Middle Ridge Winery Tasting Gallery is once again introducing a new art exhibit in its 4,000-square-foot gallery. “The Idyllwild Collection: Fire & Ice” exhibit turns up the heat with art that delivers thrills, chills and heart-melting beauty.

The exhibit features more than 200 works of art created by more than 50 artists, including for the first time, 26 students from the Visual Arts Department of the Idyllwild Arts Academy. “We are thrilled to share the work of some of Southern California’s most talented artists in our new exhibit,” said Melody Johnston who, along with her husband and winemaker Chris, opened Middle Ridge Winery Tasting Gallery to create a space where their love of wine and love of art could come together.

“We’re also excited about partnering with the IAA to feature the work of students who come from all around the world to study in our beautiful mountain community. Their work is amazing!” she added.

“We appreciate the opportunity for our students to show their work at Middle Ridge Winery Tasting Gallery,” said David Reid-Marr, chair of the Visual Arts Department at IAA. “The more students are able to present themselves and their work in public, the more they mature as artists/citizens. It is a significant educational experience for them in many ways.”

Middle Ridge’s “Afternoon with the Artists” is open free to the public from 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 27. Visitors will have the opportunity to sip, talk and walk through the Tasting Gallery while getting to know the artists.

In addition to enjoying the art and award-winning wine, guests attending the reception will be treated to the classic country, rock and R&B sounds of the Len-Tones, featuring Lenny Hansell, Gilbert Hansen and Rodger Reeder, who will be performing from 2 to 7 p.m. Middle Ridge Winery invites visitors to “spend the afternoon and with us … and the day in Idyllwild.”

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