On Thursday, June 24, one of the summer’s most important exhibits opens at the Santa Barbara Historical Museum. Lasting Impressions: Colin Campbell Cooper is part of the museum’s ongoing series devoted to the teacher/artists of the Santa Barbara School of the Arts, and it runs through October 7. Another major show of historically important paintings by an artist with Santa Barbara connections is already on view at the Wildling Art Museum in Santa Ynez. Fernand Lundgren: The Desert Speaks is an off-site effort by the UCSB University Art Museum (UAM) created to help display the permanent collection while the UAM building on campus undergoes a seismic retrofit. Lundgren’s work will be on display at the Wildling through September 19. On July 3, the Santa Barbara Museum of Art (SBMA) will open its big summer show, Chaotic Harmony: Contemporary Korean Photography. This collaboration between the SBMA and the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston will be the first major American exhibit of contemporary Korean photography, and it features the work of more than 40 artists. Chaotic Harmony runs through September 19.
Some extraordinary efforts in the art of printmaking are currently on view at the Channing Peake Gallery in the County Administration Building. The show, which is the 17th Annual Juried Exhbition of Santa Barbara Printmakers, is in fact open to artists from all over California and is on view until September 17. Another great competitive art tradition will be honored this summer at Art From Scrap, where its annual Assemblage Show is hanging until July 24, when it will end in a silent auction and (noisy) celebration of this year’s “Green Is More Than a Color” theme. Andre Monlleo is an artist and art dealer of Brazilian descent whom many may remember as the proprietor of a space on upper De la Vina Street. Monlleo returns to the gallery scene this summer with a new space downtown on Salinas and a group show called Evolution, which features some of the top names in the Santa Barbara art scene. Enjoy works by Keith Puccinelli, Dug Uyesaka, and Jack Mohr, among many others at this open-ended showing that began on June 18. Painter Ben Brode’s views of the historic San Julian Ranch are on view at an unnamed gallery at 828 Santa Barbara Street Friday-Sunday until the end of June. Over at Sullivan Goss — An American Gallery, the big summer group show is an artfully curated collection of images of Americans at Play. Whether it’s a painting by Hank Pitcher of a man on the beach holding a yellow Frisbee, or Nathan Sawaya’s amazing sculpture of a red rubber ball and jacks made out of Lego bricks, this show is sure to have something that will put a smile on your face. It can be seen until August 29 in the Cooper and Haines galleries. Across State at Artamo Gallery, this summer has been declared Summer 24/7 in honor of the seven-week rotating group show that will feature 24 of the gallery’s artists. This ambitious effort kicks off with an opening reception during the July 1 First Thursday event. Another interesting opening is taking place on July 1 at the Hospice of Santa Barbara, where the work of Galina Sakharoff-Mashek will be shown. Sakharoff-Mashek is a Russian artist who escaped from a Nazi refugee camp in Austria during WWII. Her art chronicles her journey from Odessa to Belgrade, and finally to Santa Barbara, where she was a patient at the Hospice until the time of her death.
Summer is also a great time for one-off art experiences, such as those being sponsored by Contemporary Arts Forum (CAF) and The Arts Fund. The CAF event is called From Dusk ’til Drawn: 24-Hour Drawing Rally, and it begins at 6 p.m. on Friday, July 24, and runs continuously until Saturday, July 25, at 6 p.m. The Arts Fund takes its programs into the homes of some of Santa Barbara’s most interesting people for its Salon Series which runs through August 1. For more information, visit artsfundsb.org.