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Creative Aging

Creative aging is “the practice of engaging older adults in participatory, professionally run arts programs with a focus on social engagement and skills mastery,” according to the non-profit organization Lifetime Arts.  We are developing a roster of teaching artists who will teach Creative Aging techniques and then partner with or support them to go out in the community and run arts workshops for people ages 65+.  Sedona Arts Center is launching its pilot program in May 2024.

Our next class in our Creative Aging Program is:

Creative Aging Sampler Class

Explore different art mediums in this Creative Aging Sampler Class led by Sedona Arts Center artists.  This sampler class is for ages 55 and older interested in tapping into their creativity and trying out different art forms. Participants will try their hand at storytelling, collage, watercolor, acrylic pens, and water-soluble oils.

  • August 12: Storytelling with Claire Obermarck
  • August 19: Art of Collage with Mary Helsaple
  • August 16: Watercolor with Betty Carr
  • September 9: Modern Art Techniques with Mary Helsaple
  • September 16: Water-Soluble Oils with Gretchen Lopez
  • September 23: Notecard Making with Mary Helsaple

No experience necessary!   Caregivers also welcome.

To see full details, please visit the class page at:

Creative Aging Sampler Class

Gallery 928

Teens ages 15-18 are invited to apply to Sedona Arts Center’s Gallery 928 program, a unique summer art apprenticeship that partners students with a master artist to create a work of public art.

This years Gallery 928 Instructor is Jillian Sander

“We are excited for year three of Gallery 928,” says Julie Richard, CEO of Sedona Arts Center. “This summer, apprentices will create a public art mural for our Center all the while learning about the public art process—from conception to completion to celebration.”

Apprentices will receive art instruction, knowledge of the public art field and develop tangible employment skills like resume building, presentation development and public speaking. Students will also receive a $500 stipend from Sedona Arts Center and three free college credits through Yavapai College. Up to 12 students will be selected to participate.

Modeled after Chicago’s long-running Gallery 37 program, Gallery 928 is designed to engage aspiring artists through art mentorship by creating a site-specific public artwork. Apprentices gain real-world experience with processes and materials and forge a strong connection to each other and the community as they work toward a shared vision.

“By the end of the program, our students feel empowered,” says Richard. “Not only have they created a beautiful work of art for all of Sedona to enjoy, but they have honed critical life skills—teamwork, leadership and responsibility. Best of all, they realize they can make a career out of their passion.”

In addition to completing an online application, students must also submit letters of reference and images of artworks. Qualified applicants will be invited to interview with Sedona Arts Center staff.

If you have any questions, please contact Bernadette at bernadette@sedonaartscenter.org

The 2024 Mural: Birds and Brushes

Birds and Brushes, a mural created by the 2024 Gallery 928 program, welcomes locals and visitors alike as it embodies what the Sedona Arts Center stands for at its very core. Carrying a ribbon inscribed with the center’s mission statement, a bright yellow raven leads a flock of equally vibrant local bird species across the front wall, symbolizing the golden standard SAC continuously strives to set as a creative hub in Sedona. In our artistic community we find connection, we find support, and we find a home. This idea of home is mirrored by the birds, as they work together to carry the “nesting” materials that represent what the center has offered both throughout its history and today: spools of film, paint brushes, clay tools, etc.. Created by a unique group of highschool artists, this mural recognizes the importance of the younger artistic voices in our community, effectively enriching a sense of connection throughout.






Vision & Sound: An African American Experience
February 1- March 27, 2024

Sedona Arts Center presents exhibits and a series of events featuring the works of African-American artists and advocates in Sedona, Peoria and Goodyear for the third year in partnership with the ASU Center for the Study of Race & Democracy, the City of Peoria, and the City of Goodyear. Now in its 9th year (3rd led by Sedona Arts Center), Vision and Sound: An African American Experience (V & S) uses personal perspective, cultural traditions, and the beauty of the arts to provide audiences insights into the accomplishments of African Americans and promotes inclusion in and through the arts and culture.  Vision and Sound is presented during Black History Month and offers opportunities for the public to explore African American cultures and experiences. To expand the reach and impact of the exhibition, SAC introduced a Symposium in 2023 entitled Understanding Culture and Race Through the Arts which featured two keynote speakers, a DEI workshop and panel discussions with participating artists. This will be repeated in 2024 with an expanded agenda and more in-depth discussions. In addition, programs, events and exhibits will be held in Goodyear, Peoria and Glendale during the celebration. Artists will conduct live demonstrations of their work at various events.

Click here for more info: VisionandSound.org


Arts & Economic Prosperity 6 (AEP 6)

AEP 6 is a program run by Americans for the Arts – one of our national service organizations. We have led this study on behalf of the City of Sedona which measures the economic impact of the nonprofit arts and culture sector here.  Through surveying and data gathering, we will have a comprehensive measure of our entire sector’s impact sometime in late 2023. Surveys were collected throughout the past year. This is actually the 6th study that AFTA has conducted – so this is a longitudinal study.  They typically run the study every five years but delayed it due to the pandemic.

View the AEP6 – February 1, 2024 talk: Click Here

Lecture & Discussion Series:
Appropriation in the Arts: Centering Authenticity

This is a series of exploratory panel discussions on key topics surrounding authentic representation in contrast to appropriation of Indigenous art. Discussions will explore issues pertaining to the legal and ethical aspects of art production and collecting; the use of cultural symbols in Native and non-Native fine art; food sovereignty and the use of traditional food and crops in the hospitality industry. Topic experts from the Museum of Northern Arizona (MNA), Arizona State University, and Northern Arizona University, indigenous experts, artists and gallery owners will discuss the blurred lines between art appreciation and appropriation to deepen the audience’s understanding of these issues. This series will be presented in partnership with the Museum of Northern Arizona and hosted at the Museum of Northern Arizona and Sedona Arts Center. Sponsored by AZ Humanities Council.


Panel 1 / September 17, 2023: Moving From Appropriation to Authenticity

Panel 2 / November 5, 2023: More Than a Meal

Panel 3 / January 21, 2024: Drawing Cultural Inspiration