Community art museums enable creative introspection – The Rocky Mountain Collegian


Hailee Stegall

Artwork is displayed inside the Gregory Allicar Art Museum inside the University Center for the Arts on August 25. (Luke Bourland | The Collegian)

Fort Collins has a multitude of finely curated art museums within reach of students and community members. Regardless of your age, specialization or career, art museums tend to be capsules in space and time where minutes don’t pass in the same way. For students in particular, a brain vacation is sometimes ideal for a stressed mind.

Luckily for students, there is an easily accessible art museum conveniently located across from campus. The Gregory Allicar Museum of Art is located at 1400 Remington Street in the University Center for the Arts. The museum has 3,500 works of art in its collection and regularly rotates through exciting exhibits.

works of art are on display at the Gregory Allicar Art Museum
Various art exhibits are on display inside the Gregory Allicar Art Museum on August 25. (Luke Bourland | The Collegian)

“(Art) can do a lot of different things,” said Lynn Boland, director and chief curator of GAMA, on the topic of what’s most important for students to get out of the art housed in the Museum. “There’s the pleasure side and the appreciation of art, but for me, at least, contemporary art deals with current issues that are vital. I think art gives access to ideas and ways of thinking – it’s not as linear as other forms (of art).

For example, an ongoing exhibition titled “Reclamation: Recovering Our Relationship with Place” is part of the global art project “Extraction: Art on the Edge of the Abyss.” This project focuses on the extraction of natural resources from the earth, focusing on how it is necessary for modern life and growth and also harmful to the overall health of the planet and its inhabitants.

An upcoming exhibition by artist Dionne Lee examines how our human forms move through landscapes both physically and emotionally and how different people’s landscapes contain different types of trauma – an exercise in empathy and understanding.

In addition to hosting exhibits that are open to the public five days a week, GAMA offers a range of virtual exhibits on its website that are available 24 hours a day during their exhibit times.

The museum is open Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., from 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday and from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. GAMA is closed to the public on Mondays and Tuesdays as well as university holidays and breaks. Admission is always free and open to all.

Off campus, a well-known and nearby art museum is the Museum of Art Fort Collins. The Art Museum is located at 201 S. College Ave. in what was once the post office building. While going through many name changes and relocation since it opened in 1983, this museum retains a nationally recognized level of visual art within its walls.

Lisa Hatchadoorian, Executive Director of the Museum since 2014said the most meaningful part of museum business for her is “opening up a world of art to the general public – everything from toddlers to the elderly”.

The art she talks about follows a wide range of mediums. Their upcoming exhibits this fall truly have something for everyone.

Hatchadoorian spoke about the upcoming “Blow Up II: Inflatable Contemporary Art,” an exhibition featuring inflatable garden art created by 11 different artists from across the country, calling it interesting “because it’s not not a material you typically think of for high-level contemporary art.”

“Blow Up II” runs from October 29 to January 9, 2022.

The other autumn exhibition is called “Beauty and the Beast: An Unexpected Journey” from August 27 to October 17 and is a semi-collaborative sculpture exhibition by Lorri Acott and Adam Schultz of Red Feather Lakes, Colorado. Acott and Schultz describe their exhibit as following the hero’s journey, depicting transformation and change – something that resonates deeply with students in particular.

Acott says that while his and Schultz’s art represent the hero’s journey through their own lives, the couple also want viewers to “come with their own ideas, their own thoughts, their own experiences, their own reactions to our art and, hopefully they will. see things, find things we haven’t even thought of.

The Fort Collins Museum of Art is accepting applications until August 15 for their 18th Annual Northern Colorado Eye Center Mask Benefit. Artists have donated 2,750 masks over the years, and the benefit has raised more than $1.7 million to support the museum’s mission to “spread the power of the visual arts.”

The museum is open to the public from Wednesday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Admission is $4 for students and $5 for adults.

Hailee Stegall can be reached at or on Twitter @haileenstegall.


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