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Sonoma County Gazette
Bruce Johnson Slow Motion bench before the Tubbs Fire

Sculptor Bruce Johnson's fire-damaged ’Slow Motion’ bench is now at Occidental Center for the Arts

Jan 14, 2018


By Steve Fowler, OCA Board President

When the Tubbs Fire roared through Santa Rosa’s Larkfield area in October, it not only gutted the northern end of the Luther Burbank Center for the Arts, but also the nearby sculpture garden where a number of Sculptor Bruce Johnson’s ( ) monumental redwood-and-copper sculptures were on display. Sadly, some of the pieces were burned to the ground. The fickle flames left others severely charred, while some pieces went virtually untouched.

One piece, a horizontal bench-like work entitled ‘Slow Motion’, was damaged beyond repair but still retains a pleasing form and the scars of a tragic fire. Occidental Center for the Arts has requested that it be placed (on a temporary loan basis) in the front of the OCA Gallery as an echo of the fire trauma, as well as a prayer for recovery. Bruce has generously offered to transport, clean and oil these remains and install it at the center. It will be recognized as a work of beauty and resilience by all who come to Occidental Center for the Arts to visit the Gallery or attend our fine events. 

The timing is auspicious, because on Sunday, January 21, from 4 to 6 pm,  O.C.A. is hosting a unique music and spoken word benefit entitled  “Beauty From the Ashes: Songs, Stories and Poems of Love, Loss and Hope’ . It features Kayleen Asbo, Bonnie Brooks, and Larry Robinson, who are generously donating their portion of the proceeds to benefit

All fire-displaced persons are welcome to attend free of charge if they first contact OCA at 707-874-9392. Let the healing begin!

Bruce Johnson Slow Motion bench

Occidental Center for the Arts  •  3850 Doris Murphy Ct.   •   Occidental, CA 95465

Slow Motion’ by Bruce Johnson 


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