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VENTURA COUNTY ROUNDUP / West County | Ventura

City Given Honor for Trail Sculptures

September 24, 2000|JOSH GOLDSTEIN

The American Trails organization has honored the city's public art program for its Ventura River Trail sculpture display.

The American Trails and the Arts award recognizes several outside sculptures along the six-mile exercise trail, said Kerry Adams, Ventura's public art coordinator.

The contemporary art project includes more than 40 pieces that represent the area's local history and conservation efforts, featuring pieces representing ocean life and the oil-drilling industry.

"The art really spruces up the trail," Adams said. "It's fun to see people's reaction to some of the pieces along the way."

The year-old trail cost $4.2 million and has horse trails, plus a walking and bike path.

Ojai artist Jeff Sanders, who created a bronze orange sculpture and a drinking fountain decorated with Chumash symbols for the project, said the art along the trail lets people see the sculptures up close in an unlikely settin "The project gives local artists a chance to produce something where other people can see besides in a gallery," said Sanders, who was paid $20,000 for his two pieces.

Artists Valerie Temple and Ralph Massey also contributed to the project. The next phase of sculptures for the trail featuring three area artists is expected to be finished by the end of the year.

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