Art Scene

San Mateo City Arts


San Mateo has a large art scene. The City Arts of San Mateo is a non profit charitable organization that works tirelessly to give community members an opportunity to participate in activities that further the art culture.


The group was established in 1996 by resolution of the San Mateo City Council. San Mateo City Arts was charged with stimulating interest and promoting the arts. They offer a range of programs that are geared toward getting residents and visitors interested in the arts. Many of the programs are offered in conjunction with school groups and community groups.


The Programs


There are different programs that are offered through out the year like the 15th Annual High School Arts Recognition program. The program allows contestants from the San Mateo area High Schools to submit their art work in several different categories like the visual art division and the literary art division. Monetary prizes are awarded to the winners.


They also host events like gallery shows for local artists at the City Arts of San Mateo Gallery. They host the 4th Friday walk about’s as well.


Free Download


San Mateo is very committed to art as evidenced by the more than 50 public art pieces located through out the city. The Art in Public places is a guide that is free for download from the City Arts of San Mateo website. This guide helps you to find all the beautiful public art pieces that are available for viewing.


The sculptures that are placed through out the city are bought outright in some cases and on loan in others. You can also visit the murals that are painted on some of the buildings like “peaceful dreamer” or the “library hall lane”. Some of the pieces are historic treasures like the “indian maidens” carved from Redwood hanging over the doorway of the post office where it has sat since 1930 when the building was erected. The sculpture of “dog” which is actually unnamed is likely the first piece of public art in San Mateo and dates back to around the 1880’s not much is known about the sculpture other than it was crafted in Italy and was part of the Kohl estate at one time.


It is a great way to spend an afternoon for free.


Other Events


There are other events like music festivals that are also hosted. Keeping abreast of the latest goings on is easy. You can check the website for the latest calendar updates, donate or volunteer.