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Fort Mason Center. Building C San Francisco, CA 94123

Children develop through creative exploration.

We believe that through process-oriented artmaking, children discover their creative powers. They learn to view the world as a place filled with possibilities where they can shape and express their own voice and vision.

children's art center studio art wall

Just like our teaching methodologies and traditions, the Painting Wall in our studio has transcended time and remains a symbol of the creative expression and joy we strive to provide children in the community.

Our Impact

Since 1978, Children's Art Center has engaged young people in visual arts education that prioritizes self-expression and creativity. Our teaching artists actively listen to children and support their exploration of ideas, memories, and feelings. By empowering students to express their identity through art, we help them develop language, problem-solving skills, and connections with others. As a community-based organization, we work to reverse inequities in access to arts experiences for children in San Francisco, particularly those from economically vulnerable families and youth of color. We serve approximately 1200 children each year.

children's fall art
girl with collage art

What We Do

School Programs

We provide artist residencies in schools that nurture children to innovate, explore, and collaborate through the artmaking process as part of their school day or after school enrichment.

children building 3D paper art

Studio Classes & Camps

We nurture creativity and curiosity in weekly classes and summer camps hosted at our art studio designed especially for young artists at the Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture.

girl painting

Community Outreach

We engage with the San Francisco community through providing hands-on art engagement at public events and free resources to support families in nurturing their children’s creativity. 

family art activity

years in service to San Francisco youth



children served annually

participants are from economically vulnerable families


of participants are youth of color


Our Supporters

Children’s Art Center encourages creativity and connection throughout the San Francisco community through a variety of partnerships.

We are an anchor tenant of the Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture, which has been our home since 1978. We partner with the San Francisco Unified School District and independent schools in the city. We are active participants with the Arts Education Alliance of the Bay Area (AEABA) and SFUSD’s Community Arts Collaborative, where we work with school district officials and fellow Community Based Organizations to advocate for arts education in our city.

We are grateful for the support provided by generous individual donors, philanthropic foundations, and local and state government entities that share our mission to foster the creative development of young people.

grants for the arts logo
san francisco arts commission logo
california arts council logo

Interested in donating?

Since 1978, Children's Art Center has engaged young people in visual arts education that prioritizes self-expression and creativity. 

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