Seeping Into History: Oil Touches Everything

Seeping Into History: Oil Touches Everything is a UCSB student exhibition that explores our contemporary and historical relationships to fossil fuels, with a focus on the local Santa Barbara area. As the site of the historic 1969 oil spill, which catalyzed a nationwide environmental movement, Santa Barbara’s history is uniquely connected with oil; however, our society’s dependence on petroleum products manifests in numerous ways, most of which are much subtler than any oil spill.

Student art work, exhibited on Stearns Wharf will examine this subject through visual, auditory, and textual interpretation, including illustrative flags, a website, audio tours, maps, and an artist’s book. As the climate crisis mounts in urgency, Seeping Into History aims to create a space where we may inspect our position within these larger systems more critically and vigorously than ever before. The art work will be exhibited March 5-19, 2022 on the theme of intersections of climate change, and its impact on the local community of Santa Barbara. More information can be found at

In partnership with The Santa Barbara Museum of Art (SBMA) and The Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara (MCASB), UCSB students will develop two educational programs for the public relating to students’ research and printed works on Stearns Wharf. The programs and workshops will be designed for children and adult audiences. Adults Educational Programming in collaboration with MCASB will be on March 12th (Saturday) 3:30 – 4:30pm; Children Educational Programming in collaboration with SBMA will be on March 13 (Sunday) 1:30 – 4:30pm


* A mockup of the twelve flags
comprising the timeline

* A mockup of one of the four diptychs, depicting seismic exploration for oil (left flag) and one of its many cruel effects on wildlife (right flag)




Social Media (Instagram): @seepingintohistory

Press Contacts:
Isabella Millet (,
Anahi Garcia (,
Iman Djouini (

The Stearns Wharf Merchants Association represents the merchants and business owners on Stearns Wharf. Stearns Wharf is located at the end of State Street between East Beach and the Santa Barbara Harbor. For more information, visit

Stearns Wharf