From colonial times to the present, the wilderness has inspired American artists. The Wildling Museum of Art & Nature celebrates our nation’s wild places as seen through the eyes of its finest artists. The museum has three floors of exhibitions which change several times a year. The second floor gallery is now dedicated to showcasing the art and nature of the Central Coast region and features a permanent wall mural of a Valley oak habitat created by John Iwerks, as well as mosaics featuring local wildlife. The Barbara Goodall Education Center features several community shows a year by local school children, local art groups and seniors as well as hosts monthly childrens craft activity and art workshops for all ages.

Wildling Museum History

Patti Jacquemain
Patti Jacquemain

Artist and conservation advocate Patti Jacquemain founded the Wildling Museum in 1997. With her devoted husband Dave Gledhill and their friends working tirelessly, the Wildling opened its doors in Los Olivos in 2000.  The Wildling moved to its current larger location in Solvang in 2013. Since its founding, the Wildling has hosted over 60 amazing art exhibitions and countless programs, trips and tours. The Wildling uses art as a tool to educate and inspire people to better understand and care for our nature’s dwindling natural and wilderness areas.  The Wildling is a 501(c)(3) and our Federal Tax ID number is 77-0470520.  We have a small staff of three full-time which is augmented by a dedicated and enthusiastic group of volunteers of about 35.

The Wildling’s mission is to inspire our community and visitors to enjoy, value, and conserve wildlife and natural areas through art.  We provide artistic, educational, and field experiences of nature for that purpose.

Our vision is to be recognized as an exceptional and innovative leader in inspiring our communities and visitors to value wilderness and other natural areas through the lenses of a diversity of artists. The museum strives to collaborate with others for the betterment of our communities.

Permanent Collection

The Wildling has a small, diverse and growing permanent collection of art.  Nature photography is strongly represented and includes area artists Jeff Jones, Richard Salas, Ines Roberts, Tom Millea and Roger Craton.  We also have several oil paintings by historic painter John Fery, an Austrian who emigrated to America in the 1860s and painted scenes small and grand of the American Western landscape.  Other historic artists that are represented in the collection include Russell Chatham, Ray Strong, Lockwood de Forest and Everett Ruess. Click HERE to see more artworks in our collection.

The Answer by Charles J. Fritz. Collection of the Wildling Museum.
The Answer, Charles J. Fritz. Wildling Museum
Eleanor's Plum Tree, Ray Strong
Eleanor’s Plum Tree, Ray Strong.  Wildling Museum