Art in Sonoma County: Current Gallery and Museum Exhibitions in March 2019

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.

Arts Guild of Sonoma
Through April 1, Member’s Exhibit
*** Opening Reception Thursday March 7 from 5 to 7:30 p.m.
Featuring work by 18 AGS Member Artists.
140 East Napa Street, Sonoma

By James Spitzer

Calabi Gallery
Through March 9, A World of Art
The gallery is displaying an eclectic mix of art from various times and places, in many media. Included are works by Paul Beattie, Hans Burkhardt, Rafael Canogar, Easton, Claire Falkenstein, Karen Green, Sutter Marin, Mary Fuller McChesney, Robert Pearson McChesney, Louis Earnest Nadalini, Louis Siegriest, the late great James Spitzer, Seymour Tubis, Elisabeth Vellacott, Zao Wou-Ki, and many others. The previous display of paintings by Carolyn Lord, Lucy Martin, and Carol Peek continues.
456 Tenth St., Santa Rosa

Charles M. Schulz Museum
March 17 through March 8, 2020, Peace, Love, and Woodstock
In honor of the 50th anniversary of the 1969 Woodstock festival this summer, the Museum and Research Center presents a yearlong exhibition celebrating the smallest Peanuts character, Woodstock, named for the generation-defining music event. Check the website for related Public Programs.

Through May 20, Without Words
From “Good grief!” to “AAUGH!” Charles M. Schulz developed a lexicon that has become synonymous with the Peanuts comic strip. Yet the cartoonist’s approach to communication went well beyond words. The new exhibition explores Schulz’s pantomime comics and the artful techniques Schulz employed when telling stories using illustration alone.

Through August 4, Behind Peanuts: The Little Red-Haired Girl
Charlie Brown’s unrequited love, the Little Red-Haired Girl, was inspired by Donna Mae Johnson-Wold, the real-life first love of Charles M. Schulz. In this exhibition, learn the back story through original art, photographs, and personal interviews.
2301 Hardies Lane, Santa Rosa

By Linda Oritz

Chroma Gallery / Santa Rosa Arts Center
Through March 22, Healing the Environment
*** Meet the Artists Reception, March 1, from 5 to 8 p.m.
The paintings, photography, sculpture and natural objects by Sonoma County and Bay Area artists are personal statements on the environment. The artwork is their visual commentary of how nature is being challenged by humanity, and how to protect and heal our common home.
SOFA Arts District
312 South A Street, Santa Rosa

Cloverdale Arts Alliance Gallery
Through March 22, Place
Guest artists for this exhibit are sculptor Luann Udell, and painter Timothy David Dixon. Featured resident artist is Ralph Broussard, showing digital collages.
204 N. Cloverdale Boulevard, Cloverdale

Corricks Art Trails Gallery
Through March, Confluence: Winter / Spring
*** First Friday opening reception, March 1, from 5 to 7 p.m.
The work of Tim Haworth and Donna Schaffer.
637 Fourth Street, Santa Rosa

Fulton Crossing Gallery
1200 River Rd, Fulton

By Jennifer Hirshfield

Gallery 300
Through March, New Work
Jennifer Hirschfield, Alejandro Salazar, Terry Sauvé, Lisa Thorpe, and Ron Macken.
6780 McKinley St., Suite 130, The Barlow

Graton Gallery
Through March 17, Partners & Friends
Each of the eight partners at the Gallery has invited an artist friend to show work alongside their own. Featured Guests Artists are Kelly Burke, Ceylan Crow, and Sky Richardson.

March 19 through April 21, Roshambo
*** Reception for the artists Saturday, March 23 from 2 to 5 p.m.
Juried group show featuring works of and on paper, made with scissors, or stone or stoneware.
9048 Graton Road, Graton

Hammerfriar Gallery
132 Mill Street, Ste.101, Healdsburg

Healdsburg Center for the Arts
March 2 through April 14, Animalia
*** Opening Reception Saturday, March 2, from 5 to 7 p.m.
The word “Animalia” evokes images of all animals; birds, bugs, reptiles, furry friends and pets, fish and fowl. It brings to mind all the wild and wonderful ways that “Animalia” have been an integral and essential part our human experience. Closing tea, April 14, 2 to 4 p.m., an opportunity for public and artists alike to discuss animals and art techniques.
130 Plaza Street, Healdsburg


By Jill Keller Peters

La Crema Estate
Through May 15, Jill Keller Peters
Sonoma County artist, Jill Keller Peters creates artwork that uplifts the human spirit and emanates the vibrancy that she looks for in life. Her carefully selected hues present “an oasis of calm, a serene juxtaposition of color and balance” in her inspired geometric abstractions and impressionist scenes of nature.
La Crema Estate at Saralee’s Vineyard
2nd Floor Gallery
3575 Slusser Road, Windsor


Laguna Foundation, Heron Hall
Through April 29, California’s Wild Gold
Mixed-media tapestries by Faith Rumm. These large collaged tapestries are a joyful celebration of the abundance of life and biodiversity found in California.
900 Sanford Road, Santa Rosa


By David Huffman

Museum of Sonoma County|
Through April 20, See Something, Say Something
The exhibition considers a common warning announcement often seen at bus depots, train stations and airports. The warning, “See Something, Say Something,” encourages citizens to stay alert and speak up if they notice something amiss. While the phrase originated to convey the threat posed by terrorism after the 9/11 attacks, in this exhibition the meaning of the phrase “see something, say something,” is expanded to encourage individuals to call out additional threats to society, such racism, sexism, economic disparity, and climate change. The three artists in the exhibition; David Huffman, Evri Kwong, and Linda Vallejo, are observant and expressive. Through their work, they identify and name various threats, and approach social issues with intelligence, sincerity, and wit.

Through June 2, Pacific World: The History that Binds Us to the Sea
*** Opening Reception Friday, March 1 from 5 to 7 p.m.
Featuring a collection of Ming Chinese porcelain traded across the ocean, art and objects of Oceania, and artifacts related to the Sonoma Coast, the exhibition traces the influences of the Pacific World on the history of Sonoma County and the North Bay Area. Learn how present day Sonoma County became a point of convergence; where the currents carried items of trade and brought immigrants, laborers, temporary visitors, and permanent settlers. The Pacific World exhibition also features a collection of antique maps of Asia and the Pacific, objects from nineteenth-century shipwrecks, as well as a children’s gallery with an interactive game and ship model.
425 Seventh Street, Santa Rosa

By Pieter Myers

Occidental Center for the Arts
March 1 through 17, The Bottom Line
*** Artists’ reception Saturday, March 2, from 3 to 6 p.m.
An exhibition of figure drawings from the Thursday Night Drawing group founded by the late and legendary, Bill Wheeler.

March 22 through April 7, Wilder Bentley the Younger: A Retrospective
*** Opening Reception Saturday March 23, from 3 to 6 p.m.
Wilder Mayo Bentley II passed away on October 11, 2018. A true renaissance man, he was talented in multiple art forms. This exhibition will feature a variety of his paintings, printmaking, poetry, stained glass, handmade books, calligraphy and brass inlaid jewelry.
3850 Doris Murphy Court, Occidental

By Michael Cooper

Paul Mahder Gallery
Currently on view; Sculptural Masterworks by Michael Cooper
222 Healdsburg Avenue, Healdsburg

Petaluma Arts Center
Through March 23, National Parks Painting Project
In the National Parks Painting Project by Mary Fassbinder and Guest Artist Davis Perkins there are 60 plein air paintings of each of the U. S. National Parks.
230 Lakeville Street, Petaluma

Ren Brown Collection Gallery
Through March 17, Maniére Noire
Mezzotints by Mikio Watanabe. 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

Christine Kierstead

Riverfront Art Gallery
March 6 through May 5, Early Spring Show
*** Opening reception Saturday, March 9, from 5 to 8 p.m., with a poetry reading and a gallery talk by the artists.
On view: Words & Women by Christine Kierstead; and Wild/Free by Isabelle Truchon, paintings of semi-wild horses that roam in the Camargue region of France.
132 Petaluma Boulevard North, Petaluma




Santa Rosa Junior College, Robert F. Agrella Art Gallery
Through March 28, Meanderings
Sabbatical Exhibition by Stephanie Sanchez

Through April 11, Parallels
Artists; Holly Downing, Claire Keith, Deborah Kirklin, Stephanie Peek, Gillian Pederson-Krag, and Robert Poplack.
1501 Mendocino Avenue, Santa Rosa

By Sharon Madden Harkness

Sebastopol Center for the Arts
Through March 31, NOT JUST Landscapes
In the Main Gallery, International juried Landscape exhibition. Juror: Robin Dintiman. Artwork reflecting scenery from cityscapes to nature views and more personal and imaginary visions including futuristic, environmental and psychological.

Also on view in Gallery II: Suspended Moments
The figurative oil paintings of Valerie L. Winslow contain narrative overtones of personal anecdote and social commentary, including themes reflecting the current climate of the #Me Too movement.

In Gallery III: Light/spirit/Reflect
Laurence Elias exhibits imagery produced by digital printing, painting, and laser etching on laser cut mirrored acrylic sheets. Starting points include explorations of light, reflectivity, transparency, repetition, and geometric patterns and forms. Using artist-designed fixtures for off the wall attachment at unusual heights and angles, they present uncanny illusions of solid objects, as well as colorful abstract imagery.
282 High Street, Sebastopol

Sebastopol Gallery
Through March 30, Michelle Hoting
Featuring the work of Michelle Hoting, who creates jewelry using repurposed metals. In her latest work, Michelle explores and recreates the ancient mixed-metal technique of makume gane. Layering, folding, and forming steel, copper and bronze to create a wood-grain-like pattern, she reimagines the metals into wearable sea creatures, landscapes, and touchstones. Also on view is photography by guest artist Bill Theis.
150 N. Main St, Sebastopol

Sebastopol Library Forum Room
Through March 9, Bertha Jean Schmidt
Bertha Jean Schmidt exhibits documentary photos depicting her native culture of the Cabo Verdean people on the islands of Brava, Fogo and San Vicente.
7140 Bodega Avenue, Sebastopol

Sonoma State University, University Art Gallery
Through March 10, Then & Now – Alumni Exhibition
Work by 40 SSU Art Department alumni.

March 28 through April 14, Juried Student Exhibition
*** Reception Thursday, March 28, from 4 to 6 p.m.
1801 East Cotati Avenue, Rohnert Park

Richard Shaw, Canton Lady, 2014, Image courtesy of Alice Shaw

Sonoma Valley Museum of Art
Through April 7, Richard Shaw and Wanxin Zhang
Richard Shaw and Wanxin Zhang brings the recent work of these two masters of Bay Area clay, focusing on their explorations of the cultural exchange between China and the West.

Also on view is Portals: A Space for Color by Phillip K. Smith III
American light artist Phillip K. Smith III, noted for large-scale installations, has installed three Portals in the Museum. Each artwork investigates the relationship between light, form, surface, and perception.

March 20 through April 7, Art Rewards The Student
Light | Space | Clay: Portals to Creative Explorations showcases work by Sonoma’s fourth and fifth grade students, exploring concepts of form, space, color, and change inspired by SVMA’s current exhibitions. Free Family A.R.T.S. Day – Saturday, April 7.
551 Broadway, Sonoma

By Colin Talcroft

The Art Wall at Shige Sushi
March 5 through April 28, Colin Talcroft
*** Opening reception, Monday, March 11, from 5 to 7 p.m.
Selections from the Museum Shadows Series, abstract photographs by artist Colin Talcroft, an ongoing series of shadow photographs begun in 2012 captured in museums and galleries around the San Francisco Bay Area and Europe.
8235 Old Redwood Highway, Cotati



Marsha Connell

Upstairs Art Gallery
Through March 24, Dream Vessels & A Murder of Crows
*** Artist Reception Sunday, March 10, from 2 to 5 p.m. Poetry reading with Marsha Connell and Reba Connell, 2:30 to 3 p.m.
Artwork by Marsha Connell that articulates an artistic evolution initiated in collage and leading to the “Murder of Crows” series of still-life oil paintings. The arranging and rearranging of found images in collage-making laid the groundwork for assembling and staging objects in the Crow series. Spirit Birds and wings play a supporting role in the collages, while birds star in the still-life series.
306 Center St., Healdsburg

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About Satri Pencak

Independent Curator, art writer
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