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Purchase Tickets Today for Santa Barbara Studio Artists’s Annual Tour

Santa Barbara has always been both a refuge and an inspiration for artists from all over the world. The natural beauty drew famous artists such as Colin Campbell Cooper in the late 19th century and has been attracting accomplished professionals ever since. 

In fact, according to the last census, Santa Barbara has the fifth largest population of artists in the country. This year’s aesthetic adventure will prove you don’t need to travel to New York or Santa Fe to discover a wealth of great art, one just has to know where to look. 

The public can get a chance to see these artists in their "natural habitat" on Labor Day weekend when Santa Barbara Studio Artists (SBSA) holds its’ 14th Annual Open Studios Tour on Sep. 5 and 6, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. with 34 professional artists participating. 

Many exciting new artists are on the tour this year, so repeat patrons will have some surprises. Tickets for the Tour are available online.

The fun begins at the Corridan Gallery located at 125 N. Milpas Street on Santa Barbara’s Eastside, where art aficionados can pick up their SBSA tour map starting Tuesday, Aug. 11, during regular business hours through Sunday, Sep. 6.

You can also see a sample of each artists work at the Corridan Gallery to plan your tour. Beneficiary for this year’s event is the Breast Cancer Resource Center of Santa Barbara that will receive proceeds from all tickets sold.

SBSA board president and artist, Dorothy Churchill-Johnson, stated why the town has been a destination for artists for more than 100 years. 

“California's dazzling light imbues everything, even mundane things, with a burnished glow. It sharpens perception and creates deep contrasting shadows. Most artists become seduced by it, especially in Santa Barbara.” 

Take the insider’s tour of Santa Barbara and environs. Off the beaten path in some cases, while others are on populated streets, this SBSA Open Studios Tour is a great way to see one of the top travel destinations in the world with an artistic spin.

Going to places you might not have known is definitely one of the perks this once a year open house gives patrons of the SBSA professional, award-winning and commissioned artists in their natural habitat.

Here are some of the SBSA artists with news to share. 

Michele Zuzalek received a commission from the Kappa Alpha Theta sorority at UCSB. She also has a devoted Hong Kong collector with more than 25 of her paintings, abstracts and landscapes that hang in his homes in Hong Kong and the Santa Lucia Preserve in Carmel.  

Churchill-Johnson was commissioned to do a landmark painting for Valley Children's Hospital in Madera, Ca. this year. 

New to the tour this year, Cynthia Martin’s work was featured in Saks Fifth Avenue, a juried show at Westmont Colleg, and Onward Art and Design. She added, “Visitors to my studio can sit on the deck, have a glass of wine and enjoy the harbor and city views. Here they can understand some of the source of inspiration for my paintings.” 

SBSA is a nonprofit organization of professional visual artists who maintain working studios in Santa Barbara County, but whose work shows mainly in other places. Their purpose is to introduce great local artists to a new audience and to increase public awareness of Santa Barbara as an important destination for art and culture.

SBSA formed a trade organization to give the group a stronger position. Each prospective member is selected for his or her exhibition and sales history, as well as for their interesting studio space. Work ranges from quintessential California landscape to cutting edge abstraction, breath-taking photography and inspired sculpture.

Breast Cancer Resource Center of Santa Barbara Executive Director Silvana Kelly declared, “We are thrilled to be the beneficiary of Santa Barbara Studio Artists Tour event — most of all, to be included in celebrating the talents of wonderful community artists and be inspired by the beauty of their work.” 

How to “do” the weekend

First, buy your ticket online. (Every page has a button on it to buy tickets to make it really easy). Then, pick up your tickets at the Corridan Gallery on Milpas Street starting Aug. 11 and see a selection of all the SBSA artists in the weekend tour and pick up the map.

This special exhibition gives patrons a chance to choose the artists they most want to visit and to seek out varied locations from the hills of Montecito to downtown neighborhoods, out to Goleta and over the hill to Buellton.

Gallery owner, Bill Corridan said, “Milpas Street has been called the up & coming street in Santa Barbara for all interior & exterior designers to find something special for their clients.”

The purpose of SBSA is to promote the interests of professional artists working in Santa Barbara and to increase public awareness of Santa Barbara as an important destination for art and culture.

—Maureen McFadden is a publicist representing Santa Barbara Studio Artists.


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