HDAE Art Collection

HOUSING, DINING & AUXILIARY ENTERPRISES IS PROUD to display a modest and eclectic art collection on view in various locations throughout its residences, dining facilities and grounds. Comprised of various mediums—sculpture, painting, photography, fluorescent light—spanning both history and geography, each piece offers an artistic element unique to the individual space where it is exhibited. Housing has joined the larger UCSB art policy group in an ongoing collaboration to inventory and catalogue artwork across campus. With an intent to track, preserve, protect and display art objects, the group aims to foster interactive engagement, education and enjoyment for the wide audience that makes up the UCSB campus community.

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image artwork artist media location description
Optimism Eternal Luciano Tempo
(gift of Barry Colwell)
bronze San Clemente Encino Quad The top section of the sculpture, a female shape with her hands toward the sky expresses hope and gratitude, while the lower section is reminiscent of the Eastern serpent biting its tail as a symbol of eternity, a beautiful marriage of concepts. This sculpture stood as an anchoring piece in the artist’s personal garden in Carmel California, where his main gallery was situated.
The Odyssey Howard Warshaw fresco Ortega Dining Commons The mural was painted in the late 1950's by Howard Warshaw, a professor in the College of Creative Studies. It was his visual interpretation of the epic poem by the Greek philosopher, Homer. The story (and painting) chronicles the journey and adventures of Odysseus as he returns home to Ithaca after the Trojan War.  Warshaw felt this would be an appropriate theme for students venturing on their own journeys from home, through college, and beyond.
   The 76 foot wall above Ortega's dining room offered an incredible 'canvas.’ Warshaw volunteered to paint the mural free of charge with the agreement that it be displayed as long as the building remained standing. The University agreed and a contract was signed and dated.
   He began with a series of design sketches and color studies (see WARSHAW: a Decade of Murals in the UCSB Arts Library). Painting began in 1958 and continued into the early 1960’s. In all, he spent almost four years on the catwalk above the dining room, painting at all hours of the day and night. Upon completion, an ecstatic Warshaw penned an enormous signature on the final section. He would later return to pen a smaller version which remains today on the far right of the painting.
Everyday People John Trevino, UCSB Student Class of 1995 painting Main HDAE Office
1501 Residential Services
The Women UCSB Student metal/wood sculpture Storke I Family Housing Per Marian Bankins...this single seated figure came from the Women’s Center. In 1987 or 1988, Janet VanDevener (sp), the Director of the Women’s Center, offered it to Richard Frost for Family Student Housing.  I believe the statue was created by a UCSB student artist and entitled “The Women”.
San Nicolas Hall
(from the lagoon 1967)
Ansel Adams b&w photo To the right of the San Nicolas Front Desk  
Neon Banners   neon sculptures The Club at UCSB Per Dennis Whelan, in an email dated 9/30/2015:

“The Neon banners are a spoof of the old-time club, skewering the pretentious illusions of the Academic Men’s club of a 19th century baronial hall, or of Hearst Castle’s dining hall lined with medieval flags, here reinterpreted into the pop-art of the 1960s.

The banners were designed by respected lighting professional Richard Peters and William Grover a Yale professor with whom Moore had been a frequent collaborator. The collection of colorful neon banners were made in New Haven and driven here in a station wagon. They were mounted on metal stemmed globe light fixtures protruding from walls, which sort of resembled the kind of trumpets that velvet-shoed heralds once played in medieval castles.

Other pieces incorporated into the building were fifteenth-century mudéjar Ceiling panels from Toledo, Spain, carved wood that were painted and gilded, and acquired from the Hearst estate along with baronial–style furniture, animal heads and a silk tapestry.

As an assembly of parts, above all, the Faculty Club was a place meant to have fun.

These types of gestures were not universally popular, and perhaps even meant to irritate, which they did to an unfortunate success. The interior offended those whose artistic taste was more traditional. Ten years after its completion, in 1978 a club rehabilitation by Chancellor Robert Huttenback and his wife Frieda by Montecito decorator Richard Byers, removed or changed several original elements: the banners, the tapestries and stuffed heads. The banners were never found.

As a student of Charles Moore during my Graduate years at UCLA, and later as a campus planner at UCSB, I [Dennis Whelan] took the initiative to have the banners restored. They were recreated from original photographs and drawings (from William Grover) by a fabricator in Oxnard. I raised $5,000 in donations from friends and club members to have them reinstalled in 2001.

There still remains one missing banner, made of silver Mylar.”

Mudéjar Ceiling Panel Spain, probably Toledo, third quarter of the
15th century (panel

Pine with colored pigments,

52 × 79 × 4 1/2 in.

Ceiling and wall panels removed from The Club prior to renovation in 2014 and gifted to LA County Museum of Art (LACMA) in honor of the museum’s 50th anniversary in 2015.

3 panels remain in The Club at UCSB storage for possible reuse / decorative purposes.

Description taken from LACMA’s publication issued to donors in 2016:

“The term mudéjar describes an Islamic-inspired architectural and decorative style that was largely the work of Muslim craftsmen who remained in Spain after the Christian Reconquest (thirteenth century–1492). In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the homes of wealthy Europeans and Americans often incorporated mudéjar interiors that had been removed from their original architectural settings; many of these interiors eventually found their way into museum collections. Such is now the case with a remarkable carved and painted ceiling to which this spectacular panel belongs. It is closely related to a ceiling in the Convent of Santa Isabel de Los Reyes, in Toledo; the two ceilings share the identical eight-pointed star design with inset rosettes and a very similar color scheme—predominantly blue and gold. The tripartite castle and rampant lion denote the coat of arms of Castille-León.”

Additional information from LACMA’s research:

“The provenance of the ceiling makes for a compelling story with its most recent sojourn at the UCSB Faculty Club, installed in the kitchen and service areas from 1968-July 2014. It is not known how it came to the attention of Charles Moore, who designed The Club, but UCSB legend had it that the ceiling had once belonged to William Randolph Hearst. Our research was able to show that Hearst had indeed acquired the room in 1926 from the sale of the collection of Don Luis Ruiz, in New York. The ceiling, described in the 1926 sales catalogue as coming from the “Royal Palace of Toledo” and “Indisputably the most magnificent example ever offered for public sale” was probably in a more complete state, measuring 30 X 21 feet; an illustration from the sales catalogue shows the ceiling partially installed. The ceiling never made it to San Simeon but remained in one of Hearst’s New York area warehouses until it was sold in 1941 to Gimbel’s Brothers. The history of the ceiling between 1941 and 1968 remains a mystery.”