What's It All About?

Laguna Art Museum's Annual Gala

Over 350 guests will attend what is sure to become a highlight of the annual gala calendar in Orange County. Supporting Laguna Art Museum’s far reaching art education and exhibition programs, the annual gala promises a fine dining experience with celebrity chefs, paired with exquisite wines, dancing, and performance art. A live auction adds to the excitement of the evening, giving guests an opportunity to further support the museum and its mission through bidding on unique experiences.

  • Space is limited. For information about sponsorships, please email Sara Gale or call 949.494.8971 x219.

Honorary Chairs

Jane and Joe Hanauer

Laguna Art Museum is pleased to announce the Honorary Chairs for its Gala 2019, Laguna Beach residents and civic leaders Jane and Joe Hanauer. Even among the many individuals who have gone above and beyond in support of important causes in this city, Jane and Joe are exemplary. Both Jane and Joe participate in the city’s arts organizations as trustees, tirelessly volunteering their time and expertise, and we cannot thank them enough for all their support and advocacy of Laguna Art Museum.

“How lucky we are to live in a town that is so well known for its commitment to the arts. As Thomas Merton wrote, ‘Art allows us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time.’”
– Jane and Joe Hanauer


The Wendt Award

Lita Albuquerque

Lita Albuquerque is the Wendt Award recipient for 2019. Albuquerque has created an expansive body of work that ranges from painting, sculpture, poetry, and multi-media performances to large-scale ephemeral projects in sites around the globe. Active since the early 1970s, and often associated with the Light and Space and Land Art movements, she has developed a unique visual and conceptual vocabulary using astronomical images, the earth, the body, color, motion, and time to explore human identity in its relation to the universal. She was the recipient of a National Science Foundation grant for her Stellar Axis: Antarctica project, which culminated in the first ephemeral artwork created on that continent. In 2014 her outdoor performance An Elongated Now was the centerpiece of Laguna Art Museum’s Art & Nature, complementing the installation Particle Horizon inside the museum. Since 2015, Albuquerque has served on the museum’s Board of Trustees.

The Wendt Award is named for the great landscape painter William Wendt, a leading light in the museum’s founding organization, the Laguna Beach Art Association. It recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to California art. Previous recipients include Ruth Westphal, Wayne Thiebaud, Peter Alexander, Yvonne Boseker, and Tony DeLap.


Honorable Mentions

Gala 2019 Committee

Deborah Engle
Laura Rohl
Kristin Samuelian
Elie Weaver

Kathleen Abel
Wendy Aird
Rick Balzer
Ann Coffee
Susan Davis
Michelle Fisher

Chuck Fry
Amy Fulford
Jane Hanauer
Betsy Jenkins
Lucetta Kallis
Lester Savit

Deborah Schlesinger
Marnie Wall
Blythe Wheaton
Lizanne Witte
Susie Wood

Diamond Sponsors


Platinum Sponsors

Jane and Joe Hanauer
Laura and Louis Rohl

Elie Weaver and Hilton Weinberg

Gold Sponsors

Wendy Aird
Cody and Deborah Engle
Barbara and Greg MacGillivray
Danny and Jeri McKenna

Mark Porterfield and Steve Chadima
Marisa and Stephen Robbins
Tom and Barbara Stiles

Silver Sponsors

Rick Balzer and Lyn Burke
Crevier Classic Cars

Kristin and Steve Samuelian


Keith and Sue Colestock
Robin and Steven Kalota
Emil Monda

Daniel and Francine Scinto
Lizanne and Matthew Witte
Villa Real Estate

Media Sponsors