Oakland Museum of California

1000 Oak Street

Our Mission

"The mission of the Oakland Museum of California is to connect communities to the cultural and environmental heritage of California. Through collections, exhibitions, education programs, and public dialogue, we inspire people of all ages and backgrounds to think creatively and critically about the natural, artistic and social forces that characterize our state and influence its relationship to the world."


When the Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) first opened its doors more than forty years ago, it brought together three historically independent disciplines art, history, and natural sciences under one roof. This progressive multidisciplinary approach was to celebrate the many facets of California. Our collections comprising more than 1.8 million objects including seminal art works, historical artifacts, ethnographic objects, natural specimens, and photographs and our programs explore and reveal the factors that shape California character and identity, from its extraordinary natural landscapes, to successive waves of migration, to its unique culture of creativity and innovation.

OMCA has reopened its galleries after a transformation that touches almost every aspect of the 300,000 square-foot Museum and builds on the founders' original multidisciplinary and civic-minded intent by improving integration of OMCA's collections and programs, strengthening its role as a public forum, and creating new opportunities for visitor participation. The collections are animated by innovative interpretive tools and interactive features; and new gathering spaces and program areas engage visitors and encourage them to share their own perspectives, questions, and stories.

OMCA nurtures its deep ties to the community by offering many educational and outreach programs. We welcome schools, scholars, local audiences, and all visitors to participate in our events and activities and to discover their place in California's past, present, and future.


Damien Wallace

Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2018

Such an excellent museum! On my first visit to the state my visit to the museum really gave me a new perspective on the history of the state, and gave a new context to everything and every place I visited since. Now as a resident of the area, I love taking newcomers to share the experience. Having been here several times now, I still find new and exciting things to discover here, from the history wing, to the art gallery, to the natural history wing, I truly feel there is something here for everyone!

Timothy Henry

Monday, Feb. 5, 2018

Very fun place to visit. Wish I'd been able to see all the exhibits. Some art exhibits were laughably pretentious, but I would expect that any art exhibit. So many interesting pieces outweighed them. Paintings of early California were quite remarkable.

Shannon Hunter

Sunday, Dec. 10, 2017

WOW!! This is now one of my favorite museums. It's huge, has an art, a science, and a history exhibit, and it is beautifully curated - everything flows so seamlessly, especially in the history and science exhibits. I really enjoyed the guest exhibits too - very unique. The best part is that all of the exhibits are about California and how amazing (and sometimes historically awful) this state is! You're also close to the awesome restaurants in downtown Oakland and beautiful Lake Merrit!

Sarah Kahl

Friday, Jan. 5, 2018

Great place for any age - I was just as interested/ entertained as the 3-year-olds I brought with me! Art, history and natural sciences; awesome exhibits on all things California; plenty of interactive things to do. By myself or with friends I could probably spend the whole day here


Monday, Jan. 29, 2018

Great museum! Didn't realize how big it was until got there. Very detailed exhibits. I feel like I learned something new while I was there!