Star Body, Star Breath
March 4–August 6, 2022
Star Body, Star Breath features new and recent work by Sarah Rowe, the museum’s 2022 Elizabeth Rubendall Artist in Residence. Rowe is an Omaha-based multimedia artist of Lakota and Ponca descent whose work opens cross-cultural dialogues by utilizing methods of painting, casting, fiber arts, performance, and Native American ceremony in unconventional ways. Her work is participatory, a call to action, and re-imagines traditional Native American symbology to fit the narrative of today’s global landscape.
Visit the artist during her residency at the museum from April 5–16. Learn more about the residency and scheduled events here.
Contemporary Indigeneity 2022
April 1–August 20, 2022
In 2022, the Great Plains Art Museum is reviving its biennial juried exhibition, Contemporary Indigeneity. The fourth iteration of this group show will feature artists addressing themes relevant to the contemporary Native American experience on the Great Plains, with the goal of highlighting current Native artistic practice and the diverse media and content explored by these artists. Learn more at the Contemporary Indigeneity web page.
A Vital Presence: Native Art at the Great Plains Art Museum
November 5, 2021–March 19, 2022
A Vital Presence presents selections from the Great Plains Art Museum’s collection of Native art, a significant—and growing—part of its permanent holdings. Featuring artists from diverse Great Plains and Southwest Indigenous tribes, this exhibition highlights the perspectives of these artists while emphasizing the ongoing presence and vitality of Indigenous peoples in our region.
The Christlieb Collection: 40 Years Later
October 1, 2021–February 19, 2022
In the fall of 1981, the Christlieb Collection of Western Art opened to the public on the second floor of UNL’s Love Library. 40 years later, this collection is still a favorite of many who visit it in its current home at the Great Plains Art Museum. This exhibition highlights key pieces from the collection and explores the legacy and interpretation of these artworks and the American West.
Agrarian Spirit in the Homestead Era: Artwork from the Moseman Collection of Agrarian Art
July 2–October 23, 2021
Agrarian Spirit in the Homestead Era features sixty paintings, sculptures, and prints that reveal dramatic change in land use on the Great Plains, from European American settlement and homesteading in the 1860s to an exodus from the land in the 1930s.
Jean-Francois Millet’s The Sower shows the dawn of this golden age of agrarian life, while artists such as Eastman Johnson, Winslow Homer, Georges Laugée, Thérèse Cotard-Dupre, John Gutzon Borglum, Harvey Dunn, Diego Rivera, and Robert Gwathmey represent the settlement of the Plains. Artworks by John Steuart Curry and Georges Schreiber show uncertainty near the end of the Homestead era and the twilight of this brief but transformative time in American history.
The exhibition travels to the Great Plains Art Museum from the Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art in St. Joseph, MO, and is accompanied by an illustrated catalogue published by the Albrecht-Kemper and edited by Mark and Carol Moseman. This Homestead-era art is a planned gift to be added to the Mark and Carol Moseman Collection of Agrarian Art, a named GPAM collection of annual artwork gifts that began in 2002.
Woman As…Exploring Gender and Representation in the Permanent Collection
May 25–September 18, 2021
Art is often reliant on perception and perspective: how something is portrayed and how we as the viewer respond to it. Through this exhibition, Graduate Research Assistant Hannah Ashburn investigates how women are seen and represented in artwork from the Great Plains Art Museum’s permanent collection. Arranged in a series of vignettes, Woman As… focuses on the depiction of women in various contexts, framing them as worker, bearers of culture, sources of life, and much more. The selected artworks were produced both by artists who identify as women and by those that do not to highlight different perspectives and understandings.
The Great Migration: A Celebration of Sandhill Cranes in Nebraska
January 19–June 19, 2021
Cranes have claimed a special place in people’s hearts for millennia. They are found in petroglyphs in Utah, in texts from ancient Greece and Rome, and they have long been revered as symbols of happiness and longevity in Asia. In March and April, Nebraska is a stopover place for about a million Sandhill Cranes, mostly along the central Platte River. It is the largest gathering of cranes in the world and one of the most popular of all wildlife migrations. Thousands of people visit Nebraska to see these birds and to reconnect with nature.
This exhibition celebrates this annual wildlife spectacle and the unique lives of these elegant birds. The artist, Jude Martindale, interprets her experiences with the cranes in ways that reveal not only their personalities, but also her emotional reactions to watching their captivating behaviors.
Avian Observations: Great Plains Birds in Art
January 19–May 8, 2021
Avian Observations highlights artistic representations of the varied species of birds on the Great Plains. Featuring artwork from the museum’s permanent collection and from Elizabeth Rubendall Artist in Residence Kirsten Furlong, this exhibition allows us to explore the history, physical characteristics, behaviors, habitats, and conservation of the diverse creatures that are so important to the Great Plains region.
Extinct Birds of the Great Plains: Carolina Parakeet (Conuropsis carolinensis ludovicianus), 2019, ink, collage, colored pencil, and acrylic on paper
photograph courtesy of the artist
Over the Edge of the World—Kirsten Furlong: Elizabeth Rubendall Artist in Residence
March 6–November 21, 2020
The exhibition Over the Edge of the World by Kirsten Furlong explores the artist's interpretation of the natural history and current grassland ecology in the Great Plains and beyond through drawings, monotypes, and paintings. Bird species, past and present, insects, animals, and plants are depicted along with mark making inspired by the lines and textures of the prairie.
Another Perspective: Interpretations of the Landscape
September 4–December 19, 2020
The wide, open skies and expansive prairies of the Great Plains inspire many artists to create varied interpretations of the natural world. Another Perspective features artists from the permanent collection who approach this subject matter from a unique vantage point and use abstract mark making, unconventional materials, and inventive compositions to depict the landscape.
Retrospective of Life’s Work: Charles W. Guildner
January 21–August 22, 2020
In 1990, Charles Guildner set out to photograph the landscape and people of the rural heartland. In the years since, Guildner has expertly recorded how the people of this region have maintained their traditional ways of life. This exhibition—a retrospective of Guildner’s 30-year photographic career—features examples from his Lives of Tradition series and from other projects.
Up in the Air: Great Plains Weather
January 21–August 22, 2020
This exhibition explores how artists have chosen to depict the ever-changing weather on the Great Plains. These images of snow-covered landscapes, tumultuous storms, and cloud-filled skies contribute to our understanding of how dynamic weather events affect the landscape and people of the region.
Recent Acquisitions: Highlights from the Great Plains Art Museum Permanent Collection
November 1, 2019–February 22, 2020
This exhibition highlights the generosity of the museum’s donors by featuring artwork that has entered the permanent collection in recent years.
In the Bohemian Alps: Photographs by Michael Farrell
September 6–December 21, 2019
The “Bohemian Alps” is a region of rolling loess hills that sits like an overturned bowl on the tabletop of eastern Nebraska between the Platte River to the north and Lincoln to the south, David City to the west and Wahoo to the east. In the early spring of 2017, I began visiting the region every few weeks to photograph in color using large format film cameras. As in my previous rural Nebraska photographic explorations, I’m drawn to the many small streams, old steel bridges, dilapidated farm buildings, minimum maintenance roads, and out of the way places—and how the light, colors, and textures on the land evolve with the changing of the seasons. A visitor driving the gravel roads will notice the many Czech names on the mailboxes and on the gravestones in the rural community cemeteries, and thus become aware of the continuity of family landowners and the care they have bestowed on the land during the 140 years since it was settled by their immigrant ancestors.
Opening reception: First Friday, Sept. 6, 5-7 p.m., artist talk at 6 p.m.
July 19–October 19, 2019
Altered States (Part Five) is part of an ongoing series of interconnected exhibitions consisting of several dozen drawings based on travels to Nowhere, Oklahoma; Happy, Texas; Lost Springs, Wyoming; Keystone, South Dakota; Recluse, Wyoming; Opportunity, Montana; Funk, Nebraska, and points in between. A narrative written by the artist will appear in the online magazine Glasstire in conjunction with each exhibition.
News story on the exhibition: Nebraska Today
For more about the project see: http://www.hillssnyder.com/
April 23 – August 24, 2019
This exhibition features works from the permanent collection by artists who were key players in picturing the American West. Albert Bierstadt, Ernest Berke, Karl Bodmer, Fremont Ellis, William Henry Jackson, Carl Kauba, Fredric Remington, Charles M. Russell, Olaf Wieghorst, and many others will be included.
March 1–June 29, 2019
Residency dates: March 23–April 6, 2019
Erin Jones Graf graduated from Montana State University in 2006 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Printmaking and a separate degree in K-12 Art Education. While she is drawn to the manual labor of printmaking and the “chemistry” behind the process, her love has always been painting. The artist’s native Montana is the subject of her exhibition as the 2019 Elizabeth Rubendall Artist in Residence. She states: “I grew up on the edge of the great plains of Montana, on land that nourished four generations of my family before me…. I paint my home, and my home is expansive. From prairies to peaks, I move along the hay fields and hills, painting the grandeur that is Montana.”
Jones Graf is the inaugural artist for the Elizabeth Rubendall Artist-in-Residence Studio and Education Lab donated by Fred and Julie Hoppe, which will open in spring 2019.
September 7, 2018 – April 6, 2019
Paintings, sculptures, drawings, and photographs from the permanent collection highlight the creative spirit of women artists. Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, Tonita Peña, Terry Evans, Hulleah J. Tsinhnahjinnie, Martha Pettigrew, and Anne Burkholder are just a few of the artists featured.
Opening reception: September 7, 5-7 p.m.
November 2, 2018 – February 16, 2019
New Farmers is a collaborative research project between photographer D. Bryon Darby, designer Tim Hossler, and sociologist Paul Stock. An observation of today's independent farmer, the project merges visual images with the print media of newspapers to explore and discuss contemporary farming. New Farmers aims to tell the story and empower the diversity of a new breed of first-generation, small-scale, sustainable farmer. Large-scale prints from the project pair with text that tells the story of these farmers. Visitors can take a copy of the “New Farmers” newspaper at the exhibition, which addresses the subjects of the work, food and farming on the Great Plains. More about the project can be found at http://www.newfarmersproject.com/
This program is brought to you by Humanities Nebraska, a statewide, non-profit organization inspiring and enriching personal and public life by offering opportunities to thoughtfully engage with history and culture, with additional funding from the Nebraska Cultural Endowment.
May 4 – August 25, 2018
The Oklahoma artist was named the Distinguished Visiting Artist at the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art at the University of Oklahoma, Norman in fall 2017. A portion of the artist's new work will travel to Nebraska. A self-taught artist of Native descent, Taylor is best known for his usage of iconic symbols and manipulation of proportion seen often in the hands and feet. His symbolic paintings challenge the notion that American Indian art should adhere to any one style.
With the support of the Nebraska Arts Council and the Nebraska Cultural Endowment.
March 2 – June 30, 2018
Henry Payer is a Ho-Chunk multidisciplinary artist who works primarily with collage and mixed media. He references the altered landscape through Indigenous cartographic methods of "picture-writing" with traditional aspects of spatial representation and symbolism combined with European modernist models of cubism, spatial distortion and collage. Henry represents a new generation of artists seeking to expand the range and voice of their visual and cultural representation, while attending to forms of tradition.
January 16 – April 28, 2018
Explore how this icon of American culture has been depicted over the last century through artworks selected from the permanent collection. Of note will be bronzes from renowned cowboy artists Charles M. Russell and Frederic Remington, paintings by Jackson Pollock, Thomas Hart Benton, and Olaf Wieghorst, and contemporary photography by Chuck Guilder and George Tuck. With the support of the Nebraska Arts Council and the Nebraska Cultural Endowment and Humanities Nebraska.
April 7 – July 15, 2017
A traveling exhibition that features narrative quilts by Studio Art Quilt Associates from Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska and Wisconsin. The imagery explores the connection of family, community, and our spirituality to nature and the Midwest soil. These aspects can be interpreted in abstract or concrete ways.
March 3 – June 24, 2017
Lari Radabaugh Gibbons is a professor at the University of North Texas, where she teaches printmaking and directs the Print Research Institute of North Texas (P.R.I.N.T Press). She earned an MFA from the University of Nebraska and a BA from Grinnell College (Grinnell, Iowa). Lari served as editor of The Mid America Print Council Journal from 2010 to 2013. Gibbons was selected because her work relates to the CGPS 2017 Symposium “Flat Places, Deep Identities: Mapping Nebraska and the Great Plains” and she is a UNL alumna, connecting to the 150-year celebration of Nebraska statehood.
Hildegard Center for the Arts 150th Photo Exhibition
January 6, 2017 – March 25, 2017
In collaboration with the Hildegard Center for the Arts, the Great Plains Art Museum will host the statewide traveling photography exhibition, "Bridges: Sharing Our Past to Enrich the Future," as part of Nebraska's 150th Sesquicentennial. This juried exhibition will serve as a bridge to connect Nebraskans with their culture and heritage highlighting historic places and often over-looked historical treasures in all 93 counties. The Governor’s Sesquicentennial Committee (the Nebraska 150 Commission) has officially endorsed this project as a Signature event.
Native American Art from the Permanent Collection & the University of Nebraska State Museum
November 4, 2016 – February 25, 2017
Paintings and sculptures by Southwest Native American artists provide a glimpse of a region bordering the Great Plains. Paintings from the artistic collaboration known as Artist Hopid from the Great Plains Art Museum’s permanent collection are featured alongside objects on loan from the University of Nebraska State Museum including pottery from the Norman and Bernice Harris Collection and kachinas from bequest of Luella Buros. This exhibition provides a unique opportunity to view rarely seen jewels from the University of Nebraska State Museum in conjunction with paintings by Hopi and Zuni artists from the same region of the American Southwest.
September 2 – December 17, 2016
The 2016 iteration of Contemporary Indigeneity at the Great Plains Art Museum at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln will explore Native American spirituality through artistic interpretations of place in the Great Plains. By bringing together works incorporating a diverse range of artistic media, this exhibition will seek to create dialogues regarding interpretations of sovereignty, spiritual connections to the land, and cultural identity within the boundaries of the Great Plains.
September 2 – December 17, 2016
The Elizabeth Rubendall Foundation has generously funded the artist-in-residence program at the Great Plains Art Museum since 2006. While in residence, an artist creates a work on-site affording visitors a unique opportunity to see the artmaking process and meet the artist. The artwork then becomes part of the Museum's permanent collection. There are no limitations in regards to style or media; the only criteria is that the artist(s) hail from the Great Plains and/or depict subjects pertinent to the region.
July 12 - October 29, 2016
B.C. Gilbert's work is influenced by experiences of growing up on the High Plains of Texas where ranching is prominent. His work brings into question the iconography of West Texas incorporating cowboys and Indians alongside landscape markers such as water towers. In multi-media constructions that merge unconventional materials such as tooled leather, metal siding, and found objects with painting, Gilbert depicts the West in a manner reminiscent of Pop artists. Most recently, Gilbert began making prints combining Western icons with text. Gilbert’s sculptural paintings and prints present a unique perspective of the contemporary American West.
Gilbert was in residence at the Museum from August 2 - 6 and October 11-15.
June 3 - August 27, 2016
Kendall McMinimy fuses photography and printmaking in monochromatic abstracted renderings of irrigation systems. The artist draws attention to agricultural water use through images that explore the nature of center pivot irrigation as “a system that encircles multiple conflicting truths — a worldwide revolution in food production is also complicit in the depletion of groundwater; humanitarian aid aligns with hegemonic order; global market forces allow and deny local economies; a system simultaneously produces and diminishes.”
Born and raised in the High Plains of Kansas, McMinimy holds an MA and MFA from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Cropping to Circles was recently recognized in the Critical Mass Top 50 Portfolios of 2014.
April 1 - August 27, 2016
We, The Heartland is a love letter to the cultural landscape of the prairies. Photographs by Kate Schneider portraying the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route in Nebraska and South Dakota are paired with handwritten letters to President Obama from landowners and Lakota natives. The landscapes address the unseen threat the proposed pipeline poses to the land, and the accompanying letters address the indexical relationship between the land and those who seek to preserve it.
Schneider is a Toronto-based photographer and educator. Her work is based in the traditions of documentary storytelling and ethnography, and her most recent works focus on the impact that land and the socialized landscape have on individual and cultural identity in North America. Schneider was recognized by the Magenta Foundation's 2013 and 2015 Flash Forward competitions, and has recently shown her work at the Soho Photo gallery (New York), the Society of Photographic Education (Cleveland), and the floor of the United States Senate. She received her MFA in Documentary Media from Ryerson University (2009) and is an Instructor of Photography at OCAD University and the Unviersity of Guelph-Humber. This exhibition was made possible with the support of the Nebraska Arts Council and the Nebraska Cultural Endowment.
February 5 – June 25, 2016
An Exhibition of Vintage Engravings 1770-1902
Curated by Lee Silliman, a spectrum of original nineteenth century engravings of wildlife that graced the American West will be on view. Images published in Harper’s Weekly, Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper, The Illustrated London News, and other historical sources illuminate the native species and their interaction with humans. Included in this menagerie are bears, bison, elk, pronghorn antelope, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, moose, wolves, beaver, cougars, wolverines, eagles, osprey, rattlesnakes, and even (feral) wild horses. These fauna are portrayed in their natural habitat or as the object of mankind’s penchant to hunt them for food, clothing, or sport. The panoply of scenes includes dramatic surprise encounters between man and animal, stealthy approach by hunters, conflicts between predator and prey species, a stampede from a prairie fire, Native American veneration of wildlife, and faunal portraits set in their natural habitat.
September 1, 2015 - January 30, 2016
Photography and Poetry
From This Grass Earth celebrates the wild and immense beauty of the North American grasslands by exploring the legacy of stewards of the Great Plains landscape. Through a marriage of art, science, and poetry, visitors can experience and engage with the landscape through a myriad of aesthetic, scientific, and ecological lenses.
The collaborative exhibition features photographs from the Rediscover the Prairie expedition by Sebastian Tsocanos, photographs and poems written on the trail by Robin Walter, graphics compiled by the World Wildlife Fund that articulate ecological trends underway in North America’s grasslands, and an interactive interface that allows viewers to identify the threats facing the Great Plains ecoregion.
From This Grass Earth aims to increase awareness of a critically endangered landscape and excite a deeper understanding, appreciation, and engagement with the natural world and our place within it. For more information about the project, please visit: http://www.rediscovertheprairie.org. This exhibition was made possible with the support of the Nebraska Arts Council and the Nebraska Cultural Endowment.
September 1, 2015 - January 30, 2016
The Art and Poetry of Gwen Westerman
Recent work by Gwen Westerman, 2014 Contemporary Indigeneity Exhibition Prize winner, features unique quilts and textiles alongside poetry inspired by personal connections to her Dakota family history. Dr. Westerman is a professor of English at Minnesota State University, Mankato. She co-authored MniSota Makoce: The Land of the Dakota, with Bruce White, which won a Minnesota Book Award and has published a collection of poetry written in Dakota and English entitled Follow the Blackbirds.
February 3 - June 27, 2015
Quilts and Context in the Civil War
In collaboration with the Nebraska State Historical Society and the American Textile History Museum, the Great Plains Art Museum will host the traveling exhibition of Civil War era quilts, clothing, textiles, and related objects contributing to the sesquicentennial commemoration of the American Civil War (1861-65.) Homefront & Battlefield: Quilts & Context in the Civil War connects material objects to deeply moving and insightful personal stories about the war, its causes, and its aftermath with the broader national context. Textiles were integral to the Civil War—physically, economically, ideologically, and emotionally—and linked soldiers and civilians. The exhibition and accompanying book build on recent scholarship in social and economic history to tell of the events that led to the war, the stories of men and women affected by the Civil War, and the opportunities and challenges that followed it.
January 13 - March 28, 2015
As part of the 4th Biennial Lincoln Photofest, a selection of photographs from the Fred E. Miller photograph collection on loan from the Carroll and Nancy O'Connor Foundation will be featured in the Lentz Gallery. Between 1898 and 1912, Fred E. Miller photographed the Crow in Montana. Miller’s images provide an intimate portrait of the Crow during what some have considered the last years of their wholly traditional plains life.
August 1 - December 21, 2014
Selected Works from the Permanent Collection and Recent Photographs by Jan Christensen
Striking images by Christensen complement an array of paintings, photographs, and prints from the museum's collection. Highlighting artworks with low horizon lines and expansive vistas, the exhibition celebrates the endless skyline characteristic of Great Plains landscapes. Narrow All Horizons illustrates how the American Great Plains captured the imagination of artists from the early 20th Century until today. The landscapes vary in media and also incorporate several artistic styles ranging from realism to abstraction.
May 2014 - February 2015
At the beginning of the 20th century, the Western was one of the most popular genres of silent film. It has since developed through many revivals from the Classic Westerns of the forties to the Spaghetti and Contemporary Westerns of the sixties and seventies. It provided action, scenic settings, and colorful uniforms and costumes. The Western movie symbolizes man's conquest of the wilderness in the name of civilization and confiscation of the territorial rights of the original inhabitants of the frontier, Native Americans. These films play an important role in shaping ethnic and national identities, and create and perpetuate national stereotypes. Although we might not agree with the depictions of Native Americans in westerns, understanding Hollywood's as America's stereotype of these people is true of its time period. Unfortunately, this stereotypical image from Hollywood served as the iconic Native American for everyone who lived mid-20th century though many earlier films were far from accurate. This exhibition showcases five elements of a western film shown through the lens of our permanent collection.
June 1 - July 27, 2014
“Contemporary Indigeneity” included individuals whose work expresses the texture of Native American life in the Great Plains today. Exhibited works were selected by a jury. Artist Jaune Quick-to-See Smith awarded cash prizes during the exhibit’s First Friday opening.
March 14 - May 18, 2014
“Dry Times” by ceramic artist Jess Benjamin focused on water usage in the Great Plains, a regional concern related the phenomenon of global drought. In the west gallery, an exhibition titled "Drought Interpretations" was curated by Liz Ingraham, UNL Art & Art History featured items from Arlee Barr, Amanda Breitbach, Kim Kopp, Launa Bacon, and Stacy Asher. Both shows were timed to coincide with the 2014 Great Plains Symposium on drought.
January 2 - February 23, 2014
Karl Bodmer’s vivid reflection of the landscapes, wildlife, frontier settlements, and American Indian peoples that he and Prince Maximilian of Wied encountered during their expedition along the Upper Missouri River. Made possible with support from the Nebraska Arts Council, the Nebraska Cultural Endowment, and the Richard P. Kimmell and Laurine Kimmel charitable Foundation, Inc.
April 23 - May 3, 2013, exhibit extended until June 15, 2013
Elizabeth Rubendall Artist-in-Residence Molly Murphy Adams, beadwork. During her residency, Murphy Adams created a sculptural beadwork that became part of the museum’s permanent collection; The commissioned artwork blended Native and non-Native imagery and patterns including parflesche designs, cartography, historic events and flora and fauna from the Great Plains region.
Aug. 3 - Sept. 23, 2012
Contemporary Indigeneity: The New Art of the Great Plains
June 1 - July 29, 2012
The first of a recurring juried exhibition of Native American art
Longed for Still: The Avian Art of Anne Peyton
April 24 - May 27, 2012
Confrontations and Concilatory Acts: Art & Artifacts of United States and Sioux Nation Conflict
March 2012 - March 2013
LPS Visual Mentoring Program and Kaneko
Jan. 5 - April 22, 2012
Student art show
Modern Traditions: Seeing with New Eyes
Jan. 5 - April 22, 2012
Paper Plains: The Cast Paper Sculpture of Allen and Patty Eckman
March 2012-March 2013
Paper sculpture, Artist-in-Residence program
Marking the Prairie Sublime: Paintings and Prints by Jonathan Goodding
Jan. 3 - March 25, 2012
Transported with Wonder
Jan. 3 - March 25, 2012
The Great Plains
Oct. 8 - Dec. 11, 2011
Amassing Artists: The Collecting Compulsions of the Christliebs
August 2010 - December 2011
Portraits of the Prairie - The Land that Inspired Willa Cather
Lincoln Public Schools Visual Arts Mentoring Program
Double Vision: New Works by Hulleah Tsinahjinnie
Jan. 3 - April 14, 2011
Ceremonial Dancing and Collaborative Spirits: Modern Native American Art
Jan. 3 - March 27, 2011