Working Artists Ventura Ventura, CA


Corner view showing ground-floor retail space and urban character on Ventura Avenue, and the more open south side of the project. Curved solar panels shade the theater-gallery building. Image courtesy of Tom Bonner, Hans Mauli, and Santos Prescott and Associates

Plan and section views. WAV has three courtyards, each with a distinct character. Building heights vary from four stories with a roof deck at the commercial street to two stories on the more residential side of the site.
Image courtesy of Santos Prescott and Associates


The WAV – Working Artists Ventura – is a community for artists and creative businesses, located in the Downtown Cultural District of the City of Ventura, northwest of Los Angeles. WAV provides affordable and market-rate live-work space for artists from more than 20 countries: painters, sculptors, dancers, musicians, poets, actors, and filmmakers, among others. The project also includes supportive housing with social services for people moving out of homelessness and theater/gallery space programmed by WAV artists. Art-friendly small businesses such as cafés, coffee houses, jazz clubs, and wine bars are planned for the community. WAV has the character of a small village, with varied building sizes and configurations. Entrances and balconies enliven adjacent streets, and courtyards and open spaces, which are collaboratively managed by the artists, also open to the street. The buildings were constructed using green building technology.