About the Island Center

The light of Greece opened my eyes, penetrated my pores, expanded my whole being

Henry Miller

The challenges and delights of exploring a new culture mean that learning at the Island Center is a process that goes beyond class time and fills every moment of your day. Our programs give artists of all levels the opportunity to expand their artistic vision in response to the legendary light, color and culture of Greece and the Aegean Sea.

Location plays a crucial role in the learning experience. The stunning beauty of the landscape of Skopelos, the constant flux of the coloration of the sea, the charm and authenticity of the village, the ease of strolling the path through the olive grove to the studio, and the close connection to nature all contribute to this process. Artists slow their pace, tap their inner resources, find their creative voice – and are rewarded with major breakthroughs on their creative path.

In the summer of 1986 Tom and Isabel, he from the faculty of Painting and Foundation Studies at Massachusetts College of Art and she a free lance illustrator and an independent scholar of Greek culture, spent an inspirational month traveling around the Greek islands and painting.

To give students the possibility to share their excitement and discoveries, they created and conducted Mass College of Art’s first  Study Abroad in Greece Program in 1988. After two successful summers of study in Crete, our venue moved to Skopelos where we’ve taught and hosted ever since. As our programs benefit from our many years of welcoming artists to Greece and working with talented and inspiring fellow artists and instructors, the courses have been fine-tuned and enriched to provide our participants with the most productive experience possible.

As artists and full-time residents of the island for over 20 years, Isabel and Tom offer you an insider’s view of Greece as well as providing a fascinating look into its culture, traditions and history. Best of all, you’ll be welcomed to the island not simply as a tourist, but as their personal guest – and you’ll immediately feel at home. When our students are introduced to our friends, invited to island festivals and welcomed into village homes, it becomes a doorway into another world and an artistic experience to remember for a lifetime!


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Would you like to be a part of our programs or apply now? Contact us