Visiting the Napa Valley isn’t just about the art of winemaking. The city of Napa has made art a priority through a requirement that all renovated or new commercial or mixed use buildings invest in public art.
You can peruse the results on the Napa Art Walk, a public art exhibition of sculptures that rotates every two years. The installations complement Napa’s privately owned galleries and collections of art on display at many of the region’s wineries. Here’s an overview of Napa’s flourishing art scene, with the Hotel Indigo Napa Valley as your base:
Napa Art Walk
Starting in downtown Napa, you can take a leisurely stroll along the Napa River and view many of the current sculptures that are part of the Art Walk. The most recent installations date to spring, 2017, and will be on display until spring 2019. Get a map at the Napa Valley Welcome Center or download one here.
A short drive (or 30-minute stroll) from the Hotel Indigo is Volakis Gallery, which showcases a mix of emerging and established artists. In downtown Napa, Quent Cordair Napa Art Gallery specializes in fine art and sculpture, while Art Gallery Napa Valley, which is located next door, holds many events with local artists.
Nearby is the Historic Napa Mill, home to shops, restaurant and live music venues, as well as a mosaic fountain created by artist Alan Shepp depicting the valley’s role in the history of the West Coast.
If all this art is making you hungry, stop by the Oxbow Public Market, a hub for local eats and goods, to grab lunch or a snack. Some highlights include the burgers, fries and a shake at Gott’s Roadside or the raw offerings at Hog Island Oyster Bar. Don’t leave without getting a sample truffle (or two) at Anette’s Chocolates.
From the Wine Train
If you’re taking the Napa Valley Wine Train, you won’t lack for serious eye candy along the 18-mile route to St. Helena. In 2014, the city created Rail Arts District Napa, a project to beautify a portion of the rail and bike corridor with original murals. Four murals have been completed, each spanning between 150 feet to 200 feet.
Wineries With Art
Napa is so invested in art that nearly 100 of its wineries have resident artists and/or original works on display. Art-worthy stops include Artesa Winery, which features larger-than-life sculptures and has long had a resident artist; Mumm Napa, which includes a fine art photography gallery with works from the likes of Ansel Adams; and The Hess Collection, which offers an extensive art collection and on-site museum. All three are within 15-minutes’ drive from downtown Napa.