Museum will work on collections in public view
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (July 27, 2023) — The Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College is transforming 1,500 square feet of gallery into a space designed to highlight the behind-the-scenes collections-based work of the museum. “Agents of Care: A Collections Transparency Project”—the first initiative of its kind for the Fine Arts Center—will increase access to the collection for the public, as well as Colorado College faculty and students. “Agents of Care” opens to the public on Friday, August 18, 2023. Museum staff will be present in the space on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 1–3 p.m.
“The Fine Arts Center Museum cares for a collection of over 17,000 works, a cultural resource that is particularly crucial in shaping our understanding of this region’s shifting and overlapping stories,” says Michael Christiano, director of visual arts and museum. “‘Agents of Care’ provides a dynamic point of access into that collection and the practices we employ for its care. It will be a space for conversations that will advance our understanding of how we can best steward and share this resource for generations to come.”
The new space will invite people to explore the museum collection like never before. Visitors will have the opportunity to engage with visible storage that houses objects under the museum’s care, as well as talk with collections staff and ask questions as they research, document, clean, and preserve objects openly in the gallery.
Through an ever-rotating series of presentations and programs—including hands-on workshops—”Agents of Care” provides a platform for critical conversations about museum practice while making transparent the museum’s ongoing effort to enhance its stewardship of thousands of works.
“Agents of Care” kicks off with programming focusing on “The Lives of Objects,” an exploration of the storied and sometimes complicated lives of objects. Even after objects enter the museum’s collection, some still travel, loaned to other museums for their exhibitions. Included in this programing are several works from the FAC collection that will soon be loaned to other museums, including “Portrait of Miss Elsie Palmer, or A Lady in White” by John Singer Sargent, “Dark Iris No.1” by Georgia O’Keeffe, and various textiles from the Southwest collection.
“These initial projects will examine the often unseen lives of the collections we safeguard,” says Sara Hodge, head of collections. “From the maker’s act of creation to the object’s complex and multi-faceted journey through space and time to our collections storage rooms and beyond. We are thrilled to invite diverse communities into the space and eagerly welcome their participation and fresh perspectives in the future of our collections’ stewardship.”
Works on View
August 18–Sept. 7: “Portrait of Miss Elsie Palmer, or A Lady in White” by John Singer Sargent
Sept. 8–29: “Dark Iris No.1” by Georgia O’Keeffe
Oct. 2–20: Various textiles from the Southwest collection
Friday, August 18, 5 p.m.
Celebrate the opening of “Agents of Care” with an Elsie Palmer inspired garden party. Guests can experience the newly transformed galleries, enjoy light refreshments, lawn games, and create their own expressions of care to send to loved ones. Creative garden party looks are encouraged.
“Agents of Care” Pop-up Projects
In addition to regularly scheduled projects, “Agents of Care” will feature pop-up programming related to various initiatives that are underway at the museum. This fall includes several conservation and restoration projects, including “Arte Mestiza” by Emanuel Martinez, “Wild Horses” by Frank Mechau, and the cleaning of the outdoor bronze sculptures and textiles. More details for these events will be announced on our website.
VISIT THE FAC MUSEUM
Museum free days are offered the second Saturday and third Friday of each month.
We are open late every Friday with free admission 5–8 p.m. on first Fridays and 10 a.m.–8 p.m. third Fridays.
ABOUT THE FINE ARTS CENTER MUSEUM
The FAC Museum’s permanent collection of approx. 17,000 objects showcases the rich history and vibrant contemporary cultures of the Southwest and the Americas, containing works of art from Native America, Hispanic and Spanish Colonial New Mexico, and 20th and 21st-century America.
Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College
The story of the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center at Colorado College (FAC) began with the founding of the Broadmoor Art Academy in 1919. A museum, performing arts theatre, and community art school, the FAC is a pillar in the cultural community of the Rocky Mountain West providing innovative, educational, and multi-disciplinary arts experiences designed to elevate the individual spirit and inspire community vitality. For more information about the FAC, visit fac.coloradocollege.edu or follow on Facebook @CSFineArtsCenter.
Colorado College occupies the traditional territories of the Nuchu, known today as the Southern Ute Tribe, the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, and the Northern Ute People, who lost their beloved homelands due to colonization, forced relocation, and land theft. Other tribes have also lived here including the Apache, Arapaho, Cheyenne, and Comanche — and notably, continue to do so, along with many other Indigenous Peoples. To actively seek social justice, we acknowledge that the land continues to hold the values and traditions of the original inhabitants and caretakers of this land. We pay honor and respect to their ancestors, elders, and youth — past, present, and future.