Downtown at the artist-run creative space B2 Fine Art Gallery/Studios, gallerygoers can admire contemporary paintings, sculptures and mixed-media works by regional artisans. Nearby, 253 Collective is a prime place to pick up everything from abstract landscapes to bespoke bags.
In the Hilltop neighborhood, the Fulcrum Gallery (open by appointment) occupies a nearly century-old bakery building, where anime-inspired drawings now mingle with whimsical wall installations. And all over town, Spaceworks Tacoma fills vacant storefronts with stunning displays: taxidermied animals having a tea party, 3-D paper installations and swirling sculptural forms.
Local jewelry makers lead classes and workshops on topics such as silver soldering, stone setting and metalsmithing at Tacoma Metal Arts Center, while Throwing Mud Gallery holds two-hour "Try It" pottery sessions.
For performing arts, head to the Broadway Centertheater district, which includes the historic Pantages Theatre and the Beaux Arts Rialto (both opened in 1918), as well as the newer Theatre on the Square. Year-round, these venues host performances by the city’s arts institutions (opera, ballet, symphony) as well as soloists, concert bands and dance companies.