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Benicia's Artistic Spirit

Benicia boasts one of the most active and influential art communities in the Bay Area. Hundreds of artists live and work in studios throughout the city, creating world-class objets d'art.

Why do so many artists find inspiration here?

“A desire to become a full-time studio artist, in a community of other studio artists, is why I chose Benicia. I had spent the first 20 years of my creative life working in isolation in another community before coming here. The 1991 Benicia artist community was a rag-tag lot, but it spoiled me for any other form of existence. My artist friends, family and neighbors make my spirit soar. This is the center of my universe.”

– Artist Mike Kendall

Benicia's resident artists share their talents via an eclectic mix of media and styles, including glass art, prints, sculpture, ceramics, photographs, paintings and even hand-screened wallpaper. The city is particularly known for its art glass studios, where you can often see nationally acclaimed glass artists at work.

Almost 100 artists have opted to locate their studios in an enclave known as The Arsenal, a former military reservation that now exudes a bohemian feel, given the depth and quality of creative expression that goes on there.

Helping give the artistic community a focus and collective voice is Arts Benicia, a nonprofit art center located in The Arsenal. Arts Benicia maintains a world-class gallery, offers excellent classes and art experiences for all ages, sponsors exhibitions in locations throughout Benicia, and coordinates many events, including artists' Open Studios every May.

The Benicia Arts and Culture Commission serves to ensure that arts and culture are integral to our community's quality of life, economic vitality, and central identity. They cooperate with council and public and private organizations to create and promote art and cultural programs and activities within Benicia.

Benicia also enjoys a vibrant performing arts community, with twice-yearly, professional-quality productions by the highly regarded Benicia Old Town Theatre Group and frequent performances by locally and regionally known musicians at venues such as the First Street Café and The Rellik Tavern.

Next: Glass Art »

Upcoming Arts Events
26 Aug 2017 - 8:00am - 6:00pm
Benicia Plein Air Gallery's Annual Paintout

Beginning at 8:00 AM, artist check in and begin painting throughout Benicia. Works must be framed and hung for judging by 3:00 PM. Winners will be announced at 4:00 PM followed by a reception. The public is invited to join the reception and meet the artists.

More info at

1 Sep 2017 (All day) - 3 Sep 2017 (All day)
Benicia Film Festival

Benicia is the place to be during Labor Day Weekend at the Benicia Film Festival. Great films, food & wine are in store. Funds raised directly benefit Arts & Culture in Benicia. Tickets available at

9 Sep 2017 - 2:00pm - 6:00pm
Benicia Art Walk 2017

Benicia Art Walk 2017 is on the Second Saturdays in June, July, September, and October from 2:00-6:00 PM on First Street in downtown Benicia. Come for lunch, then stay for dinner and tour eight amazing galleries hosting the fun this year with live entertainment and other activities. Click here for the Benicia Art Walk 2017 brochure and map. More info is available on