Artist James Hubbell is best-known for his fantastical organic-architecture house near Julian and the many community and global programs created by his Ilan-Lael Foundation. His artworks — oftentimes mosaics or stained glass — grace hundreds of San Diego homes, churches, and public spaces.
Many, however, do not know his lifelong devotion to Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve as his weekly muse: he and his wife Anne go to the beach below the cliffs most Sundays after church, and Jim paints one watercolor after another. They courted at Torrey Pines over 60 years ago. Since then he may have painted the cliffs hundreds of times … but who’s counting.
The next time you’re at Torrey Pines State Beach on a Sunday, look for James under an umbrella, watercolor paper in his lap, paints by his side, and eyes narrowed in the bright sunlight beneath a giant straw lifeguard hat. Few have looked at our cliffs more carefully, or with more love and admiration.
This article was originally published in the Torrey Pines Association Newsletter
by Peter Jensen
Photos by Aeliana Hubbell
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