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August at the Springfield Art Museum

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Museum Receives Competitive Federal Innovation Grant

The Springfield Art Museum is one of 7 museums in North America to receive an Institute of Museum and Library Services 2016 Sparks! Ignition Grant for Museums. These prestigious and highly competitive grants fund innovative projects at the intersection of museum programming and community service.

In collaboration with workforce development specialists from the Missouri Job Center and 4th grade classroom teachers from Springfield Public Schools, Springfield Art Museum’s [email protected] program teaches students to build soft skills, such as  critical thinking, problem solving, communication, leadership, time management, and teamwork through arts instruction and the creative process. These are foundational workplace skills that local employers have identified as lacking in the adult workforce.

In fact, the Missouri Job Center’s 2015 State of the Workforce Survey found that over 85% of employers questioned responded that “most or some of their current employees needed improvement in the areas of problem solving, time management, critical thinking/decision making, and leadership.” [email protected] provides a unique early intervention response to this very real community need.

Museum Director Nick Nelson notes “We are thrilled to receive a 2016 Sparks! Ignition Grant for Museums in support of [email protected] The recognition that the Springfield Art Museum is at the national forefront of innovative museum programming is invaluable. Through [email protected], we are identifying and modeling best practices for replicable partnerships between art museums, educators, and workforce preparation organizations that can impact economic development.” 

Curator of Art Sarah Buhr headshot

Museum Curator Earns Regional Museum Leadership Award

The Association of Midwest Museums (AMM) honored Springfield Art Museum Curator of Art, Sarah Buhr with the 2016 Promising Leadership Award at their annual conference on July 30th in Minneapolis, MN. This award acknowledges Buhr’s demonstrated “ability to organize and lead projects with local and national scope,” as well as her “admirable interest in promoting the work of artists across the Midwest,” according to Charity Counts, Executive Director of the AMM.

The AMM is made up of over 350 member museums and cultural institutions across eight states including: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, and Wisconsin. Buhr’s list of accomplishments includes re-inventing the MOAK exhibition as the biennial 4 x 4: Midwest Invitational, the recent acquisition of a major site-specific installation by artist Anne Lindberg in the Museum's King Gallery, and overseeing the re-installation of the Museum’s permanent collection in the Creating an American Identity exhibit.

“I’m proud that our permanent collection is now showcased in a way that not only highlights our cultural heritage, but is also an incredibly powerful teaching tool that informs our educational programming,” says Buhr. “Obviously, I’m thrilled to be recognized by this group of peers, but I’m also grateful to bring attention to the fact that the Springfield Art Museum is not just locally relevant, but part of an exciting regional museum community.”

Donald Holden: Memory Painter identity

Donald Holden: Memory Painter Now on View

This exhibit, pulled from the Museum's permanent collection of contemporary American watermedia, features eighteen works by artist Donald Holden.   Holden works primarily in watercolor and exclusively paints landscapes that are intentionally small scale because he "finds a special magic in small pictures." See this exhibition in our Armstrong Gallery through October 16. Includes a free gallery guide. 

Anne Linderg's "tilted sky" installation

Anne Lindberg's tilted sky in the News

Camille Dautrich recently featured Anne Lindberg's tilted sky in the Springfield News-Leader's weekend edition. This stunning fiber art installation was conceived of as a memorial to the many contributions of long-time Museum supporter Samuel O. King, who passed away in November of 2014. These floating clouds of color were installed by the artist in early June, and through generous fund donated by the Southwest Missouri Museum Associates, the Museum has acquired the piece permanently. Come in and experience the mesmerizing quality of this unique artwork today!

Creating an American Identity intro wall

New Works Rotating Into Permanent Collection Exhibition

Beginning August 3rd, look for works by Adolph Gottlieb, John Grabach, Philip Pearlstein, Julie Blackmon, Elizabeth "Grandma" Layton, Richard Anuszkiewicz, silversmith John Swift, Syliva Plimack Mangild, Mary Frank, among others to rotate into the semi-permanent exhibition of our permanent collection entitled, Creating an American Identity. Of particular note are Thomas Hart Benton's Loading Corn and Huck Finn, and Jennifer Bartlett's combination of objects and etchings that illustrate the four classical elements of air, water, fire, and earth. Rotating works of art on and off of display not only helps preserve the art, but keeps the collection of American art from the 18th century onward, fresh and relevant to patrons.

Closing in August

  • House of Art(s) - uninstalled on August 22.
  • Watercolor U.S.A. - closes August 28.
  • Warhol Uncanned - closes August 28.
  • Ozarks Food Harvest food drive - ends August 28.

Upcoming Events

  • Wednesdays, August 3, 10, 17, 24, 31, 8:30 AM: 1 Million Cups
  • Thursday, August 4, 5:30 PM: String Theory Knit Night
  • Friday, August 5, 5:30 - 9 PM: First Friday Art Walk Shuttle

For additional information, events, and educational programs please visit our calendar at and don't forget to follow us on social media @sgfmuseum.

99x identity

Save The Date - 99x: Bohemian Belle

Saturday, Oct. 8, 6 – 8 PM
Revel in a costumed evening of contemporary Bohemian fashion inspired by Rose O’Neill. Enjoy spirits, music, food, fashion, and frivolity. Creative cocktail attire encouraged. Funds from 99x benefit the Museum’s Preservation Fund. Sponsorship opportunities available, please contact Joshua Best, Development & Marketing Coordinator at [email protected] or (417) 837-5700 for more information.

99x: Bohemian Belle is presented by our friends at:

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As Always, Admission to the Springfield Art Museum is FREE. Join Us Today at YOUR Art Museum!

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