SBMA Ready to Imagine More

Posted on Nov 7 by SEASONS Magazine

Public is Invited to Wallbreaking/Public Launch of Capital Campaign on November 14

As the Santa Barbara Museum of Art (SBMA) prepares to begin its critical renovation project, the public is invited to a “wallbreaking” ceremony and official launch of the related Imagine More capital campaign on Saturday, November 14. The free, open-house event is from 6-8 p.m, with the wallbreaking to occur at 6:15 p.m. with the participation of special guests.

SBMA WallbreakingThose interested in attending are asked to RSVP to 805/963-4364, ext. 800 or online at Visitors will have the opportunity to learn more about the forthcoming project, which will result in new gallery and community spaces, improved layout and access to the galleries, and the resolution of critical needs, such as structural and seismic reinforcement, the replacement of all roofs and the climate control system, and the upgrade of other major systems. Those attending will be able to see computer-generated images of how the renovated spaces will appear, talk with Museum and architectural staff, and enjoy art-making activities, art in the galleries, and refreshments.

Next Steps: The Project Begins

The Museum has received approvals from key groups, such as the Planning Commission and Historic Landmarks Commission, and is awaiting final building permits from the City of Santa Barbara. The first stage of the renovation project is expected to begin later this year, starting with the structural and seismic reinforcement of the McCormick Wing. The foundations of the former 100-year-old Federal Post Office building require extensive seismic retrofitting. In addition, the 1941 McCormick Wing is over two stories of unreinforced masonry and is missing a fourth wallits three sides were tacked onto the Post Officeat the time, saving money and space at the expense of structural integrity. A fourth wall—a 12”-thick steel-reinforced concrete sheetwill be added with a seismic separation. To strengthen the three existing walls, a rebar cage will be anchored onto each and high-strength concrete will be shot into and over the rebar, creating a new wall inside the old. It is anticipated that it will take approximately 18 months to complete this stage of the project.

Exciting Changes in the Galleries
As the Museum progresses through the multiple stages of the renovation project, it will remain open to both visitors and to new and exciting exhibitions, with brief periods of free admission when some galleries are closed and between exhibitions. In preparation for the start of the first stage, visitors will notice some changes in the existing galleries. Over the next few weeks, both the Asian Art Galleries (on the Upper Level) and antiquities (in Ludington Court) will be deinstalled to protect these sensitive artworks from the effects of construction.

Ludington Court will soon experience a fascinating transformation with the new exhibition Interventions: Cayetano Ferrer, on view November 8 – March 13. Taking advantage of the near empty space, the artist, Cayetano Ferrer, is working with the SBMA to present a creative installation that involves fragments of antique columns and other architectural elements in the Museum’s storage, which are rarely displayed in the galleries. These carefully selected objects will interact with Ferrer’s Remnant Recomposition (2014), a sprawling floor piece comprised of casino carpet remnants.

SBMA on View at the Getty

Visitors may wonder what will happen to the precious antiquities that have been housed in the famed Ludington Court for nearly 75 years. The J. Paul Getty Museum is working with SBMA to borrow many of the objects, including the ancient Roman Lansdowne Hermes and 13th-century BCE Egyptian Relief of Kha’emweset, son of King Ramses, for an extended period of time for needed conservation and eventual display at both the Getty Center and the Getty Villa. More information will be released when timing of this installation is confirmed.

Santa Barbara Museum of Art is located at 1130 State St. and open Tuesday – Sunday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Chase Free Thursday Evenings 5 – 8 p.m., 805/963-4364,

Source: Katrina Carl, Santa Barbara Museum of Art


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