November 17, 2017 – August 5, 2018

With more than 1,700 works of fine art in its Collection, many of which were donated throughout the years by generous San Diegans, the History Center’s collection represents the visual culture of the San Diego region from the mid 1800’s through the 1950s. Exquisite Views, the inaugural exhibition launching a new gallery dedicated to exhibiting works from the Fine Art Collection, is an introduction to the collection focusing in the divergent movements which took place in San Diego between 1880 and 1950. Patrons will enjoy the spiritually luminescent works of theosophical society artists, glimpses of Southern California’s untouched landscape seen through the eyes of San Diego plein air painters, incredible murals and art by artists contracted through the Works Progress Administration and much more. With the goal of regularly bringing the collection into public view, this new gallery dedicated to the History Center Fine Art Collection will rotate periodically, allowing visitors to view works which have been out of sight and reach for decades.

Today the San Diego History Center, with its Art for the Next Century initiative, stands alone among other San Diego institutions by placing a renewed focus on gathering, conserving and showcasing the region’s art and local artists’ stories – a rich cultural heritage to be shared with the world. At present, it is unfathomable to think that any major city would give little regard to a century and half of history detailing the lives and work of world-class artists reflecting on their region’s beauty and uniqueness. Failure to catalog the triumphs and struggles of any city’s artistic community is to lose a great opportunity to interpret the immense political and social change, and our regional evolution. These stories in our community, especially those told by the artists, scholars, collectors and exhibitors, themselves, are being lost each and every day. To stem this loss, this the History Center, in addition to regularly showcasing its Fine Art Collection, is actively collecting to add important artists and visual arts stories that are currently missing from the collection’s holdings, insuring that decades from now future generations will have a clear picture of the advancement of art in San Diego today


Exquisite Views is part of the History Center’s Art for the Next Century Initiative and is made possible by:

JW Sefton Foundation
Sandra and Bram Dijkstra
Janet Klauber
Helen and Webster Kinnaird

San Diego History Center is supported in part by: