Get Inspired! Art in the Star City
by Sriyani Tidball
“Any form of art is a form of power; it has impact, it can affect change—it can not only move us, it makes us move.”
The capital city has much to offer: sports, entertainment and food—but why not feed the soul as well as the body? Lincoln is home to amazing watercolor, oil and acrylic paintings, fiber art, video, ceramics, jewelry and metal and stone sculptures. And on the First Friday of each month, many Lincoln galleries host evening open houses to showcase new artists and collections. Lincoln boasts many art studios, museums and galleries. Here are some of the best.
Sheldon Museum of Art
One of the largest galleries in the state, the Sheldon Museum of Art is downtown at 12th and R streets on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus. It houses a major national collection of American art in a breath-taking building designed by American architect Philip Johnson. The collections of the University of Nebraska and the Sheldon Art Association, founded in 1888, contain nearly 13,000 artworks in diverse media. They include works by artists John Singer Sargent, Edward Hopper, Georgia O’Keeffe, Jackson Pollock, Thomas Eakins and Andy Warhol. For more information about exhibitions, events, collections and education, visit sheldonartmuseum.org.
Anne Burkholder, owner and executive director of the Burkholder Project, shares her gallery studios with local artists whose works include paintings, photography, sculpture, mixed media, dolls and jewelry. Celebrating more than 30 years as the city’s first Haymarket gallery, the studios at 719 P St. invite you to observe artists while they work, ask questions and educate yourself about different art forms. Browse through the galleries and visit the working studios, art displays and shops, where you can see finished works as well as those in progress. The Burkholder Project is a unique collection of 36 art and design studios on three floors featuring artists of all disciplines and styles. For more information about artists and exhibits visit burkholderproject.com.
Gallery 9 Professional Artists Affiliation
Founded in 1994 and celebrating its 25th year, Gallery 9 is an independent cooperative gallery in the historic Mission Arts Building, which is also home to artist studios, arts-related businesses and apartments. The renovated building is on the National Historic Register and has a colorful past, having once been a brothel, and later, Lincoln’s City Mission. This superb contemporary art and fine crafts gallery showcases paintings, ceramics, metal sculpture, glass and jewelry from about 30 artists in residence. Reach the small gallery by crossing a beautiful, hidden courtyard that in itself makes the trip worthwhile. During the holiday season, shoppers can choose from a variety of gifts on display. In July, the gallery features a group invitational show. Gallery 9 is at 124 S. Ninth St. For more information, visit gallerynine.com.
Great Plains Art Gallery
A sculpture of prairie pioneers greets visitors as they enter the Great Plains Art Gallery at 12th and Q streets on the south edge of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus close to the Sheldon Art Gallery. The museum houses the Christlieb Collection of Western art that includes works by Albert Bierstadt, Frederic Remington and Charles M. Russell. It also hosts exhibits of art, video and photography, as well as First Friday events. For more information, visit unl.edu/plains/great-plains-art-museum.
Kiechel Fine Art
Kiechel Fine Art at 1208 O St. in downtown Lincoln was established in 1986 and specializes in 19th and 20th century American Art, Old Master and contemporary prints, as well as regional and national contemporary art. The collections represent several notable artists and private family trusts, and the gallery offers a number of services including art consultation and certified appraisal. For more information on artists, galleries, services and exhibitions, visit kiechelart.com.
The International Quilt Study Center and Museum
The mission of the International Quilt Study Center and Museum on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s East Campus at 33rd and Holdrege streets is to inspire an understanding of the cultural and artistic significance of quilts by collecting, preserving, studying, exhibiting and promoting quilts and quilt-making traditions from many cultures, countries and times. The generosity of the Robert and Ardis James Foundation made this gallery possible. For more information on the exhibitions and collections, visit internationalquiltmuseum.org.
Robert Hillestad Textile Gallery
The Robert Hillestad Textiles Gallery educates and increases awareness of the rich traditions of art, craft, design and material culture expressed through the exhibition of all forms of textiles and apparel. This gallery on the second floor of the Home Economics building at 35th and Holdrege streets on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s East Campus is devoted to art and apparel textiles from East to West. Its collection spans many centuries and features the work of famous and emerging designers. For more information on exhibitions and workshops, visit cehs.unl.edu/textilegallery/.
Parrish Studios, upstairs at 1410 O St., features spaces for small galleries and businesses to foster the creative community. It is home to several art galleries, studios, photographers and apparel shops. Parrish is a popular Artwalk destination, hosting 600 to 800 people on the first Friday evenings each month.
Noyes Art Gallery
Noyes represents the work of 125 artists in its gallery at Ninth and O streets. The gallery is operated by local artists who are members of Noyes Art, which helps keep the prices of their original work lower. A mainstay in the art community, the gallery offers original painting, photos, pottery, clothing and jewelry. The co-op art gallery also sponsors an exhibition each September at Sunken Gardens at 27th Street and Capitol Parkway, where beauty is surrounded by beauty. Noyes Gallery has a new show each month and a reception on the first Friday evening of every month. For more information, visit noyesartgallery.com.
Live Yes Studios and Gallery
Live Yes at 1233 Arapahoe St. is an alternative arts-based day program for adults with developmental disabilities. The gallery seeks to break down societal barriers and create a space where individuality is fostered. At Live Yes Studios, art is a lens through which to see the world, a tool to communicate and a gateway to community membership. For more information on the artists, instructors, programs and galleries, and to find out how to help, visit liveyesstudios.com.
The Metro Gallery
The Metro Gallery offers an amazing variety of diverse art in a relatively small space at 1316 N St., Suite 101, in downtown Lincoln. Each piece is personally selected by owner and lifelong art lover Dean Settle. He represents local, national and international artists—both professionals and amateurs—and offers a heady selection of outsider art. The gallery displays accessible and often affordable fine art. Artists participate in First Fridays and have a different show each month. Visit metrogallerynebraska.com for more information.
The Eisentrager Howard Gallery
The Eisentrager Howard Gallery features the art of faculty and students in the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
The gallery is in Richards Hall on Stadium Drive and T Street. For a listing of current and upcoming exhibitions, visit arts.unl.edu/art/eisentrager-howard-gallery.
The Kruger Collection
The Kruger Collection of Miniature Furnishings and Decorative Arts is in the College of Architecture at 10th and R streets on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus and features four centuries of miniatures in one space. Unique to Nebraska, the Kruger Collection of 20,000 art miniatures blends craft, creativity and history and is fun for all ages and interests. For more information visit krugercollection.unl.edu.
LUX Center for the Arts
The LUX Center in University Place in north-central Lincoln is a nonprofit community art center that shows work from local, regional and national artists. Adults and children can also explore their own creativity with classes in pottery, printmaking, jewelry, glass or fiber. Classes are at the center at 2601 N. 48th St. or off-site through the Art Van de LUX program. The gallery participates in the First Friday Artwalk and is close to Nebraska Wesleyan University. For more information on exhibitions and programs, visit luxcenter.org.