Winemaking may be the craft Napa Valley is best known for, but inside a bottle isn’t the only place you’ll find art in Wine Country. In fact, creativity, skill and imagination are almost as abundant as vineyards in these parts.
From gourmet chefs (Hint: Napa Valley’s more than 125 restaurants have earned more Michelin stars per capita than any other wine region in the world.) to sculptors and painters, there’s much to be appreciated.
And if you just so happen to be able to admire it all with a favorite glass of wine in your hand, then all the better.
Hall Wines' "Bunny Foo Foo" — Photo courtesy of Brian Welsh
Arts in April
Napa Valley’s month-long Arts in April celebration showcases the wide variety of art in Wine Country. This year, the more than 70 events planned include rarely seen, select wine art prints at Sterling Vineyards; a tour of the gardens at Peju Province Winery before a lesson in floral arranging; and monotype printmaking with local painter Nancy Willis.
Arts in April highlights and pays tribute to Napa Valley’s thriving art community. It’s a good incentive to get a spring visit on the calendar, but you don't have to visit in April to see wine country's artsy side. Napa Valley's love for art is a year-long affair, that can be seen in vineyards, galleries, hotels and even along city streets.
Hall Napa Valley
Little Bunny Foo Foo hops through the vineyards at Hall Napa Valley 365 days a year. He’s even known to dress up for holidays and special events.
Owned by husband and wife team Craig and Kathryn Hall, the winery is home to an extensive indoor and outdoor contemporary art collection.
Craig’s mother was an art teacher, and her inspiration can also be seen at their boutique hotel Senza, where guests are encouraged to wander the two-acre property to see the sculpture collection.
Cliff Lede Rock Block — Photo courtesy of Brian Welsh
Collections like Cliff Lede Vineyards
Vineyards and sculpture art seem to go hand in hand in Napa Valley. Rombauer, Peju, and Cliff Lede Vineyards sport their own collections.
Take some time in between tastings at Cliff Lede to peek at what’s growing. Vineyard blocks at Lede are named after fun, classic rock songs like “Born to Run,” “Hotel California” and “Stairway to Heaven.”
At Mumm Napa, winery visitors can grab a glass of sparkling wine and explore the Fine Art Photography Gallery. And the Silver Experience at Sterling Vineyards includes access to exhibits from the Sterling Art Collection, including original pieces by Picasso, Chagall, Renior, Frasconi and the Ansel Adams photographic essay “The Story of a Winery."
Wineries aren’t the only places in Napa Valley to get your art fill, though. The Napa Art Walk is a great way to explore downtown Napa, while taking in sculptures by more than a dozen artists from six western states.
Yountville’s Art Walk boasts 29 sculptures, most of which are for sale. A portion of each sale goes toward arts-related activities and events in the community.
Both walks are free and, since they’re self-guided, can be done in bits and pieces anytime of day, in between activities that require appointments.
di Rosa Sculpture Meadow — Photo courtesy of Dana Rebmann
The Gatehouse Gallery at di Rosa is open for drop-in visitors, but plan ahead and reserve a guided tour. It’s the only way to see the nearly 2,000 pieces of San Francisco Bay Area art that call di Rosa’s 271 acres home.
Surrounded by vineyards, di Rosa has three galleries, a sculpture park, a 35-acre lake and a wildlife preserve, making it a pretty perfect spot to enjoy one of Napa Valley’s many sunny days.