Artist Nancy Gifford is known in Santa Barbara for her dedication to the local arts community as well as her work at Lotusland. Gifford was guest curator of “Swarm” and “Flock,” two large exhibitions at the treasured gardens located on the estate of Madame Ganna Walska. Nancy and her husband, Michael, also live in a home that’s a work of art. The contemporary single story home in Montecito was originally a lemon packing plant.
Also Read: Lotusland: A Santa Barbara Hidden Gem
Just driving onto this property is a treat! Gliding down the curved driveway offers a great visual overview. It seemed surreal. I’d never seen a home like this before. A BMW and SUV parked inside the garage were clearly visible because of the clear glass doors. It’s easy to see the giant pieces of art adorning the walls inside because there are no coverings on the giant glass windows. In fact, there seems to be more glass than wall enclosing this home.
“That was my ticket” Gifford says of a large headshot of her from 1970. The blown up photo on the wall in her office, taken by iconic fashion photographer Richard Avedon, was featured in a magazine. The job provided Nancy with the money she needed to be able to quit working temp jobs and devote more time to her art.
These days, Nancy works on large-scale installations. Her most recent, “LAMENT,” was featured in the show “Requiem for the Bibliophile” at the Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara. Click here to watch the HD time lapse video of the making of LAMENT (scroll down for more video links)
The massive wall of art made of covers and spines of antique books is taking up two walls of her large high-ceiling studio. Gifford said she is eager to send it off to its next home at UC Santa Barbara.
Click to listen to the sound on this blog post to hear Nancy’s personal story of her journey from Ohio farm girl, to international fashion model to artist, as well as some of her pet projects. Scroll down this page to listen to hear the story behind Gifford’s two major installations at Lotusland, “Flock” and “Swarm.”
You are invited to tour the Gifford home along with other unique properties in the Santa Barbara area on Saturday, October 3. ArchitecTours 2015: Architecture with a Story is a fundraiser for the Santa Barbara chapter of the American Institute of Architects.
More video of Nancy Gifford & “LAMENT”
Gifford with fine art photographer Lindsey Ross features video of “LAMENT” and beautiful turn-of-the-century style photos Click to view
HOPE – HD ART VIDEO with Nancy Gifford on the Future of Books Click to view