Santa Barbara Museum of Art  
home > programs & events:
Events at SBMA

Tickets for most events may be purchased online at, at the Visitor Services desks during Museum hours or by credit card by calling 805.884.6423. Please check event details for further information.


SBMA offers Otojoy hearing loop technology to hearing aid users for events that utilize the Museum's sound system. Those interested in utilizing the technology are encouraged to contact their audiologist or Otojoy at 805.728.9114 or

October / November

1st Thursday
Thursdays, 5 – 8 pm

Family 1st Thursdays, 5:30 – 7:30 pm
Bring the whole family and enjoy 1st Thursday together in SBMA's Family Resource Center located across from the Museum Café on the Lower Level. Museum Teaching Artists will assist families in creating special exhibition-based art projects. Afterwards, enjoy selected galleries until 8pm.

Guy Goodwin, Hotel Motel — IN, 2014. Acrylic and tempera on cardboard. SBMA, Courtesy of Brennan & Griffin, New York

Cardboard Constructions

Thursday, November 6, 5:30 – 7:30 pm
Assemble organic cardboard shapes into shallow relief compositions, then add bold colors in tempera paint inspired by Guy Goodwin’s Hotel Motel — IN (2014).

Eadweard Muybridge, Untitled (Elephant), 1887. Collotype. SBMA, Gift of Margaret W. Weston

Animal Locomotion

Thursday, December 4, 5:30 – 7:30 pm
Draw elephants or raccoons on sheets of acetate film to create the illusion of animals in motion after Eadweard Muybridge’s photographs in Art to Zoo: Exploring Animal Natures.



Studio Sundays on the Front Steps
November 9
1:30 – 4:30 pm
Visitors of all ages are welcome to participate in this hands-on workshop with SBMA Teaching Artists on the Museum’s front steps. Each month explore a different medium, including clay, metal, ink, wood, photography, and paper, and gain inspiration from works of art in the Museum’s permanent collection or special exhibitions. In the event of inclement weather, activities will be moved inside to the Museum’s Family Resource Center.

All participants receive a Free Family Pass to the Museum.
Front Steps of the Museum

Unknown, Untitled (Ants), n.d. Gelatin silver print. SBMA, Museum purchase. 
Art to Zoo: Exploring Animal Natures

Sunday, November 9, 1:30 – 4:30 pm
Design and build your own bug using exhibition images, wire, hardware, and beads, inspired by the interesting insects in Art to Zoo: Exploring Animal Natures.

Frederick Hammersley, In the pink, 1964. Oil on panel, artist-made fram. SBMA, Gift of Frederick Hammersley Foundation
Oil Pastel
Sunday, December 14, 1:30 – 4:30 pm
Create an abstract composition of organic shapes and rich colors using water soluble oil pastels and tempera paint, then cut it up and reassemble after Frederick Hammersley’s In the pink (1964).


Curator's Choice Lecture: Jorge Pardo

Thursday, October 23, 5:30 pm
Artist Jorge Pardo is known for sculptures and large-scale installations that deftly straddle art, design, and architecture—challenging the conventional boundaries of these realms as well as the protocols of the museum exhibition. In conjunction with the Contemporary/Modern: Selections from the Permanent Collection exhibition, which features Pardo’s colossal lamp sculpture Untitled (Sea Urchin) (2012), the lecture is a special opportunity to hear the artist reflect on his work and process.

Mary Craig Auditorium
Free SBMA Members
$10 Non-Members / $6 Senior Non-Members

Reserve or purchase tickets at the Museum Visitor Services desks, or online at


Stabiles Santa Barbara Pop-Up Shop
Saturday, October 25, 12-5 pm
Samuel Guzman is a Santa Barbara designer and artist in full swing and focused on the work he truly loves. Guzman’s Stabiles are hand-crafted wire sculptures made from a single wire accentuated by a Tillandsia (air plant) and constructed without the use of adhesives or welding. The structures embody a unique aesthetic by balancing weight and space in an organic form.

Museum Shop


Día de los Muertos

Sunday, October 26, 1 – 4 pm
The Museum honors the Mexican tradition of remembering the dead with a variety of family festivities in the galleries and back plaza including music and dance performances, art-making activities, bilingual storytelling, a special display of altars created by school and community groups, and traditional refreshments.


The Odyssey, Rhapsodes, and Dengbêj: Oral Poetry from Ancient Greece to Kurdistan

Thursday, October 30, 5:30 pm
The Iliad and Odyssey that we read today were originally chanted by ancient Greek poet-musicians accompanied by the lyre. In this presentation, Raman Osman, Kurdish master tembûr musician and composer from Syria, exemplifies the exceptional artistry of oral tradition as storyteller and bard in the Kurdish tradition, bridging the gap between the Homeric poems and Kurdish folk tradition. Osman has performed at a variety of venues, including the Damascus Opera house and Universities in Syria.

Introduction on Homer and oral tradition by Andrea Fishman, Ph.D. in Classics with research and teaching interests in Comparative Women’s Lament Traditions and Receptions of Ancient Greek Drama and guest lecturer at SBCC for the Odyssey Project.

Museum Galleries

Pop-Up Opera

Thursday, November 6, 5 pm
As SBMA prepares for its exhibition of Italian masterpieces from Glasgow Museums in 2015, Opera Santa Barbara gets a head start by performing selections from Giuseppe Verdi's Rigoletto during the next Pop-Up Opera. Enjoy musical pieces also paired with the permanent collection presentation Art to Zoo: Exploring Animal Natures.

Museum galleries

Giorgio Morandi, Still Life (Natura morta), 1956. Oil on canvas. Yale University Art Gallery, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mellon, B.A. 1929. © 2014 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / SIAE Rome

Curator’s Choice Lecture: Carol Armstrong
The Matter of Still Life

Thursday, November 6, 5:30 pm
Renowned art historian and critic, Carol Armstrong teaches and writes about 19th-century French painting, the history of photography, art criticism, feminist theory, and the representation of gender in art and visual culture at Yale University. In this lecture, Armstrong looks closely at a wide range of still life paintings to flesh out the multivalence of materiality expressed through this traditional category of vanitas.


Mary Craig Auditorium
Free SBMA Members and students
$10 Non-Members/
$6 Senior Non-Members

Reserve or purchase tickets at the Museum Visitor Services desks, or online at

Staged Reading: A Female Philoctetes

Sunday, November 9, 2 pm
Join us as we present staged readings from Sophocles’ ancient play Philoctetes, Euripides’ Heracles, and other classic works including Homer’s Odyssey and Sophocles’ Ajax. In Philoctetes, Sophocles captures a reality for all combat veterans who have been physically or mentally wounded and explores ethical dilemmas, as dynamic and relevant today as they were to the Greeks 2,500 years ago. In Euripides’ Heracles, the most famous of all Greek warriors completes his final mission and returns home. The play asks its audience to consider the psychological cost that warfare places on its people, both home and away.

Post show talk backs follow the performance. This event is part of You|Stories―Aquila Theatre’s innovative public program funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, which uses ancient drama to inspire modern stories.

Reserve tickets at the Museum Visitor Services desks, or online at

Telegraph Quartet
Sunday, November 12, 7:30 pm
Out of 48 competing ensembles from around the world, the Telegraph Quartet recently won the coveted Grand Prize of the 2014 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition and the Gold Medal in the Senior String Division. Their program includes Haydn’s String Quartet Op. 74, No. 1, Henry Cowell’s String Quartet No. 4 “United” and String Quartet K. 465 “Dissonance” by Mozart.

Mary Craig Auditorium
$18 SBMA Members
$22 Non-Members

Purchase tickets at the Museum Visitor Services desks or online at

Maple + Mauve Pop-Up Shop
Sunday, November 15, 12 – 5 pm
A bit of concrete, wood, and clever design from the Pacific Northwest defines Maple + Mauve as a boutique jewelry studio, created by Sera Young in 2012. With a background in Interior Design, Young pulls much of her inspiration from architecture near and far. She stays curious by taking walks around Seattle's quirky Fremont neighborhood, which is home to Maple + Mauve. Young takes this opportunity to introduce her new line of handmade, one-of-a-kind ceramics.

Museum Shop

Lecture and Book Signing: Virginia Morell Animal Wise
Thursday, November 20, 5:30 pm
In conjunction with the exhibition Art to Zoo: Exploring Animal Natures, noted science writer Virginia Morell explores the frontiers of research on animal cognition and emotion, offering a surprising and moving exploration into the hearts and minds of wild and domestic animals. Morell is also the author of Ancestral Passions, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, Blue Nile, and co-author, with Richard Leakey, of Wildlife Wars. She is also a prolific contributor to National Geographic, Science, and Smithsonian magazines and other publications.
A book signing follows the lecture.

Mary Craig Auditorium

Free SBMA Members and teachers and students
$10 Non-Members
/ $6 Seniors

eserve or purchase tickets at the Museum Visitor Services desks or online at



Copyright © 2014 Santa Barbara Museum of Art. No images or information may be reproduced,transmitted or copied without permission.