Upcoming Exhibitions

 Support the Sesnon!

image 1969 "Experimental Arts Workshop Spring Thing Balloon Launch" Shot on campus at dawn on the basketball courts outside the East Field House below Cowell College by Charley Stern. See event listings for alumni weekend*

SPRING 2015: In Celebration of UCSC's 50th Anniversary

An Uncommon Place: Shaping the UC Santa Cruz Campus

Architectural Images and Imaginings from UCSC’s Early Years

Sesnon Art Gallery April 8-May 9, 2015

Opening Reception April 8, 5-7pm

Alumni Weekend: Rececption and Curators' walkthrough April 24, 4-6pm

Curated by Emeriti Professors James Clifford, Michael Cowan, Virginia Jansen, and Emeritus Campus Architect Frank Zwart.

The exhibition traces decisive moments in the early creation of UCSC’s built environment. In the visions that shaped the campus an extraordinary physical site was linked with an innovative educational project. The exhibition evokes paths taken and not taken in the first decades of campus development: decisions, constraints, hopes, realities. It celebrates the achievement of UCSC’s founding planners while analyzing the tensions and contradictions they built into the campus. Through many subsequent transformations, the university that took shape on rugged forested terrain atop a high hill, remains an uncommon place.


*Alumni Weekend curators' walkthrough: April 24, 4-6pm in the Sesnon Gallery at Porter College

Also opening: Rhythms of Place in the Porter College Faculty Gallery

*Alumni Weekend panel discussion: April 25, 2:30-4pm DARC room 230

From Here to Modernity: perspectives from distinguished museum professionals*

How an array of educational experiences at UCSC helped inspire five of its graduates to pursue their present careers as curators and directors at five of America’s notable art museums.

A panel hosted and introduced by Shelby Graham, Director of the Porter Sesnon Gallery, will be moderated by Jock Reynolds (Stevenson ’69), Director of the Yale University Art Gallery, holding forth with alumni colleagues Jeremy Strick (Cowell ’77), director, Nasher Sculpture Center, Philip Brookman (Porter ’75), curator, National Gallery of Art, Karen Moss (Porter ’77), director , and Erin O’Toole (Kresge ’92), assistant curator of photography, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

*part of the distinguished alumni series 

Late Spring:

Irwin 2015  
May 27-June 13, 2015

Reception and award ceremony
Wednesday, May 27
6pm Awards



don't miss our presence Downtown at the Rittenhouse and:



The Sesnon Pop-Up Downtown : in various windows

Past Pop-up projects Video Links from June 2012:


The Santa Cruz Bottle Project

Farmers' Market PhotoBooth

Nature BeWILDered

This project was supported by a grant from the University of California Institute for Research in the Arts (UCIRA) for Shelby Graham, curator of the Sesnon Art Gallery at Porter College, to teach over a dozen students exhibition techniques while exploring their role as community artists. The City of Santa Cruz Arts Program also contributed funds for materials.


The Sesnon Gallery encourages interdisciplinary discourse through the lens of the arts. Gallery hours are Tuesday–Saturday, noon to 5:00pm and Wednesday until 8:00pm. The gallery is located at Porter College, UCSC and is wheelchair accessible. Admission is free and parking is free on Saturdays. Parking permits are available weekdays at the main campus entrance kiosk for $6/day and $4 at the Porter College lot for special events. Group tours are available by appointment at (831) 459-3606.