For more than two decades, Sonoma County artists have opened their studios each spring to showcase and sell their work to the public during the self-guided Art at the Source studio tours, hosted by the Sebastopol Center for the Arts.
Taking place over two weekends, Art at the Source is one of the biggest art events each year in the North Bay. Yet, the studios were forced to close their doors amid the pandemic last year, and Art at the Source moved online to continue to show and sell work when social gatherings were impossible.
This month, as pandemic-related restrictions on gatherings ease, Sebastopol Center for the Arts recently announced that Art at the Source will once again take place live at artist studios throughout Sonoma County with current Covid-19 safety guidelines in place.
Over 90 artists will open their studios to the public on Saturday and Sunday, June 5-6 and June 12-13, for the 2021 Art at the Source self-guided tours. Sebastopol Center of the Arts is also exhibiting its annual “Art at the Source Preview Exhibit” in-person until June 13. Art enthusiasts who are unable or unready to return to live events can view the art and purchase work in an online marketplace through the end of the month.
“This is the first in-person open studio program held by Sebastopol Center for the Arts since the pandemic started over a year ago. We are so excited that the artists are showcasing their work to visitors because there is no comparison to the inspiration and joy that one gets from visiting an artist’s studio,” says Sebastopol Center for the Arts creative director Catherine Devriese in a statement. “A painting or sculpture or any original artwork is a long-lasting investment that can be enjoyed every day, as it brightens our lives and lifts our spirits.”
As with previous years, Art at the Source’s main draw is the self-guided tour throughout Sonoma County, which allows visitors to curate their own art experience with the help of a free catalog available at the Sebastopol Center for the Arts and other locations around the Bay Area or online.
With the catalog in hand, visitors can plan their routes and follow the bright yellow directional signs placed along the roadside each weekend to find their favorite artists or to discover new studios featuring a range of artwork including painting, collage, drawing, printmaking, glass art, fiber arts, sculpture, jewelry and assemblage.
The Art at the Source self-guided tours are open to the public on Saturday and Sunday, June 5-6 and June 12-13, from 10am to 5pm each day. Visitors can also view local art Preview Exhibit at the Sebastopol Center for the Arts Gallery in person Thursdays through Sundays, between 10am and 5pm, until June 13. There are also showcase exhibits open to the public at Corrick’s/My Daughter the Framer in Santa Rosa until June 26; at Gallery One in Petaluma until June 27; and at Oli Gallery in Guerneville until June 25.
Viewers can visit Sebastopol Center for the Arts’ website to see the “Art at the Source Preview Exhibit” online and purchase the art from the comfort of their home. Additionally, an online marketplace is open between June 1 and June 30 for visitors to view and shop for any participating artists’ work, including reproductions and other art objects.
“Art tells stories, allowing us to connect and get in touch with our emotions. Now more than ever before, we are searching for art to help us find joy in our lives while we deal with a global pandemic,” Devriese says. “An original piece of art has the imprint of a brushstroke, the hand of the artist embedded in the work. This Open Studios event allows visitors to take time to let the artwork speak to them, to feel and discover the radiance unique to each work. And if you fall in love with a painting or a sculpture, it is a long-lasting pleasure and a reminder of that visit and connection with the artist.”