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What’s in a name?

Many of us dream about the philanthropic good we could do if only we had a cool million or two to spare. CSUN Art professor Lesley Krane’s story illustrates how we can pay kindness forward on any level while honoring the remarkable people in our lives.

Text by Lesley Krane. Images courtesy of the author.
Lesley Krane Family Photo
Lesley Krane (left) and Barbara Guttenberg at Beverly Park’s Kiddieland in 1973

Many awards bear names that represent lives lived and generous gifts made, and I wanted to establish a funding opportunity that acknowledged my cousin Barbara Jean Guttenberg, who lived quietly and died of lung cancer on October 25, 2021.

Hazel and Barbara Photo
Barbara Guttenberg (center) with dog Syl and the author’s daughter, Hazel Krane, in 2001

Barbara grew up in Los Angeles, Van Nuys, and Woodland Hills, lived in Calabasas for 17 years, then made her final home in Tarzana. She was a true “valley girl” who loved everything about the valley. She became a make-up artist, working in the entertainment industry and local salons. With her knowledge, creativity, and tenacity, she developed her own skin care and cosmetics line, and her company, Canvas Cosmetics, flourished. As a makeup artist, she prioritized eyebrows long before they were a “thing,” and I received my first pair of clogs from her hand-me-downs. I looked up to and loved her, and her distinct aesthetic has influenced my approach to art and life.

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