California Art Club

Pasadena, CA



Resource Library articles and essays honoring the American experience through its art:

Impressionism in California, 1890-1930; essay by Jean Stern (7/30/03)

Adventures in the Sierra Nevada (2/10/01)

Scenes of the Pacific (10/9/00)

Plein Air Paintings of The Old Mill by Members of the California Art Club (8/26/00)

California Art Club 90th Annual Gold Medal Exhibition (5/7/00)

Old California (3/16/00)

In the Tradition: Paintings of San Diego County by the San Diego Chapter of the California Art Club (3/4/00)

From the Fountainhead to the Future (2/27/00)

Alfred Mitchell Homes Receive Historic Designation from the City of San Diego (12/13/99)

The Legacy of the California Art Club in San Diego (11/11/99)

California Art Club Forms First Regional Chapter in San Diego County (3/19/99)

California Art Club Visits the Huntington Library (3/10/99)

89th Annual Gold Medal Exhibition

Plein Air Painters Paint the Town of Santa Ana

88th Annual Gold Medal Exhibition


The California Art Club, established in 1909, is the Western United States' largest professional art organization with over 2,000 members, of which there are 40 "Signature" members; 300 "Artist" members; and approximately 1,700 "Patron" members.

In his book California Impressionism, co-authored with William Gerdts, art scholar Will South defines the early California Art Club as "the single most powerful political force in the annals of California Impressionism." Early members included Mabel Alvarez, Franz A. Bischoff, Maurice Braun, Benjamin Chambers Brown, Alson Skinner Clark, Frank Cuprien, Sam Hyde Harris, Anna Althea Hills, Paul Lauritz, Jean Mannheim, Edgar Payne, Hanson Duvall Puthuff, William Ritschel, Guy Rose, Donna Norine Schuster, Jack Wilkinson Smith, Gardner Symons and the venerated William Wendt, the club's second president, elected in 1911. Recent publications on the California Art Club include Susan Landauer's eight-page article in the February-March 1996 issue of American Art Review, and Nancy Moure's essay in Impressions of California: Early Currents in Art, 1850-1930, published in 1996 by the Irvine Museum.

Starting in 1913, and continuing for many years, the club held annual exhibitions in the Los Angeles Museum of History, Science and Art in Exposition Park, which evolved into the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, with the art component moving to Wilshire Boulevard and named the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. In the fall of 1927 the club moved into its first "permanent" clubhouse, the elegant Hollyhock House designed inside and out by Frank Lloyd Wright. Exhibitions, lectures and gala social functions were held at Hollyhock for fifteen years.

Patrons may join the organization by calling 626-583-9009. CAC publishes a monthly newsletter with scholarly articles, calendar of events and citations on artist members' awards, exhibitions and publications. Monthly meetings are held generally on the first Sunday of the month. Address: California Art Club, P.O. Box 92555, Pasadena, CA 91109-2555

In the Fall of 1999, the club opened the California Art Club Gallery in the Old Mill building in San Marino, CA. The Old Mill was built in 1816 as a grist mill to Mission San Gabriel and is believed to be the oldest commercial building in Southern California.

The Mill's diverse history includes its grain production for the Spanish Franciscan padres, a private residence for several owners including descendants of Henry Huntington, and even a golf clubhouse. Besides the historically important Mission architecture, The Old Mill's grounds are landscaped with native California plants. The Old Mill was bequeathed to the City of San Marino in the 1960s. The El Molino Viejo (The Old Mill) is a California State Historical Landmark. Jack McQueen, Executive Director of the Old Mill Foundation states: "The Old Mill is owned and supported by the City of San Marino but is operated by the Old Mill Foundation, a non-profit entity" [1] (left and right: Old Mill, San Marino, CA, photo, ©1999 John Hazeltine)

The California Art Club Gallery hours are available by calling 626-449-5458. The Gallery is located at 1120 Old Mill Road, San Marino, California 91108. From the 210 Freeway the gallery may be located by driving south on Lake Avenue in Pasadena, which turns into Oak Knoll Avenue, and then turning left on Old Mill Road. For motorists in San Marino going west on Huntington Drive, turn right on Old Mill Road and proceed two blocks to the building, and for east-bound motorists on Huntington Drive, turn left on Oak Knoll Avenue and then right on the third street, which is Old Mill Road, then drive one long block to the building. Exhibits are rotated quarterly. The Club is also in negotiations for a second Los Angeles area gallery.

The CAC's Mission Statement and Statement of Purpose reads:

'The California Art Club is dedicated to enriching the American culture through the promotion of the fine arts in the fields of painting, drawing, and sculpture with a special emphasis placed on the academic traditions and craftsmanship bequeathed by its founders.The California Art Club shall also organize public exhibitions to promote and preserve California's history and heritage.The club provides an educational forum through its monthly meetings, various exhibitions, andthe monthly newsletter. In addition, the California Art Club acts as an art library resource center by providing archival information on its early members and historical activities for the purpose of scholarly art research."


1. This update was made at the request of Mr. McQueen on 10/7/04


Why was this sub-index page prepared?

When Resource Library publishes over time more than one article concerning an institution, there is created as an additional resource for readers a sub-index page containing links to each Resource Library article or essay concerning that institution, plus available information on its location and other descriptive information.

See our Museums Explained to learn about the "inner workings" of art museums and the functions of staff members. In the exhibitions section find out how to get the most out of a museum visit. See definitions for a glossary of museum-related words used in articles.

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A note about Traditional Fine Arts Organization

Our website is the world's most valued and visited site devoted to American representational art. Inspiration in 2003 for our focus was provided by a myriad of artists living and deceased, Peter and Elaine Adams, John and Barbara Hazeltine, Gerald J. Miller and Jean Stern.


(above: Elaine and Peter Adams at the May, 2024 opening of On Location in Malibu at Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art at Pepperdine University. Photo by John Hazeltine)


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