ANNOUNCEMENT: Walking Tours Canceled Until Further Notice

Along with postponing all upcoming community events this past weekend until further notice, AFSB is complying with local policies to limit group activities, and has canceled our weekend architectural walking tours until further notice. 

ANNOUNCEMENT: Opening Gallery Reception & Kids Draw Architecture Cancellation

The AFSB will be postponing all upcoming community events to best support efforts across the country and the city of Santa Barbara to contain the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and to ensure the health and safety of our community, visitors, and staff.

The Foundation will remain open Tuesday through Friday from 9 am to 1 pm and on Saturday afternoons from 1 to 4 pm when fewer visitors will be present and social distancing can be more easily maintained.

  • AFSB will not hold an Opening Reception tonight for Meandering the Edges, a most unusual installation by Nathan Huff.
  • The KDA sketch sessions scheduled at SBMNH and Montecito Union School this year will also be cancelled. 

We will continue to refer to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization, Santa Barbara County Public Health Department, and other public health agencies to determine the safest course of action

Meandering the Edges by Nathan Huff

Meandering the Edges: An Installation by Nathan Huff

Exhibition Dates: March 13 – May 6, 2020
Opening Reception with the Artist: Friday, March 13, 5-7 pm
Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara Gallery

The Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara is pleased to announce the opening of Meandering the Edges, an installation of works on paper and sculpture by Nathan Huff. An opening reception for the exhibition will be held at the Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara on Friday, March 13, from 5 to 7 pm. All are welcome.

Meandering the Edges examines ways in which we inhabit homes and move through domestic spaces based on memory and emotion. Installed in unconventional ways on the walls, floor, and corners of the AFSB’s meeting space/gallery, Huff’s paintings on paper of furniture, wood floors, tables, and shovels are meant to draw attention to the space itself as an important part of the narrative. The Architectural Foundation is housed in a historic Victorian Italianate style home designed and built in 1904 by James J. Acheson. The Acheson House was a residence prior to hosting the offices of several non-profit organizations including the Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara, the Santa Barbara Chapter of the AIA, and the Junior League of Santa Barbara.

This unique exhibition encourages viewers to muse and meander their way through an ordinary environment transformed by art, inviting them to imagine scenarios and summon lost memories as they go. Huff comments, “As someone fascinated by the stories that reside in our memories and are imbedded in the built environment, I believe that the designed aesthetic of architectural space has a powerful impact on our home life and community structures.” His poetic, provocative images and sculpture are rarely straightforward.  Viewers will experience a range of surrealistic styles and installation techniques that slide between the almost comprehensible to the absurd. 

“I hope that this imagined excavation of home invites viewers towards attentive looking at built environments in new ways, charging them with a range of narrative potential and drawing out latent emotion.”

Huff earned an MFA in Drawing and Painting from California State University Long Beach, a BA in art education from Azusa Pacific University, and has also studied art in Italy, France, the UK, and Spain. Huff’s installations have been featured in solo exhibitions at Sullivan Goss Gallery (Santa Barbara), UCR Culver Museum and Sweeney Galleries (Riverside), Los Angeles at D.E.N. Contemporary (West Hollywood), Minthorne Gallery, (Oregon), Gallerie View (Salambo, Tunisa), group exhibitions at JK Gallery (Culver City), Lotus Land (Santa Barbara), and the Westmont Ridley Tree Museum of Art (Santa Barbara.)  Nathan has taught art at CSU Long Beach, LA Southwest College, Biola University, and Azusa Pacific University as an adjunct lecturer. Currently, he is an associate professor of art at Westmont College in Santa Barbara.

Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara. Enhancing our community’s appreciation of the built environment. Since 1983. We are 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.

2020 KDA Sketch Sessions

Join us for our 2020 Sketch Sessions!

This year’s sketch sessions will take place on Sundays from 1 – 3 PM.

  • March 15 – Natural History Museum, 2559 Puesta Del Sol
  • April 5 – Montecito Union School, 385 San Ysidro Road

No sign up required. Show up any time between 1 to 3 PM. 

The sketch sessions are free and drawing materials will be provided. Young people are encouraged to sketch our architectural landmarks, guided by local architects, designers, and artists.  All are welcome to participate!

Register Now for 2020 High School Design Competition!

We are excited to present the 2020 High School Design Competition in Santa Barbara County! 

Sharpen your pencils and get your calculators ready! 

The High School Design Competition will be kicking off this year on Tuesday, March 10th at 7:30 am at the Santa Ynez Union High School or Direct Relief, Santa Barbara.

We look forward to seeing you there! 

Haven: an exhibition of 10” x 10” prints created by Santa Barbara Printmakers

Exhibition Dates: January 8 – March 5, 2020

Opening Reception with the Artists: Friday, January 10, 5-7pm

Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara Gallery


The Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara is pleased to announce the opening of “Haven, an exhibition of 10” x 10” prints created by Santa Barbara Printmakers” who live in and around Santa Barbara and beyond.  An opening reception with the artists will be held at the Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara on Friday, January 10, from 5:00 – 7:00 pm. All are welcome.

For this unique exhibition, artists were invited to create 10” x 10” prints inspired by the theme “haven” and each artist interpreted the theme in their own personal way. Look for images of the Central Coast, home, places of safety, landscapes, and even abstractions. Made with techniques ranging from intaglio, relief, screen printing, and monoprint, all the prints are unframed and affordable. Proceeds from the exhibition are distributed to the artists and to the Architectural Foundation to support their community programs for all ages.

Santa Barbara artists Claudia Borfiga and Meagan Stirling developed the exhibition concept in collaboration with the Architectural Foundation and were joined by architect/architecture historian Jeremy White in jurying the exhibition.

The Santa Barbara Printmakers (SBP) is a group of artists dedicated to creating and presenting prints made using hand and press printing techniques: etching, dry point, monotype, monoprint, woodblock, collagraph, linocut, clay, lithography, serigraphy, transfer, and digital processes. This volunteer organization presents several exhibitions and newsletters each year through membership dues and the talents, skills, and energy of members. SBP welcomes applications from printmakers throughout California who use hand and press printing techniques. For more information, visit sbprintmakers.com.

2020 Kids Draw Architecture Calendars

2020 Kids Draw Architecture Calendars - On Sale Now!

2020 KDA Calendars can be purchased at the following retailers:

The Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara
The Santa Barbara Museum of Art
Upstairs at Pierre Lafond
Chaucer’s Bookstore
The Book Den

To purchase a calendar from AFSB, come by our office or give us a call.

Painting Workshop: Abstract Still Life

Abstract still life painting workshop led by artist Paige Patterson Wilson held at AFSB Gallery.

Paige Patterson Wilson’s current exhibition at the AFSB, Abstract Trompe L’oeil, highlights her deep interest in the interplay of colored surfaces.

The artist will present a related workshop on Saturday, October 26 from 1 – 3 pm. Participants will experience her working process by creating their own box/collage still life and translating it into an abstract painting.

Please bring a small cardboard box. All other materials will be provided.

Meet other local artists and art enthusiasts in your community.

All levels welcome!

KDA Gallery Opening & Holiday Party

KDA Gallery Opening & Holiday Party!

The Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara is pleased to present you the annual Kids Draw Architecture Gallery Opening & Holiday Party on Saturday, November 24, 2019, from 2 – 4 PM.

This year KDA held their sketch sessions at the Alameda Park Bandstand and Santa Barbara Middle School.

The exhibition will feature a collection of drawings from KDA’s 2019 program showcasing a representative cross-section of illustrations from all age groups and drawing abilities and will be on display until January 4, 2020.

Events like this exemplify how the Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara continues their mission of educating the public on the built environment. So please come join us to celebrate and congratulate our current calendar artists and support this vibrant educational program!

Opening Reception: Abstract Trompe L’oeil

Exhibition Dates: September 20 – November 14, 2019

Opening Reception with the Artist: Friday, September 20, 5-7 pm

Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara Gallery

The Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara is pleased to announce the opening of Abstract Trompe L’oeil, an exhibition of oil paintings by Paige Patterson Wilson.  An opening reception will be held at the Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara on Friday, September 20, from 5:00-7 pm. All are welcome.

Abstract Trompe L’oeil highlights Wilson’s deep interest in the interplay of colored surfaces. Her previous paintings were conventional still life paintings depicting recognizable objects with reflective, transparent surfaces that appear as small abstractions. Creating these paintings led her to the idea of creating purely abstract still life paintings. At first glance, her new work appears to be flat, hard edge, geometric and abstract. Upon closer observation, viewers are drawn in by the illusion of depth.

To create these unusual paintings, Wilson first constructs an abstract “still life”—a three-dimensional composition of opaque, translucent, and transparent papers, and colored gels.  After arranging lighting above to create a kaleidoscope of reflections, she paints the “still life” from direct observation, challenging herself to create the illusion of three dimensions and transparency using only opaque pigments.

Although the paintings are formal compositions, they evoke futuristic cities, outer space, and science fiction settings. Surface flatness and the illusion of depth coexist simultaneously, creating spaces where the interplay and fusion of saturated colors, abstract shapes and imagination magically coexist.

Wilson received her BA in 1979 from San Francisco State University where she studied with Robert Bechtle, a photo-realist painter. She completed her MFA in 1982 at UCSB where she studied with Ciel Bergman and William Dole. She has maintained a studio and residence in Santa Barbara for 40 years and has participated in many group exhibitions and several solo exhibitions. She currently teaches art classes at SBCC School of Extended Learning.

A workshop to demonstrate the process of setting up an abstract still life and translating it to a painting will be held on Saturday, October 26, from 1-3 pm (Cost $30.00) at the AFSB Gallery. To purchase a ticket please visit the Architectural Foundation’s website.