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In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Elverhøj has curated a timely virtual exhibition exploring the face mask as an art form. When we look back on the pandemic of 2020, these rectangles that hide the mouth and nose will be what we see. This exhibit places itself at the intersection of art and history as the face mask becomes the world’s most important fashion accessory and museums start collecting symbolic items from the COVID-19 contagion. 

This virtual exhibit reunites a group of artists that participated in “The Art of Dress” at Elverhøj in 2019. Now these artists tackle the role of the face mask as a form of individual expression as well as self-preservation. A variety of styles, a range of techniques, and conceptual thinking are employed in these one-of-a-kind works.

Matson mask

But the face mask is also a signal of caring and a gesture of community. “I am deeply moved by the energy of so many in response to this basic safety need,” commented participating artist Georganne Alex. “Artists and designers can be relied upon to demonstrate that there is always a way to creatively respond to whatever challenges the world presents.”

Museum Assistant Director and exhibition curator, Jody Williams, states, “In a world where we now recognize people by their face mask, I hope this exhibit brings a smile to our hidden lips and extra thought to the message we convey through our masks.”

Featured artists are Georganne Alex, Carole Coduti, Jess Conti, Colleen M. Kelly, Isabella Kelly-Ramirez, RT Livingston, Margaret Matson, Syd McCutcheon, Susan Owens, Tara Patrick, Linda Pearl, Gwen Samuels, Laura Wilkinson and Sara Woodburn.

Follow Elverhøj on Facebook and Instagram (@elverhojmuseum) to stay up-to-date on events and for “behind-the-scenes” clips from the show.

Links to Weekly E-Series

While the museum is temporarily closed, we invite you join us for an armchair tour of some of the greatest works of this master artist.

Extended through 2020

Rembrandt Legacy of Decency

A heralded collection of 21 Dutch Master Rembrandt prints is on view in this powerful new exhibition. The artwork is paired with displays about the Danish WWII rescue of their Jewish population. This exhibition links people, time and place through artwork and action with a legacy created by neighbors who cared for, and about, one another.

“The humanity Rembrandt expressed in his artwork continues to resonate today, nearly 400 years later,” said Elverhoj Executive Director and exhibit curator Esther Jacobsen Bates. “It’s exciting to bring works by an artist of this renown to Solvang.”

Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn (1606-1669) was an innovative and prolific painter, printmaker and draughtsman and is generally considered one of the greatest visual artists in the history of art. He lived and worked in Amsterdam, a city well-known for its welcoming spirit towards the thousands of Jewish migrants and refugees who survived the Inquisition and had been expelled from Spain and Portugal.

Rembrandt self portrait
Rembrandt self-portrait

The prints on view highlight the artist’s nuanced relationship with Amsterdam’s Jewish citizens. They are detailed and intimate, much like Rembrandt’s relationship with his subjects, many of whom were neighbors and friends.

Rembrandt’s legacy as an etcher is characterized by the new and innovative techniques he introduced to printmaking. Rembrandt’s legacy of decency is displayed in his art as he added emotional and psychological depth to his subjects through expressive faces, dramatic body language, and bold use of shadow and light.

This concept of caring is also found in jantiloven – the unofficial Danish law for "no one is better than the other." The jantiloven principle that everyone is accepted and equal plays a key part in Danish culture and mentality as was exemplified by the remarkable story of the Danish WWII resistance. Posters from the Danish Museum of Resistance in Copenhagen tell about a few intense weeks in 1943 when a “living wall of people” raised up and rescued over 95% of the Jewish population in Denmark from the Holocaust.

The art is from the collection of Howard and Fran Berger, gift to Westmont Ridley-Tree Museum of Art.


Elverhøj Museum of History and Art is on the move with a pop-up gallery at the Montecito Bank and Trust, 591 Alamo Pintado Road.


Viking PaulElverhøj Museum of History & Art invites visitors to learn more about Scandinavian ancestors of long ago. The new Vikings! display includes stone age Danish tools, replica pieces, and weapons. Informative text and photographs tell of the Vikings’ role in history and in popular culture. For younger explorers, there is a hands-on display table and handouts about the Viking runic “alphabet.”  

“Viking” is a term used by modern scholars to refer to the Nordic-speaking peoples from southern Scandinavia who raided, traded and settled in Europe and the British Isles roughly between A.D. 793-1066. In addition to being the fierce warriors of popular stereotype, Vikings were sailors, shipbuilders, farmers, master artists, craftsmen, shrewd businessmen, and fearless explorers. Their activities stimulated political changes in Europe and Russia; created lasting new societies in Iceland and Greenland; and led to the discovery of North America 500 years before Columbus.

Viking axeThe museum has had the opportunity to add new artifacts to the existing collection. These items include a Viking era sword, an ornamental replica axe, and jewelry.

Schedule a private tour for your group or class by phoning (805) 686-1211 or email info@elverhoj.org.


The Elverhøj Museum of History and Art encourages art exhibition proposal submissions from individual artists and artist groups. The guidelines are intended to help expedite the review of these submissions by insuring that each proposal is as complete as possible. Proposals for exhibitions at the Elverhøj must include both written and visual components.

A copy of the artist proposal guidelines is available for download.

Click to DownloadArtist Exhibition Proposal Procedures PDF (or DOC version)
Click to DownloadArtist GROUP Exhibition Proposal Procedures PDF (or DOC version)

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