INSPIRED MINDS: Young Artist Exhibition

Providing opportunities for emerging artists was a passion of The Herb + Milly Iris Gallery’s benefactor, Milly Iris. Coupling those opportunities with arts education is at the core of SOPAC’s mission.

INSPIRED MINDS is a celebration of young artists in the region. The program provides an opportunity for Essex County high school students to undergo a full professional gallery experience; from application through exhibition, and possible sale of their art.

This program is managed by Linda Beard, SOPAC Director of Community Engagement & Education. Submitted works are juried by a panel of distinguished artists, photographers and curators. The artwork on display is for sale, unless otherwise noted. If interested in making a purchase, contact Linda Beard at (973) 382-1035 or

Pictured above: Toxic Positivity, by Ezra Simon


Teacher Testimonials

“My students get the feeling of a New York City gallery experience in their own backyard.” —April Hart, an art educator at East Orange Campus High School.


“Participating in the Inspired Minds exhibition is an extremely important part of our art students’ curriculum and a steppingstone to the level of work that can be achieved.” —Arlene Brown, an art educator at Livingston High School.

“Immigration” by Emma Breschard

View the Flickr Gallery for this Exhibition

“Rain Man” by Daniel Haber
View the Flickr Gallery for the 2021 INSPIRED MINDS.

“Two-Faced” by Ling “Tiffany” Huang
View the Flickr Gallery for the 2020 INSPIRED MINDS.
In honor of SOPAC Audience Services Director Grayce Coviello, 1958-2020.

“Abstract Self Portrait” by Dania Altayeb
View the Flickr Gallery for the 2019 INSPIRED MINDS.

“Threshold” by David Fernandez.
View the Flickr Gallery for the 2018 INSPIRED MINDS.

“Hanging Out Columbia” by Leonele Soares.
View the Flickr Gallery for the 2017 INSPIRED MINDS.

“Color in Motion” by Wendy Li.
View the Flickr Gallery for the 2016 INSPIRED MINDS.

Portion of “Crude” by Austin Romanaux.
View the Flickr Gallery for the 2015 INSPIRED MINDS.