SOMArts incubating creativity to change the world

Mission: SOMArts leverages the power of art as a tool for social change through multi-disciplinary events and exhibitions. Equipping artists with the space, mentorship and support they need to shift perspectives and innovate solutions, SOMArts fosters access to arts and culture for collective liberation and self-determination.

Creative Programs

SOMArts prioritizes supporting artists who have been historically marginalized in contemporary art. By partnering with diverse artists and curators, we are able to produce multi-disciplinary events and exhibitions that are truly embedded in the communities they serve.

The SOMArts Curatorial Residency program is a unique opportunity for emerging artists to execute their big vision for SOMArts' Main Gallery space. The support provided by the Curatorial Residency enables artists to continue their professional development, form new creative partnerships, and engage community members through innovative public programs.

Annual events include our Día de los Muertos exhibition, curated by legendary San Francisco artist and activist René Yañez and his son Rio Yañez, and Night Light: Multimedia Garden Party.

Supporting Bay Area Artists and Changemakers

In addition to our creative programs, SOMArts partners with ArtSpan to provide monthly professional development workshops to artists.

Our fiscal sponsorship program provides administrative and fundraising support to 10–15 artist-led projects.

The Affordable Space Rental Program offers below-market rental space and production assistance to over 100 non-profits annually, hosting their exhibitions, performances, and events in our unique post-industrial space.

Quick Facts

  • Over 40,000 visitors attend free or low-cost workshops, performances and exhibitions at SOMArts each year.
  • Over 1,200 Bay Area artists incubate and share their work at SOMArts annually.
  • Our unique 26,190 square foot space encompasses two large performance/exhibition spaces, a flexible theater, a media lab, photography, ceramics and printmaking studios, and four administrative offices.
  • One of six City-supported Cultural Centers, SOMArts was founded in the passionate activism in the 1970's by leaders who were also involved in the Civil Rights movement. We maintain this historic commitment to cultural equity and social justice in the artistic programs we produce and the support services we provide to Bay Area artists and organizations.

Join us!

Stay connected with SOMArts by joining our email list or following us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

SOMArts’ programs are supported by the San Francisco Arts Commission and The San Francisco Foundation, and are sponsored in part by a grant from Grants for the Arts.

We also rely on contributions from generous members of our community. Click here to learn more about how you can help SOMArts thrive!

Photo credits (from top to bottom): Touch On, curated by James Fleming and Kelly Lovemonster, photo by Kelly Wu; Visions into Infinite Archives opening reception, photo by Dan Fenstermacher; The Annual Murphy & Cadogan Contemporary Art Awards Exhibition opening reception, photo by Astra Brinkmann; Night Light: Multimedia Garden Party 2016, photo by Astra Brinkmann; Night Light: Multimedia Garden Party 2016, photo by Emma Brown.

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