This year, the folks at Old Spanish Days have decided to do things a little differently. Following the theme of this year’s Fiesta, Viva La Communidad, the organization will partner with the Santa Barbara Art Association to hold a contest that will give local artists the chance to design this year’s traditional Fiesta poster. In the past, the poster design has been chosen by the current El Presidente/La Presidenta. But for 2008, current Fiesta commander and chief Tim Taylor has decided to mix things up a bit and select solely from locally made designs.
Artists are required to register their work on Sunday, May 4, between 10 a.m. and noon at a special in-gathering held at Faulkner Gallery in the Santa Barbara Public Library (40 E. Anapamu St.). Three professional judges will narrow
the selections down to 40, and then to 20. El Presidente is charged with making the final, and what will surely be difficult, decision. But don’t count out those who didn’t place. The 20 finalists will have their work displayed at Casa de la Guerra from Friday, May 30, to Thursday, July 24, and all 40 finalists will have a chance to sell their work at Nelson Gallery between Saturday, July 26, and Sunday, August 24.
For the last three years, the festive poster has been designed by local artists, and 2007 marked the first year of Fiesta’s Youth Poster Contest. But this is the first time the whole community has been invited to contribute their ideas into what will become the symbol of 2008’s Fiesta celebration. And what better way to recognize how Fiesta brings the community together than by letting the people who experience the excitement create the event’s emblem? Past poster themes have varied, depicting everything from local heritage icons like cowboys to festive Flamenco dancers. And most of the past posters are available to view and purchase online via the Old Spanish Days Web site. With a festival whose theme is so deeply rooted in the community, one can only hope that this new idea will eventually become one of the long-practiced traditions of Fiesta.
To find out more or to enter the poster competition, visit oldspanishdays-fiesta.org and download the official invitation.