Contact Filoli | eNewsletter Sign Upshopping cart

donate now login

Art Exhibits

lady bug on tidy tip by judy kramerPinus sabiniana, Gray Pine by Carrie Di Costanza. For distinction of botanical art presentation; awarded by the exhibit jurors. ©

Enriching your visits to Filoli in 2015 will be an inspiring collection of art and decorative art exhibits in the Visitor and Education Center. Artwork related to Filoli’s mission, permanent collection, and education programs will be displayed throughout the open season. We look forward to sharing these with you, your family, and your friends!

Guests are invited to paint, draw and/or photograph in the Garden after hours on Artist Access Days. Enjoy the tranquility and beauty while creating your next masterpiece.

Become a member of our Artist Registry and be invited to submit works for consideration in upcoming exhibits.

Exhibit Schedule and Events

2016 Exhibition Schedule

Nepenthes macfarland, Pitcher Plant by Mark Leonard Isaac-Williams

Nepenthes macfarland, Pitcher Plant by Mark Leonard Isaac–Williams. Winner of the 2015 Bourn Award for distinction with an emphasis on horticulture.©

18th Annual Botanical Art Exhibition

Tuesday, April 5 through Sunday, June 12, 2016

The Filoli Botanical Art Exhibit has long been an essential part of our Botanical Art Program’s mission to interpret and preserve this historically significant art form. With its exquisite formal Garden, heirloom orchard and nature preserve, Filoli is a unique and fitting venue for this historical art form that has rendered plants throughout history and from around the world. Many beautiful and accurate plant portraits by international and local artists will be on display in the Visitor and Education Center. In the historic House a collection of botanical illustrations from Mark Catesby’s Natural History of North America, 1712–1726 will be on display in the elegant Ballroom and select pieces from The Filoli Florilegium will be displayed in the Trophy Room. Come and experience the West Coast’s most prominent botanical art exhibit!

Brightly colored hand blown glass flames

Flames by Viscocity. ©

Sculpture Exhibit in the Garden

Saturday, June 4 through Sunday, October 16, 2016

A stunning collection of sculptures by talented local artists will be on display throughout the beautiful setting of Filoli’s Garden. A diverse range of mediums from ceramics to glass to re–used items are used to create exquisite works of art. Take a 30–minute guided walk to learn more about the artists, their methods and why the locations and works were chosen for our Garden or take a self–guided walk using a guide and map. Pieces on display will be for sale.

Cristy Aloysi and Scott Graham, Viscosity,
Anna Martin,
Alex Nolan,
David Putnam,
Rick Ritchey,
John Toki,
Patricia Vader,

Meet the Sculptors

Saturday, June 11, 11:00 am – 3:00 pm

Stroll the Garden and meet several of the sculptors as you explore this wonderful exhibit. Find out what excites and fills them with enthusiasm while you learn about their techniques and the materials they have chosen to use. Docents will be on hand to take visitors on a guided 30–minute walk throughout the day. Reservations are not needed. Click links below to visit each sculptor’s web site or to contact them by email:

Artist Reception

Thursday, August 25, 5:00pm – 7:00 pm

A special evening is planned for the artists and our guests. An insightful talk will be given by participating artists, 30–minute guided walks will be available and complementing the evening will be a variety of tasty appetizers and wine. While admission is free reservations are required; reservations begin April 29. Reservation deadline is August 19.

Guided Sculpture Walks*

Day Walks: 11:00 am – 11:30 am
Saturdays, June 11, 25, July 9, 23, August 20, September 3, 17, October 1, or 15
Thursdays, June 23, July 14, August 25, September 15, or October 13
Evening Walks: 5:30 pm – 6:00 pm
Thursdays, June 16, July 21, or August 18

Take a Guided Walk in the Garden and explore the amazing sculptures that were skillfully crafted and displayed by local artists. Find out about the artists and their sculpting techniques, what materials they used, what inspired them, and more about their creative process. Fee: FREE for members; $20 for non–members. Non–member fee includes same day admission to the House, Garden, Café, and Garden and Gift Shop. *Guided Walks are also planned for Meet the Sculptors Day on June 11, Summer Surprises Program on August 5 and 6, and the Artist Reception on August 25.

detail of a gown that will be on dipslay

Fashionable Filoli: Historic Costumes

Tuesday, June 7 through Sunday, September 25, 2016

Throughout the Bourn and Roth periods Filoli hosted everything from high society social events to quiet afternoon teas. This summer, in connection with our centennial celebrations, Filoli will feature a selection of period costumes throughout the Main House that span both the Bourn (1915–1936) and Roth (1937–1975) periods when Filoli was not only a home, but a social destination. Step back in time with us as we commemorate fashion at Filoli

Twin sisters Lurline and Bren in the garden with their dad William Roth

Twins Lurline and Bren stroll through the garden with their father William Roth.

Embroidery by Lucy Barter, Filoli Embroidery Instructor

Embroidery by Celeste Chalasani. ©

Stitched In Time: A Needlework Exhibit

Tuesday, June 21 through Sunday, August 21, 2016

The art of embroidery has been found worldwide and early works date back as far as the 3rd Century. Elaborately embroidered clothing, religious objects and house hold items often were seen as a mark of wealth and status. Young school girls in England and America embroidered samplers from as early as the 18th Century to demonstrate their skills, rank and social standing. Embroidery can also be seen as Folk Art in techniques such as Hardanger from Norway and Mountmellick from Ireland. Today embroidery and needle arts are enjoying a resurgence of which this exhibit will showcase. In this exhibit, examples of different techniques will be on display in the Visitor and Education Center through exquisite original embroidered art works all done by hand. Embroiders who have taken classes at Filoli, many from around the county and even some from abroad, as well as accomplished embroiders from the Bay Area and Filoli’s resident embroidery instructor Lucy Barter ,have contributed to this inspiring array of embroidered art works.

As a complement to the needlework exhibit in the Visitor and Education Center, the upper gallery space of the historic House will feature more than four centuries of historic European needlework from Filoli’s permanent collection. This beautiful collection can be viewed by students attending classes in the House, by Filoli members Twilights Strolls and Library Chats, or while visiting our Friends of Filoli Library, and by visitors during Meet the Artists Day Weekend.

Meet the Artists Day Weekend

Saturday, July 9, 10:00 am – 3:00 pm and Sunday, July 10, 11:00 am – 3:00 pm

Watch, listen and find out what inspires these talented artists as they share their experiences, demonstrate their techniques and show you their embroidered art works. Many pieces will be for sale. Reservations are not needed. Admission is free for members or with paid admission to Filoli.

Photograph by Jerry Barrack ©.

The Valley of Heart’s Delight: A Multiple–media Exhibit

Tuesday, August 23 through Sunday, October 23

What is now known as the Santa Clara Valley was originally a thriving collection of Ohlone Native American settlements. With the arrival of the Spanish and later settlers, the Valley became known as “The Valley of Heart’s Delight” for its thousands of acres of blooming orchards and plants, mild climate and scenic beauty. Until the 1960s, it was the largest fruit production and packing region in the world. Beginning in the middle of the 20th Century, the Santa Clara Valley and its surrounding environs have been transformed into “Silicon Valley,” the foremost center for technology innovation in the country. This exhibit celebrates the beauty, bounty, creativity, history, and cultural heritage of this special piece of geography and its evolution from its Native American roots to the present through a stunning collection of original paintings, drawings, photography, and three-dimensional art.

Call For Entries

The Valley of Heart’s Delight is a juried exhibit of original fine art photographs, drawings, paintings, and other two-dimensional and three-dimensional art that illuminates the Valley in creative ways. For the purposes of this exhibit, the depictions can be a sharp literal representation or, alternatively, an abstractive interpretation. Creativity, viewpoint, technical execution, and overall artistic quality are to be the primary factors for evaluating the entries.
Click here to enter:

Meet the Artists Day Weekend

Saturday, September 3, 10:00 am – 3:00 pm and Sunday, September 4, 11:00 am – 3:00 pm

Join us on this special weekend to meet the artists and find out what inspires them to create these outstanding pieces of artwork. Watch as they demonstrate their art and discover which techniques they use and why. View additional pieces of original artwork and a collection of prints and note cards while shopping for the perfect memento of the rich history of this diverse and resourceful area. Admission is free with paid admission to Filoli. Reservations are not needed.

Earlier This Year

ballroom at Filoli that holds the Mark Catesby exhibit

Mark Catesby’s Natural History of Carolina, Florida & the Bahama Islands, 1712 – 1726

Tuesday, March 1 through Thursday, April 21, 2016

This spring, Filoli and Addison Publications Ltd., are pleased to bring a selection of works from this remarkable collection to Filoli’s grand Ballroom. This traveling exhibition contains pieces selected from the facsimiles made from the originals in the Royal Library Windsor Castle. Each of the images were hand–printed, one color at a time, using the stochastic lithograph process, which replicates the meticulous precision and vibrant colors of the originals. In addition, a single bound volume from the new four volume facsimiles publication will be on display. This incredible display of historical botanical illustrations is the earliest watercolor drawings of North America’s flora and fauna and a perfect complement to our own Banks, Highgrove, and Filoli Florilegia which will also be displayed in the Main House.

Painting by Bruce Porter

Painting by Bruce Porter. ©

Beyond the Garden: Select Works by Bruce Porter

Tuesday, February 9 through Saturday, March 26, 2016

Bruce Porter (1865 — 1953) is most well–known, at Filoli, for his work designing our formal garden. What is perhaps not as well–known is he was also an accomplished artist, painter, sculptor, stained glass designer, writer, muralist, and even art critic. Filoli’s permanent collection includes many of his original artistic works in a range of mediums. In addition, the collection holds scaled photographs of dozens of his sketches and studies. An exhibit of a selection of his works will be on display in the Visitor and Education Center.

Artist Registry

Filoli hosts approximately six art exhibitions annually that vary in theme and content. With the exception of the Annual Botanical Art Exhibition and occasional larger exhibitions, they are invitational exhibitions. For invitational exhibitions, the curator invites artists from the Filoli Artist Registry, whose work fits within the theme of that particular exhibition. To become a member of the Filoli Artist Registry please send a one-page biography along with samples of your work either on a CD in JPEG or TIF format, or printed copies, two-up on 8½" x 11" sheets, to:

Attn: Education Office
86 Cañada Road
Woodside, CA 94062

A confirmation letter will be sent upon receipt and acceptance into the registry. For questions, please contact the Education Office at

Artist Access Days

drawing at Filoli

An artist sketches during Artist Access at Filoli.

Artist Access

Thursdays in 2016: June 23, July 14, August 25, September 29, and October 20
3:30 pm – 6:30 pm

“I perhaps owe having become a painter to flowers.” — Claude Monet

Filoli extends the opportunity for artists and photographers to experience the quiet beauty and stunning vistas of this rare and historical country estate. Individuals may have access to the Garden on a select day each month, after hours from 3:30 pm – 6:30 pm, to create landscape paintings, drawings and photographs. Photographers may use tripods; other artists may use easels and work in the medium of their choice. Models, wedding and engagement photos, family portraits or any other professional photography is not allowed. Artists must provide all their own materials and storage containers for the removal of all used water and non–toxic cleaning fluids. No fluids of any type are to be disposed of at Filoli. Space is limited, pre–registration is highly recommended.

Fee: per day: $20 for members; $30 for non–members.
Non–members: Fee includes same day admission to Filoli. You are welcome to arrive anytime between 10:00 am – 2:30 pm, visit the historic House and then scout the Garden for a location to create your next masterpiece.