Why are the paintings in the FAC’s restaurant being moved?
Two paintings on canvas located in the FAC’s restaurant will be deinstalled and relocated to permanent collection storage for care and preservation.
The paintings by Ward Lockwood are being moved for two reasons –
- Their current location doesn’t meet standards for collection care and exhibition
- The content of the works isn’t suitable for display in a restaurant, a public space of gathering and community building
THE CURRENT LOCATION CONDITIONS
The objects have sustained damage where they are currently installed. Their current location, a space that was originally the theater lounge but has since been used as a restaurant, does not meet our standards for collection exhibitions. Oil paintings on canvas are susceptible to exposure to high light levels, fluctuations in temperature and humidity, and mechanical damage from accidental contact. We are unable to adequately control for these conditions in the restaurant space which has floor-to-ceiling windows, high levels of activity directly adjacent to the objects, and larger than appropriate changes in humidity and temperature.
The museum team is working with a professional conservator to deinstall, clean and move them into the FAC’s permanent collection storage with the rest of the museum collection to assure future care and preservation.
The objects depict characters from the American theatre and cinema in ways that we identify today as racist – a minstrel performer, and the main character in a stage production of Uncle Tom’s Cabin. These depictions include dehumanizing and hateful stereotypes of Black people pervasive throughout American society in the 1930s and beyond.
The presence of the paintings in the restaurant, a space of gathering and community building, counters the college’s and the FAC’s work toward creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for all. More on our commitment to antiracism.
A few other important clarifications –
- The works are not being deaccessioned from the collection or the building and will be available for display, research, and educational purposes including Colorado College coursework, just like all other objects in the museum’s collection.
- As with all other objects in our galleries and collection, we will put up and take down works of art in relationship to our program goals.
- Our museum adheres to the standards set by the American Association of Museums, who in July reaccredited the FAC for another 10 years.
The Fine Arts Center published correction to misinformation printed and shared locally in the CS Business Journal