Ojai Valley Inn & Spa

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Client: Ojai Valley Inn & Spa

Location: Ojai, CA, United States

Completion date: 2015

Project Team

Artist

Pamela Grau

Interior Designer

EDG Interior Architecture + Design

EDG Interior Architecture + Design

Overview

The Ojai Valley Inn & Spa renovation incorporates the artwork of Pamela Grau, who derived the subject matter from the surrounding Ojai Valley. It is said that there is an electromagnetic energy over the Valley that can be seen from outer space. However, the mystical energy was felt and acknowledged long before the ability to decipher these things from a distance. The Chumash Indians, the Valley's first residents, believed that the air held supernatural, curative powers; life in the Valley has always been peaceful. It's this “feeling of Ojai” that inspired Pamela's work.

Goals

As the interior design firm, EDG was tasked with finding an artist in late 2014. The idea was to find a local artist who had a unique understanding of Ojai. An important aspect of the hotel renovation, the artwork was commissioned to capture the integrated feeling of nature and spirit. The overall goal of the project was to ensure Ojai’s charming architecture and unique sense of place was taken into consideration and at the same time, that the art provided a contemporary look and feel. Pamela was chosen because of her intellect, the aesthetic of her work and her unique use of materials.

Process

Collaboration was key for the artist and hotel alike. Ms. Grau was brought on site to meet hotel stakeholders, walk the property and see the plans for the renovation. Fabrics and materials were brought to her studio to provide a greater understanding of the final project. She sketched the work several times before beginning the process (both at the Inn and in her studio). Hotel ownership visited her studio to immerse themselves in her process and gain a deeper understanding of the methodology. Her work became so intertwined with the property that she took soil from the land and mixed it with the poly-resin used in the pieces. Other materials include re-purposed takeout cups, nails, metallic pigments, and rust patinas, which are created by a chemical reaction with the metals used.

Additional Information

The artist recently commented on the project, "I collect multiple objects, some found in nature, some mass-produced and discarded. I individualize them, embellish them and bring them together as unified communities. There is power in unified intentions. My artwork is informed by expanded mindfulness and impulses derived from my inner awareness. I believe we are all interconnected through the fabric of collective consciousness and through our collective efforts society be dramatically transformed."