Obituary by Gael Donovan (1949 – 2021) – Carmel, CA

Gaël Linford Donovan
April 4, 1949 – May 18, 1921
GAEL LINFORD DONOVAN was born in Palo Alto, California to Lois Linford Brooks Donovan and John Farrington Spencer Donovan on April 4, 1949. His parents soon moved to Carmel. It was in her beloved family home that she passed away on May 18, 2021.
Gael grew up in an art environment and a bohemian way of life. Most of the family friends were members of various artistic communities. Her mother was an internationally renowned portrait painter and a passionate explorer of the arts and ideas of all cultures. She took Gaël with him. As a young girl, Gael experienced Asia, the South Pacific, South America and Europe where she spent 1963 attending the Lake Geneva boarding school in Switzerland. Here she developed long-standing international friendships. Gael graduated from Santa Catalina School in 1967 and from Willamette University in Salem, Oregon in 1971. At age 27, she and her mother returned to Japan to study with a master screenwriter. This event had a great influence on her and created many long-term friendships with Japanese artists. Returning home to Carmel, she accepted a position as seasonal ticket manager for the Carmel Bach Festival.
In 1978, the Carmel Art Association, where her mother was an exhibitor member, needed a secretary. They hired Gaël, as she would say, “because she knew how to type”. She will remain there for two decades, the last eleven years as director of the CAA. In this capacity, she has been instrumental in the organization of major historical exhibitions and the publication of distinguished books chronicling CAA artists who have made important contributions to California art.
In 1998 Gael decided to take his own art seriously. She retired from CAA and headed to the studio. Although Gael has been continuously creative throughout her life, working in a variety of mediums, she has found her way with the brush. In 2005, her talent earned her an acceptance as an exhibiting artist at the CAA. Gael also served on the board of directors of the CAA.
An avid reader, Gael’s interests included everything new in the past. When she focused her attention on a subject, she immersed herself in it. From building a spinning wheel to coloring fabrics, including family stories and computers, everything was in his schedule! As a computer research expert, she delighted many of her friends by giving them printouts of their family ancestors. Gael was also a gourmet cook who believed that a recipe was just a starting point. She felt, like life, that everything could be improved and enjoyed in different ways. Her home was always warm and welcoming with its traditional Thanksgiving feast, Christmas brunch, and the exchange of food experiences throughout the year. Although very private, once you get to know her they discover a compassionate and intuitive person. She had a lively intelligence, a willingness to listen and was always interested in her friend’s life. Those who were lucky enough to know Gaël will miss her very much but will cherish the memories of this remarkable woman. Please visit www.thepaul to sign Gael’s online guestbook.

See the online memorial for Gael Linford Donovan

Posted by Monterey Herald Obits on October 3, 2021.

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