Give The Gift of School Gardens

Imagine being able to give 10,000 elementary school students the gift of being outside, planting seeds, and harvesting their own food. On Giving Tuesday, invest in nature and children by donating to Explore Ecology’s Grow School Gardens Campaign. With your support, we can keep our School Gardens green and growing!


For 25 years, Explore Ecology has been a vital force for garden education, providing schools and youth groups with on-site lessons, teacher trainings, and free seeds and seedlings.

Your tax deductible donation of $25.00 or more will ensure that these young gardeners can continue to grow organic vegetables, healthy bodies, and lasting friendships in Explore Ecology’s School Gardens.

Click Here to Donate

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Artist Talk at Art From Scrap for Young Americans

On Sunday, November 20th, at 1:00 pm, the Art From Scrap Gallery will host an Artist Talk for our latest exhibition, Young Americans. Ted Mills, host of the FunkZone Podcast, will moderate the talk with artists Larry Lytle and Adam Jahnke

Larry Lytle is a fine artist, writer, and lecturer in Art at California State University Channel Islands. Lytle’s artwork has been shown in galleries across the country. In his latest body of work titled American Pursuits, Lytle uses these figures to pose the question, “What would it look like to live in an America where everyone carried a gun?”

Team Spirit by Larry Lytle

Team Spirit- Larry Lytle

Adam Jahnke utilizes photography to explore questions and themes that are often shared between social and political ecology. Jahnke’s work muses on the expectation of our technological future and its co-existence with the needs that define ecological harmony. Jahnke’s sense of composition as well as content often leaves viewers feeling nostalgic, uncomfortable or challenged.

Ted- Adam Jahnke

Ted Mills is a writer, director, and artist.

Ted Mills

Ted Mills

We can’t wait to see you on Sunday in the AFS Gallery. Don’t miss the dynamic exchange of ideas at this free event.

Young Americans is a group show that features the work of Adam Jahnke (photography), Larry Lytle (photography), Mahader Tesfai (painting), and Yvette Dibos (digital film). Young Americans will be in the Art From Scrap Gallery through December 4, 2016. Gallery hours are Thursday & Friday: 11 am to 6 pm and Saturday & Sunday 10 am to 4 pm.

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Garden Educators Receive AINA In Schools Curriculum Training

Explore Ecology Garden Educators were treated to a wonderful curriculum training in October. Summer Maunakea and Kelly Perry from the Kokua Hawaii Foundation led our staff in a hands on, interactive training in the AINA in Schools Curriculum currently used in 19 school gardens across Oahu, Hawaii. This was the first AINA In Schools Curriculum Training for Educators outside of Hawaii.


Topics covered included making Bokashi (a traditional Korean food scrap fermentation process), 3rd grade compost lessons, and making and eating a delicious Three Sisters Stew with garden grown green beans, corn, and squash.


All of us here at Explore Ecology are grateful to Summer, Kelly, and the rest of the Kokua Hawaii and Johnson Ohana Foundation team for their ongoing support in helping us connect local students to their environment and their food.

Posted in Environmental Education, Explore Ecology, School Gardens, Science Exploration | 1 Comment

Sewing Workshop at Art From Scrap

Isn’t it time to ditch plastic bags? In California, approximately 13.8 billion plastic bags are used per year.  Less than 5 percent of these bags are recycled. Many of these plastic bags are used one time and eventually end up in our oceans and other waterways causing great harm to marine animals and water quality.


Is there another way? Sew your own reusable bag!


Join us for a sewing workshop on Friday, October 21, from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm with Dressmaker and Seamstress Laya Iravani. We will design and sew a reusable tote bag during this fun two hour class. Materials are provided and all levels are welcome.

This workshop is for adults and includes a glass of wine. The cost is $30.00. Tickets must be purchased in advance. Tickets will not be sold at the door, unless there is room in the class.


Laya Iravani’s experience as a seamstress spans over four decades and three countries. She has worked with well-known designers and companies and has an impressive list of clients, including: Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and Saks Fifth Avenue, in addition to collaborating with Luis Estevez as a designer.

Laya Iravani


Don’t miss this fun workshop and opportunity to learn from a gifted and experienced seamstress. The Holidays are around the corner and homemade bags make wonderful presents. See you on Friday night at Art From Scrap!

Eventbrite - Sew Your Own Tote Bag Workshop
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And The Winners Are…. 

When Kai Tepper, Phoebe Brunner, Nathan Vonk, and Jeremy Tesmer gathered in the Art From Scrap Gallery on Tuesday night, they had a tough job ahead of them. As judges of Art From Scrap’s 2016 Assemblage Fundraiser Exhibition, their goal was to pick three winners for the prestigious Hollister Family Awards out of 74 works of art.

(Jeremy Tesmer, Kai Tepper, Phoebe Brunner, Nathan Vonk)

After much deliberation, the judges awarded First Place with a $500 Cash Prize to Dug Uyesaka for burn the ships, Second Place with a $300 Cash Prize to George Couper for In Memoriam, and Third Place with a $200 Cash Prize to Jack Hewitt for The Little Mermaid.

(Dug Uyesaka, First Place Winner)

The Hollister Family Awards have been presented to assemblage artists at the Art From Scrap Fundraiser Event for over 12 years. With a long history of exhibiting assemblage art in Santa Barbara, the Art From Scrap Gallery is committed to providing a place for local assemblage artists to show their work.

(George Couper, Second Place Winner)

Selected art, including the winning pieces, will be available for public viewing and Silent Auction bidding at the AFS Gallery from October 6th through October 15th during Open Hours: Thursdays and Fridays: 11:00 am to 6:00 pm and Saturday and Sunday 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. Winning bids will be announced at the Fundraiser on Saturday, October 15, 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm. All proceeds benefit Art From Scrap’s environmental education and art programming.

(burn the ships by Dug Uyesaka)

The public is invited to the Art From Scrap Fundraiser on Saturday, October 15 from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm where they can meet the artists, enjoy delicious food and refreshments, and a Bob deBris photo op. Admission is $15.00 per person. Tickets can be purchased online at EBrite: Click Here for Link, at Art From Scrap at 302 East Cota in downtown Santa Barbara, or at the door.

(In Memoriam by George Couper)

For more information about The Art From Scrap 2016 Fundraiser, contact us at 805-884-0459 x13.

(The Little Mermaid by Jack Hewitt)
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Trash Into Treasure Eco Art and Reuse Market


On Sunday, October 2 , from 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm join us at Art From Scrap for the first ever Trash Into Treasure: Eco-Art and Reuse Market. To embrace the spirit of reuse, this event will showcase how individuals in our community creatively tackle the art of recycling.


There will be local eco crafts, art, vintage treasures, clothing, and like-new reusable items.

Veronica Juarez

Veronica Juarez

As an added bonus, the first 15 people to arrive at the market will receive their choice of a free bag with samples from Saks 5th Avenue or a $5 bulk bag from Art From Scrap.

Joe Rockwell

Joe Rockwell

We hope to see you there!

Kathleen Hinson

Kathleen Hinson

Posted in Art Discovery, Art in Santa Barbara, Environmental Education, Explore Ecology, Family Activities in Santa Barbara | 2 Comments