Armchair Travels

SBMA’s Travel Program began in 1972 and is a benefit of membership. While these uncertain times have created unprecedented challenges for the travel industry, we hope you find comfort in the following "armchair travels". The newest posts are at the top. 

 

 

Here is a list of all recommended upcoming and always available online programs (since some of the ones listed below are no longer available)

 

List of upcoming online talks:

December 1 to February 2 (weekly with a few weeks off for the holidays) * Renaissance Masterpieces, Eternal Mysteries – eight online talks by Dr Michael Douglas-Scott * Topics include Botticelli's 'Primavera', Michelangelo's 'Slaves', Piero della Francesca's 'Flagellation', Palladio's 'Rotunda', Bellini's 'St. Francis in the Desert', Leonardo Da Vinci's 'Mona Lisa', and Raphael's 'School of Athens' * Martin Randall * 4.30 pm GMT, which is 8:30 am PST * £75

December 1: Artificial Intelligence and Art: The Case of Harold Cohen, A Conversation with Justin Underhill * SBMA * 4 pm PST * Free

December 2: Deconstructing Frank Gehry * Smithsonian Associates * 9 am PST * $30

December 3: The Burghers of Calais by Auguste Rodin * Smithsonian Associates * 9 am PST * $25 

December 3: Art Matters Lecture - "What Matters is Boldness": Mexican Modernism in Context with Mark Castro * SBMA * 3 pm PST * Free

December 5, all day program: Painters in Provence: From Van Gogh to Matisse * Smithsonian Associates * 6:30 am-1:15 pm PST * $90 

December 12: Andrea Bocelli "Believe in Christmas Concert" * 8 pm * $25

December 13: Kwame S. Brathwaite in Conversation * SBMA * 11 am PST * Free

December 17:  Barnes Foundation: Renoir * Smithsonian Associates * 7 am PST * $35

January 21:  Barnes Foundation: Modigliani and Soutine * Smithsonian Associates * 7 am PST * $35

 

 

Stream anytime: 

SBMA Armchair Travel Lecture Series, select Public Lectures, then click on one of the five Armchair Travel Lectures

SBMA Dia de los Muertos Oaxaca Artisan Visit with Wood Carver Zeny Fuentes Santiago

SBMA Dia de los Muertos Oaxaca Artisan Visit with Potter Adelina Pedro Martínez and Cultural Anthropologist Florencio Moreno

SBMA Full Video Library

SBMA Mindful Looking of Tatsuo Miyajima’s Time Waterfall, one of SBMA's recent acquisitions to the permanent collection

The Frick Cocktails with a Curator

 

 

Update, 11/30/2020


CREDIT: FABRIZIO VILLA/GETTY IMAGES

"Believe in Christmas Concert" by Andrea Bocelli

Andrea Bocelli, the Italian opera singer, will stream a holiday concert on December 12th at 8 pm, regardless of your time zone. It will be broadcast from the 200-year-old Teatro Regio di Parma in Italy. 

The creative director of the performance is Franco Dragone of Cirque du Soleil. 

Tickets are $25 and are on sale now through Ticketmaster

 

Update, 11/24/2020

Travel the world with an SBMA Docent as your tour guide! Join us on a virtual journey to cultural and historic sites through works of art in the Museum's permanent collection in a new collaboration with SBMA's Education Department: Travels with a Docent. These short videos will keep you inspired, engaged, and traveling—even if only virtually for the moment. Look out for new installments of Travels with a Docent each month.

Our sincerest thanks to the SBMA Docent Council who have made this project possible.

In the first installment of Travels with a Docent, join Patricia Santiago on a virtual journey to Segovia, Spain through the work of Colin Campbell Cooper.

Does this whet your appetite for returning to real travel? SBMA is planning two tours to Spain in 2022: Southern Spain with Art Historian Nigel McGilchrist and Spain and Portugal’s Less Traveled Regions. Both tours will spend time in Segovia! If any of our future tours interest you, please email travel@sbma.net and ask to be added to the early interest list. 

 

 

 

Update, 11/19/2020

Armchair Travel Cooking Idea of the Day: 

 

CAPRESE

Perhaps the easiest and most delicious way to transport yourself to Italy through taste is by making Caprese. Combine buffalo mozzarella or burrata, tomatoes (we know they aren't the freshest now but if you pre-salt them and let them sit for 5 minutes--even during the summer months--they taste fantastic), any herb (we have been using thyme; basil is obviously traditional), olive oil, pepper and a touch more salt - layer as above or cube and eat as a salad, greens optional. I prefer it without balsamic vinegar, but it's up to you! We aren't really in Italy, which means we get to tweak the rules to our liking! ;) 

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And if you're still in the Italian mood, join this online webinar because "You can't visit Italy right now--but you can make pasta!"

November 20: Pontormo and Pasta: Live from Tuscany * Smithsonian Associates * 9 am PST * $25 

Join art historian and culinary expert Elaine Trigiani at her farmhouse in Tuscany for a virtual exploration of this region through its artistic and culinary heritage.

 

 

Update, 11/14/2020

Armchair Travel Idea of the Day: 

LEARN THE HULA!

For $40 a class, join Mu'olaulani, Pa'i Foundation & Wahea Foundation for their annual Le'a Ka Hula, now online. 

Online workshops take place November 19, 20 and 21.  

For more information or to register, visit www.ileakahula.com.

 

 

Update, 11/4/2020

SBMA Travel's Favorite Things at the SBMA Store!

Perhaps our most favorite item in our amazing SBMA store, during this time when we aren’t traveling but want to fulfill our wanderlust in any way possible, is this BEDSIDE WORLD ALARM CLOCK. We also love the variety of baskets from Rwanda; THIS ONE and THIS ONE are our favorites. Lisa has one on her coffee table that holds her remotes. When we are flipping through travel magazines or tour itineraries, we love these STICKY NOTES OF THE GREAT MASTERS. And these LAPIS BEAD HOOP EARRINGS will make any travel outfit dazzling, from India to Mexico (to your local park or grocery store!)

 

 

Update, 11/4/2020

CELEBRATING RAPHAEL 

This year marks the 500th anniversary of the death of the Renaissance artist Raphael. Three days after it opened, a large exhibition at Rome’s Scuderie del Quirinale had to shut its doors due to the pandemic. It was able to open again at the end of summer. Watch a wonderful video here of the “once-in-a-lifetime gathering of more than 200 works (120 by Raphael) from all over the world.” (NY Times)

 

Tomorrow!

Free webinar on Friday, Nov. 6th from 5-6 pm EST (2-3 pm PST)

(45-minute lecture followed by 15 minutes of Q&A)
Rome: Vatican Museums "The Raphael Rooms"
Dr. Rocky Ruggiero

REGISTER HERE

 

 

 

Update, 11/4/2020

Online Lecture Through UCSB by SBMA Study Leader Keelan Overton 

November 12, 2020 9:30 AM (PST)

Free

REGISTER HERE

Details:
Iran and the Deccan: Persianate Art, Culture, and Talent in Circulation, 1400-1700

In the early 1400s, Iranian elites began migrating to the Deccan plateau of southern India. Lured to the Deccan for many reasons, these poets, merchants, scholars, saints, and artists left a lasting mark on the Islamic sultanates that ruled the region until the late seventeenth century. In this talk, Overton will introduce some of the main themes, personalities, things, and routes of Iran-Deccan exchange while providing an overview of her recent edited volume Iran and the Deccan: Persianate Art, Culture, and Talent in Circulation, 1400-1700 (Indiana University Press, June 2020). Contributors to the book include Keelan Overton, Muzaffar Alam, Sanjay Subrahmanyam, Wheeler Thackston, Roy S. Fischel, Peyvand Firouzeh, Sheila Blair, Jonathan Bloom, Maryam Habibi, Arash Khazeni, Rachel Parikh, Kristine Rose-Beers, Bruce Wannell, Jake Benson, Hamidreza Ghelichkhani, Kimia Maleki, Sunil Sharma, and Subah Dayal.

This lecture has been made possible with the support of the Religious Studies Department, UCSB, Gramian-Emrani Foundation, Mellichamp Funds and Department of History of Art and Architecture.
The lecture will be followed by a Q & A session moderated by Samira Fathi (UCSB, Department of History of Art and Architecture).

Keelan Overton (PhD, UCLA, 2011) is a historian of Islamic art and architecture specializing in the eastern Islamic world. Her publications explore the early modern Deccan, the cultural heritage of Iran at home and abroad, and histories of collecting and display. Her 2011 dissertation on book arts and painting at the Bijapur court of Ibrahim Adil Shah II has been published as a series of journal articles and book chapters. Her current book project is a global history of Persian tilework, for which she has been awarded a Getty Scholar grant.

REGISTER HERE

 

 

Update, 10/28/2020

A Quick Virtual Escape to Palm Springs

We have been waiting for the perfect moment to launch a tour to Palm Springs.  While we hope that will be in 2021, we didn’t want to miss out on the Fall Preview for Modernism Week, which celebrates midcentury architecure and design and has gone virtual this year so we can all enjoy the festivities from home.

The Fall Preview offers videos online are available for purchase through October and then you can stream them through the end of November.  We recommend The Modernism Week Signature Home Tour Video Series, which visits five homes over 70 minutes and costs $35. 

To see all the programs available, Click Here. 

To flip through the Digital Program Guide Click Here.

We will keep you updated about the main Modernism Week programs next February.  In the meantime, we hope you feel transported to the desert oasis that has inspired architects for generations during Modernism Week's Fall Preview. 

NOTE: Registration for the Fall Preview videos is now closed. If you missed your chance, they will be available again in February 2021.  Stay tuned.

 

Update, 10/26/2020

COMING UP ON NOVEMBER 9th:  Two online lectures through the Smithsonian 

These art history lectures put on by Smithsonian Associates are usually fabulous. There is a cost but they are worth it. 

The Elgin Marbles Controversy * Monday, November 9, 12 pm ET (9 am PST) * $25

The Art of Georgia O'Keeffe * Monday, November 9, 6:30 pm ET (3:30 pm PST) * $35

 


Update, 10/22/2020

"While we may not know when this pandemic will subside, what we do know is that travel is so deeply woven into the fabric of our global culture. We all desire to visit family, dance at a friend's wedding, hug parents…and see the wonders of this beautiful world." - Scott Kirby, the new CEO of United Airlines

 


Update, 10/20/2020

 

The second lecture in SBMA's popular Art Matters series is coming up on Thursday, November 5 at 3 pm over Zoom. The speaker will be Mey-Yen Moriuchi, Associate Professor or Art at La Salle University, and the topic is Race, Society, and Identity in 19th-century Mexican Costumbrismo

For tickets and information on the full series, visit here. (FREE)

 


Update, 10/18/2020

Above: "Still Life with Gourds", 1916 by Henri Matisse (Barnes Foundation/Artists Rights Society)

The Smithsonian Associates lectures are highly recommended. Coming up are two virtual walkthroughs of the phenomenal Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia, where SBMA's late Curator of Photography, Karen Sinsheimer, took a group on a wonderful Philadelphia tour in 2013.

 

Artists in Depth at the Barnes Foundation: Matisse * Thursday, October 29 at 10 am ET (7 am PST) * $35

Artists in Depth at the Barnes Foundation: Cézanne * Thursday, November 19 at 10 am ET (7 am PST) * $35

 

 


Update, 10/16/2020

Thank you to Beth Gates Warren and Bob Boghosian for letting us share your comments about your tour with us to Mexico in 2019! 

"Our trip in Mexico was one of the most memorable of all the memorable trips we have made with the museum. It was a perfect combination of ingredients: Rachel; Florencio; the places we visited; the food we ate; the artisans; the great group of fellow tour members. Seeing that wonderful photo is a vivid reminder of the convivial travelers you assembled.

We are anxious to travel with the Museum again as soon as the threat of the pandemic subsides."

Beth and Bob have been on six trips with SBMA: India (2013), Peru (2014), Sicily (2014), Japan (2018), Greece (2019) and Oaxaca, Puebla, and Cuernavaca in Mexico (2019).

Above: Beth and Bob in Mexico in 2019.


Update, 10/15/2020

For over 30 years the Museum has celebrated the Mexican tradition of Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, with music, dance, art activities and altar displays. This year, SBMA is bringing the festivities to you virtually via Zoom and live from Oaxaca for a behind the scenes glimpse of the artisans and art that are central to this deeply moving holiday.

Cultural Anthropologist and favorite SBMA travel guide Florencio Moreno will speak about the traditions and visit the home studios of master woodcarver Zeny Feuntes and master potter Adelina Pedro Martínez.

After the Q&A with the artisan, Museum Teaching Artist, Tina Villadolid will share ideas about how to create meaningful elements out of simple materials that can be added to home altars to honor loved ones who have passed.

Click HERE to reserve space for Saturday and HERE to reserve space for Sunday. Both are from 11-12.

 

UPDATE: If you missed these, view them online HERE and HERE!

 

 


Update, 10/13/2020

Members should be receiving their Members' Newsletter in the mail soon, if they have not already. We featured our last two tours, honored Lorna Hedges, SBMA Travel's most frequent traveler, and tried as best we could to express our heartfelt gratitude to our wonderful community of travelers.. 

Above: SBMA Travelers in India in February, at the Umaid Bhawan Palace with His Highness the Maharaja of Jodhpur
Front row: Susan Weisbarth, Amy O’Dowd, Elaine Toledo, His Highness the Maharaja of Jodhpur, Shirley Waxman, Ken Waxman, Bob Toledo.
Back row: Ellen Davis, Abbie Dean, Tish Gainey, Susan Northrop, Kevin White, Pegeen White, Terry Northrop, SBMA Host Brittany Sundberg, Herb Wolas, Annette Wolas, Amanda Fox, Celeste Gainey, Gail Baril, Ellen Kern, Patti Bell, Indian Guide Anil Bahal

“The kindness and attention and patience and helpfulness was unlike any trip I have been on. I’ve traveled a lot, with other organizations, and SBMA has far surpassed them.” — Susan Weisbarth

“I just wanted to tell you what a wonderful trip it was. I absolutely loved India. The guide was beyond fantastic. He was a doll, he was so smart—he knew everything, and took care of everybody. The hotels of course were fabulous. The group was lovely. I really have NOTHING bad to say about it!” — Patti Bell

Above: SBMA Travelers in Mexico in November
Left to right: Bob Boghosian, Sheila Nash, Guide Florencio Moreno (behind), Robin Huber, Paula Lutomirski, SBMA Host Rachel Heidenry, Beth Warren, Katy Sutter, Laura Adler, Cristy Laier, Stanya Owen, Sharon Darnov, Cinnie Norvell, Marjorie McShirley, Shannon Kirby, Ken Adler, Joan Mason, Susan Fesus, Mardi Brayton, George Fesus, Cynthia Riebe, Fred Riebe

“The trip was phenomenal. Probably the best trip I’ve ever been on. Florencio is amazing, the itinerary is amazing, Mexico’s amazing. Everything. Thank you, thank you!” — Paula Lutomirski

“I loved everything about the trip!” — Marjorie McShirley

 

AboveLorna Hedges, who has been on 36 tours with the SBMAthe most tours of any SBMA traveler!  When the Travel Program started a Loyalty List in 2017, we lovingly named the highest level “the Lorna Level.”  Here she is accepting her loyalty gift and on the bag is her long list of SBMA tours.

Lorna Hedges has been involved with SBMA for 50 years as volunteer, docent, and trustee for 21 of those years. Currently she is involved with Benefactor’s Circle activities, Photo Futures, and Friends of Asian Art. She is a patron of the Music Academy of the West and is involved with the Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara. 

Lorna is a world traveler and SBMA feels very lucky to say that she has chosen to travel with us 36 times, with two future trips already reserved for 2021. After their first trip with SBMA to India in 1987, she and her late husband Walt fell in love with the country and the SBMA guide, and returned to South India the following year. They spent a few days in Nepal and Lorna tells of waking up early and walking to a lookout point to watch the brilliant orange sun rising over Kathmandu, a magical travel memory that has never left her. When asked about her trip to Morocco in 2007, she recalls riding a pony across the sand dunes in the desert. After a 22-day trip to Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, and Myanmar in 2003, she wrote “I loved that trip and feel fortunate to have been able to go.” Two of her favorite trips with Walt were Tuscany in 1994 and Sicily and Malta in 1995, from which she has fond memories of their leader Susie Orso.

Lorna is focusing on traveling closer to home these days. In 2017 after an overnight trip to Los Angeles, she described the group as “fabulously congenial!”, the accommodations as “dreamy!”, and the food as “delectable!” She continued, “as we were toasting him with champagne, Nigel intellectually summed up all we had seen and done with enriching perspective. Such riches!!” After a 2017 tour in New York City, she exclaimed “Donnovan (a fellow traveler) said it best—Delicious!! The trip was truly delicious in every way and every sense of the word. I loved every minute of it and am so happy and feel privileged as well to have been a part of it.”

Lorna says, “sometimes people say to me ‘the tours through the Museum are expensive’ I say, ‘they are worth every penny; you get your investment back in spades.’ The Museum offers experiences that other travel entities don’t have access to. They always do a wonderful job in planning and executing the trips. SBMA has been my very favorite travel agent since 1987.” 

Thank you Lorna, for your trust in us, your support of SBMA, and for the large part you play in our groups being so “fabulously congenial!” 

 

THANK YOU!

It is at times like these that we at SBMA Travel feel especially grateful for SBMA travelers, your loyalty and support through the years, and the memories of so many wonderful past trips.  As the world faces true challenges, it is important to remember that travel teaches us understanding, respect, and the importance of sharing ideas. We look forward with hope to the moment when we can once again wander the globe, connect with cultures, intermingle with people from other backgrounds, appreciate art, and share our interconnectedness with other human beings around the world.

 


Update, 10/9/2020

During three tours in 2017, 2018, and 2019, 60 SBMA Members went to Marfa, Texas and Bentonville, Arkansas with SBMA Travel. Both cities have art everywhere you look.

We have loved staying all three times at 21C Bentonville, which has its own art collection with rotating exhibitions. Take yourself on a virtual walkthrough of the current exhibition, RefugeHERE and learn more about the artworks HERE

If you're interested in our next Marfa and Crystal Bridges tour, please email us at travel@sbma.net 

 

   

 


Update, 10/5/2020

The Railway", 1873 by Edouard Manet (National Gallery of Art)

The Smithsonian Associates lectures are highly recommended. Coming up: 

Medieval History Through Artists’ Eyes * 4-Session Daytime Course * Tuesday, October 6 to 27, 2020 - 10:00 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. ET
Explore the art and architecture of the Middle Ages through four transformational moments in history. Art historian Judy Scott Feldman examines the art of the thousand-year period between classical antiquity and the Renaissance and its relationship to a diverse society infused with faith and spirituality. 

Art + History: The Railway by Edouard Manet * Thursday, October 8 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. ET
Great art is timeless. Paul Glenshaw examines the iconic painting The Railway by Edouard Manet, exploring its historical context, delving into the era of its artist, the present he inhabited, and what shaped his vision and creations.

Cezanne: The Father of Modern Art * Friday, October 9, 2020 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET
For Picasso, Paul Cezanne was simply “the father of us all.” Art historian Joseph Cassar examines key works that reflect how this pioneer of modernism pointed to future developments in art. 

Edward Hopper: American Modernist * Thursday, October 22, 2020 - 6:30 p.m. ET
Explore the life and career of Edward Hopper, one of the great American realists of modern art, with art historian Bonita Billman

 

 


Update, 9/30/2020

Check it out! Photographer Nancy Lova, whose photos from around the world are always captivating, shares her transformative trip to Udaipur, India.

 

 


Update, 9/23/2020

SBMA's popular Art Matters returns to SBMA via Zoom and tickets are now available! The series begins on Thursday, October 1 at 3 pm with a lecture on Casta Paintings: Picturing Racial Difference in Colonial Mexico with Elena Fitzpatrick Sifford via Zoom (free). 

For tickets and information on the full series, visit here.

 


Update, 9/23/2020

Image: Tatsuo Miyajima. Time Waterfall-panel #12, 2018. Computer graphics, LED display. © Tatsuo Miyajima; Courtesy Lisson Gallery. 

Virtual idea of the day:  Engage in Mindful Looking of Tatsuo Miyajima’s Time Waterfall, one of SBMA's recent acquisitions to the permanent collection.

 


Update, 9/22/2020

Nick Cave, photographed in his Chicago studio on June 6, 2019. Renée Cox 

UPCOMING VIRTUAL LIVE TALKS 

Join artist Nick Cave for a conversation on Thursday, September 24th (free) 

Join SBMA and Edgar Arceneaux for a conversation on Thursday, September 24th (free)

Take a virtual trip to PHILADELPHIA for a virtual tour of the BARNES COLLECTION with Smithsonian Associates on Thursday, September 24th ($15) 

Take a virtual trip to SIENA, ITALY with Rocky Ruggiero on Friday, September 25th (free)

Join SBMA and Kim Beil, an author and professor, on Monday, September 28th (free)

 

Stay tuned for information on SBMA's own Art Matters series! (Members receive advance notice.) 

 


Update, 9/17/2020

   

Memories of Morocco by Sarahkate Greeley, SBMA Travel Program Coordinator

The news that Morocco has taken first steps in reopening its borders to travelers has stirred up some beautiful memories for me. I thought I would share a favorite from an SBMA tour to Morocco in 2018, in hopes it might bring back some fond memories of travel for you as well.

After a day of sightseeing in Fez we gathered together on the rooftop of our Riad, which offered sweeping views of the city and mountains beyond. It was almost six o’clock and the sun was turning the dust colored landscape gold. We all fell quiet, taking in our surroundings, when the calls to prayer began. Songs rang out from the minarets throughout the city, sending flocks of birds soaring in patterns across the skyline. The contrast of the blackbirds against their golden backdrop, dancing to the songs calling everyone together below, is forever imprinted in my mind.

If you are interested and want to get on the early interest list for our next tour to Morocco, click here.

      
Sarahkate Greeley in Morocco, 2018 

 


Update, 9/12/2020

 

The Smithsonian Associates lectures are highly recommended. Coming up on September 17th, is one called "Architecture of Faith: The History and Diversity of the World's Great Mosques" by Ünver Rüstem, assistant professor of Islamic art and architecture at Johns Hopkins University.

 

 


Update, 9/7/2020

Read Rick Steves in The Atlantic on how traveling isn't just a pastime — it's a mindset.

Above:  Rick Steves taking a break from filming near the Dolomites in Italy

 

Update, 9/3/2020

 


Update, 8/31/2020

A virtual travel experience may be just what you need today


Anish Kapoor, Turning the World Inside Out, 1995. Cast stainless steel, ed. 3/3. SBMA, Museum purchase, 20th Century Art Acquisition Fund and funds provided by Eli and Leatrice Luria and the Luria Foundation, Lillian and Jon B. Lovelace, Smith Richardson and the Grace Jones Richardson Trust, and the SBMA Visionaries. © Anish Kapoor / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Find inspiration through art and artists around the world, from SBMA and back
SBMA’s treasure trove of memories, from generations of educational travel, and our lineup of 2021 tours make the following virtual opportunities inspirational for the SBMA Traveler.  Enjoy!

Please send your favorite virtual travels and/or travel books, articles, or movies you recommend to travel@sbma.net and we will feature them here.

 


Update, 8/26/2020

Do you follow SBMA on Instagram? Highly recommended! Over the past few weeks, Curators Susan Tai and Charles Wylie have shared their “Curator’s Choice” artworks. Check them out and start to follow us if you don’t already! 

 


Update, 8/20/2020

Armchair Travel Quote of the Day: 

“The truest travel books take us out and in at once.” - Pico Iyer in the Wall Street Journal 

 
 

Update, 8/18/2020

UPCOMING:  Online lectures through the Smithsonian on Sept. 2 and a 4-session course starting Sept. 4

These art history lectures put on by Smithsonian Associates are usually fabulous. There is a cost but they are worth it.  Here are the next two: 

Art + History: Guernica by Pablo Picasso, Wednesday, September 2, 2020 - 12 to 1 p.m. ET
Great art is timeless. Paul Glenshaw examines the iconic painting Guernica by Pablo Picasso, exploring its historical context, delving into the era of its artist, the present he inhabited, and what shaped his vision and creations. 

Vermeer: In Praise of the Ordinary4-Session Daytime Course, Friday, September 4 to 25, 2020 - 10 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. ET
Explore the legacy of painter Johannes Vermeer, a master of light and color whose paintings captured the beauty and meaning of everyday life, with art historian Aneta Georgievska-Shine. 

 


Update, 8/14/2020

Photo book from Artifact Uprising

Armchair Travel Idea of the Day:

Make a professional-looking book of your photos from past travels!

A wonderful idea for this time is to make photo books of your past trips. I just made one on Chatbooks. It was easy and came out looking gorgeous! We hear good things about Artifact Uprising and Mixbook. Other classic ones are Shutterfly and Snapfish. Here are tips from Condé Nast Traveler on how to organize photos from all your favorite trips.

 


Update, 8/12/2020

The Travel & Special Programs Department at SBMA is in charge of the chamber music program at the Museum and the nourishment one receives from the performing arts is relevant to armchair travels—thus updates on this page having to do with music.

The Mandelring Quartet, who performed at SBMA in 2012, 2017, and 2019, just performed its first post-covid concert the Ludwigsburg Castle Festival in Germany. The all-Shostakovich concert was “corona-compatible”. The live-streamed recording can be heard here.

The Catalyst Quartet, who have also performed numerous times at SBMA (in 2013, 2014, twice in 2015, 2017, and 2018) were part of an article in last week’s New York Times called “5 Minutes That Will Make You Love 21st-Century Composers”. The Catalyst Quartet’s Uncovered project features the music of classical composers whose works have been largely overlooked due to their race or gender. The first of their recordings in this series: music of Samuel Coleridge-Taylor with pianist Stewart Goodyear and clarinetist Anthony McGill, to be released this fall. 

 


Update, 8/11/2020

If you do travel…

You may have heard that the State Department lifted its global advisory against international travel (to most countries) after nearly five months, but the CDC’s no-sail advisory remains in effect, several countries continue to deny entry to Americans, and many people are not traveling as a personal choice. However, if you do travel, take a look at this article from National Geographic “If you must travel now, how to stay safe” and this Conde Nast Traveler article on the pros and cons of air travel, train travel, and car travel, as well as other tips on traveling safely. And as always, if you are going abroad, enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive alerts from U.S. officials about the COVID-19 situation and other emergencies while abroad. (If you're on an SBMA tour, we do this for you.) 

 


Update, 8/10/2020

SBMA's Travel Program is a benefit of Membership. In addition, Members at the $500 and above receive advanced info about our SBMA-exclusive/customized tours. 

There are many other benefits to SBMA Membership, including 10% off in the Store!

Have you visited the new online Museum Store yet?

If you are an SBMA Member, remember to use your 10% SBMA Member Discount by entering the code SBMAMember at checkout.

All proceeds support the Santa Barbara Museum of Art’s exhibitions and extensive education programs.

 


Update, 8/7/2020

Take some time to get creative this weekend with SBMA! We continue to offer more opportunities to engage in creative art-making so you can experience the Museum's permanent collection from home. We are also excited for the return of monthly virtual Studio Sundays, starting on August 9.


We hope you will join us for the next virtual Parallel Stories talk on August 23 with Pulitzer Prize-winning author Hisham MatarAll Members who attend will be entered into a raffle to receive a copy of Matar’s book A Month in Siena.

If you didn't have the chance to join us for the last Parallel Stories featuring author Sameer Pandya, check out the recording of the virtual event.

See all SBMA at Home opportunities.

 


Update, 8/3/2020

Armchair Travel Quote of the Day: 

“Blessed are the curious for they shall have adventures.”

– Lovelle Drachman

 


Update, 7/30/2020

Tired of looking out your window at the same view of the outside world? Go to Window-Swap.com and enjoy the window views from homes around the world. Oddly therapeutic, it can remind us that the pandemic and lockdowns are a shared global experience. 

 


Update, 7/26/2020

This webinar by USI Travel Insurance Services contains all you ever wanted to know about travel insurance and Covid-19.

There are many options for travel insurance. SBMA Travel shares info on USI Travel Insurance Services with our clients as on option. They were recently recognized as one of Forbes Advisor’s Best Travel Insurance Companies for 2020.  


Update, 7/22/2020

Armchair Travel Book Suggestion from an SBMA Traveler 

From SBMA Traveler, Cinda Erdman, who traveled with SBMA to Vienna, Prague, and Budapest in 2019:

This week, I read a marvelous book about Prague!!  THE LAST PALACE by Norman Eisen which is a true story all about Prague and the Ambassadors and the Americans.  We did not visit Otto’s palace so now I want to!!  Hope things improve and we can go on a Museum trip!!!

 


In the words of SBMA Travelers: 

I have enjoyed the Travel Dept's occasional emails, since "armchair traveling" is the only traveling I am doing these days!  I can't believe how many years have passed since Cuba.  I recently read an "undiscovered" short story by Hemingway in the New Yorker which was set in Cuba (it was one of his fishing stories) and I was so thrilled to be able to say to myself (something one does in lockdown) "I know that place - I've been there!" I can still smell the cigar smoke wafting through the streets of old Havana.  - Barbara Marré

I like to think you and your staff are happily cooking up new plans for when we can all travel again. It is a wonderful day dream now. - Melissa Dvorak

Your newsy email was the perfect pepper-upper for yet another day longing to be "out of Dodge!"   SO many of us are missing the wonderful SBMA (in person!) Travel experience. Thanks to you and Sarahkate for keeping our spirits up....and appetite for Travel whetted. The (Bhutan) article from Global Traveler set off a flurry of memories of beautiful sites and experiences.  Loved your list of Favorite Places..........you are no doubt familiar with my borrowed (from Susan Sontag) travel "motto" "I haven't been everywhere, but it's on my List" - Judy Weirick​

My iPhone screen this week randomly, unexpectedly, inexplicably presented me with Google photos of where I was a year ago - in Greece with Nigel and my museum friends - and it made me so happy! - Sharon Felder

As part of my Pandemic regime, I am revisiting the wonderful trips I’ve been on and the one to Morocco certainly was a highlight.  What keeps me going, is the thought that perhaps in a year another trip will be possible. - Ann Kelly

 

 


Update, 7/16/2020

Above: Lorna Hedges, who has been on 36 tours with the SBMAthe most tours of any SBMA traveler!  When the Travel Program started a Loyalty List in 2017, we lovingly named the highest level “the Lorna Level.”  Here she is accepting her loyalty gift and on the bag is her long list of SBMA tours.

Lorna Hedges has been involved with SBMA for 50 years as volunteer, docent, and trustee for 21 of those years. Currently she is involved with Benefactor’s Circle activities, Photo Futures, and Friends of Asian Art. She is a patron of the Music Academy of the West and is involved with the Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara. 

Lorna is a world traveler and SBMA feels very lucky to say that she has chosen to travel with us 36 times, with two future trips already reserved for 2021. After their first trip with SBMA to India in 1987, she and her late husband Walt fell in love with the country and the SBMA guide, and returned to South India the following year. They spent a few days in Nepal and Lorna tells of waking up early and walking to a lookout point to watch the brilliant orange sun rising over Kathmandu, a magical travel memory that has never left her. When asked about her trip to Morocco in 2007, she recalls riding a pony across the sand dunes in the desert. After a 22-day trip to Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, and Myanmar in 2003, she wrote “I loved that trip and feel fortunate to have been able to go.” Two of her favorite trips with Walt were Tuscany in 1994 and Sicily and Malta in 1995, from which she has fond memories of their leader Susie Orso.

Lorna is focusing on traveling closer to home these days. In 2017 after an overnight trip to Los Angeles, she described the group as “fabulously congenial!”, the accommodations as “dreamy!”, and the food as “delectable!” She continued, “as we were toasting him with champagne, Nigel intellectually summed up all we had seen and done with enriching perspective. Such riches!!” After a 2017 tour in New York City, she exclaimed “Donnovan (a fellow traveler) said it best—Delicious!! The trip was truly delicious in every way and every sense of the word. I loved every minute of it and am so happy and feel privileged as well to have been a part of it.”

Lorna says, “sometimes people say to me ‘the tours through the Museum are expensive’ I say, ‘they are worth every penny; you get your investment back in spades.’ The Museum offers experiences that other travel entities don’t have access to. They always do a wonderful job in planning and executing the trips. SBMA has been my very favorite travel agent since 1987.” 

Thank you Lorna, for your trust in us, your support of SBMA, and for the large part you play in our groups being so “fabulously congenial!” 

 

 


Update, 7/15/2020

Travel + Leisure announced their best cities in the world list for 2020 and Oaxaca, Mexico is #1!  San Miguel de Allende, Mexico is #2.

 


Update, 7/13/2020

On an SBMA Travel tour, a team of people work together to make the experience the best it can be. In-country guides, scholars, and tour managers often leave a lasting imprint on our travelers’ hearts.

The travel industry employs one in ten workers worldwide. They educate us, they become friends, and they can feel like our family abroad. It seems to happen quickly on a tour that one connects with these individuals on a deeply personal level.

Please allow us to introduce you to a few special guides who are part of the SBMA Travel community abroad

 

SBMA’s Travel Program began in 1972 and is a benefit of membership. While these uncertain times have created unprecedented challenges in the travel industry, we hope you find comfort in hearing from our tour leaders and in these ideas for “virtual travels”.

 

TRAVELER COMMENTS:

Thank you so much for the wonderful messages from the travel guides!  Lovely people, lovely places, wonderful sentiments, and terrific feelings, especially now!  SBMA is such a wonderful place for our community. You all do such a fantastic job in all areas!  And I so appreciate all your efforts, especially during these trying times.  - Julia Stephen 

What a delight to see Anil’s visage again!  That brought back many fond memories I’ve not thought of lately and provided a pleasant respite in the midst of the coronavirus disruption, which I enjoyed. - Gregg Hackethal

Thank you for the messages from SBMA tour guides! I fondly remember Susie Orso for her wonderful sense of humor and intrepid spirit of adventure when she accompanied the knowledgeable and insightful Nigel McGilchrist as his tour manager on an unforgettable tour of Sicily. In addition to visiting all the major antiquities, cathedrals, historical sites, and museums; we were treated to delightful visits to agricultural sites and cooking schools where we had the opportunity to see wonderful gardens and have delicious meals prepared especially for us. All this and spectacular accommodations and great food in authentically local restaurants. Thank you Susie and Nigel and SBMA for a wonderful Sicilian journey. - Mark A Summa

What a lovely idea. I so enjoyed hearing from the guides I have traveled with.  I would never have recognized Susie Orso and she was one of Walt’s and my favorite guides.  She was our guide when we went to Tuscany in 1994 and then when we traveled to Sicily and Rome in 1995—both just wonderful trips and of which I have fond memories.  My travels with Nigel, Florencio and Karma were after Walt died. I am sure that these messages are being enjoyed by the many people who have traveled with SBMA. - Lorna Hedges

I much enjoyed hearing Nigel's familiar voice. So true, travel is SO important to how we view the world. - John Gardner

 


Update, 7/10/2020

Armchair Travel Idea of the Day:

Check out The Frick's Travel with a Curator
 
Travel News of the Day: 
 
 

Update, 7/9/2020

Take a Virtual Trip to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival!

Since 2015, SBMA Travel has run an annual trip to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival (OSF) in Ashland, Oregon. Participants see four plays, engage in pre- and post-play discussions, meet actors, and have the option of seeing additional plays during leisure time.

This year’s tour, and OSF’s fall performances, were unfortunately canceled due to the impact of the pandemic.  

Currently, two plays can be “rented” for $15 each and watched online. They are The Copper Children (available until July 15) and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (available until July 22.) The performances were recorded in February 2020, after the season had opened, but before everything was shut down in March. The recordings were initially done for archival purposes and not for public viewing, so it doesn’t have the same quality as other stage shows being streamed (like Hamilton) that were meant to be viewed electronically. Subtitles have been added. 

We hope you enjoy joining us on this “virtual” trip to Ashland!

 


Update, 7/7/2020

The Arod Quartet

A lot of people don't realize that SBMA's Travel & Special Programs Department puts on the chamber music concerts in the Museum's auditorium. 

In March, the Arod Quartet was scheduled to perform but the concert had to be canceled due to Covid-19. One of the quartet members, Samy Rachid, created this video message to the ticket holders and the quartet shared this recording from a performance they gave last fall of Haydn’s “Sunrise” Quartet for France Musique.

The Szymanowski Quartet is another favorite ensemble who has performed numerous times at SBMA (2006, 2008, twice in 2010, 2012, 2014, and 2016). They sent us a link of them performing the first movement from Mieczysław Weinberg’s Piano Quintet in F Minor, Op. 18 with Michail Lifits. This "Elbphilharmonie Session" was recorded in the Laeiszhalle Recital Hall in Hamburg a few months ago. The Szymanowski Quartet wants to let us know they "still have so many positive and vivid memories of our performances at Santa Barbara Museum." 

Nothing compares to seeing live music and our hearts, support, and wishes go out to the musicians whose livelihood depends on performing music for live audiences. We look forward to having you back at SBMA as soon as it is safe to do so!

 


Update, 7/3/2020

Armchair Travel Idea of the Day:

Read this article in National Geographic by Daniel Stone, who gave a talk at SBMA in March 2020, on how cherry blossoms came to the United States.  
 
 

Update, 6/26/2020

 

Additions to "SBMA Travel Guide to Virtual Adventures": 

Best travel documentaries, Conde Nast Traveler 

"Cocktails with a Curator" at The Frick, shared by SBMA Travelers Linda and Peter Beuret

Watch SBMA's Curator of Contemporary Art talk about "November, Washington Square" (1959) by Edward Hopper and many other videos on SBMA's YouTube channel, then engage in some "SBMA At Home" by coloring your own "November, Washington Square"

 


Update, 6/25/2020

SBMA Travel Guide to Virtual Adventures

Left Image: Royal tombs decorated with Persian-style tilework in the Qutb Shahi funerary complex, Golconda, Deccan, India (Photo: Keelan Overton, www.keelanoverton.com)
Right Image: Tomb of Ahmad II Bahmani, Bidar, Deccan, India (Photo: Keelan Overton, www.keelanoverton.com)

Every Journey Starts with a Plan
According to travel personality Samantha Brown, the act of PLANNING travel puts us in the same psychological, happy-go-lucky place as BEING in a destination. Right now, 44% of people are using their extra time to plan a future trip. Are you? See what travels we have been planning for you.

The Right Book can Make all the Difference
A good read can change the way you experience a new destination. We have some great new recommendations for you. Two recent book suggestions from an SBMA Traveler you might enjoy are See You in the Piazza and Always Italy, both by Frances Mayes. For a more academic read, Dr. Keelan Overton, a favorite SBMA Study Leader and Lecturer, recently published Iran and the Deccan: Persianate Art, Culture and Talent in Circulation, 1400-1700, a collection of 14 essays by 18 scholars addressing the movement of people, works of art, and cultural norms between Iran and the Deccan region of southern India. The 140 photos alone will transport and transfix you.

For Those of you in Need of a Guided Adventure Now
Sometimes waiting is the hardest part. If you are in desperate need of some adventure and can’t wait until all this planning comes to fruition, these are a few of our favorite guided virtual travel experiences you can watch right now.

 

Scroll to the first post at the very bottom for even more virtual travel ideas! 

 


Update, 6/23/2020

According to travel personality Samantha Brown, the act of PLANNING travel puts us in the same psychological, happy-go-lucky place as BEING in a destination.

44% of people are using their time in quarantine to plan a future trip.

Are you?

Email us your response at  travel@sbma.net

 


Update, 6/15/2020

"This virus can stop our travel plans, but it cannot stop our travel dreams." - Rick Steves

As I think about what Rick Steves said, I think about how happy I am when I am making travel plans, or doing travel research.  Since I was an 8-year-old planning my birthday party down to the very last detail, I have always enjoyed making plans, even if they never come to fruition. I have countless files on places I may go one day, or may never get to - it almost doesn't matter. 

This has worked beautifully with my job as SBMA's Travel Manager, since there are many trips that I plan and do not go on.  I relish in thinking about the places our Members would want to visit and in planning the itineraries, from the museums that should be included to the best moments for fitting in restroom breaks. 

And so I continue to dream of travel.  I dream about the moment when SBMA can offer tours again and I dream about the details. 

By Lisa Benshea, SBMA Travel Manager

 


Update, 5/29/2020

SBMA Travelers Jill Nida and Gary Simpson, who have taken three trips with SBMA Travel, were featured in our SBMA Members' e-newsletter. Both Santa Barbara natives, Gary owns Ace Santa Barbara Home Improvement Center and Jill is an avid community volunteer. Both are world travelers. Hear what they have to say! 

What inspires you?
"Traveling to experience and appreciate other places and cultures is totally inspirational for both Jill and me.  Aside from all the interesting sights, smells, flavors and cultures, we crave traveling for the people experiences we bring home in our memories. It's amazing how many wonderful local people one meets along the way. We stay in contact with at least three guides we had on trips over the last few years."

What is your connection to the Museum?
"It is thanks to SBMA that we have experienced three wonderful and enlightening trips to India (twice) and lastly Nepal, Tibet and Bhutan, all of which were absolutely fabulous, meticulously carried out by our accompanying SBMA host and expertly guided by the best guides to be had. We loved our first trip to India and when presented with some trip options we 'went for it' and booked two new different ones at the same time because we just couldn't pick which one was the better. So glad we did!"

Do you mind not being able to travel right now?
"We were getting very close to booking a trip we had planned for this fall, but by early March it was obvious that it would have to wait...and we're fine with that."

What are your favorite countries?
"That's a tough question that I'm sure stumps many a traveler. We think India is probably the most culturally diverse and fascinating country we've visited...and we have visited a lot...but Bhutan was so peaceful, beautiful and with some of the most sincere and kind people on the planet you could ever want to experience."

Where do you want to go next?
"We would love to join SBMA for another two week trip to other parts of India or perhaps Egypt, preferably allowing for special perks such as going to places others normally don't gain admittance to and being guided by top specialists and knowledgeable guides along the way, something we know SBMA can do!"

 


Update, 5/24/2020

SBMA At Home is a new addition to the Museum website and includes curatorial content, such as virtual tours and past lectures, as well as family-friendly art lessons and projects created by Museum Teaching Artists and educators. Bringing the Museum home addresses the ongoing human need to connect; a desire that is especially strong at times like this. SBMA At Home provides that connection, from something as small as a momentary distraction, to inspiration, respite, a chance to learn something new, or an activity to do as a family.

 


Update, 5/20/2020

This article took me on a virtual trip back to Bhutan, perhaps my favorite country to visit, where I have been twice and would happily return every year!  https://www.cnbc.com/2020/05/13/travel-to-bhutan-an-authentic-experience-in-asia.html ~ Lisa, SBMA Travel Manager

 


Update, 5/18/2020

A quote for these times of isolation:  "One's destination is never a place, but rather a new way of seeing things." - Henry Miller

 


Update, 5/14/2020

As the Museum continues to be closed and we continue to plan for the future of travel, we loved this short article by Pico Iyer, who always reminds us in the most beautiful words, why we travel. 

 


Update, 5/8/2020

Reminiscing about past travels? We would love to see your best SBMA Travel photos and hear your best travel memories. Send them to  travel@sbma.net.

Thank you Mary and Cinda for sharing your travel photos!

Sent by SBMA Traveler Cinda Erdman: a photo from the dining room of the Hotel Paris in Prague, SBMA tour to Vienna, Budapest and Prague in 2019.

Sent by SBMA Traveler Mary Marks:  photo of Dylan Turk, study leader, SBMA tour to Marfa and Crystal Bridges in 2018.


Update, 5/5/2020 

From frequent SBMA travelers on how they are practicing "virtual" travels and looking forward to the future:

"I've had enough of this.  Let's get traveling!!"  - An avid SBMA traveler

"I have been very busy reliving wonderful trips to wonderful Italy. With the help of two newer books by Frances Mayes (she of 'Under the Tuscan Sun') I have been able to recreate some fabulous moments and plan a few for the future!  "See You in the Piazza" offers a more intimate travel account, complete with a few recipes..... good to enjoy with a lovely glass of wine, which she will also recommend.  "Always Italy" has the added value of some wonderful photography.  It seems Mayes knows and loves many of less visited locations we have enjoyed with Susie and Nigel. All things Italian are lovingly described, from the mini series 'My Brilliant Friend' to Taralli, those circular treats so delicious with aperol spritzes, which we all loved in Puglia!  Just spending time going through my old Susie itineraries and remembering special moments with Nigel reminds me how much I am looking forward to travel again!  Soon, very soon......." - Gwen Baker, SBMA Traveler and Trustee

 


Update, 5/1/2020

Lisa Benshea, SBMA Travel Manager, Looking Back and Forward

Lisa's favorite places:
~ Morocco for its colors, tiles, arches, designs, history.
~ Italy for its customs, Michelangelo, and gelato.
~ India for the fact I can’t even put into words why I love it.
~ Mexico for all its variety, culture, art, food.
~ Bhutan for everything else! 
~ Plus Hawaii, because as the song goes, “I’ll never forget where I’m from.”
(And all these places for their wonderful people!)

Lisa's dream destinations of the moment:
~ Armenia, Georgia, Laos, Colombia, and Cape Cod
~ Plus all of the favorite places above, because everytime I go somewhere, it doesn't make my list of "places to go" any smaller, it just makese me want to go back to see more!

 


Update, 4/28/2020

Virtual Travel Ideas ~ Reminisce, SBMA Lectures Online, Books, Movies, and Planning of Future SBMA Tours: 

While these uncertain times have created endless challenges in the travel industry, we have found comfort in reminiscing about past tours. If you would like to reminisce with us, please email  travel@sbma.net with your favorite photo and/or memory from a past SBMA Tour. We can't wait to hear from you and the best photo will be featured in the next SBMA Members' Newsletter!

Looking to the more recent past, we have hosted some wonderful guest speakers for our Armchair Travel Lecture Series. If you didn't get a chance to see them in person we invite you to watch them from the comfort of your home, maybe paired with a cocktail or favorite viewing snack. Click Here and select Public Lectures, then click on one of the five Armchair Travel Lectures

A good read is becoming increasingly important right now, and we have been enjoying this list of great travel books and this list of amabassador recommendations for the one book you should read before visiting their country from Conde Nast Traveler.

Also from Conde Nast Traveler is this list of 50 great travel movies we thought you might enjoy.  

Finally, for those dreaming of the day travel is feasible again, we have updated our website with our plan for 2021 and beyond (subject to change). We are in constant communication with our contacts around the globe, putting together one-of-a-kind itineraries for you and getting ready for the moment when travel is once again on the horizon. 


 

Update, April 2020

Covid-19 Update and Traveling Vicariously with SBMA

The spread of Covid-19 has created unprecedented challenges for all of us. The health and safety of our travelers is our top priority. If you are a participant on an upcoming SBMA tour, we and/or the tour operator will continue to be in touch with updates regarding your trip and we will address each program on a trip-by-trip basis. Please contact travel@sbma.net with any questions. We are working from home but remain available to you.

It is at times like these that we feel especially grateful for our community of SBMA travelers, your loyalty and support through the years, and the memories of so many wonderful past trips. We hope that you and your loved ones are well and healthy. As our whole world faces true challenges, we remember that travel teaches us understanding, respect, and the importance of sharing ideas. We look forward with hope to the moment when we can once again wander the globe, connect with cultures, intermingle with people from other backgrounds, appreciate art, and share our interconnectedness with other human beings around the world.

In the meantime, we are putting together ideas for vicarious travels from the comfort of your home. New posts will be shared at the top of this page.


 

 

MUʻOLAULANI, PAʻI FOUNDATION & WĀHEA FOUNDATION
presents
I Leʻa ka Hula 2020

Update, 11/24/2020

Santa Barbara Art Museum

Museum Hours

In accordance with the State of California orders and in response to COVID-19, the Museum is currently closed.

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