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Not your average garden party for BMoA’s ARTMIX

From the moment people walk through the gate of the Bakersfield Museum of Art's Sculpture Garden on Thursday, they will be surrounded by the sights and sounds of ARTMIX.

"The garden has been transformed into a truly immersive experience," said Amy Smith, BMoA's executive director. "This is an experience that we want to provide to all of our guests."

And there's a reason for the fanfare now that the curated cocktail party is back after two years being held virtually.

"We are overjoyed to have the event back in person, of course with a few changes."

The biggest change is that most of the event will be held outside in the garden since no food or drink is currently allowed in the parts of the museum hosting the current exhibition, "On the Edge: Los Angeles Art, 1970s-1990s, from the Joan and Jack Quinn Family Collection."

That adjustment allowed organizers to bring their creativity to nature in a layout that Smith describes as a "visual treat."

"For the art installation, a group of board and community members as well as staff are installing some really fun things," she said on Tuesday. "There are pieces hanging from trees, some in the center of our grassy area. You have to see it to enjoy it."

Along with installation, the event will live up to its name with the off-the-wall art sale featuring more than 150 works from 60 local and regional artists including Art Sherwyn, Vikki Cruz, Larry Jason, Jaime Eaton and Charlotte White. Pieces are priced between $100 and $500 to appeal to art collectors at all levels.

This is the fifth year that local painter Marjorie Dow has taken part in the sale.

"Participating for me is a way to challenge myself, allowing myself to be vulnerable to the unknown in my art journey," she wrote in an email.

Surrounded by fashion and hair all day for her job as a hairstylist, Dow said her three pieces for the event reflect her appreciation for "good style and the mood that goes with it."

The mood at ARTMIX will also be enhanced by the silent auction that will feature works from artists who are part of "On the Edge."

These auctioned works are not part of the exhibit, which consists of works from the Quinn private collection, but reflect the skill of their creators including Larry Bell, Lita Albuquerque, Chuck Arnoldi, Astrid Preston and Joe Fay.

Fay also agreed to offer a commissioned portrait for the museum's opportunity drawing. Tickets are $100, available at the event or by calling 661-323-7219, with one lucky winner receiving a portrait of a person of their choice.

Stimulating the other senses, ARTMIX will also feature cocktails and decadent bites from area businesses.

The benefactor reception will include champagne from Campo Bar + Bottle and passed appetizers from Bord A Petite.

Throughout the rest of the evening, guests can enjoy a variety of other treats including:

• Fudge and toffee treats from Aunt Mae’s Sweet Tooth.

• Chile verde with Mexican rice and Puncher’s Chance Bourbon lemonade from Moo Creamery.

• Locale Farm to Table's sweet potato and Brussels sprout casserole and champagne and fruit juice spritzers.

• Cilantro and cheese taquitos and mezcal margaritas from Nuestro Mexico Restaurant.

• Bresaola and fontina crostini as well as rosemary lemon spritzes from Luigi’s.

• The Kitchen’s cava (sparkling wine) and Spanish tortilla with piperade and chorizo.

• Charcuterie grazing board from Baker’s Outpost.

• Wine from Montoya Vineyards.

• Voktail's canned vodka drinks.

Attendees are also challenged to get creative with their party attire.

Smith said, "All of our decor is inspired by the Light and Space (art) movement, so we encourage bright colors and people to really have fun with their outfits."

The museum's goal is to raise $100,000 from this event but Smith also said everyone involved is also excited to be gathering in person for this special event.

"I have forecast gorgeous weather for us to celebrate this social event of the spring season."

Stefani Dias can be reached at 661-395-7488. Follow her on Twitter: @realstefanidias.