MCASB reopening party, February 22, 2023 | Credit: Ingrid Bostrom

It was all sunshine and smiles at the January 22 reopening party for Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara (MCASB). The arts community came out in full force for the joyful Sunday celebration to support the contemporary arts museum, which abruptly shut down in August 2022, due to ongoing financial strains.

Fortunately, the organization — which was founded in 1976 as the Contemporary Arts Forum (CAF) — has come back to life under new leadership. 

New board president Frederick Janka (the former development director of MCASB and current executive director of the Carolyn Glasoe Bailey Foundation) leads the charge, along with another ex-MCASB employee, exhibition designer Arturo Heredia Soto (current lead exhibition designer at UCSB’s AD&A Museum, and cofounder of LUM Art Magazine), LUM Art Magazine editor and cofounder Debra Herrick (current UCSB Associate Editorial Director) and Lila Glasoe Francese (president of the Carolyn Glasoe Bailey Foundation and CEO of OHI Home).

The Board of Trustees also announced the appointment of Adriana Arriaga, local designer, artist, activist and currently sitting on the Arts Advisory Committee for the City of Santa Barbara; Vanessa Wallace-Gonzales, multi-disciplinary artist, educator, and healer; and Dalia Garcia, (Nuu Savi (Mixteca)) from San Juan Mixtepec, Oaxaca, Indigenous youth advocate, and anti-racism activist. 

Current gallery hours are Thursday to Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. Up next: Cannupa Hanska Luger’s New Myth (Mandan, Hidatsa, Arikara, Lakota) opens February 12.

Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara (MCASB) is located upstairs at 653 Paseo Nuevo. See

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