www.montereycountynow.com JUNE 13-19, 2024 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY 31 ARTS Monterey County has been a painters’ paradise since the early 20th century. Hundreds of local artists present their work in galleries, and today on websites and Instagram. But seeing their faces and their studios is more of a rarity. Randy Tunnell, a longtime commercial photographer, who takes photos for the Sunset Cultural Center and the Monterey Jazz Festival, had a great idea of how to document the bohemian legacy: a historic documentation of today’s Carmel and Big Sur painting community. His brand-new coffee table book, Carmel & Big Sur Painters, includes 100 “environmental portraits” of local artists taken in their studios and galleries. Consider it a wonderful guide to local painters and a chance to connect art with faces—real human beings who stand behind all the work. “We all are fascinated by how people look; we all make those instant judgments,” Tunnell says. The book includes the superstar of the area, such as David Ligare, and upcoming painters, such as Grace Aniela Wodecki. An opportunity to see some of these portraits comes on Tuesday, June 18 at a reception. The project started as 25 portraits. The first was of Carmel painter Joaquin Turner. The book includes images of as many as 40 Carmel Art Association members. Each page is devoted to a single painter, and includes a brief artist statement. “I posed them, picked the background,” Tunnell says. “I think about the project as a time capsule, a large sampling of the long bohemian legacy.” Tunnell perceived himself as a bohemian, too, and says he wanted to make his own contribution to that legacy—the light in Big Sur, the village character of Carmel. He talks about a sense of satisfaction and relief whenever someone asks him, “Did you include so and so?” and he is able to say, “Oh yes, I did.” Naturally, there are more artists, representatives of different media and in different locations in Monterey County, all waiting to be portrayed. Perhaps the book will become the first in a series. The project has received a positive response already. But those interested may have to hurry to get a copy; it is published as a limited edition of 500. Randy Tunnell’s book reception takes place 5-7pm Tuesday, June 18. Sunset Center, San Carlos Street at 9th Avenue, Carmel. Free. 620-2048, randytunnell.com. DANIEL DREIFUSS Tunnell Vision A Carmel photographer documents the faces behind the Monterey County art scene in a new book. By Agata Pop˛eda Randy Tunnell of Carmel is a versatile photographer who once served as staff photographer for the Weekly. His new book focuses on local artists. CARMEL-BY-THE-SEA SAN CARLOS & 7TH ESTATE WINERY & TASTING ROOM 1972 HOBSON AVE. GREENFIELD Delicious Poured daily BEST TASTING ROOMS 2018– 2023