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Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum

653 Paseo Nuevo, Upper Arts Terrace, Santa Barbara, CA 93101
805-966-5373
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Ranked #37 of 71 Attractions in Santa Barbara
Type: Art Museums
Owner description: The Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum (CAF) is an alternative art space presenting cutting edge exhibitions in visual, new media, andperforming... more » Owner description: The Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum (CAF) is an alternative art space presenting cutting edge exhibitions in visual, new media, andperforming arts.  Celebrating its 35th anniversary in 2011, CAF is the premier venue for contemporary art between Los Angeles and San Francisco and is dedicated to the exhibition, education, and cultivation of the art of our time.  With FREE admission, CAF is the main scene for the arts in Santa Barbara!CAF is located at the Paseo Nuevo Mall Upper Arts Terrace in downtown Santa Barbara, CA and is open Tuesday - Saturday: 11 am to 5 pm, Sunday: noon to 5 pm during the run of our exhibitions and on First Thursdays for our popular Forum Lounge series. « less
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9 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
New Delhi, India
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2014

Ruchi Singhal is a Contemporary artist, Painting, She has no word for her madness to design paintings colours lead the way for her. Emotions and generally everything around here to create layer after colourful layer of colour and texture on the canvas. http://www.ruchisinghal.com

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Ko Samui, Thailand
Top Contributor
137 reviews 137 reviews
36 attraction reviews
111 helpful votes 111 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2013

Small but with an excellent selection of local modern art, a great space with free entry in the middle of a shopping area, everyone visiting Paseo Nuevo should spend 15 mins here

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Tacoma, Washington
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
3 attraction reviews
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 24, 2013

I appreciate that CAF is an arts space in the middle of far too much commercialism. State street is disappointingly mostly chain stores, so finding CAF and the adjacent Stage Theatre on the upper story of the mall was a nice surprise. All that said, the installation I saw made me say "Art? Really?". But I am not a modern... More

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Santa Barbara, California
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 30, 2012

Always interesting exhibits of all sorts. Will beguile contemporary art lovers as well as neophytes. If you join, you get invited to cool talks, events and trips. The staff is great - friendly and knowledgeable. CAF is a Santa Barbara gem - I urge Santa Barbarians to visit often and visitors to the area to spend time at CAF to... More

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Santa Barbara, California
Top Contributor
62 reviews 62 reviews
41 attraction reviews
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 1, 2012

........you will experience up and coming artistes in the spirit of the greatest performance artiste LAURIE ANDERSON!!!!! at the 1st thursday events at the Contemporary Arts Forum...upstairs above Panda Express and Eureka Gourmet Burgers and California Pizza Kitchen down the walk from Brookstone Massage Chairs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and their new head massage machine!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Santa Barbara, California
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2012

I'm going to be honest; there really isn't much contemporary art in Santa Barbara that is exciting, engaging, or even relevant. I am often disappointed with the venues that show contemporary work, but the Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts was an absolute exception. The exhibition that was being shown when I visited was intriguing and challenging, and the work spanned across... More

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Goleta
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
6 attraction reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 24, 2012

Their shows are very, very good. Themes are sometimes beautiful, sometimes thought-provoking or challenging. Always worth the trip!

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Lexington, Kentucky
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2012

I wasn't sure what to expect when merely reading the name in my travel book, but I'm glad I went with my instincts because this hidden gem is a must see. I was given the opportunity to meet the director and curator Miki Garcia and what a delight she is! I felt like I was on a private tour at... More

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Santa Barbara, CA
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 31, 2007

The Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum is a little known art space located upstairs in the Paseo Nuevo Mall, and is the only space in Santa Barbara committed to showing and promoting contemporary art. It's free to enter and makes a great art escape and break from shopping while downtown. They aren't a museum (they don't have a permanent collection)... More

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