Great Plains Art Museum


Tuesday–Saturday: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. | Closed major U.S. holidays, University breaks, and home football game Saturdays | Free admission | 402-472-6220

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The University of Nebraska is a land-grant institution with campuses and programs on the past, present, and future homelands of the Pawnee, Ponca, Otoe-Missouria, Omaha, Dakota, Lakota, Kaw, Cheyenne, and Arapaho Peoples, as well as those of the relocated Ho-Chunk, Sac and Fox, and Iowa Peoples.

Water in a Dry Land

Water in a Dry Land

January 24–July 8, 2023

Water in a Dry Land considers our complex relationship with water and the many essential roles it plays in the Great Plains region. Utilizing artwork from the museum’s permanent collection, this exhibition features various cultural and artistic perspectives on the use of water, explores water management and agricultural practices, and addresses the effects of precipitation, drought, and flooding on the land.

First Friday event

Above detail: Todd A. Williams, Platte River, Hall County, Nebraska, 2014, oil on panel, commissioned for the Elizabeth Rubendall Artist-in-Residence Collection. © Todd A. Williams. Used by permission.

Above banner: Susan Puelz, Adagio II: Platte River, 1998, watercolor and pastel on paper, gift of the Friends of the Center for Great Plains Studies

Dana Fritz

Field Guide to a Hybrid Landscape

Lower-level gallery
Sept. 2, 2022–March 11, 2023

In Field Guide to a Hybrid Landscape, Dana Fritz’s photographs make visible 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 its environmental history. A conifer forest was overlaid onto a semi-arid grassland just west of the 100th meridian in an ambitious late nineteenth-century idea to create a timber industry, and to change the local climate. This unique experiment of row-crop trees that were protected from the natural cycle of fire for decades, yet never commercially harvested for timber, provides a rich metaphor for our current environmental predicaments. This late nineteenth-century effort to reclaim with trees what was called “The Great American Desert” has evolved to a focus on twenty-first-century conservation, grassland restoration, and reforestation, all of which work to sequester carbon, maintain natural ecosystem balance, and mitigate large-scale climate change. Dana Fritz is Hixson-Lied Professor of Art at UNL. She is the author of Field Guide to a Hybrid Landscape (forthcoming from University of Nebraska Press in January 2023).

Panel event

Above: Dana Fritz, Forest Edge, 2021, archival pigment print, courtesy of the artist.


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