May 2018: Artists from the Southern California Plein Air Painters Association (SOCALPAPA) were recently provided exclusive access to the Transportation Corridor Agencies’ (TCA) largest conservation site — Upper Chiquita Canyon Conservation Area — to paint natural habitat that is closed to public and recreational use. The artists and their easels fanned out across the conservation area to paint the broad landscape of rolling hills, grasslands, and coastal sage scrub.
Originally planned for residential development and a golf course, TCA, in partnership with environmental organizations and resource agencies, placed the nearly 1,200 acres of land into permanent open space in 1996. Closed to public and recreational use, this is the first time TCA has opened the property to local artists.
“This rare opportunity has been a year in the making to provide SOCALPAPA access to such a pristine outdoor setting that is rarely open to the public,” said Caryn Maldonado, President of SOCALPAPA. “We are passionate about plein air art and each artist created up to two paintings to show the years of effort and hard work that went into bringing the non-public land back to its pristine natural habitat.”