Montalvo’s Art on the Grounds program is envisioned as a platform for artists to present art works in the context of a 175-acre public park. Montalvo is home to diverse range of native and non-native plant and tree species, and includes a redwood and live oak forest, an expansive grass lawn, and a succulent and cactus garden. Its diverse buildings encompass a Mediterranean-style villa built in 1912, outdoor and indoor theatres, and the Lucas Artists Residency Commons building and studios. Artists are encouraged to experiment with innovative models of artmaking in the public sphere and consider novel ways of engaging with Montalvo’s varied grounds and publics.
Works produced through the Art on the Grounds program range from sculptural objects to time-based performance events and experiences, durational projects developing out of community engagement activities and workshops, sound works, and interventions. Works on view are often displayed in association with exhibitions in the Project Space Gallery. During the summer, Montalvo celebrates its annual Art on the Grounds exhibition opening with an art party featuring live music, food trucks, and performances. Beginning in late 2010, Montalvo began acquiring a small number of select permanent sculpture works that now form part of its permanent collection.
Art on the Grounds is open for public viewing during Montalvo's normal park hours, Monday-Thursday, 8am-5pm and Friday-Sunday, 9am-5pm.