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On View: Art and Culture Exhibitions

The Library’s exhibition program allows free access to visual art and cultural exhibitions, while promoting San Diego artists and creative community groups.

 

Public Exhibition Opportunities

 
For more information about library exhibitions, email us at OnView@sandiego.gov.

Library patrons viewing an exhibition in the Central Library Art Gallery.

 

Central Library Art Gallery

Echoes of Africa
June 4, 2022 - August 20, 2022
Opening Reception - Saturday, June 4, 2022 | 12:00 - 2 p.m.
Opening Reception will take place promptly at 12:00 p.m. on the 1st floor outdoor courtyard with a special performance by the World Beat Center African Drum and Dance group. Following the performance, guests will be welcomed into the exhibit areas, both in the Popular library on the 1st floor and the Fine Arts Gallery on the 9th floor. 
 
Echoes of Africa exhibition

Echoes of Africa celebrates classical and contemporary artistic traditions by African and African American artists. This two-part exhibition features African artifacts from San Diego Mesa College's World Cultures Art collection coupled with artworks produced by local contemporary artists. A dynamic group of artifacts will be exhibited, featuring objects that demonstrate the mastery of African artisans in metal, wood, ceramics, beadwork, and textiles. The Fine Arts gallery will highlight artworks by contemporary local artists in conversation with select African artifacts, echoing and responding to aspects of their materials, symbolism, and creative process. The exhibition pays tribute to the ongoing cultural and artistic influence of African art on African American artists and celebrates our connections to the spirit and history of African and African American culture.

Curated by Dr. Denise Rogers and features work by Andrea Chung, Angie Jennings, Christopher Lloyd Tucker, Maxx Moses, and Jermaine Adeshola Williams.
 


Artist Panel - Echoes of Africa
June 28, 2022 | 5:00 p.m.
 

Echoes of Africa - Artist Panel

 

Join us for an evening panel discussion featuring artists Angie Jennings, Christopher Lloyd Tucker, Maxx Moses and Jermaine Williams. Their work is currently on view in the Echoes of Africa Exhibition at the San Diego Central Library Art Gallery. The event will be moderated by Dr. Denise Rogers, curator of the exhibition.  Guests will be invited to tour the exhibition after the panel conversation. The conversation will take place in the Valeiras Sculptural Garden on the 9th floor beginning at 5:00 p.m.

Previously On View

Occupy Thirdspace II: Plástica y palabra en TJ/SD
Ocupa Tercer Espacio II: Plástica y palabra en TJ/SD 
February 19, 2022 - May 7, 2022
 

Occupy Thirdspace II: Plástica y palabra en TJ/SD / Ocupa Tercer Espacio II: Plástica y palabra en TJ/SD

 

Occupy Thirdspace II: Plástica y palabra en TJ/SD explores the relationship between the visual arts and palabra (word). It documents the history of this relationship from the late 1980s to the present, through the work of artists who have lived and worked in Tijuana and San Diego. Palabra as a concept speaks back to the oppressive function of “Language,” as a tool for colonization, assimilation, and exclusion—repurposing, translating, and changing it. Plástica y Palabra represents a collective force of impulses that cross geopolitical, racial, lingual, social, and economic borders. These practices live, give new life, and assign new meaning to their environment. 

Ocupa Tercer Espacio II: Plástica y palabra en TJ/SD explora la relación entre las artes visuales y palabra. Documenta la historia de esta relación desde fines de la década de 1980 hasta el presente, a través del trabajo de artistas que han vivido y trabajado en Tijuana y San Diego. Palabra como concepto responde a la función opresiva del "lenguaje," como una herramienta para la colonización, la asimilación y la exclusión—reutilizándolo, traduciéndolo y cambiándolo. Plástica y Palabra representa una fuerza colectiva de impulsos que cruzan fronteras geopolíticas, raciales, lingüísticas, sociales y económicas. Estas prácticas viven, dan nueva vida y asignan un nuevo significado a su entorno. 

Curated by Sara Solaimani and features work by David Avalos, Elizabeth Sisco, Louis Hock, Omar Pimienta, Cog•nate Collective, Adriana Trujillo, Jaime Ruiz Otis, Charles Glaubitz, Melissa Cisneros, Marcos Ramírez ERRE, and Comité Magonista Tierra y Libertad.

Sonidero Travesura will be performing LIVE at the gallery opening. The duo is composed of Tijuana native Omar Lizarraga and Dardin Coria. 


Call to Serve: Clara E. Breed and the Japanese American Incarceration
September 18, 2021 - January 30, 2022
 

Clara Breed Call to Serve Exhibit

Clara E. Breed directed the San Diego Public Library for 42 years as a public servant advocating on numerous fronts, including the promotion of youth services, championing a child’s right to read by encouraging international and multicultural collections, undertaking an unprecedented expansion of the City’s Library system, and most significantly, advocating on behalf of the hundreds of Japanese American families that were incarcerated due to Executive Order 9066.

Breed was ahead of her time in her interest to promote cultural understanding and fight prejudice. Her steadfast commitment and activism broadens our insights about the role libraries play in working toward a more equitable, diverse, and inclusionary future.

Call to Serve: Clara E. Breed & The Japanese American Incarceration is co-organized by guest curators Susan Hasegawa, Linda Salem, and the San Diego Public Library. This exhibition was made possible by a collaboration between the City of San Diego Commission for Arts and Culture, the Japanese American National Museum, the Japanese American Historical Society of San Diego, San Diego State University Library, and Simmons University Archives. This project was made possible with support from California Humanities, a non-profit partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities.


Fear No Art: Civic Engagement, Histories, Currencies
February 15 – May 17, 2020 
 

Fear No Art work

© City of San Diego Civic Art Collection

Fear No Art: Civic Engagement, Histories, Currencies, invites the public to consider artworks in the City of San Diego’s Civic Art Collection and the narratives that emerge when in dialogue with local contemporary artists. Together, these artworks represent a wide range of themes and approaches, which act as a provocation for the viewer to consider concepts such as institutional critique, the ability of art to effectively speak to and for the masses, the specificity of the Civic Art Collection, and the notion of a collection, itself.
 
Fear No Art is curated by Dr. Lara Bullock and features work by Eric Blau, Donald Borthwick, Mildred Bryant Brooks, Celeste Byers, Collective Magpie, Jung Ho Grant, William Hogarth, Robert Kelly, Leslie William Lee, Jacquelyn Hughes Mooney, John Parot, Cat Chiu Phillips, Charles Reiffel, Zoya Sardashti, Jean Swiggett, Terry Turrell, Jerry O. Wilkerson, and Joe Yorty.
 
 

Julius Shulman: Modern San Diego
September 28 – January 19, 2020
 

Black and white house photograph by Julius Shulman

© J. Paul Getty Trust

Recognized for his work in Los Angeles and Palm Springs, it is not widely known that between 1934 and 2007, architectural photographer Julius Shulman (1910 – 2009) shot over 200 projects in San Diego. His clients were architects, publishers, construction companies, and developers, and included notable San Diego architects Lloyd Ruocco, Sim Bruce Richards, Henry Hester, and Frederick Liebhardt. Shulman’s work, spanning several decades, documented the region’s evolving 20th century architectural landscape and he played an instrumental role in sharing California’s unique post-War modernism with a wide audience. Through a large number of publications and exhibitions, focused largely on his work in Palm Springs and Los Angeles for architects Frank Lloyd Wright, Pierre Koenig, Charles Eames, and Richard Neutra, interest in Shulman’s work continues to this day. However, his images of San Diego have not been widely shared or published.

Crafting Opportunity: Mid-Century Work from the Collection of Mingei International Museum
May 11 – July 28, 2019
 

Crafting Opportunity exhibit poster

Crafting Opportunity: Mid-Century Work from the Collection of Mingei International Museum is an exhibition of ceramics, furniture, fashion, fiber art, jewelry and metalwork that explores the robust artistic output that followed World War II. Mid-century craft and design in America is a study in creative pluralism, a blurring of the lines between fine and applied arts, craft and production, rustic and modern, functional and conceptual.
 
The exhibit includes notable works from craftspeople Ellamarie Woolley, Jack Lenor Larsen, Arline Fisch, Maria Martinez, Douglas Deeds, Berta Wright, Harrison McIntosh, Kay Whitcomb, Laura Andreson, and Charles and Ray Eames - many on view for the first time.

The Artist Portrait Project: San Diego Artists 2006-2016
Dec. 15, 2018 – March 17, 2019
 

Artist Portrait Project exhibition poster

Photographer Jennifer G. Spencer spent ten years trying to capture the “creative spirit” of leading San Diego artists through environmental portraiture. The result: An historic record of 50 artists who significantly contributed to our region’s creative culture. The exhibit included additional works from artists Kenneth Capps, Jean Wheat, Helen Redman, Susan Osborn, Joseph Bennett, Jeanne Dunn, James Watts, Anne Mudge, Nilly Gill, Cindy Zimmerman, Robert Treat, and Polly Giacchina.

A Method for Reaching Extreme Altitude
May 26 - Sept. 16, 2018
 

Methods for Reaching Extreme Altitudes exhibit graphic

Featuring the work of eight San Diego artists exploring space art, ranging from scientific to science fiction and otherworldly curiosities. Artists Adam Belt, Matthew Bradley, Sheena Rae Dowling, Andrew McGranahan, Arzu Ozkal, Cheryl Sorg, Jones von Jonestein, and Melissa Walter traverse the outermost reaches of space through diverse mediums and concepts. Their creativity, paired with their search for knowledge, exemplifies the human desire to understand the world and universe we live in.
 

OnView - Local Arts

 
Carmel Valley Library
Natural and Geometric: Origami Works by Joseph Hwang
OnView June 1 - 29, 2022
 

Rancho Peñasquitos Library – Joseph Hwang Exhibit

In this exhibit, paperfolding artist Joseph Hwang presents two original series of animal origami designs and modular balls. Figurative models are folded from single uncut squares, and modulars from multiple uncut squares without glue. In every work, the rules are the same: start with a square and no cutting.

Central Library, 2nd Floor Display – N1FTey
Philosophical Abstractions
OnView June 20 – August 20, 2022
 

Philosophical Abstractions

A series of art pieces by local artist N1FTey, generated using AI. AI Art programs can use Artificial Intelligence to generate a variety of drawings and pictures based on various text prompts. The topic of each piece in this exhibit comes from philosopher Immanuel Kant’s Logic, and they are created in the style of oil paintings by James Gurney.


La Jolla/Riford Library – La Jolla Historical Society
Secret Garden Tour of La Jolla: Art from the Gardens
OnView May 19 — June 30, 2022
 

Secret Garden Tour of La Jolla: Art from the Gardens

Image credit: Leah Higgins
Featuring artists Christine Chenoweth, Michelle Gonzales, Leah Higgins, Sharon Hinckley, Edward Juarez, Ralph Kingery, Dot Renshaw, Lynne Schulnik, Kathryn Stephens, and Laura Wheeler.
 
Reception: June 7, 5:30 p.m. — 7:00 p.m.

Mission Valley Library – Brian McClean
San Diego in Living Color
OnView June 4 – July 30, 2022
 

San Diego in Living Color

Experience America’s Finest City in vibrant, stunning and colorful fashion. Photography by artist Brian McClean printed on metal.

North Park Library - Lise Diamond-Devine
OnView through September 1, 2022
 

North Park Library - Lise Diamond-Devine Exhibit

A collection of portraits, still-life, and landscapes by local artist Lise Diamond-Devine.

Pacific Beach/Taylor Library– Colored Pencil Society of America DC 202 
2022 Members Show
OnView June 13 – August 13, 2022
 

Pacific Beach/Taylor Library– Colored Pencil Society of America DC 202

Featuring colored pencil art by artists Bobbie Bradford, Sue Carlson, Judy Jacobs, Darcy Lohmann, Al Meloche, Fran Miller, Katherine Miller, Antoinette Turbyfill, and Brenda “Blade” Villegas.

Rancho Bernardo Library - Lori Chase  
Fur, Feathers, Fish and Flowers
OnView April 1 – June 30, 2022
 

Fur, Feathers, Fish and Flowers Exhibit

Enjoy a feast of watercolor and mixed media portrayals of fauna and flora by local artist, Lori Chase, as she shares her interpretation of special moments and scenes that delight.


Rancho Peñasquitos Library – Ethan Wang
We're All Wonders 
OnView May 26 – June 28, 2022
 

We're All Wonders

Showcasing pencil sketches, colored pencil drawings and watercolor paintings by eight-year-old Ethan Wang. Includes figure painting, landscape, animals, and still-life, as well as illustrations for a novel. Ethan suffers from severe allergies, so playing sports can be challenging. Through this exhibit, he shows that everyone is unique.

 

Behind the Scenes

Occupy Thirdspace II: Plástica y palabra en TJ/SD explores the relationship between the visual arts and palabra (word). It documents the history of this relationship from the late 1980s to the present, through the work of artists who have lived and worked in Tijuana and San Diego. Palabra as a concept speaks back to the oppressive function of “Language,” as a tool for colonization, assimilation, and exclusion—repurposing, translating, and changing it. Plástica y Palabra represents a collective force of impulses that cross geopolitical, racial, lingual, social, and economic borders. These practices live, give new life, and assign new meaning to their environment. 
 
Curated by Sara Solaimani and features work by David Avalos, Elizabeth Sisco, Louis Hock, Omar Pimienta, Cog•nate Collective, Adriana Trujillo, Jaime Ruiz Otis, Charles Glaubitz, Melissa Cisneros, Marcos Ramírez ERRE, and Comité Magonista Tierra y Libertad. 
 
 
 

Proudly presenting Behind-the-Scenes of Call to Serve: Clara E. Breed & the Japanese American Incarceration. The virtual tour offers an in-depth review of the exhibit and all materials on loan from the Japanese American National Museum, the Japanese American Historical Society San Diego, San Diego State University, Simmons College Archive, and San Diego Public Library Special Collections. 
 
 
Exhibition Teaser

 

Virtual Tour

 

Inter-disciplinary artist MR Barnadas of Collective Magpie sits down with us to discuss her work Who Designs Your Race? in the Fear No Art: Civic Engagement, Histories, Currencies exhibition.
 
 
 

Check out our virtual exhibition of Fear No Art: Civic Engagement, Histories, Currencies curated by Dr. Lara Bullock.
 
 
 

Performance artist Zoya Sardashti speaks about her work "To Be Seen & Unseen" in the gallery's exhibition Fear No Art: Civic Engagement, Histories, Currencies curated by Dr. Lara Bullock.
 
 
 

Multi-disciplinary artist John Parot sits down with us to discuss his current work "Chromosexual" in the Fear No Art: Civic Engagement, Histories, Currencies exhibition.
 
 
 

This week in 'Behind the Scenes' illustrator and muralist, Celeste Byers, discusses her work "Survivor Love Letter" with curator Lara Bullock of Fear No Art: Civic Engagement, Histories, Currencies.
 
 
 

Curator, Lara Bullock of Fear No Art: Civic Engagement, Histories, Currencies sits down with interdisciplinary artist Joe Yorty to discuss his work "Stage".
 
 
 

Curator, Lara Bullock of Fear No Art: Civic Engagement, Histories, Currencies sits down with contemporary artist Cat Chiu Phillips to discuss her work "Entertain".