Upcoming Exhibition


“Emerging Pareidolia”
Mixed media paintings by Lori Wolf Grillias
July 17 to August 28, 2015
Architectural Foundation Gallery
Opening Reception: Friday, July 17, 5 – 7pm

The Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara is pleased to announce a new solo exhibition by Lori Wolf Grillias, entitled “Emerging Pareidolia.” All are welcome to attend a festive opening reception with the artist on Friday, July 17 from 5 to 7 pm.  The show will continue through August 28.

Artist Lori Wolf Grillias returns to AFSB following a successful solo show in 2011. Using a variety of mediums, she paints with watercolor and acrylic, and draws using charcoal, graphite, caran d’ache crayons and watercolor pencil on paper and board.  Continuing her exploration of imaginary worlds constructed from familiar and mysterious elements, she creates a realm that exists in its own time and place.  Flora and fauna appear with enigmatic figurative references amidst densely woven compositions of brilliant colors, shapes and forms.

In the artist’s words, “As I walk through this world with my small phone camera… I record palette possibilities.  Life events, which are heard, seen, or even just felt, conjure my pareidolic inclinations. Together, a fantastic paracosmic world always grows.”  Pareidolia is defined as a psychological phenomenon where one observes shapes and forms in random stimulus, while a paracosm involves a detailed imaginary world, where humans and animals may interact with entities that are entirely alien and otherworldly. (Wikipedia)

After attending the Otis Art Institute in 1981, Lori Wolf Grillias earned a BFA from USC in 1985. She has received numerous awards, and has shown her work at the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art, SBCC Atkinson Gallery, Irvine Art Center, Laguna Art Museum, and Barnsdall Art Park.  Since 1995 she has been providing visual arts instruction for the Children’s Creative Project, and she is currently Visual Arts Instructor at the San Luis Obispo Art Center.

The AFSB Gallery is located in the historic Acheson House on the corner of Garden and East Victoria Streets in Santa Barbara. Regular gallery hours are Tuesday to Friday, 11 am to 3 pm, and by appointment. The primary gallery entrance on Garden Street is accessible by ramp.

We look forward to seeing you!

Current Exhibition


“Wet World: How Rain Affects Architectural Impressions”
Oil Paintings by Judy and Warner Nienow
April 15 to July 10, 2015
Architectural Foundation Gallery
Opening Reception Friday, April 24, 5-7 pm

Warner and Judy Nienow’s new exhibition, “Wet World: How Rain Affects Architectural Impressions,” will be shown at the Architectural Foundation Gallery from April 15 to May 29, 2015. The public is invited to attend a festive opening reception with the artists on Friday, April 24th from 5-7 pm. Refreshments will be served.

In their first collaborative theme-based exhibit since 2004, artists Judy and Warner Nienow investigate the visual variations rain creates on city surfaces in “Wet World”, whether it be drizzle or downpour, Manhattan or Paris. The challenge was to set aside high contrast, sharp edges and bright colors for the alluring mystery of muted day tones or a thousand wet reflective surfaces on a city street at night. From a Gothic church facade in a German village to a rack of children’s rain boots; from reflective State Street puddles to iconic buildings glimpsed through diamond-like raindrops on windows; and from dueling images of the Louvre on a rainy morning, each artist strives to bring a unique, individual style to their offerings in the 27 painting exhibition.

A native of Santa Barbara, Judy Nienow holds a B.A. and M.A. in English Literature from UCSB. As a visual artist, she is primarily self-taught since childhood. Her paintings are divided between Urban Landscapes and Agitated Still Lifes, and she explains, “both allow for provocative exploration of behavioral narratives which have recently unfolded or are about to occur.” Her surrealist art was displayed in the Williamsburg Art and Historical Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. Both artists have shown their paintings in France at the Chateau des Reaux in the Loire Valley and at The American Art Gallery in Deauville, Normandy, as well as the Amsterdam Whitney Gallery in Chelsea, N.Y.

Warner Nienow is the recipient of The Arts Fund’s 2004 Individual Artist Award in painting. He regularly participates in local exhibitions, including shows at the Fielding Graduate Institute, S.B. Maritime Museum, The Arts Fund, Gallery 113 and the Faulkner Gallery. Born in Milwaukee in 1939, Nienow earned a BSEE with honors from the University of Wisconsin, and had a long, successful career as an engineer and software manager at General Motors. Warner Nienow studied painting with realist master Claude Buck from 1968-1971, and he is an active member of the S.B. Art Association and the Goleta Valley Art Association.

The Architectural Foundation Gallery is located in the historic Acheson House at the corner of Garden and East Victoria Streets in Santa Barbara, with a ramp-accessible entrance on Garden Street. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Friday from 9 am to 2 pm, and by appointment. Images are available upon request. Press Contact: Nancy Clare Caponi. Please call 805-965-6307 for more information.