Center of Wonder Launches Wonder Institute

Enhancing Art & Cultural Opportunities Through A Digital Media Lab, Makerspace, Masters-In-Residency Series and Community Programming

June 7, 2019 Jackson, WY – Center of Wonder is pleased to announce the launch of our new initiative, the Wonder Institute.  The Institute will provide additional programming and creative space that will enhance Jackson Hole’s artistic and cultural community, and provide educational opportunities for the entire community.

The Wonder Institute will initially encompass four key areas, a Digital Media Lab, a Makerspace, a Masters-In-Residency Series, and Wonder Community Programs.

“Jackson Hole is a hotbed of award-winning professional film and photography talent. However, there is limited opportunity where students and adults can learn from these mentors, or have the equipment and technology to further their own creative pursuits,” said JuliAnne Thomas, Director of Communications and Development.  “Through our Digital Media Lab we will provide the equipment, and collaborate with the wide number of partners who will inspire the next generation of filmmakers and photographers.  We are offering several pilot programs including a two-week intensive filmmaking program in July for high school students and a filmmaking class with the Doug Coombs Foundation participants.  In addition, the Institute will be partnering with Teton Photography Club and will soon be announcing pilot photography classes.”

The Digital Media Lab and Makerspace will initially be housed in the south Jackson industrial district at Dancer’s Workshop’s alternative creative space, The Beast.  We are currently exploring long-term space options in Town that will provide easier access for students after school.

At the Makerspace, individual artists who do not have gallery space can create and showcase their work. The space will allow welders, sculptors, woodworkers and artists of all media to further their work, and provide a venue for youth and adults to learn from these artists.  Eventually, we will be adding 3-D printers, laser cutters and more equipment to spur creativity and provide learning options.  We foresee the Makerspace becoming a fun and exciting safe place where students can gather afterschool, and in the evenings to explore their creativity.

The Masters-In-Residency Series is a new take on the traditional speakers’ series.  The Wonder Institute will bring to Jackson Hole engaging experts in the arts and science arenas, four to six times per year. In addition to a keynote address, speakers will be selected who can provide additional workshops for the community and students over a three to five-day visit.  Immersing them in our community will allow a wider audience to learn from, and interact with them.

Keeping with our collaborative mission, the Wonder Institute is overseeing community outreach pioneered by Jackson Hole Wild. The Institute will coordinate TedxJacksonHole, Wild Fest and Science Days.  Wonder Community Programming will be designed with partners including Teton Science Schools, Wyoming Stargazing and others.

“The Wonder Institute is a concept we have wanted to bring to the Jackson community for several years,” said Veronica Silberberg, Co-founder and Board Chair.  “The time is right to take creative programming to a new level, advancing our mission of inspiring creative leaders.  We are excited about providing unique experiences, mentors and thought leaders for our entire community, and especially for students who are looking for fun and creative outlets after school and in the evenings.”

Collaboration has been a cornerstone of the Center of Wonder since its inception.  The Wonder Institute would not be possible without partners such as Dancers Workshop, Doug Coombs Foundation, Teton Photography Club, Teton Science Schools, Teton Search and Rescue Grand Teton Music Festival, Jackson Wild and many more.  Center of Wonder looks forward to collaborating with many other groups and organizations in the valley as the Wonder Institute programs expand in the coming year.

“We are looking for community members who are interested in being mentors for many of our programs,” said Thomas.  “Those interested in mentoring and sharing skillsets from 3-D printing, filmmaking, woodworking and more, are encouraged to reach out to us and share your knowledge with youth and adults, and inspire a new generation of creative leaders in our community.”

For more information about the Wonder Institute, programs and workshops, please visit our website:


About the Center of Wonder: Center of Wonder was founded and established as a non-profit organization in 2007 by Veronica and Gary Silberberg to provide programming and grants that  inspire wonder, empower creative leaders and advocate for the arts in Jackson Hole.  The Wonder Institute is the next step to expand arts, culture, and science opportunities and experiences of wonder in Jackson Hole from around the world. 


JuliAnne Thomas

Director of Communications & Development

[email protected]