Summer Art Series

Each month in the summer, the Museum features a different local artist who is inspired by the natural world of the Santa Cruz region. Join us every First Friday June-August, from 5-8pm to meet the artists as we debut their work. FREE Admission for First Friday.

Call for Artists: 2018

Submit Online HERE

Exhibition Details

This summer (June-August), the Museum will feature a different local artist who draws inspiration from the natural world. As we launch this exhibit for the second year, we are seeking artists of diverse backgrounds, career stages, ages, and regions of the county, whose work meets the following criteria:

  • Artwork must be inspired by nature.
  • Medium is nontraditional or innovative (Please note: We are not seeking scientific illustration or photography at this time).
  • The artist statement or exhibit theme must align with our mission: connecting people with nature and inspiring stewardship of the natural world


Open to Santa Cruz County residents, 18 years old or older.


  • Submissions due April 15th
  • Artists will be notified by April 23rd

Exhibit Design, Construction, and Installation

  • The Museum will prepare and provide wall space approximately 11’ wide by 7’ high, plus two 3’x7’ panels.
  • The artist will write and produce all exhibit labels and/or an artist statement and provide them to staff prior to the install for aproval.
  • The exhibit elements will be created off site by the artist and brought to the Museum on or before the installation window.
  • The artist will be responsible for installing the exhibit, with the supervision of the Visitor Services Manager.


The Museum will cover all expenses related to publicity and the opening reception. The artist will complete any research, design, art production and installation as a volunteer and will not receive compensation for the exhibit. The Museum will not broker the sale of any artwork on the wall and labels may not include prices. However, the Museum brings in over 1600 people on average in a summer month, and we will provide business cards to interested parties as requested. Consignment prints or cards may be sold in the Museum gift shop- the Museum will retain a 25% consignment fee on the sale of all items and will return unsold items along with a check for consignment sales within 30 days of the close of the show.

Ownership of the Exhibit

Ownership of the artwork, labels and other elements created for this exhibit will remain with the artist.


The artist will provide promotional images for advertisements and press, as necessary. The Museum shall have the right to photograph and/or reproduce art work in full or in part for educational, or publicity purposes, including social media. Use of images for promotional purposes will credit the artist.


The Museum assumes all responsibility for the protection of artist’s work while on exhibit.

Submit Online HERE

Past Artists:

July: Light Through the Leaves 
Cyanotypes by Marlene Mirassou

Marlene Mirassou’s cyanotype images are of plants native to the forested upper reaches of Branciforte Creek, near her former home in the Santa Cruz Mountains. These camera-less images show the light that passes through or is blocked by their leaves and other parts. Join Marlene for a Cyanotype Workshop at the Museum on July 8th at 10am.

August: Our Coastal California 
Pastels by Sandra Cherk

Sandra Cherk uses soft pastels to capture scenes of our much-loved shorelines, foothills, mountains and forests. Learn more about Sandra here.

September: The Art of Wonder 
Natural History Etchings by Stephanie Martin

Stephanie Martin’s art celebrates the exquisite design and diversity of California’s flora and avifauna. She observes her subjects in the field, sketches specimens in museums, and creates intaglio etchings that bring these dead birds to life. Her work is a graceful meld of science and art.  Learn about Stephanie here.

Summer Art Series was supported by the Santa Cruz Arts Commission and Gayle and Joe Ortiz.