How will we know it’s us without our past?

John Steinbeck   Grapes of Wrath

Current & Upcoming Exhibitions

LJHS exhibitions are sponsored in part by ArtWorks San Diego



The La Jolla Historical Society Wisteria Cottage Gallery is currently closed in accordance with State of California and County of San Diego public health directives associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.




Our Ocean's Edge

June 5 - September 5, 2021

Exploring the beautiful essence of California’s 1,100 mile long coastline through photography and prose, Our Ocean’s Edge is an exhibition featuring black and white images from LA-based photographer Jasmine Swope’s quest to capture the essence of California’s marine parks. Accompanying the images, author Dwight Holing's prose contributes narrative interpretations of these important seascapes. California made history with the creation of the nation’s first statewide system of ocean parks − a network of 124 Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) stretching from Oregon to the Mexico border. Like national and state parks on land, MPAs are beautiful environments that provide protection for wildlife, solutions to climate change, and recreational resources for all. Our Ocean’s Edge is a photographic documentary project that celebrates these fragile seascapes, from Southern to Northern California, while increasing awareness about their natural benefits and promoting ecological conservation.

Funding for this project generously provided by Weston Anson, Dave and Sandra Erickson, Barbara Freeman, Anna Palmer | Palmer Design Inc., and ArtWorks San Diego.  Institutional support provided by the City of San Diego Commission for Arts and Culture and by the Members of the La Jolla Historical Society.



Trifecta: Art, Science, Patron

September 25, 2021 - January 16, 2022


Local artists and Salk Institute scientists collaborate in this interdisciplinary project that was inspired by the visionary gift of the Jacobs family. The Joan Klein and Irwin Mark Jacobs Senior Scientist Endowed Chair Challenge began in 2008 to encourage donors to establish endowed chairs in support of Salk scientists for their outstanding contributions to biological research. For every $2 million in donor contributions toward a chair, the Jacobs added $1 million to achieve the $3 million required for a full endowment. The Jacobs Challenge is responsible for 18 of the 31 chaired positions to date. The science that is funded today makes future discoveries possible and the patrons who make this research a reality are the stewards of tomorrow. To celebrate this gift to posterity, local artists have been paired with many of these honored scientists to create this exhibition. Through their artwork, the artists share their visions inspired by this cutting-edge research funded by philanthropic patrons of the community. This trifecta of artist, scientist, and patron pays homage to major contributors of this vibrant community and inspires a better future. 

Curated by Chi Essary

Major funding for this project generously provided by the Ray Thomas Edwards Foundation with additional support from Weston Anson.  Institutional support provided by the City of San Diego Commission for Arts and Culture and by the Members of the La Jolla Historical Society. The Society is immensely grateful to the Salk Institute for Biological Studies for their support and participation in this project.