About The Desert Art Center
The Mission of the Desert Art Center, a community art resource, is to stimulate, educate, and nurture the visual arts of the residents of the Coachella Valley through a collaborative effort of membership programs, art education, and gallery space for emerging and established artists.
We do this by providing:
We are extremely proud of our involvement in the art education of students in our community. Our art classes augment the art education programs in the Palm Springs Unified School District.
In addition, we provide scholarships to local high school seniors who enter an art program at a college or university as well as financial support for school art supplies.
The Desert Art Center was established in 1950 and is the oldest art organization in the Coachella Valley. Artists who founded the Desert Art Center believed that being an artist is more than personal expression. It also includes making a contribution to the community you live and work in, which they did through the gallery and its events. Many founders of the Desert Art Center became nationally known artists.
Our current location is a landmark building that was the first school in Palm Springs. The school was built in 1927 by Frances Stevens, who was the wife of cattle rancher Prescott T Stevens, who built the El Mirador Tower in 1928. The building began its life as their home, until 1927, when the first classrooms were constructed. In 1974 the City of Palm Springs purchased the site and President Gerald Ford dedicated it as a cultural arts center.