Art Alive Premiere

Once a year my life gets turned upside down. Topsy turvy with months of planning and expectation around one event…Art Alive. Sounds dramatic, but for the past 11 years I plan most other things in my life around this week of all encompassing events. It also sounds a little negative….but the secret is that even with all its pressure, it’s detail smothering nature, and the downright physical and mentally exhaustion it brings on, I love it. No other project allows me to flex my creativity and logistical prowess in the same way. The Premiere Dinner specifically is like an event planners greatest fantasy played out in one space. The Art gives me endless content and the main event calls for overwhelming scale…that is what dreams are made of in my book. This year’s event was themed on Alfred Eisenstaedt; the 20th century’s premier Photojournalist. A special retrospective exhibition of his black and white photography from the 30’s and 40’s was the inspiration for this year’s dinner. Set among this amazing photography, an art deco dream evening unfolded.

The rotunda design by Jennifer McGarigle was also themed on Eisenstaedt and greeted guest as they entered the cocktail space. The deep red roses encased in glass echoes visions of being frozen in time like a photograph. The rest of the cocktail space decor hinted at the gilded wonderland you would encounter upstairs at dinner.


Matter being escorted upstairs, guest entered the dining gallery through a tunnel of lights into a room with a custom full overhead installation ceiling of over 40 gold Art Deco chandeliers with areas of complementary floor chandeliers reaching upwards. Similarity the jewel toned floral centerpieces reached upwards on gold risers off the emerald velvet table linen. Colored crystal and gold place settings brought it all together.


We also got into the theme with our event dress and ended up all wearing shades of velvet that matched the decor for the evening and the featured era.


It’s always amazing to see something you have planned and dreamed of for a full year physically come together in front of you. It was a stunning night enjoyed by all and makes me even more hungry for next year’s event! I can’t wait to share the monster event Bloom Bash with you soon!

All Photos: Bauman Photographers

My Dress: Norma Kamali
Rhinestone Turban: Mary Jane Claverol

Production, Tables, Chairs: PEP Creative
Lighting Fixtures & Lounge Furniture: Revelry Event Designers
Tabletop: Not My Dish & BBJ Linen
Flowers: Green Fresh Florals + Plants
Catering & Cocktails: Coast Catering


Mellow Yellow

Do you ever see something seemingly ordinary but become completely obsessed with it? This was me when I first saw this place school buses are stored off the freeway. Year after year I thought this would be an amazing place to take photos, and once I started this blog, I knew I would make it happen. I was finally able to with my photographer friend Bronson. I went yellow on yellow for this shoot and we got some great pics at this really fun 15 minute mini shoot in before being promptly asked to leave haha! Not much else to say, but I hope you enjoy these fun images of the busts yard and surrounding streets ~ SG


All Photos: Bauman Photographers
Top: Norma Kamali Ribbon Sleeve Top in Acid
Pants: Alexander Wang High Waist Snap Leggings



Desert X

The first time I heard about DesertX I knew it was for me. Large scale art installations set all over the desert!!? Sign me up! The timing of the first DesertX exhibition in 2017 didn’t work out for me. Luckily they extended the Doug Aiken mirage house and I was able to see it. I was hooked. When the 2019 lineup was announced I made prompt plans for a girls weekend to check it out.

There were too many installations to see them all, but we got to see quite a few and below are a few of my favorites. Not surprised my favorite ones turned out to be the most colorful ones 🙂




Sterling Ruby’s fluorescent orange monolith, SPECTER, appears as an apparition in the desert. The bright, geometric sculpture creates a jarring optical illusion, resembling a Photoshopped composite or collage, as if something has been removed or erased from the landscape. The block acts as a cipher or stand-in, mimicking the form it could be — a shipping container, a military bunker, an unidentified object, an abandoned home-stead. Fluorescent orange is traditionally used for safety, as a warning. Here that logic is reversed: a ghostly object, set apart from the natural environment, hiding in plain sight.




Set in two locations across the U.S.–Mexico border, Lover’s rainbow is conceived as an identical set of rainbows made from painted rebar. Exposed rebar usually signals development, but too often in the Mexican landscape we see those dreams thwarted and abandoned. Historically, rainbows have symbolized rain and fertility. Located in desert territory, the act of bending the rebar into the ground is a way to re-insert hope into the land. The mirror rainbows are also meant to throw light into the current immigration policies, prompting viewers to see things from two perspec-tives. Those who cross the border get the full experience. After all, going in search of the rainbow should highlight its symbolic power to re-establish hope, love, and inclusive-ness when we need it most.




It was the unexpected discovery of an abundance of fossilized marine life more than 100 miles inland from the Pacific shore that led the early Spanish settlers to name this valley Conchilla, which means “little shell.” Because of a mis-spelling the region became known as the Coachella Valley, thereby stripping it of the reminder that 6 million years ago, what is now desert had been underwater and connected to the so-called Western Interior Seaway. For the Danish collective Superflex, geological history and the not-so-distant future meet in the recognition that with global warming, rising water levels will again submerge the land- scape along with all the structure and infrastructure that made it habitable for humans. Rethinking architecture from the point of view of future submersion, their mission has been to create land-based forms equally attractive to human and marine life. Using the preferred color palettes of Walter and Leonore Annenberg, Palm Springs, and marine corals, Dive-In merges the recognition that global warming will drastically reshape the habitat of our planet with another more recent extinction: the out- door movie theater. Here the interests of desert dwellers and sea life come together in the coral-like walls and weekly screenings of a structure born of a deep past and shallow future.




Going Nowhere Pavilion #01 is a Möbius strip made from concrete breeze blocks in a variety of fleshy pinks and browns. Technically, the Möbius strip is a surface with one continuous side formed by joining the ends of a rectangular strip, but it has a direct relationship to methods of psychology. Famed psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan’s own attempts to use topology – the study of geometric properties – as a vehicle to describe the human mind is a subject artist Julian Hoeber has explored for years. As with the Möbius strip form, what is inside and outside the self can quickly become indiscernible.

Executed Variant DHS #1 (Q1, CJ, DC), the painting sited in a pool connected to the property, is a loose variant on a series of works Hoeber titled the Execution Changes. It is connected to its neighboring Möbius strip by proximity, but also by color. The painting, like the pavilion, is an image of the mind in its own way: the painting is a study of phenomenological consciousness. Both the sculpture and the painting attempt to parse out how forms can represent the logical, irrational, historical and corporeal experiences of human consciousness.


Magic Circle

I had heard about this magical sculpture garden called Queen Califia’s Magic Circle in Northern San Diego for a long time. It’s only open for only a few hours a week and I don’t make it to Escondido much so it took me years to make time to get there, but I was finally able to make the trek last week to meet up with photographer friend Nevena. The artist Niki de Saint Phalle is well known in San Diego due to her many mosaic covered public art works installed all over town, but nothing else she has done reaches this remarkable scale. It’s a true dreamscape and I was able to get a sense of the way she merged fantasy and history in her work more than anything else of hers I have previously seen. I tried to embody some of the fantasy while playing with the high contrast color and delicious textures…perhaps a modern day Queen Califia. Nevena’s photos turned out wonderful and I hope you enjoy.

All photos by Nevena Marigold Studio 

Below is the description from the City of Escondido’s webpage about the sculpture garden:

Queen Califia’s Magical Circle is the only American sculpture garden and the last major international project created by Niki de Saint Phalle (born France, 1930-2002). Inspired by California’s mythic, historic and cultural roots, the garden consists of nine large-scale sculptures, a circular “snake wall” and maze entryway, sculpturally integrated bench seating, and native shrubs and trees planted within the interior plaza and along the outer perimeter. The garden bears the brilliant, unique mosaic ornamentation that is an unmistakable part of Saint Phalle’s later work.

The sculpture garden’s key architectural features are an undulating circular wall that surrounds the garden. Monumental playful serpents, decorated in colorfully patterned mosaics, slither along the top of the wall, their curved bodies forming a pattern of solids and voids that allows visitors to see landscape vistas beyond the garden. The “snake wall” opens into a maze whose walls and floors are covered with black, white, and mirrored tiles. Once through the maze, visitors enter into the central courtyard. There are nine freestanding sculptures in the garden. The imposing mosaic sculpture of Queen Califia standing on the back of a five-legged eagle commands the center of the garden. Eight large totemic sculptures surround Queen Califia. They are covered with symbols and forms freely drawn from Native American, Pre-Columbian, and Mexican art as well as the artist’s own fantastic imagery.


Violet Femme

Most people know I like a dramatic look…especially in my editorial shoots, but something I haven’t talked a lot about is my passion for vintage clothing. Something about the craftsmanship, the detail and the special-ness of clothing from times past is lost in this new world of fast fashion. I have long collected vintage dresses and coats and have recently begun to start to collect a little again. I search all over, and when I saw this amazing bright violet hued vintage designer dress by Victor Costa for Neiman Marcus, my heart stopped. The rich royal color spoke to me and nothing short of an ultra dramatic location would do this piece justice.

Luckily in San Diego we have no shortage of beautiful landscape. I have long wanted to shoot at what is known by locals as the Ho Chi Minh trail in La Jolla. This hike is known for its narrow and slippery pathways filled with otherworldly formations created naturally by wind and water. The dress and location turned out to be a perfect marriage, and with the amazing artistic eye of photographer Nevena of Marigold Studio, these photos are among my favorite ever taken.


~ SG

Let Them Eat Cake

I suppose most little girls have a princess fantasy…and I was definitely no exception.  As I got older, despite my anti-pink. girl-power fight back attempts against my previous Disney-marketing infused princess obsession, I somehow never truly lost a secret soft spot for all things tulle and sparkle. When I was 16, my parents took us to France and I was able to experience Versailles. I was immediately taken by its grandeur and imagined the princesses and their ladies in waiting that inhabited the gilded palace. It enchanted me and to this day one of my favorite movies of all time is Sofia Coppola’s movie about its most famous inhabitant, Marie Antoinette. On my most recent editorial shoot, I was able to temporarily go back to that first romantic childhood fantasy and attempt to embody a modern version of Ms. Antoinette. The chosen location for this shoot was The Westgate Hotel; a place that been a part of my princess fantasy since I had high tea there as a child, and as close to Versailles as you can get in San Diego. My friend Bronson once again helped me bring this to life with a little extra help from some amazing fashion and a very special cake from my friends at Heirloom Cakes that was fit for a queen.

All photos: Bauman Photographers


Fashion Standouts:

Dress – Vintage A.J. Bari Sourced on Ebay
Asymmetrical Pink Top – Jatual Paris SS18 Collection
Earrings – Kendra Scott Fabia in Rose Gold Blush Mix and Aria Clip On Silver Statement Earrings In Gray Dichroic Glass





Beyond Reason

As a museum that has typically specialized in the dead artist, its always pretty exciting when we feature a living artist’s work. We have done this periodically over the years, but have been doing much more of it recently. This particular exhibition we opened this past week, Tim Shaw: Beyond Reason, has been on our tongues for quite some time. The installations and its subject matter in Tim Shaw’s first museum exhibition is nothing short of spectacular. The six psychologically charged environments included in the show address humanitarian issues designed to unsettle and provoke thought.  Much edgier than most of the work I have ever seen at the museum, nerves and excitement were high at the opening celebration as we awaited reactions from our donors and special guests. Not surprisingly to me, overwhelming praise was received for both the charged topics in the show and the feelings it left them with.

With themes such as abuses of power, the threat of terrorism to the use of money to silence free speech, throwing a themed celebration for this exhibition was no small task. Rather than recreating any of the topics in event form, I instead focused on environmental change so that when you entered your mood was slightly altered before seeing the exhibition works. The amazing art, the dark decor and some pretty delicious and beautiful drinks and bites made for quite the enjoyable evening.

When selection a look for this event, I only knew I wanted something unique made from non traditional materials. I’ve recently become obsessed with a brand I connected with on Instagram called Jatual Paris. Their unique fabric usage really got me hooked and their vinyl capsule collection for Fall/Winter 2018/19 is really special. This is the first of many looks I will be featuring in my shoots by this brand. Below are the highlight shots from a couple my favorite ares of the exhibition  and the event featuring my pretty spectacular purple vinyl dress by Jatual.

All photos by Bronson Pate of Bauman Photographers


The Middle World is a large and highly complex sculptural installation created over twenty years. It consists of seventy separate small bronze and terracotta figures, arranged upon a 3m tall vessel that is part altar, part pinball machine. The sculpture is cast in steel reinforced cement.



The installation recounts an early life experience of sitting in a restaurant in Belfast when a firebomb explodes on the floor below creating pandemonium. Chairs, tables, old clothes and shoes are scattered across the floor of a fabricated space. Slow moving shadows of people running are cast upon walls, dinner trays revolve through the air filled with haze, and the intense sound of many sirens radiate out from the corners of the room.



Influenced by a violent disturbance that took place on a street one night, Soul Snatcher Possession sets the scene of a ritual gangland killing or punishment beating. No weapon is visible, the perpetrators smile and gestures betray the moment just before some dreadful act is committed where fear fills the imagination. The installation is a metaphor for the violent extraction of soul, the manipulation of mind and the taking of life by the powerful, in order to perpetuate the myth that those with the power want to portray. It relates to the street, the corridors of governance and commerce.



Picture1assTHE DRESS