Whether painting the Matilija Poppies, Goleta Slough, or the historic Lobero Theatre, she still challenges herself to see things differently.
To meet artist Meredith Brooks Abbott at her rural Carpinteria ranch, is to step into one of her soothing and harmonic canvases. Time slows and vision softens at the view of her meandering gardens blending seamlessly into the natural vegetation of the surrounding Carpinteria Valley. A hopelessly romantic white Victorian farmhouse dating to the 1870‘s, sits in the shade of a large oak tree.
With Freddie, her sweet Labradoodle (and tennis ball) in tow, we head into her charming studio where canvases are perched in varying stages of completion and the quiet afternoon light streams in through high windows that run the length of the space. A self-portrait of Richard Meryman, family friend and noted American Impressionist and portrait painter, shares counter space with old photographs, portraits of her own children and pets, bits of nostalgia and the paintbrushes of Lockwood de Forest, California plein air painter.
Meredith, or Ky, as friends and family know her, has been painting here for over 40 years. These days she still paints almost every day, preferring to paint outdoors in the same plein air style of her predecessors. She has also just completed her second solo show at Sullivan Goss Gallery.
Aside from her daily painting practice and weekly drawing classes, her life is full with her almost 50-year marriage to Duncan, four adult children, seven grandchildren, tennis games, and gardening. She cherishes the times she is able to paint along
side her daughter Whitney and granddaughter Gwen. Most importantly, she is still celebrating, documenting, and preserving the beauty and goodness of Santa Barbara through her landscape, architecture and still life art.
As we continue to appreciate our beloved Lobero Theatre and the music that is created and shared inside its historic walls, we also give a nod of appreciation and gratitude to Meredith Brooks Abbott, another Santa Barbara treasure, who has once again highlighted the beauty and history of this lovely theater in our special town. True harmony!