The Rancho Santa Fe community is coming together to organize a unique art auction to support children's art programs.
The Artero Fine Art Auction will feature more than 100 paintings, photographs, mosaics and sculptures from emerging, local artists as well as recognized 19th and 20th century deceased painters. The auction, the first of its kind in San Diego County, will be Nov. 1, at the Inn at Rancho Santa Fe from 4 to 8 p.m.
"We've never had anything like it," said Roni Clemens, director of the Rancho Santa Fe Art Gallery. "It's a unique opportunity to purchase original art for your home or office … in every conceivable style from abstract and contemporary, to impressionist landscape and seascape."
Highlights among the 19th and 20th century artists include Olaf Wieghorst, Robert William Wood, Marjorie Jane Reed and Robert Rischell. The pieces are coming from the Journey's West Gallery on Cedros Avenue in Solana Beach.
Among the local artists who enjoy name recognition far beyond their hometowns are John Modesitt, Toni Williams and Julia Gray. Many artists have multiple pieces included in the juried auction.
While some pieces start above $5,000 and Wieghorst's "Holding the Herd" is the most expensive masterwork at $75,400, many paintings range from $200 to $3,000.
Auctioneer Kathleen Guzman will host live bidding on 40 pieces. Guzman, the former president of Christie's East, is an internationally-know art and antique appraiser and auctioneer.
The fundraiser is a joint venture between the Inn, the Rancho Santa Fe Rotary Club and Art Guild to support local programs that expose San Diego youth to art.
"We're all artists at heart," Clemens said. "Unless these organizations are available, many students go up all the way to high school without being exposed to art."
The Art Lux Institute, based in Encinitas, provides in-classroom art programs.
Angel Faces provides a summer retreat and monthly support group meetings for girls with facial disfigurements. Art is a key element of the therapeutic retreat to help build girls' self-confidence.
ARTS: A Reason To Survive provides a range of art programs for children facing difficult life situations, from music and performance to media arts and photography.
Besides the main Point Loma campus, there are 32 satellite sites set up in hospitals, homeless shelters, foster care centers and group homes around the county.
Event organizers are hoping to raise as much as possible for these nonprofits despite the current economic climate.
With stocks and real estate in the dumps, "art is probably a very good investment right now," Clemens said. "And you get to appreciate looking at it every day."
Tickets are $20 in advance and $30 at the door. Tickets are on sale at the Rancho Santa Fe Art Gallery, Coldwell Banker, Wells Fargo Bank and the Inn at Rancho Santa Fe.
For more information, including the auction catalogue, go to