Public Art Committee ready to beautify Claremont

Claremont City Council appointed residents to the Public Art Committee on June 9, following recommendations presented by the ad hoc committee.

“This was one of the most exciting and difficult appointment processes,” said Mayor Pro Tem Sam Pedroza. “You’ll recognize some names and some names you won’t, but I’m hoping we’re going to be seeing some really neat things coming from the committee that the whole community will benefit from.”

The Public Art Committee was established by the city council and will be responsible for upholding the Public Art Master Plan, ensuring that the city’s public art policies and procedures are followed, and supporting the development and stewardship of Claremont’s public art collection and other public art on municipal and private property.

A total of 10 applicants vied for six spots on the committee, with a seventh member who will serve as a liaison from the Architectural Commission not yet appointed. The six members of the Public Art Committee are as follows: 


Amy Croushore: four-year term

A 17-year resident of Claremont, Ms. Croushore is a former marketing and fundraising consultant with a BA in English from UCLA and an MBA in Marketing from Claremont Graduate University. She was involved with the Claremont schools’ Parent Faculty Association for 17 years in various capacities including PFA president at CHS and served at insurance officer for the Claremont Parent Faculty Association. She was also chosen for the hiring committee for the Assistant Supervisor, Curriculum and the WASC Accreditation Committee. Ms. Croushore was also a member of the Claremont Coordinating Council, the Youth and Family Master Plan Committee, and the campaign manager for Steven Llanusa’s re-election bid to the CUSD Board of Education.

As a veteran marketing and fundraising professional, the committee will benefit from her acumen when searching for grants and private funding, examining the details of the loan of a work of art, placement strategy and event management.


Karen Neiuber: three-year term

With an interest and passion for art, Ms. Neiuber began using her art background to delve into colors and textures by producing monoprints and ceramic assemblages following her retirement from 40 years in public education as an elementary teacher and district curriculum administrator. She has served on the Architectural Committee, is a member of the After Work Planning Committee for the Committee on Aging and holds a BA in art from Cal State Fullerton as well as two master’s degrees, including both teaching and administrative credentials.

Ms. Neiuber has lived in Claremont for nearly 12 years, and became connected to the local art community many years ago when she facilitated the first strategic plan for the dA Center for the Arts in Pomona. Through those associations, she has become friends and worked with many Claremont artists, participated in discussions in the Public Art Master Plan and became involved with the Maloof sculpture show and the Arboretum show.


Adriana Tchalian: three-year term

As an adjunct professor of art history at Chaffey College, Fullerton College and East Los Angeles College, Ms. Tchalian has a genuine interest in and a commitment to being actively engaged in the Claremont art scene. She has lived in Claremont for over two years and has taught a course on California art at East LA College featuring Claremont artist Milford Zornes, among others.


Christopher Toovey: four-year term

Having grown up in Claremont during the ‘60s and ‘70s, Mr. Toovey has experienced first-hand what the arts can do to create, nurture and expand community in the City of Trees. Many of his friends were the sons and daughters of Claremont artists and he’s been known as an artist himself since elementary school. Mr. Toovey’s artwork has been shown at the Claremont Community Foundation Gallery, Claremont City Hall and Bunny Gunner. Mr. Toovey holds a BFA from Pitzer College, has participated in the city’s ad-hoc group on public art and has been involved with the production of a dozen murals through public art programs in the cities of La Verne and Pomona, and several as lead artist.


Georgette Unis: four-year term

Ms. Unis has lived in Claremont for 39 years and has contributed both expertise and financing to public art throughout the city. A painter and sculptor for 35 years, she holds a Masters of Fine Art from Claremont Graduate University and serves on various public art committees, art boards of directors and has curated art shows. Ms. Unis currently serves on the Claremont Banner Committee and the Claremont Community Art Committee and is the Claremont Art Museum site coordinator for the annual Art Fiesta at Padua Hills Theatre. As an exhibiting painter/artist, Ms. Unis recently held shows at Square I as well as the Claremont Community Foundation. She has also exhibited her work in Los Angeles, Pomona and Oregon.


Jessica Wimbley: three-year term

Ms. Wimbley is a practicing artist with a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design, an MFA in Visual Arts from UC Davis and a MA in arts management from Claremont Graduate University. Looking to augment her skills and diverse background in the arts into advocacy for the arts at the municipal level, Ms. Wimbley believes her professional experience as a visual artist, arts administrator, and academic not only illustrates her passion for art but will be an asset to the Public Art Committee.

A seven-year resident of Claremont, Ms. Wimbley also works in the city she calls home. She held the position of Museum Coordinator at Pomona College Museum of Art from 2008-2012, creating the weekly program “Art After Hours” and worked with dA Center for the Arts during her tenure, creating the program In Front of the Real Thing, where local artists visited museum collections and made new works in response that were exhibited at the dA.

The Public Art Committee is set to meet on the second Monday in Claremont City Council Chambers at 7 p.m.

—Angela Bailey


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