The Richmond Art Center is a Bay Area cultural institution that showcases both emerging and established artists, including Richard Diebenkorn, Jasper Johns, Jay Defeo, Wanxin Zhang, and Hung Lui — many of whom launched their careers at the Art Center. Four galleries and a sculpture courtyard host 14 -16 exhibitions a year. The Art Center also offers a comprehensive range of on-site classes, docent-led tours, community events and off-site programs at schools and community centers for adults, teens and children. At the Center alone, 160 beginning to advanced classes and workshops are taught every year across a wide range of media, to over 1100 students all taught by experts in their fields.
The Richmond Art Center is a dynamic arts organization that empowers and transforms individuals and the community through creative exploration, experience and education.
The Richmond Art Center was founded in 1936 by local artist Hazel Salmi. Working for the WPA, Hazel walked, biked and rode streetcars throughout Richmond carrying a suitcase filled with art supplies. Hazel's firm belief was that within every person resides an artist—her aim was to transform individuals and the community through creative exploration, experience, and education. In 1951, recognizing the arts as essential in its civic cultural fabric, Richmond integrated the Art Center into its new civic center. In 2011, the Art Center celebrated its 75th year of continuous operation.
• Our 2012 exhibition ‘In Conversation’, works by June Schwartz, John Chiara, and Waxim Zhang, was honored as SF Chronicle art critic Kenneth Baker’s Top Ten Bay Area art exhibitions.
• Launching five free afterschool arts program at Helms Middle School, Lincoln Elementary School, Shields-Reid and Nevin Community Centers, and the Richmond Main Library that offer much-needed creative art experiences to children and teens.
• Organizing and hosting three free city-wide events— Jazz in Art, Upcycle!, and Skeletonfest— that offer a fun day filled with art activities and more for the whole family.
• Teaming up with the Lawrence Hall of Science, the Richmond Main Library and the Exploratorium in Summer 2013 to pilot STEAM, a program that will use Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math to promote experimentation, collaboration, creativity, and critical thinking among 7- to 14-year-old students.
• Building alliances and partnerships with other community organizations to bring more affordable opportunities to the city of Richmond and the greater East Bay.