Villa Montalvo Celebrates 75/10 Anniversary

Villa Montalvo in Saratoga, CaliforniaThe beautiful estate of Villa Montalvo in Saratoga is home to one of the oldest artist residencies in the United States, and this year the program is celebrating two big anniversaries. With 75 years of residency and the ten year jubilee of the Sally and Don Lucas Artists Program, this calls for a celebration. This past February began the year-long celebration that Montalvo has simply titled 75/10.

With program alumni from across the globe, festivities are being held internationally and locally.

Local celebrations, such as A Toast to the Residency in March, opened the resident building for tours and special exhibit. Annual events are also getting special treatment this year. The Artsplash Celebration in April also hosted a special open studio with the artists-in-residence in addition to its regular schedule of events. More recently, Rock the Garden joined the festivities  this past Friday, July 24th, by going big with more multidisciplinary alumni performances, food and drink, than before.

An ongoing feature of the 75/10 celebration is the rejuvenation of a monthly events series, now titled Open Access: Inside the Lucas Artist Program. The work of artists-in-residence will be showcased with presentations and activities that will exhibit the multidisciplinary approach of the program. This event series is designed to give audiences the unique opportunity to engage in the creative process with current Fellows.

It is a great time for locals to come and enjoy all of the features of Villa Montalvo.

There is always a great array of artistic styles to be enjoyed at the Villa, and most are open to the public. As a part of their ongoing program of arts there will be, and have been, a number of new temporary and semi-permanent exhibits and installations opening throughout the year for public reception. Theatrical performances include many opportunities for families with small children to engage in the creative environment – from puppet theatre to unique fairytales and summer theatre camp. The outdoor amphitheater is known for hosting the concerts of many famous artists, and is popular with music lovers throughout the bay. If you want some natural beauty, the grounds have gardens and hiking trails with wooded paths and spectacular views of the valley up into the Los Gatos foothills, and are open daily.

 

Read more about the celebrations on the Montalvo website:

http://montalvoarts.org/residencyanniversary/

or check out the anniversary blog with the latest information on all anniversary celebrations:

http://blog.montalvoarts.org/7510-anniversary.html

 

 

 

Great time of year to visit Villa Montalvo

Villa Montalvo, the former estate of Senator James PhelanIf you haven’t been to Villa Montalvo and the Montalvo Arts Center in Saratoga recently, this is a great time of year to head over and take in the lovely grounds – and perhaps take in some live music, family theatre, or other art on display, too.

The villa was built for Senator James Phelan in 1912, who willed it to the people of the State of California to be an arts center.  And so it is today, not just a lovely Italianate estate on 175 acres, but a place to enjoy a wide variety of art forms. Last weekend my family and I visited there (these images were from a sunnier day recently!) and enjoyed seeing the artwork in the lawn, in cryptic (poetic) signs along the roadway, and noticed a wide array of tempting events coming up soon.

Amateur photographers will find many scenic subjects for their art (but please note that professional photography is not allowed without permission).  Also please note that picnics aren’t allowed, unfortunately, but there are some opportunities for dining on site.

Montalvo Arts Center Grounds

There are a couple of venues for concerts at Montalvo.  Best known is the large, gracious lawn that spreads out in front of the Villa.  (In the ’90s I remember seeing Peter, Paul and Mary perform there on a glorious summer day!)  It’s a very slight hill, which makes for a wonderful, natural amphitheatre.

Given the natural and architectural beauty of this place, it is a highly prized location for parties and weddings, too. (more…)