Rent Hikes at Santa Monica Airport Threaten to Push Artists Out

April 30, 2019

On a March Saturday, the Santa Monica Art Studios (SMAS) hangar bustled with thousands of visitors. SMAS opened its doors in 2004 and has since been the cultural epicenter of the Annual Airport Art Walk. The 22,500-square-foot venue provides affordable studio space for 35 working artists. It is also the home of Arena 1, a large gallery that has hosted hundreds of national and international exhibitions, educational events and fundraisers for SoCal schools and art organizations. Each fall the SMAS Open Studios invites the community into their place of inspiration and manifestation. This rich cultural site has been gratis for anyone with a desire to be a part of the art scene in Santa Monica.

The opportunity to buy directly from artists at SMAS provides an accessible entry point for collecting.

But much of this is about to change, thanks to actions recently taken by Santa Monica’s City Council.

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