, Laddon has lived in the U.S. for 45 years. Her four children graduated from RUHS, and now she has grandchildren in attendance. She began painting in the late ‘90s, and subsequently joined the Redondo Beach Art Group. She hopes to bring an international, invitational show to town in 2025.
All CA 101 shows have been held in Redondo Beach – other host sites included space on the Redondo Pier, South Bay Galleria, a former furniture store in Riviera Village, and the former Gold’s Gym on the waterfront.
“Every building was a way of taking someone on a journey as they walked through,” said Laddon.
Friday’s opening reception starts at 6 p.m., hosted by Friends of Redondo Beach Arts.
The Redondo Beach Historic Library is located at 309 Esplanade. ER
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