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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



Family 1st Thursdays
Thursdays, October 1; November 5; December 3, 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 8 pm.

Oil Pastel and Tempera Paint Still Life
October 1
Study the complex details of flowers up close by sketching from botanical arrangements. Add color to the composition with water-soluble oil pastels mixed with tempera paint, inspired by Henri Fantin-Latour’s Chrysanthemums of Summer (Chrysanthemes d'Ete) (ca. 1887).

Abstract Texture Studies
November 5
Focus in on the details of Raul Corrales’ Blue Jeans, Cuba, (1948) to create an abstract texture study by layering canvas strips and opaque watercolors.

“Double Stack” Paintings
December 3
Block lines and shapes on canvas with masking tape, then paint over in Day-Glo acrylics to complete your own “Double Stack” painting.


Studio Sundays on the Front Steps
Sundays, October 11; November 8; December 13, 1:30 – 4:30

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.


Chalk Pastel
October 11
Capture a figure in motion in chalk pastel on mid-tone paper inspired by Edgar Degas’ Laundress Carrying Linen (ca. 1882–1892).

Colored Pencils
November 8
Reimagine Flor Garduño’s Basket of Light (1989) as a triptych by adding color and words to the images.

December 13
Play with line, shape, and color by creating a paper and colored tape collage inspired by Peter Halley’s Rainbow Six (2010).

An Evening of Poetry, Dance, Afro Jarocho Music, and Conversation with Artist Patricio Hidalgo
Thursday, October 1, 5:30 pm

Patricio Hidalgo inherited a sensibility of son jarocho from his grandfather Arcadia Hidalgo, a founder of the revivalist movement in the 60s, when the music had all but disappeared. Today, Patricio is a world-renown musician and poet, as well as proponent for the musical and social roots of jarocho in mestiza, indigenous, and African traditions. Join us to meet the artist and hear student poems inspired by Hidalgo’s work.

Presented in Collaboration with Viva El Arte and UCSB Arts and Lectures.

Mary Craig Auditorium



Josh Kun – The Aural Border: Listening Across the California-Mexico Line

Sunday, October 18, 2:30 – 3:30 pm

In this engaging multimedia oration, award-winning author and University of Southern California Professor Josh Kun takes us on a musical and sonic tour of the California-Mexico borderlands. From the tourist booms of the early 1900s to the rock and roll booms of the 1960s, from Herb Alpert and Woody Guthrie to contemporary electronic music and narco-ballads, and from border sound art to border radio, Kun complements the exhibition Looking In, Looking Out: Latin American Photography with a listening in and a listening out that follows inter-California frequencies from Tijuana to Los Angeles and back again.

Presented in collaboration with the Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara's On Edge Festival

Davidson Gallery

Free Family Day
Día de los Muertos

Sunday, October 25, 1 – 4 pm

The Santa Barbara Museum of Art honors the Mexican tradition of remembering the dead with a variety of family festivities in the galleries, front steps, and back plaza including music by Conjunto Jardin, dance performances by Folkloric Dance Group Quetzalcóatl, art-making activities, bilingual storytelling, a special display of altars created by school and community groups, and traditional refreshments.


Pop-Up Opera
Thursday, November 5, 5:30 – 6:10 pm

Opera Santa Barbara returns to present another crowd-pleasing pop-up performance in the Museum's galleries.
Museum Galleries

Peter Halley, One Step Beyond, 2007. Acrylic, fluorescent acrylic, and Roll-a-Tex on canvas. Private Collection, London.

Artist Talk: Peter Halley
Sunday, November 8, 2:30 – 4 pm

Renowned New York-based artist Peter Halley discusses his vibrant geometric paintings featured in the exhibition Geometry of the Absurd: Recent Paintings by Peter Halley.

Mary Craig Auditorium 
Free SBMA Members / $10 Non-Members / $6 Senior Non-Members
Reserve or purchase tickets online or at the Museum Visitor Services desks.

Catalyst Quartet

Tuesday, November 10, 7:30 pm

The Catalyst Quartet, prize winners of the Gianni Bergamo Classical Music Award 2012 (Switzerland) is comprised of top Laureates and alumni of the internationally-acclaimed Sphinx Competition: violinists Karla Donehew-Perez and Jessie Montgomery, violist Paul Laraia, and cellist Karlos Rodriquez. The quartet has participated in the Juilliard String Quartet Seminar, Grand Canyon Music Festival, Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival and been featured in The Strad and Strings magazines including multiple radio and television broadcasts.

Mary Craig Auditorium
$18 SBMA Members / $22 Non-Members
Purchase tickets online or at the Museum Visitor Services desks.

Left: Raquel Gutiérrez. Right: Rafa Esparza, Dedicaciones. Photo by Escritorio de Procesos.

VARIEDADES: A Variety Show on the Border

Thursday, November 19, 5:30 pm

The VARIEDADES performance series, curated by writer and performer Rubén Martínez, takes its cue from the Latin American “variety show” format and pushes the genre, combining spoken word, performance art, music, and a dash of “critical karaoke.” In honor of the Looking In, Looking Out: Latin American Photography exhibition, the VARIEADADES crew approach the border between the U.S., Mexico, and Central America through renderings of utopia and distopia—anarchist-inspired communes, on the one hand, and the brutal violence that results from state collusion with transnational illicit markets in human and drug trafficking, on the other. Expect references to the “magonista” transnational utopia headquartered in Los Angeles at the turn of the 20th century and meditations on violence and healing in contemporary Mexico and Central America. The performance also features Rafa Esparza and Raquel Gutiérrez.

Mary Craig Auditorium
Free SBMA Members/$10 Non-Members/$6 Senior Non-Members
Reserve or purchase tickets online or at the Museum Visitor Services desks.

Quire of Voyces Short Program Concert

Thursday, December 3, 6:30 – 7 pm

The Santa Barbara Quire of Voyces returns to SBMA to perform a short program of choral music during 1st Thursday in December. The Quire of Voyces was founded in 1993 to rediscover the sacred a capella choral music of the Renaissance and the modern age.

Ludington Court

All Wrapped Up: The Art of Giving Gift Workshop
Saturday, December 12, 9 am - 3 pm
Ages 5 – 12

This one-day workshop offers a unique art experience for children to gain inspiration from original works of art in the Museum’s collection and create hand-made cards, prints, ornaments, and more. Students draw, paint, print, collage, and sculpt artful gifts to share with friends and family. SBMA's Ridley-Tree Education Center at McCormick House, 1600 Santa Barbara Street

SBMA's Ridley-Tree Education Center at McCormick House, 1600 Santa Barbara Street
$60 SBMA Members/$70 Non-Members
To register, visit or contact Rachael Krieps at 805.884.6441 or
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