Over 30 years ago, a few Santa Barbara artists had a vision—a vision of a space where people could come together, make and see great artwork, and spread inspiration. Three decades later, two large buildings and four separate spaces for rehearsals, painting, sculpture, and gallery shows came together to create the The Community Arts Workshop (CAW). On Monday, April 30, CAW and the Board of the Santa Barbara Arts Collaborative (SBAC) honor the supporters who made this vision come to life by hosting a private event to unveil the inclusion of two jaw-dropping gates.
Local ironwork artist, David Shelton, a Santa Barbara artisan whose work has long embellished the city, designed these gates with inspiration from the Greek, Roman and Chumash mythology to craft a soaring ironwork structure that will serve as an inspiration for artists for years to come. Paying homage to the Summer and Winter Solstices, these gates tell mythological stories that reflect the creativity of the Santa Barbara Community.
Shelton’s design of the first gate reflects the story within the skies at Summer Solstice as the Goddess Hera sends a crab to attack Hercules while the lovely Goddess Ishtar sends Taurus to harass Orion for spurning her advances.
The second gate, honoring the Winter Solstice, rests on Garden Street and tells the mythological story of Pan, disguised as Capricorn the seagoat, who rescues Jupiter after destroying the God Typhon. Shelton brings these two mythological stories to life by molding metal into spectacular landmarks that demonstrate the power of art and storytelling.
With the support and donations from the community, CAW has been able to foster a workspace for dreamers to come and unleash the power of collaboration and innovation and to create and engage with one another. After years of temporary locations, CAW celebrates the addition of these gates as a symbol of a permanent foundation, a place for inspiration, and a sign of appreciation for the community’s support. After the unveiling on Sunday, the public is invited come witness and enjoy the beauty of these gates for decades to come.