The San Luis Obispo Museum of Art’s collecting mission and its sacred trust is to ensure the preservation and interpretation of artworks significant to the Central Coast and all of California. Moreover, the Permanent Collection aims to define the role of artists important to the county and region, with equal emphasis on contemporary and historical art.

The Collection, officially established in 1998, owes much to the late volunteer curator Arne Nybak, who supported art through his hard work and personal fortune, pioneering collection methods still in use today.

You can support the Permanent Collection by adopting a painting for $250. Your family name will be listed with the artwork when it is on display, and you will preserve it in the tradition of Arne Nybak.

Museum Collection Holdings

Le Wi Hoagland

Birds of Paradise

PC.01
Watercolor, 34.25 x 28.25 inches

Le Wi Hoagland was an active member and supporter during this organization’s early years as the SLO Art Association. Originally from the East Coast where she ran a summer camp for children.

Gladys Gray (b. 1908– )

Fire Breather

PC.02
Watercolor & collage, 35.75 x 45.5 inches

Gladys Gray was born in Truckee, California and was raised in a family of artists on a cattle ranch. She spent her summers in the Truckee-Tahoe area.

John Barnard

Fields of Fire: Lompoc

PC.03
Watercolor, 29.5 x 37.5 inches

John Barnard was born and raised in Long Beach, California. He got serious about art in the second grade. In high school an art teacher, Ruth Burdick, persuaded him to enroll in art classes.

Howard Bradford (1919–2008)

Untitled (blue bird)

PC.04
Watercolor, 33.5 x 39.5 inches

Howard Bradford (1919-2008) was born in Toronto, Canada and moved, at a young age, to Los Angeles, California. Howard Bradford spent his youth raising chickens and growing dahlias.

Roger Armstrong (1917–2007)

Morning in Tenejapa

PC.05
watercolor, 29.5 x 36.5 inches

A native of Los Angeles, California, Roger Armstrong studied at Pasadena City College and Chouinard Art Institute in Los Angeles, and spent considerable time studying with…

Dorothy Cutter

Cymbidiums in the Window

PC.06
acrylic, 1980

Dorothy Cutter lives in Morro Bay, California. She studied at the Maryland Art Institute, Corcoran Museum School, American University and the California College of Arts and Crafts…

Helen Hunt Reid (1901–1969)

Gretchen

PC.07
Oil on canvas, 26.75 x 22.75 inches

Helen Hunt Reid was born in Kansas City, Missouri then moved to Los Angeles where she earned degrees at UCLA and USC.

Robert Reynolds

The Making of an Etching

PC.08
etching, 12 trial proofs, 30.5 x 41 inches

A native of San Luis Obispo, Mr. Reynold’s paintings are in art collections throughout the US.

Lou Stillwell

Untitled (Still Life with Pears)

PC.09
oil on canvas, 25 x 23 inches

Lou Stillwell lived in San Luis Obispo County during the formative years of the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art…

Arne Nybak (1910–1999)

Self Portrait

PC.10
watercolor, 40 x 30 inches

A child of Norwegian immigrants, Arne Nybak was born in Duluth, Minnesota…

Stanton Gray

Party Time

PC.11
oil on board, 30.25 x 21.25 inches

Stanton Gray, with his wife Gladys, were strong supporters and patrons of the Art Center…. 

Margaret Maxwell

TV Newsroom KQED

PC.12
acrylic, 24 x 18 inches

M. (Margaret) C. Maxwell, an art teacher at Cuesta and San Luis High School…

Jo Werts

Red Flowers

PC.13
watercolor, 24.5 x 27.75 inches

Jo Werts studied art at the Chicago Art Institute and the University of Chicago…

Arne Nybak (1910–1999)

California Spring #1

PC.14
watercolor, 28.75 x 37.5 inches

A child of Norwegian immigrants, Arne Nybak was born in Duluth, Minnesota…

Gini Allen Griffin

Double Doña

PC.15
pastel & mixed media on paper, 34.5 x 28 inches

Gini Allen Griffin is known for her paintings, murals, and ceramics….

Arne Nybak (1910–1999)

Untitled (Still Life with Fruits & Vegetables)

PC.16
oil on board, 47.5 x 37.5 inches

A child of Norwegian immigrants, Arne Nybak was born in Duluth, Minnesota…

Robert Reynolds

Untitled (Studies of Arne Nybak)

PC.17
graphite on paper, 26.25 x 19.25 inches

Robert Reynolds is a landscape artist who concentrates on the pristine nature areas…

Bertha Artindale

Sonata

PC.18
oil on canvas, 39 x 39 inches

Bertha Artindale was a gifted painter who came to California after WWII…

Arne Nybak (1910–1999)

Poster: Peonies in Blue Vase, 1983

PC.19
Litho print, artist's proof for poster, edition of 200

A child of Norwegian immigrants, Arne Nybak was born in Duluth, Minnesota…

Arne Nybak (1910–1999)

Artist’s Journal (Circle series #1)

PC.20
oil on canvas, 36.75 x 36.75 inches

A child of Norwegian immigrants, Arne Nybak was born in Duluth, Minnesota…

Helen Hunt Reid (1901–1969)

Cut Glass Decanter

PC.21
pastel on paper, 30.75 x 20.75 inches

Born in Kansas City, Missouri, Helen Hunt Reid moved to Los Angeles where she earned degrees at UCLA and USC…

Roberta Owens

Untitled (Man With Guitar)

PC.22
acrylic on canvas, 44.75 x 34.5 inches

Roberta Jean Owen lives in the Frazier Park area of Bakersfield, California. A large exhibit of…

Elaine Badgley Arnoux

At The Mirror

PC.23
serigraph (#25), 26 x 20 inches

Elaine Badgley Arnoux was born in Omaha, Nebraska and moved to Southern California…

Roberta Owens

Untitled (Mother With Child)

PC.24
acrylic on canvas, 48.5 x 30.5 inches

Roberta Jean Owen lives in the Frazier Park area of Bakersfield, California. A large exhibit of…

Robert Reynolds

Going Home

PC.25
oil & acrylic on canvas, 32.5 x 44.5 inches

Robert Reynolds is a landscape artist who concentrates on the pristine nature areas…

Marvin Lane

Untitled (River & Bridge)

PC.26
oil on canvas, 15.75 x 26.25 inches

Marvin Lane was a painter from Chicago, who painted architectural designs. Most of his work was done in the 1950s in Chicago…

John Warren

Morro Bay

PC.27
watercolor, 21.5 x 29 inches

John Warren was a lithographer employed by the WPA in San Francisco in the 1930s.  He is mostly known for…

Vern Swanson (1916–1992)

Untitled (Cityscape In Mountains)

PC.28
watercolor & ink on paper, 26.25 x 33.25 inches

Vern Swansen was born in Oregon on August 9, 1916. Mr. Swansen grew up in Pasadena and majored in architecture…

John Warren

Untitled (Seascape)

PC.29
watercolor, 21 x 27 inches

John Warren was a lithographer employed by the WPA in San Francisco in the 1930s. He is mostly known for his watercolor paintings and is believed to have been part of the Federal Art Project exhibit in…

Marvin Lane

Shadow of Man

PC.30
oil on canvas, 26.25 x 32.25 inches

Marvin Lane was a painter from Chicago where he painted mostly urbanscapes. He moved to San Luis Obispo and lived a reclusive lifestyle in the Wineman Hotel…

Ivy Parsons

Untitled (Abstract Landscape)

PC.31
oil on canvas, 23 x 27 inches

Ivy Parsons was a member of the San Luis Obispo Art Center and a benefactor and patron of the Art Center. She had a distinct style…

Hilda Gass

Moon Reflections

PC.33
oil on canvas, 34.25 x 26 inches

Originally from Pasadena, Hilda Gass later moved to the Central Coast area. She was especially gifted in color and design…

Helen Manazon

Untitled (Female Nude)

PC.34
watercolor, 24.75 x 19.5 inches

Helen Manazon was a Morro Bay artist with an active studio. She was a prominent member of the artistic community in the 1980s…

Anne Jenkins

Departure at Night

PC.36
etching, 21 x 22 inches

Anne Jenkins was an artist and leader of the Docent Council at the San Luis Obispo Arts Council for several years…

Ivy Parsons

Untitled (Abstract Cityscape)

PC.37
oil on paper laid on board, 13.25 x 15.75 inches

Ivy Parsons was a member of the San Luis Obispo Art Center and a benefactor and patron of the Art Center…

Helen Manazon

Untitled (Vase With Flowers)

PC.38
watercolor, 24.75 x 19.5 inches

Helen Manazon was a Morro Bay artist with an active studio. She was a prominent member of the artistic community in the 1980s…

David Settino Scott

Portrait of Arne Nybak

PC.39
oil on wood, 27.75 x 22.25 inches

Raised in an Italian-American blue-collar family in Southern California, David Settino Scott became interested in art while…

Jo Werts

Nasturtium Leaves

PC.40
etching (#3/25), 20.75 x 16.75 inches

Born in Iowa, Jo Werts attended the Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Chicago where a few of her instructors were Richard Diebenkorn…

Arne Nybak (1910–1999)

Robin Hood (Widow Scarlet Costume Sketch)

PC.41
watercolor, 23.5 x 18.5 inches

A child of Norwegian immigrants, Arne Nybak was born in Duluth, Minnesota…

Arne Nybak (1910–1999)

At The Races (Costume Sketch)

PC.42
ink with watercolor wash, 22.5 x 18.5 inches

A child of Norwegian immigrants, Arne Nybak was born in Duluth, Minnesota…

Arne Nybak (1910–1999)

Theater Sketch #1

PC.43
watercolor, 23 x 14.5 inches

A child of Norwegian immigrants, Arne Nybak was born in Duluth, Minnesota…

Phil Dike

Untitled (Figures in Greys)

PC.44
serigraph, 24 x 32 inches

Phil Dike was born and raised in Southern California. In 1923, he was awarded a scholarship to study at the Chouinard Art Institute…

Marian Stevens

Normal II

PC.45
mixed media, 27.5 x 22 inches

Marian Stevens is a California artist and teacher, leading the Life Drawing classes at Cuesta College for many years.

Emily Polk (1910-2001)

Isobar, c. 1970s

PC.46
photo montage, 29.25 x 29.25 inches

Artist Emily Polk donated this artwork to the then San Luis Obispo Art Center’s growing Permanent Collection in 2000…

Elaine Badgley Arnoux

Woman at Table

PC.47
serigraph (#25), 20 x 26 inches

Elaine Badgley Arnoux was born in Omaha, Nebraska and moved to Southern California…

Elaine Badgley Arnoux

Moon Song #2

PC.48
serigraph (#25), 20 x 26 inches

Elaine Badgley Arnoux was born in Omaha, Nebraska and moved to Southern California…

Phil Paradise (1905–1997)

Untitled

PC.49
watercolor, 24.5 x 62.25 inches

Phil Paradise was known for his ability to sketch from memory of his travels and produced a book of hundreds of India ink sketches…

Margaret Jorgensen

Refuge

PC.50
watercolor, 28.25 x 34.25 inches

Margaret Jorgensen was one of the original founders of the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art…

Emil Kosa (1903–1968)

Untitled (Study of Female Nude)

PC.51
pastel on brown paper, 30 x 24 inches

Emil Kosa, Jr. was born in Paris, France. The artist moved to the United States with…

George Papashvily

Playing Otters

PC.52
serpentine and granite, 30 x 32 x 17.5 inches

Georgian (former USSR) born sculptor George Papashvily (1898-1978) succeeded…

Nancy Dunn

Icon

PC.53
welded steel, 61.25 x 61.5 x 13 inches

Nancy Dunn has been active on the California Central Coast art scene since the early days of this organization…

Robert Livingston Moore

Ascending Figure

PS.54
welded steel

Robert Moore, a native Californian, was born in Alhambra in 1936. As an art major at…

Bob Nichols

Ceramic Wall

PC.55
ceramic, mosaic tiles

From 1985—1986, Bob Nichols was commissioned to create a ceramic corner installation…

James Proctor (1919–2004)

Untitled

PC.56
oil or acrylic on canvas, 61.75 x 49 inches

James Proctor was born in Philadelphia in 1919. An important early Modernist, Mr. Proctor…

Phil Dike

Vista del Mar, c. 1960s

PC.57
watercolor, 23.5 x 29.5 inches

Phil Dike was born and raised in Southern California. In 1923, he was awarded a scholarship to study at the Chouinard…

Ed Winter

Untitled

PC.58
batik, 47.75 x 67.25 inches

Ed Winter lived in the San Luis Obispo area and worked as an independent artist and…

Arne Nybak (1910–1999)

Study for Self–Portrait

PC.59
graphite, 28.25 x 24.25 inches

A child of Norwegian immigrants, Arne Nybak was born in Duluth, Minnesota…

Rena Doud

Cruciform

PC.60
watercolor, 38.5 x 30.25 inches

Rena Doud was born in Massachusetts and started her painting career at Orange Coast College…

Ruth Fash

Feminist Fan: Frida Kahlo

PC.61
mixed media, 39 x 32 inches

Ruth Fash used circular shapes in her artwork a great deal. An explicit feminism also permeates the series…

Phil Dike

Untitled, #199 B Ed 25

PC.62
serigraph, 1965

Phil Dike was born and raised in Southern California. In 1923, he was awarded a scholarship to study at the Chouinard…

Nat D. Fast

Standing Female Nude

PC.63
pencil/crayon, May 1974

Nat D. Fast was nationally known for his watercolors that feature the look of fast brushstrokes…

Don Klopfer

My Old House

PC.65
oil, 31 x 24 inches

Don Klopfer (1920-2009) was born in Washington, D.C. and died in Arroyo Grande, California…

Elaine Badgley Arnoux

Myron Graham

PC.66
watercolor

Elaine Badgley Arnoux was born in Omaha, Nebraska and moved to Southern California…