With the adoption of AB 189, the state legislature put in place an important new tool for the development, support, and preservation of California’s extensive and diverse cultural assets. 


The legislation charged the California Arts Council with establishing criteria and guidelines for state-designated cultural districts.


California’s Cultural Districts Program was initiated via a two-year long pilot, where a select cohort of designated districts actively engages in refining the final design of the program.  Eureka is proud to be one of the fourteen selected districts in the state.

>>Explore the California Cultural Districts here. 


Eureka Box Art!

The City of Eureka invites artists to apply to install murals on utility boxes. The goal of Eureka Box Art! is to use utility boxes as “canvases” for original pieces of art as well as to contribute to the vitality and attractiveness of the city, while deterring graffiti. 

This program is open to individual artists, a team of artists, or community groups with a designated lead artist who has the vision and skills required to complete the project to the highest standards of innovation and technical expertise. Artists are paid a stipend of $500.

For Artists

This program is open to individual artists, a team of artists or community groups with a designated lead artist. Selected artists shall be compensated for the application of their artwork and designs.

        >>Click here for more information and instructions on how to submit your design.

For Sponsors

Are you looking to sponsor a Utility Box Mural?

Eureka Box Art! is now looking for businesses or individuals to sponsor utility box murals citywide.

        >>Click here for more information to sponsor a utility box mural.

        >>Click here for a pdf of approved designs to choose from-or contact us to submit the designs of your own artist.

        >>Click here for a map of available box locations

Contact Us

We are always happy to walk you through the process and answer any questions you may have. Please call or email Lisa or Delo for more information.


Lisa Savage, Economic Development Project Manager;, (707) 441-4186


The Eureka Street Art Festival (ESAF) is a week-long, city-wide event that takes place each summer. The core mission of the festival is to create intentional, accessible art that enlivens public spaces, stimulates community revitalization, and attracts visitors to Eureka. The annual festival invites local and international artists to paint murals and create street art throughout Downtown and Old Town Eureka, creating a unique walkable and bikeable public art experience. The festival offers the opportunity to watch the creation of large-scale pieces of world-class art and allows the public to interact with artists through artist talks, daily tours, and special events. The festival culminates in a large block party to celebrate the completion of the art.

In the summer of 2017, the Black Faun Arts Project commissioned murals by British artists Dan Kitchener (aka DANK) and Duncan Jago (aka Mr. Jago). These transformed a small corner of Old Town Eureka and began to draw many visitors each day. It quickly became clear that this community appreciates not only having large-scale pieces of public art but also watching their creation. Eureka has always been home to a large number of murals, and the time seemed right to pull this all together with an organized effort to celebrate our city's public art. The Eureka Street Art Festival was born in 2018 with the intention of being an annual event, focusing each year on a different area of the city.

        >>Learn more about the Eureka Street Art Festival here. 

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Artist of the Month/Year

Each month, the City of Eureka Arts and Culture Commission selects an “Artist of the Month.”


In order to be nominated as Artist of the Month, an Artist must either:

  • Be nominated by a member of the community via an official “Artist of the Month Nomination Form”; or,

  • Be an Artist that has completed a Utility Art Box; or,

  • Be an Artist that participated in the Eureka Street Art Festival; or,

  • Be nominated by the Arts and Culture Commission


Recipients of the “Artist of the Month” award receive:

  • Social media highlights (Instagram, Facebook, etc).

  • A detailed highlight in the City’s monthly newsletter. 

  • Trophy Award

  • Delivery of award at Art & Culture Commission Meeting


Each December or January, the Mayor selects an “Artist of the Year,” which must be chosen from among the 12 previous Artists of the Month. Recipients of the “Artist of the Year” award will receive:

  • Social media highlights (Instagram, Facebook, etc)

  • A detailed highlight in the City’s monthly newsletter

  • Press Release

  • Trophy Award

  • Delivery of award by Mayor and/or Council Member at an evening mixer, City Council Meeting, or daytime event (Artist’s choice)

  • Free business license for one year (if applicable)

  • Year-long free Parking Pass good for any City Parking Lot or City Parallel Parking Space

  • May serve as spokesperson at select key Art events when called upon by the Mayor, a City Council member, or the Art and Culture Commission 


One or more of the following mandatory criteria shall be used in the selection of Artist of the Month/Year. The Artist:

  • Is a small, new start-up Artist that could use help with publicity.

  • Is a unique or innovative Artist that could "put Eureka on the map.”

  • Deserves to be recognized for an outstanding contribution to the community.

  • Has initiated outstanding partnerships, collaboration, and/or joint-marketing with other artists and/or organizations.

  • Consistently promotes and markets Eureka’s art community in a positive light with efforts that reach beyond our region.

  • Has displayed art or performed in prominent galleries or venues outside of Eureka.

  • Demonstrates creativity and imagination in artistic expression.

  • Has created a new and innovative form of art or has pushed an existing medium to new levels.

  • Is a significant contributor to Arts Alive and other art-related events in Eureka.


Artist of the Month shall meet at least one criteria from the above list, and Artist of the Year shall meet at least two criteria.


2018 Artists of the Month:
  • Phyllis Barba

  • Johnathon DeSoto (2018 Artist of the Year)

  • Duane Flatmo

  • John King

  • Ananda Oliveri

  • Samantha Moore

  • Jack Sewell

  • Augustus Clark

  • Stock Schlueter

  • Patricia Sennot

  • Matt Beard


Artist of the Year 
Jonathon Desoto Photo Credit León Villag
Johnathon DeSoto


Johnathon DeSoto is a multi-disciplinary artist whose work is concerned with the personal, social and political dynamics of our current world. He is a Humboldt County native, with no formal art education. He is a member of Cooperation Humboldt, Humboldt Artist Guild and Societies for Poetic Action. Johnathon views art as a profound human expression that is essential to creating thriving, complex and powerful societies. His work is focused on the interplay of what it means to be a person with privilege, joy and abundance and what responsibilities one has to act and collectivize in order to expand access to ways of thriving. “Artists are not just a fundamental ingredient of society. Artists are cultural leaders”


Each month, the City of Eureka Arts and Culture Commission selects an “Artist of the Month.” In order to be nominated as an Artist of the Month, an Artist must either be nominated by a member of the community via an official “Artist of the Month Nomination Form”, complete a utility art box, participate in the Eureka Street Art Festival, or be nominated by the Arts and Culture Commission.


The Commission started the program in June of 2018, and the seven artists chosen for 2018 include Phyllis Barba, Duane Flatmo, John King, Ananda Oliveri, Samantha Moore, Jack Sewell, and Johnathon DeSoto. Johnathon completed two utility art boxes, participated in the Eureka Street Art Festival, and was nominated by Art and Culture Commissioner Linda Wise. Johnathon also participated in the People’s Mapping Project, a collaborative art installation that showed at the Black Faun Gallery and had a solo art show called Underthrow Rainbow in Arcata. In addition, he volunteered to paint a neglected public bench and has reached out to the City to paint city-owned basketball courts.


After the Artists of the Month are chosen, the Mayor then selects the “Artist of the Year”, which must be chosen from the year’s Artists of the Month. Mayor Susan Seaman chose Johnathon because his art is tied to community. There were several wonderful artists whose work over the years led the way for the rich artist culture we have today. Some on the list, like Johnathon, represent a new generation of artists. Johnathon stands out as somebody who wants to make an impact on Eureka.


The City of Eureka would like to congratulate and thank Johnathon for his commitment to creating a thriving artist community in Eureka.




  • Mural Strategic plan & Implementation

  • Wayfinding Banners & Signage

  • Passport for the Arts

  • NEA VALI Study

  • Railroad Bridge

  • Strategic Marketing Plan

  • Street Pianos

  • Gazebo Re-envisioning


  • Neighborhood Painted Intersections

  • Art Crosswalks


  • Theatre Festival

  • Artists in Action

  • Arts in the Park Program