Gallery Hop 'Til You DropSanta Barbara's cultivated artistic environment has inspired new ideas and nurtured creative energies dating back to the Chumash era. With a vibrant history as an artists' colony and currently home to more than 60 galleries, it's impossible to absorb Santa Barbara's rich visual arts scene in just one visit. So we've created a stimulating gallery jaunt to whet your appetite for art and inspire many happy returns!
Marvel at renowned masterpieces like Monet's Waterloo Bridge and Van Gogh's Outskirts of Paris at Santa Barbara Museum of Art, one of the nation's Top 10 regional art museums. The museum features nationally recognized collections and special exhibitions of international merit. Just 100 steps away from the museum doors, you'll find Artamo Gallery. If contemporary abstract art is your passion, you'll want to stop into this hot spot, which represents accomplished local, regional, national and international artists.
Wander through halls lined with decades of art history at Sullivan Goss, which houses more than 6,000 works, from 19th-century pastels to photos of tattoos. This distinguished gallery has encapsulated the essence of American art for 25 years and has even featured the iconic surfboard paintings of Hank Pitcher, a native Santa Barbara artist and art educator. Relish in an artful lunch at the gallery's own Arts & Letters Café. Modeled after the walled gardens of Spain, the café is nestled in a beautiful courtyard in the heart of Historic Arts District in downtown Santa Barbara.
Stroll over to La Arcada Court to get in touch with the local art vibe at Gallery 113, a lively cooperative venture exhibiting works by the 500-member Santa Barbara Art Association.
For an added dose of local and regional plein air painting, stop by Marcia Burtt Studio downtown or the Easton Gallery in Montecito.
Stay on trend with the latest avant-garde expressions at the Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum. This ultramodern gallery has gained the reputation as Santa Barbara's leading showcase for noteworthy local, national and international contemporary works of all mediums.
Santa Barbara's educational institutions also offer impressive collections and thought-provoking exhibitions. From Tibetan sand paintings to psychedelic dance concert posters, University Art Museum at the University of California, Santa Barbara has a national reputation for culturally diverse exhibitions. If you adore architecture, the museum's impressive design collection includes more than 750,000 drawings and sketchbooks. Santa Barbara City College's Atkinson Gallery and Westmont College's Reynolds Gallery showcase outstanding exhibits within institutions of higher learning as well.
To remember your artistic venture, pick up a one-of-a-kind souvenir at Santa Barbara Arts & Crafts Show, where you'll find original paintings, hand crafted jewelry, wall hangings, vintage posters, hand-painted silk scarves and woodcarvings.