Sonoma launches first-ever ‘art walk’

Tour the downtown art scene on the first Thursday of the month through November.|

“Art is everywhere in Sonoma,” said Mark Bodenhamer, CEO of the Sonoma Valley Chamber of Commerce. And, he says, to celebrate Sonoma’s “collaborative creativity,” local arts and business organizations have partnered to create the “Sonoma Art Walk.”

Beginning this Thursday, Sept. 6, and continuing on the first Thursday of each month through November, the new monthly series pairs local businesses and other community venues with an art exhibit of their choosing. Currently, more than 15 venues are on board with likely close to 20 participating by kick-off time.

“Many local businesses are already displaying amazing works of art on their walls or are otherwise helping to showcase the work of the local artisans,” said Bodenhamer. “This event is a monthly opportunity for the participating businesses to shine an extra spotlight on Sonoma’s creatives, and it provides the residents a new experience around the Plaza.”

The Art Walk is a partnership between the City of Sonoma, the Chamber of Commerce, the Sonoma Valley Visitors Bureau, the Sonoma Community Center, Arts Guild of Sonoma, the Sonoma Valley Museum of Art, and a number of other organizations contributing to the planning of the monthly walk. Participating in the art walk is free and information about the artists and an interactive map and list of venues can be found at

Some of the current venues participating include Adastra Wines, Artifax, Arts Guild of Sonoma, Bump Wine Cellars, Fairmont Gallery, Frenchie Picnic & Provisions, H. Frank, Jean Edwards Cellars, Lake Sonoma Winery, Murphy’s Irish Pub, Rancho Maria Wines, the Sonoma Valley Museum of Art, the Sonoma Community Center, Sotheby’s Realty and Tiddle E. Winks. Corner 103 will join the tour in October.

The artists on display range from painters, photographers and other fine artists to more interactive demonstrations such as music, poetry or culinary arts. Many of the artists will be on hand to greet people and discuss their work. For instance, the space at the Alley Gallery will feature artists Jim Callahan and Fred Parker. Across the way, Scott Lyall Clothing will showcase photographer Jacko Vassilev while Tiddle E. Winks will feature eclectic Americana music from the DollyMammas. Just up the street, Artifax Art-to-Wear will feature artist Kaeti Bailie and Murphy’s Irish Pub will feature mixed media work using recycled vinyl records by artist Deirdre Molloy.

“We didn’t want to restrict how each host venue wanted to participate,” said Linda Keaton, executive director of the Sonoma Valley Museum of Art. “As a ‘creative’ event, we thought it was best to let each venue interpret Sonoma Art Walk however they like and encouraged them to celebrate in a way that worked with their business.”

With a kick-off and ribbon cutting scheduled for 5:15 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 6 at the museum, located at 551 Broadway, the event will run from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the various venues around the Plaza. Dates for future events are Oct. 4 and Nov. 1.

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