Idy Talks – Josh Thomas “LIVING THE DREAM”

Musical theater major Josh Thomas, detailed his artistic journey, which began at the age of eight when he decided to become a comic at December 6th’s Idy Talks.


Thomas dreams big and he wants you to dream big, too. “Don’t give up on your dreams, work for them,” the tenacious seventeen-year old advised the audience. So far a lot of Josh’s dreams have come true.

He’ll soon graduate from his dream high school, Idyllwild Arts, he recently met his idol, Conan O’Brien, he’s launched an increasingly popular youtube talk show, and has been accepted by his dream college, Columbia College in Chicago.

IDY TALKS – Nikki Taro

an Art in Society and AEL Presentation

Filmmaker Nikki Taro “wowed” the standing-room only audience on November 8th at the Town Gallery – presenting her art and life. What an amazing path she’s traveled thus far!

Watch Nikki’s presentation here ~

RUSTIC WEDDINGS – Upcycle Fashion Show

What does one wear to a rustic wedding? Art in Society once again joined forces with IAA Design Department and Idyllwild’s Help Center to create a spectacular fashion show using upcycled materials.

The wedding gown started out as curtains and a table runner. And the stunning result was worn by the bride three weeks later at her actual wedding.

The models were Idyllwild residents ages six to sixty! From flower girls to mother-of-the bride everyone was dressed to impress.

The event raised $5,000.00! All proceeds went directly to The Help Center. The Idyllwild HELP Center assists over 600 residents in need – they provide non-perishable food, hygiene products, wood for heating, and much more. It’s Children’s Fund contributes to child care costs at Idyllwild Town Hall for working parents as well as school/winter clothing.  The Art in Society program is proud to help the Help Center meet its financial goals with this annual fundraiser, which is quickly becoming one of Idyllwild’s most beloved traditions.

Cinco de Mayo Sidewalk Chalk Art Fiesta


Art in Society was true to form in May, uniting four creative and caring Idyllwild organizations for the Cinco de Mayo Sidewalk Chalk Art Fiesta.

The Art Alliance of Idyllwild, Art in Society, Idyllwild School’s PTA and the smARTS project all teamed up to participate in this community art project. Enthusiastic participants ranging from 6 to 60, all rolled up their sleeves and got “hands-on” / “hands-dirty” to see to it that downtown Idyllwild sidewalks were vibrantly decorated in sidewalk chalk murals.


A successful afternoon indeed, as the funds raised (approximately $1,500.00) were donated directly to smARTS, who provides approximately 300 art classes to Idyllwild Elementary School students per year, and are very deserving of our assistance.

The Broad Museum, L.A. and Jasper Johns

Jasper Johns’ extensive body of work, while not overtly political, has been interpreted as quietly so. It has been seen to manifest coded pronouncements about sexual identity through consistent investigations and representations of the body, uses of language, and humor. Among the myriad of interpretations of Johns’ work, a political or activist analysis is possible, but this has, at times, been overlooked in favor of an aesthetic or populist analysis that disregards any inherent political message.

Today, a target roundel in a work of fine art might seem fairly unremarkable; yet sixty years ago, in a very different social and political climate, Jasper Johns’ Target paintings were freighted with hidden meanings. Pictured: l-r  Art in Society enthusiasts Joaquin Eaton Sharon, Alex Kuykendall, Hannah Wakelin.


IDY TALKS – Ashley Leung

Music Major Ashley Leung began her Idy Talk by handing her violin to a member of the audience and asking her to play it. Of course, the baffled woman could barely hold the instrument. “Not as easy as it looks,” chided Ashley who, after retrieving her instrument, did, indeed, make it look easy. Ashley then talked about her journey, as a ninth-grade music student, from her home in Hong Kong to Idyllwild and the academy, and the growth that migration has produced, both musically and culturally. Ashley’s concern for others is the very definition of Art in Society –  “Each year, I invite four or five students who attend Idyllwild Arts to come with me to teach music and art to underprivileged students in my native country.”

Called “Teach Music for China,” its mission statement captures Ashley’s personal goal of offering music instruction in areas where it is not readily available. “Our mission statement is ‘to enrich and cultivate music education as a form of self-expression in an underprivileged school in China. Music is a powerful tool to transform lives.’”


ART IN SOCIETY 2017/18 launched Wed., September 17, 2017 with the traditional Ice Cream Social. Film and Digital Media student, Nikki Taro, made a wonderful and very touching presentation about her work, over the summer, at El Pastoral Del Amor, an orphanage in Merida, Mexico. Truly Art at work in Society. Inform. Transform. Influence.IceCreamSocialArt in Society Ice Cream Social Poster 2017