Santa Barbara Coastal News


Special exhibition at gallery in Santa Barbara entering final week

21 Feb 2014 5:22 PM
Multitude of interesting exhibitions slated to open at PMCA in January

Only a few days remain for those local art enthusiasts interested in viewing the current exhibition at the Santa Barbara City College Atkinson Gallery. On display since Friday, Jan. 31, Ann Diener's latest collection of drawings has drawn scores of visitors in recent weeks. However, the display is slated to conclude Friday, Feb. 28.

If you've been considering a visit to the vibrant gallery space on Cliff Drive to view the display, you might want to make plans to do so in the near future, as the artwork has received a substantial amount of critical acclaim. 

Collection boasts myriad of unique works, perspectives
The pieces being shown in the exhibition are sure to amaze, as the intricate detail and thoughtful composition of each are exclusive to Diener's creative process. The featured drawings were created through a lengthy procedure in which the artists overlapped images of present day Los Angeles with historical blueprints of the city. The achieved effect is billed as a "cacophony of architecture" by the gallery, as it successfully records public spaces from varying time periods and eras in the metropolitan area's colorful past. 

The exhibition has already generated significant attention from the local art community, including Charles Donelan, a respected critic at the Santa Barbara Independent, who described the display as "An unusually vivid and thoroughly imagined dream space where spiraling curves weave in and out of ghostly architectural fragments." 

He lauded Diener's pieces as 21st century complements to the captivating carceri images popularized by the Venetian artist Giovanni Battista Piranesi in the 18th century. He asserted that placing a focus on the City of Angels' sprawling freeways and elaborate water systems is an appropriate modern update to the classic style, as the collective mental landscape has changed drastically.

"The result is one of the year's most surprising and inspiring large works, and the show provides a fascinating look at the dream world of an important artist," Donelan wrote.

Diener an accomplished artist with bright future
In addition to the SBI, Diener has received recognition by such esteemed publications as The Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, Artweek and the Santa Barbara News-Press. A local to this region of the Golden State, she attended area schools and made a name for herself in the vibrant West Coast arts scene. 

After receiving her B.A. from the University of California at Los Angeles, she went on to obtain an M.F.A. from the University of California at Santa Barbara. Over the years, she has had her one-person exhibitions featured at the Bank Gallery in Los Angeles and the Electric Works Gallery San Francisco, as well as the Art, Design and Architecture Museum at UCSB and the Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum, among others. Additionally, she has had the opportunity to travel around the world and serve as the artist-in-residence at both the the American Academy in Rome and at Kaus Australis in Rotterdam.

Engaging, enriching exhibitions planned for coming months
Following the conclusion of Diener's exhibit, the Atkinson Gallery won't waste any time in preparing the subsequent show and planning for future displays. From Friday, March 7 to Friday, April 11, the the work of Tim Berg and Rebekah Myers -  a multimedia studio art collaborative from Claremont, Calif. - will be shown.

The Annual Student Exhibition will follow, and be on display from Friday, April 25 to Friday, May 16. This juried exhibition will be judged by Elyse Gonzalez, the curator of exhibitions at the UCSB Art, Design and Architecture Museum. To start the new school year, the 2014 Art Faculty Biennial will be held from Friday, Aug. 29 to Friday, Sept. 26.

For more information on the Atkinson Gallery's offerings and hours of operation, call (805) 965-0581 or visit its official website.