In 1976, a long time Atherton resident, Rita Corbett Evans, passed away and bequeathed her home to the Town of Atherton for the purpose of developing a “Creative Design Program.” Following a labyrinthine tale including the sale of the property by the estate to a private individual,  the discovery of a handwritten will and lengthy lawsuits, the property was eventually acquired by the town of Atherton. It was subsequently sold and the proceeds were used to create the Rita Corbett Evans Trust that was dedicated to carrying out the provisions of the Evans will.


In 1996, the Town created the Atherton Arts Committee, funded by the trust to support the goals outlined in the will. The Committee was given a meeting place in the town facilities, and in 1999, it acquired an 1100 sq.ft. site in Atherton’s Holbrook-Palmer Park for activities such as art classes and small exhibits.

The Atherton Arts Foundation is a 501(c)3 Public Benefit corporation which was organized in 2009 to support the activities of the Committee when it became clear that the Evans trust fund would soon become exhausted. The  Arts Committee was eventually disbanded and in 2013, its activities were taken over by the Foundation.

The Atherton Arts Foundation is continuing with the goals of the Arts Committee to contribute to the enjoyment of art within Atherton and promoting fine art in the surrounding communities. It is dedicated to the acquisition and display of public art (which previously was not a significant part of the Atherton landscape), organizing and funding biannual art shows, sponsoring musical events, contributing to educational activities such as Art in Action, and providing local artists with space in its Holbrook-Palmer Park facility for shows and classes.

The Atherton Arts Foundation is keeping the arts visible and accessible in our community, integrating art into the fabric of our daily lives.  Our success is made possible through charitable donations. Your gift is tax-deductible. Help us keep the arts and arts education strong within our community – it is our greatest treasure!