Sonoma County has been a magnet for artists and art connoisseurs for many decades, and continues to attract sophisticated artists and art collectors, along with casual art lovers. Combined with the sheer natural beauty, and general creative ambience, the area readily entices visitors, as well as long-time residents, to explore the many and varied fine art offerings. With the addition of great food, drink, and outdoor activities, it’s easy to spend a day, a week, or a lifetime traversing through the vineyards, forests, and rolling hills, along the scenic coast, and through the welcoming towns of Sonoma County.
The following is a partial list of local art exhibitions. Many eateries, wineries, and civic buildings also present changing art shows in their spaces.
*** Designates an Opening Reception.
♦ Indicates exhibitions which specifically commemorate the anniversary of the firestorm that devastated large areas of Sonoma County and the North Bay in October 2017.
Arts Guild of Sonoma
October 3 through October 29, Suzanne Phillips
*** Opening Reception Friday, October 5 from 5 to 7 p.m.
Also showing are works by AGS members.
140 East Napa Street, Sonoma
Blasted Art Gallery
October 5 through November 2, Nicole Irene Anderson and Avery Caauwe
*** Opening Reception Friday, October 5 from 5 to 8 p.m.
Two Sonoma County artists explore contemporary issues, including the advancement of technology, the fate of the environment, and the shape of our future world.
Art Alley, South A Street
SOFA Arts District, Santa Rosa
Through October 6, The Fantastic Vision of Alejandro Salazar
Born and raised in Colima, Mexico, Salazar has been widely exhibited throughout the United States and Mexico and now maintains a studio in Santa Rosa, California.
October 13 through November 24, Art of Social Commentary
*** Opening Reception Saturday, October 13 from 4 to 8 p.m.
On view is work by artists, both past and present, responding to social and political issues of importance to them. Some of the works date back to the mid-19th century but remain frighteningly relevant today, and the contemporary artists offer fresh viewpoints on current issues.
456 Tenth St., Santa Rosa
Charles M. Schulz Museum
Through March 10, Then Came the Dog
Charles M. Schulz had a lifetime affinity for dogs: beginning with his boyhood dog Spike, who inspired his first cartoon, to creating the world’s most famous beagle Snoopy, who inspired thousands more. In Then Came the Dog, you can simultaneously trace Schulz’s life-long love for dogs and Snoopy’s life-long love for himself. As we journey from Schulz’s backyard into Snoopy’s, discover the life of a man and his best friend through the lens of the Peanuts comic strip.
2301 Hardies Lane, Santa Rosa
Chroma Gallery / Santa Rosa Arts Center
October 5 through November 17, Wonder and Whimsy
*** Reception Friday, October 5 from 5 to 8 p.m.
An exhibit of collage and assemblage, whimsical and wondrous art in unexpected combinations to delight, surprise, provoke, and blur the boundaries of the two- and three-dimensional.
SOFA Arts District
312 South A Street, Santa Rosa
Cloverdale Arts Alliance Gallery
Through November 16, Nurture
Guest artists for this exhibit are sculptor Caro Pemberton and painter Aldo Longo. Resident artists include Laura Paine Carr, Pamela Heck, Terry Holleman, Paul Maurer and Hanya Popova Parker. Ceramicist Jane Gardner is the featured resident artist.
204 N. Cloverdale Boulevard, Cloverdale
Corricks Art Trails Gallery / My Daughter the Framer
Through October 21, Art Trails Preview
*** First Friday Meet the Artists reception, October 5, from 5 to 7 p.m.
Corrick’s and My Daughter the Framer once again begin the Sonoma County Art Trails season by featuring the work of over 70 local artists at the 2018 Art Trails Preview Show!
637 Fourth Street, Santa Rosa
♦ Fulton Crossing Gallery
October 5 through October 28, Resilience: From Wildfires to Wildflowers
*** Artist Reception Friday, October 19, from 5 to 8 p.m.
On view are paintings by Lucy Liew inspired by nature’s signs of recovery from last October’s wildfires.
1200 River Rd., Fulton
6780 McKinley, Suite 130, in The Barlow, Sebastopol
Through October 28, Abstractions, Distractions, Reactions
Featuring Bruce Hopkins and Susan Shore; Guest Artists: Judy Bianchi, Katie Kruzic, Cathy Locke and Phil Wright.
9048 Graton Road, Graton
132 Mill Street, Ste.101, Healdsburg
Healdsburg Center for the Arts
Through October 21, Figure Study
Jurors; Chris Blum, Janet Howell, and Vesna Breznikar. In this exhibit the human figure is portrayed realistically, abstractly or symbolically. The narrative possibilities are vast and universal as forty-two artists present their “Figure Study”.
130 Plaza Street, Healdsburg
♦ Hopscotch Gifts & Gallery
Through October 14, Spirits Rising
Spirits Rising is a celebration of our collective healing and positive spirits after the 2017 Firestorm. Thirty artists will be showing work in fiber, glass, jewelry, painting, photography, sculpture, ceramics, mixed media, wood, and metal.
126 Matheson, Healdsburg
405 East D St., Petaluma
Laguna Foundation, Heron Hall
Through December 21, With Awe and Wonder: A Celebration of Nature’s Beauty
This exhibit represents some of the best of local photographer Brenda Tharp’s work from the past 30 years – from the Laguna de Santa Rosa watershed to Yosemite, Utah to Michigan, Oregon to Alaska, and her own backyard in Santa Rosa. Brenda has traveled to Namibia, Botswana, Alaska, Cuba, Italy, Slovenia, and throughout the USA in search of images that express the beauty of this planet and the wildlife that inhabits it.
900 Sanford Road, Santa Rosa
♦ Museums of Sonoma County
October 6 through January 27, From the Fire
*** Opening reception Saturday, October 6 from 3 to 6 p.m.
From the Fire: A Community Reflects and Rebuilds commemorates the anniversary of the firestorm that devastated large areas of Sonoma County and the North Bay in October 2017. The exhibition examines the fires from personal, historical, and environmental perspectives, as well as highlight art’s power as a healing tool and creative outlet.
October 9 through November 4, Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead)
This annual exhibition features altars and artwork designed and created by Peter Perez, Mario Uribe, Rubén Guzmán, and Martín Zúñiga, and features curated items from Liz Camino-Byers’ collection of Mexican folk art. The exhibition also includes works by students who participate in the Memory Portrait Competition, and murals painted by students from ArtStart, Community Action Partnership, and museum volunteers from the Youth+Art summer program.
425 Seventh Street, Santa Rosa
Occidental Center for the Arts
October 5 through November 18, Myth and Magic
*** Opening reception Saturday, October 6 from 4 to 7 p.m.
An exhibition of work by Sonoma County artists, juried by Jennifer Mazzucco.
3850 Doris Murphy Court, Occidental
Paul Mahder Gallery
Through October, Three New Exhibitions
New and selected paintings by Lawrence Gipe. Cage/Kafes, new outdoor sculpture by Mike Berg. Art Trails Preview with over 30 works from Sonoma County Artists.
222 Healdsburg Avenue, Healdsburg
Paradise Ridge Winery Sculpture
During the devastating Tubbs Fire the winery buildings were destroyed, but the vineyards and most of the sculptures remain unharmed. While rebuilding takes place the three-acre sculpture garden, which includes the two-story-tall LOVE sculpture, has reopened to the public, and Marijke’s Grove sculpture garden will be open on weekends from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. through October 28.
4545 Thomas Lake Harris Drive, Santa Rosa
♦ Petaluma Arts Center
Through November 17, Renewal through Art
This exhibition of work by artists affected by the fires is a celebration of the revitalizing power of art. Artists from both Napa and Sonoma counties are featured. Works were created specifically as a response to the fires, including some art that integrates rescued and reclaimed fire artifacts. These fascinating pieces demonstrate the capacity of art to bring forth the resiliency of the human spirit in the face of catastrophe.
230 Lakeville Street, Petaluma
Ren Brown Collection Gallery
Housed in a refurbished building with shoji and a small, serene Japanese garden, the gallery shows contemporary art by Japanese and regional Northern California artists.
1781 Coast Highway One, Bodega Bay
Riverfront Art Gallery
Through November 4, Eleventh Anniversary Show
*** Art Walk Saturday, October 13, from 5 to 8 p.m.
Presenting the work of seven featured artists in a variety of media.
132 Petaluma Boulevard North, Petaluma
Santa Rosa Junior College, Robert F. Agrella Art Gallery
Through October 4, Drawings By Brett Grunig
*** Artist Reception Wednesday, October 3 from 4 to 6 p.m.
This show includes a collection of story fragments based on themes from folktales and traditional fantasy, and a series of illustrations for a children’s book, Mike Eats the Cheese, by local author Dan Schieberl.
1501 Mendocino Avenue, Santa Rosa
Sebastopol Center for the Arts
Through October 21, Art Trails Preview Exhibition
Art Trails is a juried, self-guided open studio event showcasing the art, creative processes and the working environments of 145 professional Sonoma County artists.
October 25 through December 2, Reverberations (Main Gallery)
*** Opening reception, Thursday, October 25, from 6 to 8 p.m.
An exhibition of rarely-seen exquisite fine art selected from private collections paired with new poetry inspired by these artworks. Included are works by Pablo Picasso, Julie Mehretu, Francis Bacon, and Käthe Kollwitz, to name a few.
Also on view; A Pilgrimage: The Sculpture & Photography of Genevieve Willson Barnhart
A retrospective exhibition by California artist Genevieve Willson Barnhart featuring bronze sculpture, jewelry, and black and white photography. This show charts an artistic career spanning more than 80 years.
282 High Street, Sebastopol
Through October, Peter Krohn, Diana Majumdar, and Clark Mitchell
Sebastopol Gallery welcomes new member artists Peter Krohn and Diana Majumdar, and guest artist Clark Mitchell.
150 N. Main St, Sebastopol
Sonoma State University, University Art Gallery
Through October 14, The Tyranny of Objects
Napa-based multi-disciplinary artist Stephen Whisler investigates issues related to surveillance, military weaponry, and the frightening power of nuclear bombs. The exhibition features a life-size sculpture of Fat Man—the atomic bomb detonated over Nagasaki, Japan, in 1945—suspended from the Gallery’s ceiling. Also on view are numerous woodblock prints and pastel drawings of military drones and rockets. Whisler’s work is a rare combination of aesthetic beauty and the disturbing feelings associated with such sinister objects.
1801 East Cotati Avenue, Rohnert Park
♦ Sonoma State University, Library Gallery
Through December 14, Reflections: After the Fire
*** Reception, Wednesday, October 17, from 4 to 5:30 p.m.
The Fall 2017 Firestorm expressed through painting, photography, video, and mixed media by 21 participants.
1801 East Cotati Avenue, Rohnert Park
♦ Sonoma Valley Museum of Art
Through January 6, From Fire, Love Rises: Stories Shared from the Artist Community
From Fire, Love Rises commemorates artists who were impacted by the October 2017 fires in Sonoma and Napa Counties. The exhibition features 14 artists and 19 writers who work in bronze, photography, ceramics, printmaking, new media, poetry, and prose to express their countless stories of loss, gratitude, and resiliency that have emerged in the year since the fires. Related events listed on website.
Also in the museum; 20 Sonoma Collectors: Celebrating SVMA’s 20th Year. The exhibition provides a unique opportunity to view contemporary art from important Sonoma collections, including works by Squeak Carnwath, Shepard Fairey, Roy De Forest, Tom Friedman, Jacob Hashimoto, David Hockney, Robert Mapplethorpe, Claes Oldenburg, Kiki Smith, and Andy Warhol, among others.
Through October 21, Natural Affinity: California Women Sculptors in the Landscape
Public art in Sonoma Plaza with works by Gwynn Murrill, Lisa Reinertson, and Alison Saar. Each of these women sculptors play an important role in evolving the canon of California art and in the craft of sculpture.
551 Broadway, Sonoma
The Art Wall at Shige Sushi
Through October 28, Suzanne Edminster—Salt Mind
*** Opening reception Monday, October 1, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Paintings and mixed media work by Santa Rosa artist Suzanne Edminster, who has an interest in the history of alchemy and salt in particular. Edminster draws on history, a distinctive sense of color, and an intuitive, layered creative process to make art of substance. A vibrant palette and dynamic brushwork give her paintings immediate appeal.
8235 Old Redwood Highway, Cotati
Upstairs Art Gallery
October 1 through October 28, Shades of Autumn
*** Gallery reception Saturday, October 6, from 1 to 3 p.m.
With a focus on the shades of autumn, on view are paintings from various gallery member artists. Landscape paintings by Susan Greer are featured upstairs in the gallery.
306 Center St., Healdsburg
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