Bakersfield Museum of Art: An Artistic Gem in Bakersfield, CA

Bakersfield is a city in California well-known for its rich agricultural heritage, oil production, and country music scene. However, what most people do not know is that it is also home to an artistic gem – the Bakersfield Museum of Art (BMoA), located in the heart of downtown Bakersfield.

A Brief History of the Bakersfield Museum of Art

Founded in 1956, the Bakersfield Museum of Art is one of the oldest and most respected museums in the region. Its mission is to inspire and educate the community by presenting and collecting contemporary and modern art, specifically focusing on California artists. Over the years, the museum has grown its collection to include a diverse range of works of art, including paintings, sculptures, photographs, and mixed media.

The Museum's Collection

BMoA's permanent collection includes over 1,200 works of art by more than 350 artists. Among the notable artists featured in the collection are Sam Francis, Wayne Thiebaud, and Richard Diebenkorn. The museum also has an impressive collection of contemporary photography, including works by Ansel Adams and Edward Weston.


In addition to its permanent collection, the Bakersfield Museum of Art regularly hosts a variety of temporary exhibitions throughout the year. These exhibitions feature both local and international artists and cover a wide range of styles and mediums.

One example is the Southern California Experiments in Light and Space exhibition, which highlights the work of artists who explore the connection between light, space, and perception. The museum also hosts an annual juried exhibition featuring works by emerging and established artists from across California.

Education and Outreach

The Bakersfield Museum of Art is not just a place to view art; it is also a place to learn about art. The museum offers a range of educational programs for visitors of all ages, including school tours, art classes, and workshops. The museum's outreach programs also include collaborations with local schools and community organizations to bring art education to underserved communities.

Facilities and Services

The Bakersfield Museum of Art is housed in a beautiful building that was once an Elks Lodge. The building has been extensively renovated and expanded to include three large galleries, a sculpture garden, an art library, and an education center. The museum also has a museum store where visitors can purchase art-related items and gifts.

Expert Quotes

According to David Gordon, the museum's executive director, \"The Bakersfield Museum of Art is a cultural hub in the region. We're proud to showcase California's rich artistic heritage and provide a space for contemporary artists to exhibit their work. Our mission is to inspire and educate, and we strive to do that every day.\"

In the words of artist Sam Francis, whose work is featured in the museum's collection, \"The Bakersfield Museum of Art is a gem of a museum. It's impressive to see how they've grown their collection over the years and how the museum has become an important cultural institution in the region.\"


The Bakersfield Museum of Art is a must-visit for anyone interested in art, whether you are a seasoned collector or simply enjoy admiring beautiful works of art. With its impressive collection, engaging exhibitions, and commitment to education and outreach, the museum is a true treasure in the heart of Bakersfield.

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