Widgets Magazine

Institute for Diversity in the Arts hosts first block party of the year

(MINI RUDA/The Stanford Daily)

(MINI RUDA/The Stanford Daily)

The Future Block Party, hosted by the Stanford Institute for Diversity in the Arts (IDA) at Harmony House last week, was dedicated to promoting its core values of diversity, creativity and excellence in the arts.

To launch IDA’s 16th year, the event featured music, information about the Institute and spaces for engaging with and celebrating diverse works of art at Stanford.

Representative of IDA’s belief in the ability of art to transform and transcend space, the event showcased works of art that poured outside of the house onto the lawn along with music that could be heard down the block.

“IDA provides the space for folks to be themselves and express the fullness of their identity and authenticity, to be outside and connected with nature and friends, to experiment with creativity,” said A-Lan Holt ’11, the associate director of IDA.

The idea of an institute dedicated to racial diversity in the arts was first envisioned by Charles Lyons, Stanford’s former drama department chair beginning in 1973. That vision was ultimately realized in 2000 with a grant from the James Irvine Foundation. The interdisciplinary program’s focus is not only on featuring student works, but also on engaging artists beyond campus to learn about culture and identity.

Both Holt and Yeji Jung ’18, a student IDA fellow, noted the IDA’s focus on inclusivity.

“We’re really here to support this community, to build with each other, and the doors are open. I hope folks feel welcome and that they can make the space their own.”

“We take diversity very seriously,” Holt said. “When we say diversity we mean seeing the fullness of everybody and embracing that fullness. We’re not about imposing a culture but rather embracing our culture together.”

Contact Mini Ruda at ‘mruda’ at stanford.edu.

  • Emily Constance Chao