This edition of ON Culture was originally emailed to subscribers on July 5, 2024. To receive Leslie Dinaberg’s arts newsletter in your inbox on Fridays, sign up at

ON the Walls

“Simonetta’s Library, oil on canvas by Nadya Brown | Credit: Courtesy

The beautifully lush work of Nadya Brown will be on view in the exhibition “A Natural Curiosity” at the Architectural Foundation Gallery June 3 – August 12, with an opening reception on June 2 from  5 – 7 p.m. Born and raised in England, Brown has since lived in Italy and Spain and now, Santa Barbara. After studying painting and printmaking at Goldsmiths College, University of London, she received her MFA from Ohio University and has exhibited her work extensively in solo and group shows both in the U.S. and the UK.
Crosby, Stills & Nash, first album, 1969. | Credit: Henry Diltz

Legendary rock photographer Henry Diltz has a new exhibition “Music is Love: Photographs by Henry Diltz” opening at Solvang’s Elverhoj Museum on Friday, May 26. No matter if you have never encountered his name, you have undoubtedly seen Henry’s photographs,” said Elverhoj Executive Director Esther Jacobsen Bates. Diltz photographed more than 250 album covers and thousands of publicity shots in the 1960s and 1970s, including the Morrison Hotel cover for The Doors. On view through August 13, other artists in Diltz’s portfolio include the Eagles, Neil Young, Crosby, Stills & Nash, Jackson Browne, James Taylor, Jimi Hendrix, The Monkees, Joni Mitchell, Linda Ronstadt, and Paul McCartney Bates shared that the exhibition title is a nod to the late David Crosby, and a section of the gallery will showcase Crosby with photographs of his musical career.
 Michelangelo’s artwork from the Sistine Chapel will be on view at the Mission starting May 26. | Credit: Courtesy

I Madonnari won’t be the only thing beautifying the Santa Barbara Mission this month. Artwork from the Sistine Chapel is being reproduced near scale and shown at the Mission starting May 26. According to a release, “With special expertise and care, the ceiling paintings from the Sistine Chapel (by Michelangelo) have been reproduced in a truly unique way using licensed high-definition photos. Brought to life using a special printing technique that emulates the look and feel of the original paintings, visitors are given a chance to engage with the artwork in ways that were never before possible: seeing every detail, every brushstroke, and every color of the artist’s 34 frescoes. … Whether visitors have already been to the Sistine Chapel or not, everyone can admire the artwork up close, at their own pace, and with the ability to capture photographic memories of this iconic work.” On view through September 4, this ticketed exhibition certainly sounds amazing. 

ON the Stage

‘Frampton Comes Alive’ album cover circa 2006. | Credit: Courtesy

Still in fine tune, Peter Frampton just announced a show at the Arlington on August 16. Tickets go on sale today (May 19) for an evening with one of the most celebrated artists and guitarists in rock history. Once upon a long time ago, my husband Zak had similar long curly tresses to what Frampton had back in the day, and I’ll never forget the story of Zak walking down the halls of Vieja Valley School in a terry cloth robe on Pajama Day, while the teachers serenaded him to the tune of Frampton’s “Oh Baby I Love Your Way.” Here’s the ticket link. Guess what my first request will be?

Peter Frampton will be at the Arlington on August 16. | Credit: Courtesy

ON the Streets

Applications are now open for Pianos on State 2023 with artists living and working in Santa Barbara and Ventura both eligible to apply.  This public art program — collaboratively organized by Santa Barbara Arts Collaborative, Santa Barbara County Office of Arts and Culture, the City of Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara Education Foundation, Downtown Santa Barbara, and the Children’s Creative Project — is an opportunity for emerging and professional artists alike to showcase their work through a unique project. Individual artists and collaborative teams are both eligible, though teams must use one application. Click here for application information. 

On the Page

Catherine Esposito Prescott, Florencia Milito, and Gabriel Ibarra, will appear at Central Library on May 27. | Credit: Courtesy
 Santa Barbara Writers Conference 2023 | Photo: Courtesy

As a long ago recipient of a scholarship to the Santa Barbara Writers Conference, I’m particularly thrilled to share the names of the newest members of the tribe who will attend this wonderful event June 18-23. 

The winners of the SBWC scholarships for 2023 are:

  • The Admiral’s Prize Scholarship: Anna Maria Stump
  • SBWC Scholarship for Fiction: Thomas Atkinson
  • SBWC Scholarship for Nonfiction: Julie Dillemuth
  • SBWC Scholarship for Poetry: Susan Florence
  • The Admiral’s Prize Scholarship: Anna Maria Stump
  • The Ian Bernard Memorial Scholarship for humor: Gail Bellenger
  • The Chuck Kent Memorial Scholarship for screenwriting: Kelly Brotman
  • The Stephen Vessel’s Memorial Scholarship for fantasy/sci-fi: Nikki Blakely

It’s the 50th anniversary of this inspiring event, so stay tuned for my story in an upcoming issue of the Independent

ON the (Big) Screen

TÁR | Credit: Courtesy

If you haven’t had a chance to see the wonderful film TÁR on the big screen yet, The Carsey-Wolf Center at UC Santa Barbara is holding a free in-person screening at 2 p.m. on Saturday, June 3, followed by a virtual discussion with writer/director Todd Field. Click here to register (required). 

“Out of This World” is the theme for an intergalactic lineup of free summer cinema under the stars at the Courthouse Sunken Garden. Presented by UCSB Arts & Lectures, the space-inspired screenings begin on July 7 with Steven Spielberg’s Close Encounters of the Third Kind and run every week (other than Fiesta) through August 25, where the finale will be Jordan Peele’s Nope.

ON the Web

Coronation image | Credit: Courtesy Couture Pattern Museum 

The Coronation Couture Exhibition, which I wrote about here, will not only be back on view at WorkZones on June 1 from 5-8 p.m., it’s also now available for an online tour. This jam-packed, informational digital experience allows you to journey through the grandeur of the royal 1953 coronation couture history from the comfort of your home. 

ON the Calendar

Caption: The Prime Time Band | Credit: Courtesy

Why let the kids have all the fun? The Prime Time Band of Santa Barbara — a vibrant group of amateur musicians, ages 40-90+, with a two-fold mission of providing free concerts for the community and an entry point to music making for mature adults — is holding a free concert on Sunday, May 21 at 2 p.m. at Dos Pueblos High School’s Elings Performing Arts Center. The theme is a celebration of “America’s Musical Landscape,” with a program that includes Broadway favorites, a medley of John Williams’ film scores, a salute to Benny Goodman and hit tunes from The Mamas & Papas. Since its inception in 1995, the band (directed by Dr. Paul Mori)  has performed more than 175 free concerts and has been declared by the city to be a “Santa Barbara Treasure.”

For a complete calendar of events this week and beyond, visit


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