ART Awards

Leadership in Art Award

The Leadership in the Arts Award was established in 2006 by the Santa Barbara County Arts Commission as an annual award “to honor and recognize individuals or organizations that have made a significant impact on the arts and culture of our region through innovative thinking and exemplary commitment to promoting sustaining, and advancing our quality of life through the Arts.”

2018 recipient: the arts fund

The 2017 Leadership in Art Award Recipient is the Arts Fund of Santa Barbara. The mission of The Arts Fund is to create, fund and administer programs and projects that foster the arts for the people of Santa Barbara County; to act as a catalyst which maximizes the effectiveness of arts resources and to nurture collaborative relationships with other arts organizations. The Arts Fund evolved into an independent organization with its current mission of offering art education, development and exhibition opportunities to aspiring artists and curators, as well as opportunities for Santa Barbara County residents to expand their appreciation for the wealth of local arts in our own community.

PAST Recipients

Vicki Andersen | Lompoc Mural Society | Kathy Koury and the Children's Creative Project | Santa Barbara Bowl Foundation | Connie Rohde-Stanchfield | Rod Lathim | Zaveeni Kahn-Marcus, founding director of UCSB Multicultural Center | Kerry Methner and Mark Whitehurst, Voice Magazine | Bill Cirone and Tina Fanucchi | Joe and Margie Talaugon | Nat Fast | Susan Rose


Business in Art Award

In 2005, the City Arts Advisory Committee initiated an annual Business in Art Award. The award is given to “an individual or entity that meets the following criteria: 1) conducts business in the Santa Barbara area, which may include being a retail or commercial establishment, being a sole practitioner, a partnership or professional corporation; and 2) exhibits outstanding support of arts activity in our community, creating a stronger, more vibrant arts environment in Santa Barbara and enriching the lives of both residents and visitors."

2018 recipient: paseo nuevo shops & restaurants/Pacific retail

Paseo Nuevo Shops and Restaurants (Pacific Retail) is home to wonderful arts nonprofits, including the Museum of Contemporary Art-Santa Barbara, Center Stage Theater and YES! Dance. Last year, they graciously served as host to the City of Santa Barbara Arts Symposium. The Arts Advisory Committee recognized Paseo Nuevo and Pacific Retail’s commitment to the arts. In 2017-2018, they hosted several arts pop-ups that needed homes, including, but not limited to, Santa Barbara Puppetpalooza, the On Edge Performance Art Festival and Contemporary Fine Art Exhibition.

Since their inception, they have incorporated public artworks created by our community, including murals that currently are on view at the De La Guerra and Chapala Street entrance. Over the years, Paseo Nuevo has created a stronger, more vibrant arts environment in Santa Barbara, enriching the lives of both residents and visitors. Examples include being an active participant in the Downtown Organization’s First Thursdays art program by partnering with the Museum of Contemporary Art-Santa Barbara on Summer Nights with KCRW as well as hosting their own unique programs in the center court featuring numerous performance, music, and dance groups throughout our community—providing free programs for hundreds of guests, locals and visitors alike.

Past Recipients

Montecito Bank & Trust | Santa Barbara Center for Art, Science and Technology (SBCAST)