Current Exhibitions

January 20, 2018 to April 15, 2018

Jack London (1876-1916) is revered as the quintessential American novelist and short story writer, and in the Sonoma area he is a renowned native son. His internationally celebrated literary works include The Call of the Wild, The Sea Wolf, White Fang, and Martin Eden. Less well known are London’s concurrent explorations in photography. This exhibition will introduce an array of the writer’s photographs gathered from his adventures as a war correspondent and global sailor. Included are views from the Russo-Japanese War, San Francisco’s 1906 earthquake and fire, and visits to Hawaii and the South Seas islands. They reveal London’s avid curiosity, his perceptive and compassionate eye, and his remarkable comprehension of the then-new art of photography. Curated by Helaine Glick.

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Jane & Jerry Baldwin
Bob and Carol Nicholas
Jean Simpson
Marcie & Dave Waldron
Douglas Fenn Wilson

January 20, 2018 to April 15, 2018

Libros de Artista will feature about 40 contemporary limited edition books created by Latin American artists, sourced from both the original artists in Mexico and from the Latin American & Iberian Collections at Stanford University Libraries. 

The books in the exhibition reveal a wide range of artistic, political and personal concerns. Topics explored include the relationship between gender and power, immigration, censorship, border control politics and other themes that are becoming more and more relevant to lives both north and south of the border.

Libros de Artista offers an enthusiastic ride through a world of strong graphic tradition, deeply felt relationships to material objects, profound knowledge of craft and a judicious use of technology. Curated by Simon Blattner.


Susan & Gary Campbell

Upcoming Exhibitions

April 28 to June 10, 2018

The exhibition Ship of Dreams: Artists, Poets and Visionaries of the S.S. Vallejo is the story of how a decommissioned ferry boat became an important cultural crossroads in the history of California and America.  Moored on the north side of Sausalito, California in 1949, the S.S. Vallejo became the dynamic home and cultural incubator for artists, musicians and literary luminaries such as Gordon Onslow Ford, Alan Watts, Jean Varda, Allen Ginsberg, Wolfgang Paalen and many others.  This exhibition examines the contributions of the circle of S.S. Vallejo from 1949 to 1969 with important visual works of art by Onslow Ford, Varda, Paalen, Roberto Matta, Ruth Asawa, Lee Mullican, Fritz Rauh, Richard Bowman, J.B. Blunk and others.

Ship of Dreams: Artists, Poets and Visionaries of the S.S. Vallejo is the first ​exhibition to survey the full spectrum of creative life aboard the S.S. Vallejo from 1949 to 1969.  It was a pivotal period in the development of California and American culture with many of its thought leaders gravitating around this singular place on the edge of San Francisco Bay.
This exhibition is a collaboration between SVMA and Lucid Art Foundation.


April 28 to June 10, 2018

Sonoma Valley Museum of Art is pleased to present Her View: The Bay Area Figurative Art of Gail Chadell Nanao, the first solo retrospective of the Berkeley-based artist associated with the Bay Area Figurative movement of the 1950s. Nanao's work blends the spontaneous bravura brushwork of Abstract Expressionism with a reimagining of figuration. Having studied in the early 1960s at the California School of Fine Arts (now the San Francisco Art Institute) with Nathan Oliveira and James Weeks, Nanao is situated amongst the second generation of Bay Area Figurative artists alongside Joan Brown, Manuel Neri, and Bruce McGaw. Nanao had important early exhibitions of her work in New York and Tokyo in the 1960s, but dropped from the public eye until the early 2000s when her work was rediscovered.

Sonoma Valley Museum of Art will present the full range of Nanao’s work, from her dark, existentialist paintings of the early 1960s, such as Birthday Party (1963)—a response to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy—to her dramatic Venus and Adonis series, which show her consummate handling of the drip and gesture, informed by a range of influences, from Asian calligraphy to modern masters such Edvard Munch and Francis Bacon.

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