The Carl Cherry Center’s art galleries offer original exhibitions of painting, sculpture, fine craft, printmaking and photography as well as displays of works by the center’s founder, Jeanne D’Orge.
The Carl Cherry Center for the Arts showcases diverse visiting artists in year-round gallery exhibits. The majority of exhibits are curated by the center, and range from historical to contemporary art, including painting, photography, ceramics, assemblage and sculpture.
Cherry Hall theater presents eclectic readings, discussions, plays, film series and musical performances, many of which are focused on the nature of art itself.
Each year, the Carl Cherry Center for the Arts recognizes the talents of local high-school art students by dedicating an entire exhibit to their work. Thinking Out Loud is a display of works by Monterey County High School artists, featuring a wide range of media — including painting, drawing, ink-relief, sculpture and collage.
The Monterey County High School Poetry Awards were established in 1996, as a collateral program to Thinking Out Loud, to recognize and promote excellence in high school poetry writing. The concept for the poetry program grew out of an awareness that poetry by young people is vital and open-eyed yet largely unrecognized.
The awards program, presented annually in collaboration with the Monterey Public Library, helps promote literacy in both English and Spanish, provides a forum for creative expression, serves as a way to help students develop a sense of belonging to their community, and facilitates interdisciplinary teaching methods.
Hundreds of Monterey County students participate in the poetry program each year. Poems from all participating high schools are selected to be included in the awards and are judged on their merit. Certificates, cash awards, and poetry anthologies honoring the student poets are presented at an annual ceremony.