• Wed. Oct 4th, 2023


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Your Favorite Places to See Art in California

Readers recommended street art in Eureka, a new Chicano art museum in Riverside and more across the state.

George Rose/Getty Images

It’s starting to feel like summer.

Whether you’re looking for a new family-friendly experience or a highly air-conditioned spot to escape the heat, today we’re sharing your choices for the best museums and places to enjoy art in California.

This is a continuing series, and you can see the previous selections here and here. You can also email me recommendations at CAToday@nytimes.com.

Here are your latest suggestions, sorted by region and lightly edited for clarity:

Creative Growth in Oakland

“This is one of the best and most inspirational galleries to visit. It is an art gallery for artists with intellectual disabilities. They have a day program for the artists, gallery shows and an annual art fashion show, and a stable of artists, a few of whom have pieces in the Museum of Modern Art in New York, among other places.” — Colin Cooper, Berkeley

The city of Eureka

“I live in Eureka, and the Eureka-Arcata region has a vibrant public art community. Eureka in particular has been encouraging a public-private collaboration to decorate the utilitarian facades of buildings with murals. There are a number of streets and alleys where the mural art extends for blocks in the Old Town and downtown areas. Indeed, even such pedestrian utilitarian objects as street utility boxes had been decorated, and the art, contributed by the local artist community, is often amusing and spectacular.” — James Weseman, Eureka

Sausalito Center for the Arts

“Cleverly repurposing a bank building on Bridgeway in central downtown Sausalito — with easy parking immediately adjacent — S.C.A. offers an interesting and changing mix of exhibitions.” — Claire McAuliffe, Belvedere

Fresno ArtHop

“Fresno’s monthly ArtHop events are glorious, living art. ArtHop started in downtown Fresno decades ago with a few galleries opening and serving wine and cheese with soft jazz music playing in the background. Now, a few slices of downtown are totally transformed one night of the month into huge events. The biggest change has been the arrival of taco trucks and street vendors selling jewelry and other handmade art. One thing is clear: ArtHop is the place to be every first Thursday of the month.” — Brianna Vaccari, Fresno

Kaweah Arts in Three Rivers

“The Kaweah art gallery, in the center of Three Rivers, displays art from throughout Tulare County. Every first Saturday in Three Rivers, artists open their studios to share talents with the public. The art gallery is where you pick up a map to find the locations of all the participating artists, and the businesses that support the arts.” — Shirley A. Blair Keller, Three Rivers

Palm Springs Art Museum

“There are always excellent special exhibitions, many times quite current and edgy. The permanent collection, much of it centered on the Western United States, is well represented and beautifully displayed in a building which is aesthetically pleasing and easy to navigate. Docents are friendly and helpful. The shop is irresistible.” — Mary Altier, La Selva Beach

Mingei International Museum in San Diego

“In Balboa Park, the museum features folk art, craft and design from around the world. I take visitors to see the current piñata exhibit, which is both whimsical and thought-provoking with a life-size lowrider car, hundreds of tiny butterflies and mythical creatures all in piñata form. It is a feast for the eyes. The museum has a lovely cafe and a great store which features textiles, jewelry and baskets from around the world. Note the museum is free on the third Tuesday of each month.” — Celine Evans, San Diego

The Cheech Marin Center for Chicano Art & Culture of the Riverside Art Museum

“I was impressed by the depth of artistic talent displayed and by Mr. Marin’s eye. Days afterward, I was still talking about the collection and showing others — friends, sales staff at the local paint store, and thrift store canvas collectors — photos of my favorites among the collection.” — Shirley McRae, San Diego

Raymond Zhong/The New York Times

The Grand Canyon, a cathedral to time, is losing its river.

Four inmates rehearse dance in Chino State Prison.Michael Tyrone Delaney for The New York Times




Liz Hafalia/The San Francisco Chronicle via Getty Images

Today’s tip comes from Megan Cooper, who lives in Sacramento and recommends the Charles M. Schulz Museum in Santa Rosa:

“As a lifelong fan of Peanuts, I was there on opening weekend in 2002, and I am a member who visits from Sacramento two to three times a year. The museum is a loving tribute to a great cartoonist and gentle, but complicated, man. When you walk in, you’ll immediately see a massive tile mosaic by the Japanese artist Yoshiteru Otani, comprised of 3,588 tiles of Peanuts comic strips. The rest of the museum features rotating themed exhibitions, special events and a chance to visit the recreation of Schulz’s studio. Seeing his drawing board with a spot worn down from all those years of drawing comic strips is always an emotional experience for me.

The museum is across a small residential street from the Redwood Empire Ice Arena and Snoopy’s Gallery & Gift Shop. I always stop in at the Warm Puppy Café at the ice rink for a Peanuts-themed snack. Schulz himself used to eat breakfast there every morning.

The Schulz campus as a whole is very family friendly, cheerful and beautifully maintained. The art room is always open for kids and kids at heart to indulge in some Peanuts-themed art projects. There are tons of regular and special events for all ages, including a Thanksgiving feast of pretzels, jelly beans and buttered toast. Stop and read the comic strips on display, and you’ll find yourself laughing quietly. Schulz was truly a genius at cartooning.”

Tell us about your favorite places to visit in California. Email your suggestions to CAtoday@nytimes.com. We’ll be sharing more in upcoming editions of the newsletter.

We’re almost halfway through 2023! What are the best things that have happened to you so far this year? What have been your wins? Or your unexpected joys, big or small?

Tell me at CAToday@nytimes.com. Please include your full name and the city where you live.

In downtown Los Angeles last month, Chuck Woo and Darrian Lu met for the very first time.

It was an emotional, heartfelt moment, because two years ago Woo donated blood stem cells that helped Lu, 15, in his battle against acute lymphoblastic leukemia. It’s particularly difficult for Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders with life-threatening blood cancers and other diseases to find bone marrow and stem cell donors.

“As soon as I knew I was a match, I said, ‘Absolutely.’ There’s no question about it,” Woo told The Mercury News. “As a parent, I wanted to help potentially save a life.”

(You can join the bone marrow registry here.)

Thanks for reading. I’ll be back tomorrow. — Soumya

P.S. Here’s today’s Mini Crossword.

Johnna Margalotti and Briana Scalia contributed to California Today. You can reach the team at CAtoday@nytimes.com.

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