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Carin Schoppmeyer: Crystal Bridges marks 10

New exhibit open July 11 by Carin Schoppmeyer | July 25, 2021 at 1:00 a.m.

Since Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art opened on Nov. 11, 2011, it has welcomed nearly 5.5 million visitors from around the world, according to Rod Bigelow, executive director and chief diversity and inclusion officer. Now, an exhibition titled "Crystal Bridges at 10" is "one way to celebrate a decade of enriching arts experiences for students, families and our community at large. The exhibition reflects the shared journey of our collection that will surprise and delight, while compelling us to further explore the vision for the next decade and beyond."

Sponsors and friends of the museum enjoyed a sneak peek at the exhibition during a sponsor preview on July 9 prior to the public opening on July 11. Organizers described the exhibit as "10 distinct art experiences celebrating the collection and the community." While most of its components come from the permanent collection, "the local community is an important presence in this exhibition," according to Mindy Besaw, curator, American art and director of fellowships and research.

Inspired by Norman Rockwell's "Rosie the Riveter," visitors can read the stories of some of Northwest Arkansas' everyday heroes; watch as the University of Arkansas takes a digital dive into Francis Guy's "Winter Scene in Brooklyn"; and see self-portraits made by local children framed on the wall next to self-portraits from the collection, organizers said by way of example.

"We hope visitors will be excited to interact with the artworks and artists, whether 'stepping into' 'Winter Scene in Brooklyn,' seeing Dyani White Hawk's curated gallery of works or stopping to watch artist Ziba Rajabi create a new work of art," said Lauren Haynes, former director of artist initiatives and curator, contemporary art at Crystal Bridges and the Momentary and newly appointed Patsy R. and Raymond D. Nasher Senior Curator of Contemporary Art at the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University.

Among supporters for "Crystal Bridges at 10" are Bob and Becky Alexander, Ramsay and Jaquita Ball, Avis and Bill Bailey, Juan, Marcy, and Joaquin Camacho, Steve Flory, Jim and Susan von Gremp, Meza Harris, Steve and Susan Nelson, Catherine and Stephan Roche, JT and Imelda Rose, Jon and Kim Shirley, Diane and Mark Simmons, Catherine and Michael Mayton, Barbara and George Sycip, Deborah Wright and David Zwirner.

Upcoming special events in conjunction with the exhibition include:

Adult Workshop: Photo Transfer Printing with Ziba Rajabi, 1-4 p.m. today, July 25;

Art by the Glass: Shadow Box Assemblage Laurie Foster, 6:30-8:30 p.m. July 30;

And Member Scoop: "Crystal Bridges at 10" Guided Tour, August 25.

Timed tickets for "Crystal Bridges at 10" are available for $12, and admission is free for members, SNAP participants, veterans and youth ages 18 and younger.

For more event photos --

Columnist Carin Schoppmeyer can be reached by email at

Photo by Ironside Photography / Stephen Ironside.
Photo by Ironside Photography / Stephen Ironside.

Print Headline: Crystal Bridges marks 10


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