Who We Are

2018 This Land is Whose Land Exhibition

Our Mission

To enrich our community through transformative arts and educational experiences.

Show Up  |  Get Involved  |  Get Inspired

Sun Valley Museum of Art has enriched our community through transformative arts and educational experiences for over 50 years. Thank you for your support and involvement.

Since 1971, we have served this community—a community that is curious about the world and eager for arts and cultural experiences. We’ve welcomed amazing artists and thinkers. We’ve provided generations of local students with a strong foundation in the arts. We’ve connected our community through creativity, conversation and BIG IDEAS.

We are so grateful to our many supporters as we reflect on our past 50 years and look ahead to 100 years.

At this pivotal point in our history, we proudly honor our heritage while we look to a dynamic and bright future.

Our Manifesto

At Sun Valley Museum of Art we come together to think, to wonder, to create,
to expand our views and stretch our boundaries—to start a conversation.
We invite you to learn and be inspired with us.

That’s why we are here.

Our Story

The Sun Valley Center for the Arts and Humanities, now called the Sun Valley Museum of Art, was founded in 1971 on the belief that a community cannot be built solely from the presence of a beautiful mountain but needs arts and culture to be both vital and sustainable. Since its founding SVMoA has aspired to enrich our community through transformative arts and educational experiences. As the oldest arts organization in the Wood River Valley and one of only five institutions in Idaho accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, SVMoA serves as the Wood River Valley’s cultural anchor, bringing families, friends, visitors and residents together for shared arts experiences. We offer exceptional year-round programming in visual arts, music, film, and the humanities.

Over the last 50 years, Sun Valley Museum of Art has grown from a handful of people presenting classes and events to a professional arts organization that serves more than 40,000 patrons every year. The original campus of the Sun Valley Center for the Arts and Humanities was established on land deeded by Bill Janss, owner of Sun Valley Company (1964-1977). Back in the early days when the Union Pacific Railroad owned Sun Valley Resort, the 6-acre property along Trail Creek was the site of kennels where the resort’s sled dogs were kept. For several years, SVMoA flourished at this location as a facility for high-level fine arts residencies. Many of the artists and faculty that worked at SVMoA in its first two decades have gone on to achieve celebrated careers.

Today Sun Valley Museum of Art located in Ketchum has become a cornerstone of the Wood River Valley’s rich and diverse arts scene. Our commitment to education and this community has never wavered and is reflected in programmatic choices that cultivate dialogue around relevant regional and national issues. Recognized as a thought leader in our state and region, our exhibition program is nimble and responsive, considering subjects that enhance our community’s understanding of place or current moment. As a non-collecting institution, SVMoA is uniquely suited to invite the most appropriate artists to explore the specifics of a topic or an issue and we regularly offer opportunities to artists and musicians to develop new work.

Our Commitments

Sun Valley Museum of Art’s goals are guided by our core values and reflect our desire to be a place of education and discovery as well as a vehicle through which people can exercise their curiosity and creativity. SVMoA's purpose is to engage the whole community through arts and ideas, shaping our programs to encourage connection, conversation and active reflection.

SVMoA is deeply committed to adult and K-12 arts education. In addition to year-round lectures, workshops and classes for adults, and our robust partnerships with local schools enable us to bring artists and authors and musicians into direct contact with students in area classrooms. Our many outreach programs supplement the school curriculum through the Classroom Enrichment Program, in-school Professional Artist ResidenciesStudent Exhibition Tours, as well as Scholarships and Professional Development Opportunities for local students and educators.

DEAI (Diversity | Equity | Accessibility | Inclusion)
Sun Valley Museum of Art is actively working to serve our community through programs that reflect our commitment to diversity, our belief in the importance of equity, and our desire to be a place that is both accessible and inclusive. We seek to enrich our community through transformative arts and educational experiences with these values at the forefront of our programming and as filters for how we make decisions at the board and staff level. With the belief that the arts can transform the lives of individuals and communities, SVMoA enthusiastically takes on the work of implementing the values of DEAI at every level of the organization.

We recognize that we are at the beginning of a process that will be ongoing—one that will guide us as we shape a future that is welcoming to all. Our goal is that as SVMoA works to amplify a diversity of voices, those at every level of the organization—staff, board, audience, artist—feel valued for who they are as individuals and for the unique perspectives they bring to SVMoA.

As one of the leading arts organizations in the Wood River Valley and within the state of Idaho, SVMoA embraces the work of implementing the values of DEAI with the knowledge that we serve a largely rural state, and that we are located far from the nearest urban center. We exist in a county in which more than 30% of the population identifies as Hispanic/Latinx, a county with both Idaho’s highest per capita income and the state’s greatest economic inequality. We acknowledge that we live and work on the homelands of the Shoshone and Bannock peoples, and their use of these lands, past, present and future.

Highlights from 50 Years of Programming Excellence

Humanities Lecturers*

Junot Diaz
Geraldine Brooks
Orville Schell
Louise Erdrich
David Grann
David Henry HwangwangHwant
Alexandra Fuller
Miranda JulyMichael Chabon
Ira Glass
Anthony Doerr
Jonathan Franzen
James B. Stewart
Cheryl Strayed
Tim O’Brien
John Lehman
Kirk Wallace Johnson
Viet Thanh Nguyen
Jon Meacham
Richard White
Henry Louis Gates Jr.
Azar Nafisi
George Saunders
Joanne Weir
Mark Bittman
Joy Harjo
Neal Conan
John Carreyrou
Donna Shalala
Scott Simon
Barbara Ehrenreich
Martin Indyk
Michael Pollan
Mara Liasson
Neil deGrasse Tyson
Richard Rodriguez
Jacqueline Novogratz
Vicki Ruiz
Gretel Ehrlich
Gloria Steinem
Eric Schlosser
Judith Freeman
Reza Aslan
Daniel Handler
Richard White
Dale Chihuly
Robert Thurman
George Saunders
Arianna Huffington
Ruth Reichl
P.W. Singer
Tim Egan
Mary Oliver
Cheech Marin
Terry Tempest Williams
Ari Fleischer
Jonathan Franzen
Garrison Keillor
José-Luis Orozco
Ian Frazier
Sir Salman Rushdie
Maude Barlow
Will Shortz
Shankar Vedantam
Ann Patchett
Erik Larsen
Lois Lowry
James Balog
David Sedaris
Diana Walker
Bill McKibben
Barry Lopez
Alvin Josephy
N. Scott Momaday

*exclusive of Institute of the American West conferences

Performing Artists

Bonnie Raitt
Ramsey Lewis
Kronos Quartet
Ladysmith Black Mambazo
Ray Charles
Mason Williams
Taylor II
Emmylou Harris
Robert Cray
Mariinsky Ballet
Dizzy Gillespie
Storm Large
Blues Traveler
Branford Marsalis
Jimmy Cliff
Ririe Woodbury Dance
Nanci Griffith
Turtle Island String Quartet
The Staple Singers
Kathy Mattea
Paul Winter Consort
Diane Schuur
Keb’ Mo’
Lar Lubovitch Dance Company
Koko Tayor
Taj Mahal
Michael Franti & Spearhead
Ailey II
Buddy Guy
Los Lobos
Lyle Lovett and his Large Band
Mark O’Connor
Arlo Guthrie
Imani Winds
Vienna Choir Boys
Dianne Reeves
Las Cafeteras
Shawn Colvin
Willie Nelson
Northern Rockies Folk Festival – 20+ years of presenting
Pilobolus II
Donavon Frankenreiter
The Campbell Brothers
Johnny Clegg
Black Violin
International Guitar Night
Tyler Ramsey
The War & Treaty
Pedrito Martinez & Alfredo Rodriguez
LED Dance
Zap Mama
Flamenco Vivo
Pink Martini
Jake Shimabukuro
Marcia Ball
Trombone Shorty
Lake Street Dive
Gregory Alan Isakov
Sam Bush
Rosanne Cash
Dr. John
Meredith Monk
Allen Toussaint
Punch Brothers
Neville Brothers
Tedeschi Trucks Band
James Taylor
The Avett Brothers
Eroica Trio
Carole King
Brandi Carlile
Clint Black
Mavis Staples
Ziggy Marley
Infamous Stringdusters
Carlene Carter

Exhibiting Artists

Jacob Lawrence
Catherine Chalmers
Lee Mullican
Agnes Pelton
Allan McCollum
Mark Klett
Xu Bing
Tucker Nichols
Roger Shimomura
Charles Sheeler
Kiki Smith
Thomas Moran
Timothy O’Sullivan
Hans Haacke
Fred Sandback
Carl Andre
Sol Lewitt
Brice Marden
Agnes Martin
Richard Tuttle
Dinh Q. Le
Margarita Cabrera
Theaster Gates
Jennifer Steinkamp
Patrick Dougherty
Hasan Elahi
Trevor Paglen
Baseera Khan
Alfredo Jaar
John Marin
Helen Lundeberg
Walker Evans
Martha Rosler
Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle
Morris Graves
Theodore Waddell
Sheila Hicks
Enrique Chagoya
George Catlin
Arthur Dove
Nina Katchadourian
Minerva Cuevas
Camille Utterback
Paul Kos
Kim Abeles
Edward Burtynsky
Arlene Schechet
Walton Ford
Edward Steichen
Robert Henri
Marsden Hartley
Marion Post Wolcott
Walker Evans
Shahzia Sikander
Shirin Neshat
Hung Liu
George Nakashima
David Levinthal
Gregory Crewdson
Steve Roden
Sigmar Polke
Gerhard Richter
Thomas Moran
Carrie Mae Weems
Andy Goldsworthy
Max Beckmann
Georgia O’Keeffe
George Grosz
Joseph Beuys
Akio Takamori
Gertude Kasebier
Agnes Pelton


SVMoA Points of Pride


FAQs / About Sun Valley Museum of Art

The People Behind SVMoA