The Lutah Maria Riggs Society was founded in 2013 to celebrate the courage and creative brilliance of the architect for whom the Society is named. Her remarkable work should command an important position in the history of American architecture and yet, until now it has gone largely unrecognized.
With the expertise of Lutah archivist and historian Melinda Gandara, the Society has engaged hundreds of community members to share stories, memories, and places that go into an exciting film about Lutah. LUTAH A Passion for Architecture: A Life in Design premiered at the 2014 Santa Barbara International Film Festival to rave reviews.
Our Society is entirely volunteer and has been enthusiastically supported by many local organizations (Architectural Foundation of Santa Barbara, Casa del Herrero, Ganna Walska Lotusland, Pearl Chase Society, and now the Santa Barbara Foundation). We all share an interest in bringing the story of Lutah Maria Riggs to life.
Meet Lutah Maria Riggs, architect and draftswoman. With an abundance of talent and a hint of eccentricity she navigated her way through the established world of architecture in the early 20th century and brought a freshness to the look of Souther California buildings. Her design of some of our most iconic structures, such as the Lobero Theatre, cemented her role as a true Santa Barbara treasure.
The Santa Barbara Historical Museum is proudly collaborating with the Lutah Maria Riggs Society and the UCSB Art, Architecture & Design Museum to fully illustrate her life, her work with George Washington Smith, and the evolution of her own style.
The exhibition will be on view to the public from October 23, 2014 through Spring 2015.
by Melinda Gándara
The story of Lutah Maria Riggs is highlighted in a lovely well-illustrated 62-page booklet. The remarkable story of how this improbable paragon of perseverance rose to the pinnacle of her profession has been told in a handsomely illustrated booklet drawn from Lutah's own diaries, letters, photographs and sketches. It is an inspirational story; it is an extraordinary story.