About us


The Italian Cultural Heritage Foundation of Santa Barbara

ICHFSB is a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation

Our Purpose

The purpose of the Italian Cultural Heritage Foundation  of Santa Barbara is to foster greater understanding of the culture, history, language and arts of Italy, past and present, by providing funds for scholarships, awards, education, worthy institutions and by sponsoring cultural programs and events.


The Vitruvian Man

Our chosen logo is a world-renowned drawing created by Leonardo da Vinci around 1487.  The Vitruvian Man is a pen and ink drawing with wash on paper, 34.4 x 25.5 cm.  It is carefully stored in the Gallerie dell’Accademia in Venice, and is displayed only occasionally.

The drawing depicts a male figure in two superimposed positions, both with arms extended, and one with legs apart.  The figures are inscribed in a circle and square.  The drawing and accompanying text are sometimes called the Canon of Proportions, or the Proportion of Man.    It is based on the correlations of ideal human proportions with geometry described by the ancient Roman architect Vitruvius.

The image exemplifies the blend of art and science during the Renaissance and is a perfect example of Leonardo’s keen interest in proportion.

Born in the Florence region in 1452, Leonardo da Vinci became a painter, sculptor, architect, musician, scientist, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, geologist, cartographer, botanist, and writer.  In short, he is the archetype of the Renaissance man and considered one of the world’s greatest painters and perhaps the most diversely talented person ever.  Two of his paintings, the Mona Lisa, and The Last Supper, are among the most famous of all paintings.  And the Vitruvian Man is also considered an icon.

The Vitruvian Man remains one of the most reproduced images in the world today.  It is a contemporary symbol of medical professionals and establishments, and has also come to represent alternative medicine and wellness.  The image also appears on the national side of Italian 1 euro coins.