News Releases

May 26, 2009


SANTA ANA, Calif. - A new exhibition entitled "Scenic View Ahead: The Westways Centennial" featuring cover art from the Automobile Club of Southern California’s Westways magazine will be on display in the Vi Smith Concourse Gallery in the Thomas F. Riley Terminal at John Wayne Airport (JWA) from May 26 through October 19.

Auto Club historian Matthew W. Roth said, "The exhibition at John Wayne Airport will have more works of Westways cover-art than any prior public showing of the collection. We are delighted with the airport and its expansive space, which allows us to present works of art from every period and genre. The cover of the Auto Club magazine featured examples from most of the major movements of California art in the 20th century and this is a rare and welcome opportunity to present that breadth to our members and the public."

Maynard Dixon’s Clipper ShipMaynard Dixon’s Clipper Ship is an example of his abstracted yet realistic landscapes. Dixon provided art for all 12 covers for the magazine in 1930.

The Automobile Club began publishing its member magazine, originally named Touring Topics, in 1909 with a focus on automotive subjects. Prior to its name change to Westways in 1934, the magazine took a new direction by adopting a broader cultural mission and in 1928 began commissioning original art for the covers of the publication.

The cover-art program featured Maynard Dixon, Donna Schuster, Phil Dike, Jan Sawka and many other notable artists from the region as well as prominent stylistic movements of the 1940s through the 1970s such as California watercolor, Pop Art and mixed media. The magazine’s cover-art program, whose collection traced the evolution and expansion of visual arts in Southern California and was a major patron of the region’s artists, ended in 1981.

Seacape of BalboaPhil Dike was a pillar of the California scene-painting movement and known for watercolor depictions of landscapes and streetscapes. His Westways covers ranged from his seascape of Balboa, shown here, to the urban panoramas.

The exhibition will feature a total of 56 paintings and is the largest-ever showing of Westways cover art. Ticketed passengers who have passed through security will be able to view the collection, which is on display across from Gates 1 - 4 and 11 - 14 in the Thomas F. Riley Terminal. For more information about JWA’s art program, visit To learn more about the Automobile Club of Southern California, visit


John Wayne Airport (SNA) is a self-supporting enterprise, owned and operated by the County of Orange, serves nearly nine million passengers annually and is governed by the five-member Orange County Board of Supervisors.

The Automobile Club of Southern California, the largest member of the AAA federation of motor clubs, has been serving members since 1900. Today, the Auto Club’s members benefit by roadside assistance, insurance products and services, travel agency, financial products, automotive pricing and buying programs, automotive testing and analysis, trip planning services and highway and transportation safety programs. Information about these products and services is available on the Auto Club’s Web site at