Spirit of the Ocean Fountain

completed spirit of the ocean fountain

The Spirit of the Ocean Fountain is a prominent architectural feature near the great arch of the Courthouse.  Years of rain, environmental toxins and exposure had taken their toll on the delicate sandstone, and efforts to reinforce and repair the statues with various fillers had resulted in a badly deformed carving.

With a project team of 15 professionals, and almost a million dollars raised by the Santa Barbara Courthouse Legacy Foundation, the restorers located a quarry close to the original, cut large blocks from the sandstone, and transported them to the front lawn of the Courthouse to be publically and painstakingly hand carved using many of the original tools.

Completed by Nick Blantern and his team from Britishstone, this combination of ancient carving methods, combined with modern and computer assisted techniques resulted in an amazing replication of this beloved and historic fountain. Fundraising for this project took nearly 6 years, and would not have been possible without the support of Foundations and private donors in the Santa Barbara community.


Project Slideshow

Did You Know...

The Sunken Garden is host to community-wide celebrations all year long. What is often mistaken about this magical place is its layout of stone walls—many are told it is the basement of the former courthouse prior to the 1925 earthquake. This is myth. The sandstone blocks that form the current day landscape were recycled from the older courthouse buildings after the 1925 earthquake.