The City of Laguna Beach Arts Commission installed new public artwork by local artist Jeffrey Skarvan at the Red Phone Booth located on Forest Avenue. Once used as a telephone kiosk, the public telephone has been removed and the box now serves as a site for temporary public art. Artwork for the project is selected via a competition held by the Arts Commission every two years.
Titled “Call to Action,” Skarvan’s proposal was selected out of eleven artist submissions for the 2021 competition. The design primarily features a large octopus sculpture secured to the top the booth. Jeffrey Skarvan said, “The octopus is poised atop and embracing the red phone booth partially filled with ocean water, its vibrant color and presence suggesting a ‘call’ to action to the viewer; to appreciate nature's beauty and our precious ocean habitat.”
Arts Commissioner, Donna Ballard said “Call to Action by artist Jeffrey Skarvan brings humor to the new temporary Red Phone Booth installation in downtown Laguna. The octopus appears to be escaping out of the top of it’s phone booth ‘tank’. We can all use a laugh these days, and you can’t help but smile when you see it.”
Arts Commission Chair, Adam Schwerner said, “When the Arts Commission was reviewing submissions for the Red Phone Booth, it was Jeffrey Skarvan’s submission that won the day. After the year we have had, the Commission was attracted to the whimsy of his proposal. His octopus will be a great mascot for the year to come.”
The public is invited to the dedication of the work on Friday, May 7, 2021, at 3:30 p.m. The dedication will commence at the Red Phone Booth on Forest Avenue and travel to the lawn of City Hall where the dedication for a temporary sculpture by another local artist Casey Parlette will follow. The dedications will include a discussion with the artists about their works. To attend, please wear a mask.
This program is funded through the Laguna Beach Tourist Marketing District and the City of Laguna Beach.