I Madonnari Italian Street Painting Festival
– presented for FREE at the Old Mission in Santa Barbara, California
Saturday – Monday | Memorial Day Weekend | 9:30 AM to 6:00 PM
The annual three-day Madonnari Italian Festival, or Street Painters Festival, transforms the Mission plaza using pastels on pavement to create 150 vibrant and colorful, large scale images. In addition to the artwork itself, you can check out the authentic Italian market and live music. The Italian market offers traditional Italian food items, including gelato and pasta prepared by Children’s Creative Project volunteers, as well as unique festival souvenirs such as posters and notecards. Dance along to live music on the Mission Lawn or help the kids create their own street paintings on the west side of the Mission.
Start your day with a self-guided tour of the Old Mission before observing the many street paintings. Open from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sundays, the museum, church, Sacred Garden and cemetery are included in admission.
Santa Barbara is proud to be the first city to bring this romantic festival to the western hemisphere from our sister festival in Grazie di Curtatone, Italy. The festival benefits the Children’s Creative Project, a nonprofit arts education program of the Santa Barbara County Education Office. The Project serves 50,000 children in more than 100 schools with visual and performing arts workshops and performances throughout Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties.
I Madonnari Italian Street Painting Festival 21 made it virtually happen with online broadcasts across Memorial Day Weekend. While we do not know if we can be together in person at the Old Mission this year, we can share the spirit of this wonderful festival virtually. New street paintings drawn with chalk pastels will be created by artists on their driveways for festival sponsors during the Memorial Day weekend on May 29-31, 2021. Photos of sponsored street paintings with sponsors’ names will be posted each day on our website, Facebook and Instagram accounts. Sponsored street paintings will remain on our website until the next year’s festival.
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