Monterey County’s century-long legacy of attracting artists and performers lives on in more than 100 art galleries, constant culture festivals, rich local theater groups and arresting live shows. Check out the print or online version of Monterey County Weekly for an up-to-the-minute compendium of local happenings.
This gallery/café/toy store unleashes new waves of urban and underground art from local and big-city artists. It’s also headquarters for music, film and comedy. 1230 Fremont Blvd., Seaside, 583-0913, http://www.thealternativecafe.com
Local historian Pat Hathaway’s treasure trove contains the “single largest collection of historic Monterey photographs anywhere.” 469 Pacific St., Monterey, 373-3811, http://www. caviews.com
Since 1948, the gallery, theater and gardens of this storied Carmel nonprofit arts salon have showcased a dizzying palette of drama, poetry, films, music and art. Fourth and Guadalupe, Carmel, 624-7491, http://www.carlcherrycenter.org
Established in 1927, Carmel’s oldest gallery is owned and operated as a collective by leading local artists who show diverse works in their historic, tree-shaded building. Dolores between Fifth and Sixth, Carmel, 624-6176, http://www.carmelart.org
One of the West Coast’s leading photo galleries and arts organizations, with regular juried and group shows. Sunset Center, San Carlos and Ninth, Carmel, 625-5181, http://www.photography.org
Contemporary figurative bronze sculpture, paintings and drawings by artists Richard MacDonald, Robert Heindel, Henry Moore and Jian Wang. San Carlos between Fifth and Sixth, Carmel, 800-972-5528, http://www.dawsoncolefineart.com
This newer, smartly curated spot has featured exhibitions by creative contemporary photographers. San Carlos and Seventh, Carmel, 917-3450, http://galleryexposed.blogspot.com
The 15 member artists at this sleek Carmel gallery collaborate on shows, tend to the store and produce distinctive works. NW corner of Dolores and Sixth, Carmel, 620-1987, http://www.gallerynorthcarmel.com
Contemporary California art from today’s artists, such as Belle Yang and Gregory Kondos, to historic painters such as Armin Hansen. 206 Fountain Ave., Pacific Grove, 373-6007, http://www.haukfinearts.com
The two galleries and one café of this Moss Landing haven of culture pulls in an overwhelming amount of art in one cool location. 7902 Moss Landing Road, Moss Landing, 633-5843, http://www.hauteenchilada.com
Monterey’s two keystone museums feature rotating exhibitions of historic, contemporary and international art, and a permanent collection of California and regional paintings, photographs, objects, folk and ethnic art. 559 Pacific St., Monterey, 372-5477; 720 Via Mirada, Monterey, 372-3689, http://www.montereyart.org
The MoM, formerly the Monterey Maritime and History Museum, reopened with vibrant, colorful, mixed media exhibits of topical themes, while retaining its historic maritime collection. 5 Custom House Plaza, Monterey, 372-2608, http://www.museumofmonterey.org
With 10 major openings a year, the four spacious galleries of Pacific Grove’s storied art venue feature sculpture, paintings, photography and a full range of art classes. 568 Lighthouse Ave., Pacific Grove, 375-2208, http://www.pgartcenter.org
A fascinating place for immersion in the county’s ecology and natural diversity, with displays of local birds, foliage, geology and animals, bolstered by rotating exhibits. 165 Forest Ave., Pacific Grove, 648-5716, http://www.pgmuseum.org
This small space packs in originals, prints and appearances by renowned photographers like Christopher Burkett and Roman Loranc. Ocean and Dolores, Carmel, 625-1288, http://www.photographywest.com
A group of local artists runs this gallery, which features work paint, collage, sculpture, ceramics, jewelery, photography, glass, weaving and fiber art. 218 Main St., Oldtown Salinas, 422-4162, http://www.salinasvalleyartgallery.com
This fun, Oldtown Salinas treasure trove compiles art and artistic products from up-and-coming locals and established pillars from the underground and street art scenes.
262 Main St., Salinas. Free. 422-9200, http://www.somosmedia.net.
The prolific and accessible Steven Whyte sculpts classical human forms in iconic poses with stylish touches, earning him one of the most recognizable names in area sculpting. Dolores between Fifth and Sixth, Carmel, 620-1917, http://www.stevenwhytesculptor.com
The country’s second-oldest photo gallery has a superlative collection of works by Ansel Adams, the Westons and the next generation. Sixth between Dolores and Lincoln, Carmel, 624-4453, http://www.westongallery.com
The collection here can be hinted at with Winfield’s operating motto: “a common elegance and uniqueness – with an occasional journey into the bizarre for good measure.” But the range of sculpture (“Sitting Cheetah” by Gwynn Murrill) and painting (“Still Life with Lemons and Prickly Pear Fruit”) – even pottery – does that dynamic description one better. Dolores St., Carmel, (831) 624-3369, http://www.winfieldgallery.com
He’s known simply as Wyland. And that’s sufficient for most to recognize the famous artist whose ocean and sea creature works grace galleries, books, prints and posters everywhere. His art is commercial and touching at the same time, finely brushed with a simple innocence and awe that can speak to nature lovers while bypassing art purists. Wyland Galleries Carmel, 3 NW Mission St., Carmel. 1-888-995-2631, http://www.wylanddistributor.com
This nonprofit organization equips and cultivates young artists, exhibiting their powerful potential in a variety of large group shows. 472 Calle Principal, Monterey, 375-9922, http://www.yacstudios.org
Popular musicals are presented in this tourist-friendly setting on Monterey’s Fisherman’s Wharf, 372-1373, 649-2332, http://www.mctaweb.org/theatres/wharf.html
Shakespeare, musicals, classics and even summer films in the woods and under the stars abound at Carmel’s rustic, 100-year-old Outdoor Forest Theater. Mountain View and Santa Rita, Carmel, 626-1681, http://www.foresttheaterguild.org
Monterey Peninsula’s junior college draws from the acting community at large for its (renovated) Main Stage shows and smaller outreach productions in the compact SRO Theater. 980 Fremont Blvd., Monterey, 646-4213, http://www.mpctheatreco.com
This popular company has returned after a four-year absence, with ambitious programming including productions of David Mamet and other modern greats. 8 El Caminito Road, Carmel Valley, 659-7500, http://www.magiccircletheater.net.
The Peninsula’s Equity company presents contemporary and classic productions on the smaller, wrap-around Circle Theatre, while the historic Golden Bough main stage, recently renovated, handles big, fun musicals and comedies. Monte Verde between Eighth and Ninth, Carmel, 622-0100, http://www.pacrep.org
This independent community theater company stages edgy plays, musicals and comedies, spiked with humor and daring. They recently built a second (smaller) theater space. 320 Hoffman Ave., Monterey, 675-0521, http://www.paperwingtheatreco.com
This small upstart theater space shows big heart in tackling an edgy array of stuff from the dramatic to the humorous, the scary to the satirical. They plan on doing live music, too. 2115 N. Fremont St., Ste. C, Monterey, 402-8940, http://www.stardustplayhousemonterey.com
The school’s 3/4 studio stage allows wrap-around viewing of contemporary and topical stuff, like adaptations of John Steinbeck novels and their youthful and seriously good 2x4BASH fare. The big main stage gets lavishly produced musicals and such. 411 Central Ave., Salinas, 755-6816, http://www.westernstage.com
Now in its 86th season, this esteemed music society brings high-powered artistry to the Peninsula, like the upcoming season’s visits by Opera San Jose and the Los Angeles Piano Quartet, at acoustically revered venues like Sunset Center and All Saints’ Church. All Saints’ Episcopal Church, Ninth and Dolores, Carmel, 625-9938, 624-3883, http://www.carmelmusic.org
CMMB has been bringing live classical chamber music performances to the Peninsula since 1966. They also host residencies and outreach by visiting artists. This season, their 46th, look for Poulenc Trio and Kalichstein Laredo and Robinson, among others. Sunset Center, San Carlos between Eighth and Ninth, Carmel, 625-2212, http://www.chambermusicmontereybay.org
The 457-seat performing arts venue for the California State University campus hosts lectures, films, music, dance and many other events. Sixth Avenue, Seaside, 582-4580, http://www.worldtheater.csumb.edu
This remodeled theater in the heart of Oldtown Salinas is host to a variety of popular live music shows, comedy and sporting events, merging popular culture and historic charm. 214 South Main St., Salinas, 758-8459, http://www.foxtheatersalinas.com
This lavishly restored revival theater hosts occassional live music shows, free opera performances and the International Film Festival and BLUE Ocean Film Festival. 417 Alvarado St., Monterey, 372-3800, 372-4555, http://www.goldenstatetheatre.com
A small wood-frame house serves as an independent nonprofit with a large collection of photographs, memorabilia and books. Extraordinary music and events occur on the idyllic lawn. Highway 1, five miles south of Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, Big Sur, 667-2574, http://www.henrymiller.org
Nestled in Carmel Valley and backdropped by a mountain range, this training center for young musicians draws top resident artist-teachers from around the world to administer master classes and give public recitals. West Carmel Valley Road and Ford Road, Carmel Valley, 659-3115, http://www.hiddenhillsvalleymusic.org
Recently named the country’s best aquarium, Monterey’s window into the bay, perched over tidepools and waves, highlights the richness and diversity of Central California marine life. 886 Cannery Row, Monterey, 648-4800, http://www.montereybayaquarium.org
The birthplace of European history in Alta California survives in beautifully restored adobe homes, historic buildings and gardens throughout downtown Monterey. Eleven 19th-century structures, including California’s First Theater and original Customs House, may be toured. 20 Custom House Plaza, Monterey, 649-7118, http://www.parks.ca.gov/MSHP
The county’s biggest nonprofit symphony orchestra presents popular, lesser known and new classical music in Salinas and Carmel. Their next season, starting October, includes Haydn, Mozart, Sibelius, Verdi and more.
Steinbeck Institute of Art and Culture, 904 N. Main St., Salinas; Sunset Center, San Carlos between Eighth and Ninth, Carmel, 646-8511, http://www.montereysymphony.org
This 8,500-square-foot museum is packed with a variety of hands-on exhibits where kids can explore a wide world of possibilities like a farm, golf course, theater, hospital, beach and treehouse. 425 Washington St., Monterey, 649-6444, http://www.mymuseum.org
This sparkling center celebrates John Steinbeck with a permanent gallery displaying film and interactive exhibits. It also features rotating exhibits, original manuscripts, archival photographs and cultural programs. 1 Main St., Salinas, 796-3833, http://www.steinbeck.org
This tenacious nonprofit dance company mentors young dancers and choreographers and assembles regular performances that highlight their grace, for which they’ve recently been invited to the Smithsonian and Rome. 3343 Paul Davis Dr., Marina, 384-1050, http://www.spectordance.org
The names that have graced the historic stage are the stuff of legend, from tenor Jose Carreras to multi-award winning dynamo Rita Moreno. Culture lovers can look forward to classical musical performances, popular music and comedy acts, film festivals and dance performances. San Carlos at Ninth, Carmel, 620-2048, http://www.sunsetcenter.org
This monument to poet Robinson Jeffers is one of California’s most significant literary landmarks, built largely by Jeffers himself. Regular tours transport visitors into Jeffers’ world. 26304 Ocean View near Stewart Way, Carmel, 624-1813.