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Dorothy Grettenberg Handy: Needlepoint Art

June 3, 2024 - July 26, 2024, Central Library

Needlepoint art of a Parisian cafe by Dorothy Grettenberg Handy 

The City Arts Commission is pleased to present the extensive collection of needlepoint art by local artist Dorothy Grettenberg-Handy, whose family has a longstanding history in the City of Newport Beach. The Fun Zone Boat Company was founded in 1948 by Dorothy’s father, Dal Grettenberg. Considered the first tour boat company in Newport Harbor, the company was known to offer a variety of cruises, charter trips, and tours to the public. Outside of work, the Grettenbergs were quite involved in various activities and groups in Newport Beach Dal was very active in the Balboa Angling Club, and her mother, Opal, was one of the first members of the Lady Anglers.

Dorothy graduated from Newport Harbor Union High School with her brother, Tom, in 1951 before continuing her education at U.C. Berkeley. She pursued a teaching career in northern California before eventually returning to Newport Beach in 1981 to assist her father in the operations of the company. Her husband, Ray, took over as president in 1992. Together, they carried on her father’s legacy; and the Fun Zone Boat Company continues to thrive today.

 Her passion for needle-pointing began after attending a class on Balboa Island. Finding joy in the art of needle-pointing, she has spent the last 25 years perfecting her craft. The themes of her artworks range from delightful views of Parisian cafes to relaxing beachfronts, still life imagery, and whimsical depictions of birds and other animals. Each artwork takes weeks of meticulous work, and Dorothy collaborates with a local framer to customize each frame. Her needlepoints also extends to Santa figures, pillows, and small toys she’s given to family members over the years.

Canvases and threads: Jebba Needle Point, Corona del Mar
Blocking and frames: On the Wall Gallery, Santa Ana

Artwork copyright ©Dorothy Grettenberg Handy
All Rights Reserved

Upcoming Installations

2024

  • July 29 - September 20: Christopher Evans (Acrylic paintings)
  • September 23 - November 15: Shant Beudjekian (Watercolor paintings)
  • November 18 - January 10: Faro Mohajedi (Photography)

2025

  • January 13 - March 7: Tianyi Wang (Photography)
  • March 10 - May 2: Liberty Dickinson (Acrylic paintings)

To have artwork considered for an exhibition at the Central Library, download and fill out the Application for Consideration Art

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