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Angel sculpture unveiled at hospital

Adventist Health Tehachapi Valley Hospital

Before the completion of Adventist Health Tehachapi Valley hospital, interim-President David Eastman appointed the Art of Healing Committee to secure works of art to be placed throughout the hospital. Artwork has been proven over and over again to be beneficial in the healing of hospital patients.

Among the many works secured by the committee are the butterfly mural located in the interior courtyard and the welcoming angel in the hospital entry hall.

On March 18, the remaining members of the committee unveiled the final art project located at the emergency room entrance to the hospital. For years, the committee had searched for a piece of slate large enough for the carving of the "Three Angel Messengers." They were told slate was available only in China and that by law quarries in the United States could only operate for 10 years and then have to close. Sculptor Dwight Dreyer heard of a quarry above Fresno that had been in operation since 1840, so it was not affected by the closure law. There he found the perfect piece of slate.

Donald Towns rendered the three angel design to fit the stone. The committee commissioned sculptor Jun Kim to carve the stone. Kim is a well-known sculptor who was a monk from the age of 13 to 23. He has hiked all of the Pacific Crest Trail with friends; in fact, he has hiked all three major trails in the United States.

The finished piece depicts the three angels from Revelations 14: 6-12, admonishing the world to be prepared for Christ's second coming. One angel holds an hour glass, one holds a scroll and the third holds a trumpet. The dedication was attended not only by hospital staff but by city and other dignitaries.

With their job for the hospital completed, the Art of Healing Committee wanted to continue their work in educating the public in the value of art. In 2018, they formed the Tehachapi Arts Commission which is affiliated with the Greater Tehachapi Economic Development Council. The non-profit has a mission statement, "To establish Tehachapi, California as a destination for representational fine artists and collectors."

Art 2021 was their first event following the cancellation of Art 2020. In May 2021, 36 artists came to Tehachapi and spent a long weekend exploring the beauty of our town and committing it to canvas. They completed their work at home and submitted the finished work for a July public show that was held at Aspen Builders Community Center in Tehachapi. The show was a resounding success resulting in over $100,000 in sales.

The Art 2022 show is expected to surpass last year. Over 40 artists will be in Tehachapi again painting en plein air during the weekend of May 13-15. This year, among the artists will be three well-known military aviation artists. The opening gala will be held on Friday, July 22 at Aspen Builders Community Center where attendees will have the opportunity to meet and talk with all the artists and enjoy a catered buffet. Proceeds from this event will go to the Art in the Parks project for Tehachapi Valley Recreation and Park District. The Arts Commission plans to place a sculpture in each of the TVRPD parks with the first being a girl on a skateboard to be placed at Ollie Mountain Skate Park in West Park. Tickets for the VIP event are $100 and can be ordered by calling Laura at (626) 945-3753. Tickets are also available at The Loop newspaper office at 206 S. Green Street. The July 23-24 art show is free to the public and is a wonderful opportunity to view the magic of representational art.