a most magical place
Headlands Center for the Arts
Headlands Center for the Arts provides an unparalleled environment for the creative process and the development of new work and ideas. Through artists' residencies and public programs, we offer opportunities for reflection, dialogue and exchange that build understanding and appreciation for the role of art in society.
Located in the coastal wilderness of the Marin Headlands 15 minutes from San Francisco, Headlands Center for the Arts was conceived through a planning process conducted by the Golden Gate National Recreation Area after the transfer of former military property to the National Park Service. The Park Service engaged a number of nonprofit organizations as "Park Partners", to assist them in restoring the historic buildings and developing interpretive programs for the public. Headlands was incorporated in 1982 by a founding Board of Directors comprised primarily of local artists. In 1994 we secured a long-term Cooperative Agreement for use of our buildings within the Golden Gate National Recreation Area.
In creating Headlands Center for the Arts, the founders sought to re-configure the role of the artist from a marginalized position to that of a central participant in our society. Since 1987, Headlands has developed this idea into an array of dynamic programs for artists and the public, including residencies, lectures and performances, Open Houses, community-based projects, publications and commissions.
Over 1,000 artists have worked with Headlands in its various programs. We host artists from different disciplines and cultural backgrounds, and our public programs bring artists together with scholars, activists and other professionals. By facilitating interaction across traditional boundaries, Headlands works to introduce artists and audiences to new creative processes, and to broaden the range of possibilities for art's function in our society.
Headland's reputation for creative exploration is world renowned, influencing communities from Bangkok to Berlin, Stockholm and New York. The cross-pollination of ideas that is at the core of what we do attracts emerging talents and highly influential artists alike. Their visits as well as a host of other professionals who visit influences one another and the worlds they touch.