September: The Architecturally Macabre Book Club

September: The Architecturally Macabre Book Club

WHERE ARCHITECTURE IS ALWAYS THE MAIN CHARACTER.

Hosted by AFSB Vice President, Selinda Tuttle.

“Personally, I prefer to read books—fiction or non-fiction—that feature the city as a character,” says the book club’s curator, AFSB Vice President Selinda Tuttle. “The only thing cooler than reading a book that reckons with a city is being able to talk about that book with people who find it just as worthy of conversation.”

 
September’s Book:
The Woman in the Window
by A. J. Finn
 

Register at Facebook for this live video event. 

 
Join the private Facebook group (same name) to interact with more book lovers!

Happy Reading!

Local Treasures Opening: September 18

Local Treasures Festive Opening with Music... and Covid safety precautions
Saturday, September 18, 1-4 pm.

September 18, 2021 Saturday, 1-4
The Architectural Foundation Gallery

The Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara is pleased to present Local Treasures, an exhibition of artworks by thirty artists who have exhibited at the Architectural Foundation Gallery during the past seven years. The exhibition runs from Saturday, September 18th through November 12th, 2021. The public is invited to drop by on the opening day, September 18th from 1-4 (masks and social distancing required).

In the Foundation’s garden, the group Glendessary Jam will be providing music for the event.  

July: The Architecturally Macabre Book Club

July: The Architecturally Macabre Book Club

WHERE ARCHITECTURE IS ALWAYS THE MAIN CHARACTER.

Hosted by AFSB Vice President, Selinda Tuttle.

“Personally, I prefer to read books—fiction or non-fiction—that feature the city as a character,” says the book club’s curator, AFSB Vice President Selinda Tuttle. “The only thing cooler than reading a book that reckons with a city is being able to talk about that book with people who find it just as worthy of conversation.”

 
July’s Book:
The Fallen Architect
by Charles Belfourne
 

Register through Eventbrite below to automatically get the ZOOM link for July’s book club meeting. 

 
Join the private Facebook group (same name) to interact with more book lovers!

Happy Reading!

Call for Sponsors: Scholarship Reception & Awards Ceremony

2021 Scholarship Reception & Awards Ceremony

Event is Postponed due to pandemic precautions

Please return for news about the 2022 reception event.

This is a celebration of AFSB’s mission of education and the sponsors, members, and volunteers that make that happen. A celebration of higher education, as we award and recognize Santa Barbara County students pursuing college-level studies in architecture and related fields.

Learn more about this year’s Scholarship Recipients HERE at the Scholarship Page. 

Dancing With Paint by Marlene Struss

Dancing With Paint by Marlene Struss

July 16 – September 8, 2021
The Architectural Foundation Gallery

he Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara is pleased to present Dancing with Paint, an intriguing exhibition of new paintings by long-time Santa Barbara artist Marlene Struss. The exhibition runs from July 17 through September 8, 2021, and the public is invited to an Opening Reception with the Artist on Friday, July 16th, from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. 

The title, Dancing with Paint, contains multiple references.  It conjures the sloshing, swirling, elegant movements of Struss’s painting style, which she describes as biomorphic abstract expressionism with an Asian twist.  On another level, Dancing with Paint characterizes Struss’s partnership with her paintings—how the organic, structural images quickly and almost magically emerge as the artist’s hand and the paint respond to each other in bursts of coordinated, exhilarated movements.  “To prepare for those special moments of focused inspiration,” says Struss, “I spend much time and deliberation on my choices of harmonious colors, paint viscosity and unusual applicators (including yarn, balloons, plastic forks, acetate, rags, you name it)—but it’s dancing around the studio that really primes me and seems to be an essential part of my painting process.”

Marlene Struss graduated from UC Santa Barbara in 1973, where she studied drawing with Howard Warshaw, painting with Irma Cavat, and printmaking with Bruce McCurdy. She subsequently spent many years developing a unique style of abstract collage, for which she was awarded the Independent Artist Award for Assemblage in 2004 from the Santa Barbara Arts Fund.  After a brief but significant stint with digital painting, she then turned to acrylic painting on panel to increase spontaneity and decrease limitations, to enliven the work with surface texture, and work more physically.   More information and past and present artworks by Struss can be seen at www.marlenestruss.com.

The Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara has been dedicated to expanding our community’s appreciation of the built environment since 1983. The AFSB Gallery is located in the historic Acheson House at the corner of Garden and East Victoria Streets in Santa Barbara. Regular gallery hours are Saturdays from 1:00 to 4:00 pm and weekdays by appointment.

June: The Architecturally Macabre Book Club

June: The Architecturally Macabre Book Club

WHERE ARCHITECTURE IS ALWAYS THE MAIN CHARACTER.

Hosted by AFSB Vice President, Selinda Tuttle.

“Personally, I prefer to read books—fiction or non-fiction—that feature the city as a character,” says the book club’s curator, AFSB Vice President Selinda Tuttle. “The only thing cooler than reading a book that reckons with a city is being able to talk about that book with people who find it just as worthy of conversation.”

 
June’s Book:
Loving Frank
by Nancy Horan
 

Register through Eventbrite below to automatically get the ZOOM link for June’s book club meeting. 

 
Join the private Facebook group (same name) to interact with more book lovers!

Happy Reading!

A Summer Lecture Series: The Architecture of India

A Summer Lecture Series: The Architecture of India

By Dr. Allan Langdale

Thursdays, Via Zoom.
June 17 - August 19, from 6:45 - 8:00 PM

$10/lecture or $80 for all

This lecture series focuses on several monuments and architectural complexes in India, surveying the Buddhist, Hindu, and Islamic traditions of the sub-continent. The material will be presented in chronological order, spanning dates from the 2nd century BCE to the sixteenth century.

Read more about each individual lecture on our Events Page.


 

Allan Langdale has had seasons of powerful lectures with the Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara, including several sold-out lectures. He has his PhD in art history from UCSB and currently teaches at UC Santa Cruz. He also works in the tourism industry for Smithsonian Journeys and Zegrahm Expeditions, doing about a dozen trips a year. Allan is the author of several articles and books, including Palermo: Travels in the City of Happiness (2014) and The Hippodrome of Istanbul / Constantinople (2020). His travel blog can be found at ‘Allan’s Art and Architecture Worlds’: https://allansartworlds.sites.ucsc.edu/

Beauty Out Of Ashes by Sophia Beccue

Beauty Out Of Ashes by Sophia Beccue

May 15 – July 8, 2021
Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara Gallery

The Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara is pleased to announce Beauty Out of Ashes, an exhibition of vibrant, abstract paintings by Sophia Beccue. Visitors are invited to view the exhibition on Saturdays, from 1:00 to 4:00 pm, and weekdays by appointment, May 15th through July 8th. The artist will be present on May 15 and July 3. (Self-screening, masks, and social distancing are required.)

During the past two years, while living through cancer and a global pandemic, Sophia Beccue came to grasp the deeper meaning of beauty, beauty born out of the dark times, experienced personally and collectively.

In December 2018, Beccue was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer; in 2019, she went into partial remission and long-term treatment. After wrestling through the meaning of life and death, and finding peace through her faith, she was better equipped to face the pandemic and her husband’s diagnosis of cancer. She discovered not only beauty in the darkness, but strength in the midst of weakness and brokenness.

Her paintings are predominantly abstract, done in watercolor and acrylics on paper and wood panels. The emotion-packed journey through cancer inspired Beccue to put her heart into her work with a calm spirit. Her dynamic compositions, suffused with color, movement and texture, capture deep valleys as well as sunshine with authenticity.

Born in Taiwan, Beccue immigrated to the U.S. in her teens and currently lives in Santa Barbara. She studied graphic design at San Diego State University and illustration at the Academy of Art in San Francisco. She worked as a graphic designer and illustrator, and now focuses on fine art painting. A member of the Santa Barbara Art Association, the Abstract Art Collective, and the Art Council of the Westmont-Ridley Tree Museum of Art, she has won numerous awards and has had solo and group exhibitions. Her art has been collected internationally.

The Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara has been dedicated to expanding our community’s appreciation of the built environment since 1983. The AFSB Gallery is located in the historic Acheson House at the corner of Garden and East Victoria Streets in Santa Barbara. Regular gallery hours are Saturdays from 1:00 to 4:00 pm and weekdays by appointment.

https://www.sophiabeccuestudio.com/

Prairie-Style Home on Mission Street

Prairie-Style Home on Mission Street

Mission Street Home Echoes Midwestern Style

By: Betsy J. Green
 

Address: 21 East Mission Street

Originally Published in The Santa Barbara Independent

Link to original article here: https://www.independent.com/2021/02/25/prairie-style-home-on-mission-street/

Ours is a city dominated by Victorian, Craftsman, and Spanish Colonial Revival homes. We do, however, have some fine examples of additional styles more prevalent elsewhere in the country, and the American Foursquare, a type of “Prairie” style, is one. Frank Lloyd Wright is the most famous architect associated with this style, which is common in the Midwest. 

A Prairie-style home is usually characterized by a low-pitched hipped roof, shaped like a pyramid. Wide eaves emphasize the horizontal lines of the house. This architectural style is all about straight lines and angles — there are no curves or frilly details. 

The first owner of the home at 21 East Mission Street was from the Midwest, so his idea of the perfect home may have been influenced by the architecture there. This home’s Prairie-style angularity is echoed in the brick front walk, which is paved in a double basketweave pattern, and the Japanese shoji screens in the front windows.

A Young Couple Builds a Home

Courtesy of the Santa Barbara Historical Museum

The home was built about 1911 by Edward A. and Nellie Diehl. Edward was from Missouri and Nellie (Elizalda) had grown up in Santa Barbara. When they married in 1905, the local paper described Edward as “one of the city’s most promising young businessmen” and noted that Nellie was “a descendant of one of the oldest Spanish families in California.” They later had a son named Frederick, who is believed to be the one who carved the initials “FD” on a shingle at the back of the house.

Edward’s father, John Frederick Diehl, started a gourmet grocery store in 1891 when the family arrived here. Diehl’s Grocery was located at several different locations on State Street in the half century that it was in business. The store sold imported delicacies from Europe, as well as local produce, and was famous for its elaborate sidewalk displays. The store sold its own baked goods, homemade mayonnaise, and candy and had a soda fountain that served oyster cocktails! In 1905, the grocery’s ad in the local paper boasted that the store sold a “new health food — toasted corn flakes.” Both Edward and his brother William worked at the store.

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, before many families had automobiles, Diehl’s Grocery had its own horse-drawn delivery wagon. That wagon now belongs to the Santa Barbara Carriage and Western Art Museum. You may have seen this vehicle in Fiesta parades.

The Diehl family left Santa Barbara in the 1940s, and the home was occupied by several owners until 1965 when George and Shigeko Nishihara bought the home. George was a cabinetmaker and made the intricate shoji screens in the house. Members of that family have owned and lived in the home ever since. Brian and Vicki (Nishihara) Woolford have lived in the house since 2010. Vicki spent her formative years in the home before she settled in Hawai‘i for some 40 years, where she and Brian met.

Credit: Betsy J. Green

The backyard is a quiet, brick-carpeted oasis shaded by a coastal live oak that an arborist estimated to be 150 years old. A seasonal creek in the back provides water for the tree. Since the tree predates the house, the Diehls may have chosen this site because of the tree. 

What do the Woolfords like best about their home? The walkable location and the architectural diversity in the neighborhood, they told me.

Interesting Patterns Emerge

I was struck by the repeating patterns of the house and its occupants. Frank Lloyd Wright collected Japanese woodblock prints, and this ties in with the shoji screens in the front windows. The screens echo the brick pattern on the sidewalk. The Woolfords moved here from Hawai‘i, and in researching the Diehl family, I discovered that Edward Diehl and his brother William had both spent time in Hawai‘i in 1901.

Please do not disturb the residents of 21 East Mission Street.

Betsy J. Green is a Santa Barbara historian and author of Discovering the History of Your House and Your Neighborhood, Santa Monica Press, 2002.

Rediscovering Rosemary Cottage

1916 Colonial Revival Home with History

Credit: Betsy J. Green
By: Betsy J. Green
 

Address: 1821 Anacapa Street

Originally Published in The Santa Barbara Independent

Link to original article here:  https://bit.ly/32KlCr1

 

A number of homes and estates in the Santa Barbara area have names. Some are fairly well known, such as Bellosguardo or Casa de la Guerra. Other names are less familiar, but the house at 1821 Anacapa Street has a name that no one seemed to be aware of — including the present owner: Rosemary Cottage.

This Colonial-Revival style home appears to have been built about 1916, since the house was listed for the first time in the 1917 city directory for Santa Barbara. Colonial Revival homes were popular from about 1880 to 1955, and generally have a center entrance that is accented with a gabled porch supported by round columns.

Courtesy: Betsy J. Green

The first occupant was an older widow named Julie Matthews Hinsdale, whose daughter — Corinne Hinsdale Whitelaw — lived across the street. When Julie passed away in 1918, the local paper mentioned that her home was named Rosemary Cottage. Presumably, there were rosemary bushes in the yard. The only references to the home’s name date to 1918, so it’s not surprising that the name has remained a mystery for more than 100 years. The home’s owner was not aware of the home’s name. That was the first discovery. The second discovery came later.

In 1919, the home’s most distinguished resident moved in — the landscape artist Thomas Moran and his daughter, Ruth. Moran’s main home was in East Hampton, New York, and is a National Historic Landmark. Starting about 1916-1917, the 80-year-old Moran and his daughter began spending their winters in Santa Barbara. The first couple of years, they stayed at the Potter Hotel and other places. But about 1919, they bought the home at 1821 Anacapa Street and began spending every winter in Rosemary Cottage. 

Thomas Moran | Courtesy of the East Hampton Library, Long Island Collection

Moran’s name is not especially well known today, but in 1917 he was famous enough that the local paper devoted nine paragraphs to him in an article titled, “Noted Painter of Big Views Arrives; Thomas Moran is Famous for His Canvases of Western Outdoor Wonders.” The article ended with a quote from him, “Santa Barbara is the most beautiful city, with its environs, I have seen in all California.” 

In 1871, Moran was part of the team that surveyed the Yellowstone region. It is believed that his sketches were a large part of the reason that Yellowstone became the first national park in 1872. His nickname was “Yellowstone Moran.” 

n 1919, the Santa Barbara Public Library, which doubled as an art museum, exhibited one of his paintings. The local paper stated, “The painting is of the Shoshone Falls, Snake River, Idaho, and is considered by connoisseurs, one of the artist’s most important canvases … The canvas is 6×12 feet, and was painted in 1900 … The picture has been exhibited in several cities and is now going to the Grand Canyon.”

One of Moran’s paintings hung in the Oval Office during President Obama’s administration. | Courtesy of Pete Souza

Some of Moran’s landscape paintings are hung in the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, D.C., and a couple are in the White House. During President Obama’s administration, Moran’s painting of Wyoming’s Teton Mountains hung in the Oval Office. Moran died in Santa Barbara in 1926 at age 89. He is buried in East Hampton.

After his death, the house was sold, and at least five families moved into and out of this house until 1965. In that year, Berry A. Watson and Mary Loretta Watson purchased the home for about $42,000. They raised their large family here, and today one of their sons is happily living in his childhood home. He shared that his favorite part of the house is the front porch with its pillars and railing. About a dozen copies of Moran’s landscape paintings adorn the walls.

Credit: Betsy J. Green

A second discovery came as I was leaving the house. I glanced up and noticed a carved plaque above the door — it showed a few branches of rosemary! The present owner, upon learning that the home was Rosemary Cottage, says he is considering planting a rosemary bush, “to honor the past life of the house.”

Please do not disturb the residents of 1821 Anacapa Street.

Betsy J. Green is a Santa Barbara historian and author of Discovering the History of Your House and Your Neighborhood, Santa Monica Press, 2002. Her website is betsyjgreen.com.