Nebraska U hosts First Friday art exhibits

· 5 min read

Nebraska U hosts First Friday art exhibits

first friday sign at the great plains art museum
Kateri Hartman University Communication
The Great Plains Art Museum will be open later for First Friday on Oct. 7.

On the start of every month, the University of Nebraska–Lincoln joins the local community for First Friday Artwalks, an opportunity for all to enjoy artwork displayed in local galleries.

For the Oct. 7 First Friday event, four University of Nebraska–Lincoln entities are hosting art exhibits and activities for community members to enjoy. Gallery spaces in Sheldon Museum of Art, Great Plains Art Museum, Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts and the Department of Art, Art History and Design will be open later to participate in the First Friday, an event hosted by the Downtown Lincoln Association on the first Friday of every month. Exhibit hours vary from 5 to 9 p.m. A full list of exhibits can be found here.

“First Friday is a great way for people to experience the Great Plains Art Museum as part of the larger art walk,” said Katie Nieland, associate director and communications coordinator for the Great Plains Art Museum. “By visiting multiple museums, people can view many different types of art in different spaces. It’s a very celebratory atmosphere that’s accessible even if you’ve never been to an art museum before.”

Sheldon Museum of Art

the sheldon museum of art
Kateri Hartman University Communication

Sheldon has been participating in First Friday for over 20 years, according to Saraphina Masters, assistant curator of engagement for the Sheldon.

“It’s important that Sheldon participates in First Friday because it’s an opportunity for us to show the university community and Lincoln what we have to offer,” Masters said. “By staying open late and hosting fun art-making activities, we invite everyone to see Sheldon as a space where they are welcome to come be creative and appreciate art.”

This Friday, students and members of the public can decorate a locally grown mini pumpkin, make a button, learn about local farms and foods from Buy Fresh Buy Local Nebraska and enjoy light refreshments. Visitors are also encouraged to observe the fall semester exhibits. The event will run from 4-7 p.m. and admission is free.

The Great Plains Art Museum

great plains art museum
Kateri Hartman University Communication

The Great Plains Art Museum will be open for Lincoln’s First Friday Art Walk from 5-7 p.m.

“The Museum has been participating in First Friday for as long as First Fridays in Lincoln have been around,” Nieland said. “It’s important to give people a chance to see our exhibitions at a time that may work better for people’s schedules. First Fridays are a great time to experience all the fantastic art that exists in downtown Lincoln and the campus community.”

The museum will display two exhibits, “Wayfaring Strangers” by Michael Farrell, and “Field Guide to a Hybrid Landscape” by Dana Fritz.

“Wayfaring Strangers” features a set of large-format portraits created during the pandemic in fall 2020. The work was done in a backyard natural light alcove, harkening back to 19th Century portrait settings.

Farrell is a veteran in public broadcasting specializing in history and humanities documentaries, as well as programs about diverse topics, such as music, art and rural and environmental issues. In addition to teaching, he co-leads the Platte Basin Time-lapse project.

In “Field Guide to a Hybrid Landscape,” Dana Fritz’s photographs show the forces that shaped the Bessey Ranger District of the Nebraska National Forest and Grasslands, once the world’s largest hand-planted forest. Wind, water, planting, thinning, burning, decomposing and sowing all contribute to the environmental history of this conifer forest overlaid onto a semi-arid grassland in an effort to create a timber industry and change the local climate.

Dana Fritz is a Hixson-Lied professor of art at the university. She uses photography to investigate the ways we shape and represent the natural world in cultivated and constructed landscapes. She is also the author of “Terraria Gigantica: The World under Glass” (University of New Mexico Press, 2017) and “Field Guide to a Hybrid Landscape” (forthcoming from University of Nebraska Press in January 2023).

Exhibition support is provided by the Charles W. Guildner Great Plains Art Museum Excellence Fund, Hixson-Lied Faculty Grants, and the univeristy’s Arts & Humanities Research Enhancement Fund. Admission is always free.

The Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts

johny carson center for emerging media arts
Kateri Hartman University Communication

The University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s Dance Program is having its monthly First Friday event from 6-6:30 p.m. at the Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts. Nine dance majors will be performing a work-in-progress showing of a dance piece by esteemed choreographer and dancer Bernard Brown. Brown will do a short talk-back after the performance.

Eisentrager•Howard Gallery (Art, Art History and Design)

The Eisentrager•Howard Gallery in Richards Hall will hold a closing reception for “Building a Narrative: Production Art and Pop Culture” from 5 to 7 p.m. The exhibition features original artwork from popular films, animated television series, comics and trading cards. It is part of the Lincoln Collection series, an exhibition with more than 140 selected works from the private collection of Trent Claus, a Nebraska U alumnus and visual effects supervisor for Lola VFX. Learn more about the exhibition.

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