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U Inaugurates President’s Gallery and Art Exhibition


March 17, 2014 – A creative spirit that dates back at least a century is thriving on the campus of the University of Utah, and in some unexpected places.

To showcase the work of all artists – whether current students, faculty members or staff – a new exhibition and exhibit space has been established by Sandi Pershing, assistant vice president of engagement at the U.

“This is a creative campus, and I wanted to find a way to recognize talent across campus and to engage the university community in a new and visible way,” said Pershing. “This inaugural campus-wide exhibition supports the UMFA’s Art is 100 celebration, and spotlights the Park Building, which was home to the U’s first art gallery when completed in 1914. This is a great year, and an exciting way, to support the arts at the U and to welcome the public to an iconic building on campus to experience it.”

Visual artists working in all media, from any department on the University of Utah campus, are invited to submit examples of three pieces of their work to be juried by the President’s Gallery Committee.  Accepted submissions will reflect a sense of place – presenting diverse observations on the land, the people, the community, and campus life in Utah and at the University of Utah.

The President’s Gallery Committee is chaired by Mrs. Pershing and includes Tom Alder, principal, Alderwood Fine Art; Nancy Boskoff, arts management; Gretchen Dietrich, executive director, Utah Museum of Fine Arts; Dave Meikle, painter, and graphic designer for the U; and Brian Snapp, artist, and chair of art and art history at the U.

Deadline for submission to the President’s Gallery: A Sense of Place is Friday, April 18. Following the jury’s review, artists will be notified no later than June 1. The exhibition will show in the new space in the Park Building during fall semester 2014. Complete instructions for submitting are available online.

ABOUT ART is 100

This year the Utah Museum of Fine Arts celebrates Art is 100—100 years of collecting at the University of Utah. Thanks to the vision and dedication of many art lovers and leaders on campus and in the community, a small campus art gallery opened in 1914 is now the premier fine arts institution in the Intermountain West. The UMFA collects, interprets and preserves a permanent collection of 19,000 objects – ranging from antiquities and European masterworks to art of the American West and global contemporary art. The official art museum of both the University and the state of Utah, the UMFA is a vibrant cultural hub connecting campus and community with global art and ideas.


The University’s first art gallery opened in 1914 in the white building at the top of Presidents Circle. The building was designed by the architectural firm of Cannon, Fetzer, Hansen. Originally named the Central Building, it was renamed the Park Building after former university president John R. Park in 1919. It currently houses the office of the president as well as other university administrators. The Park Gallery was eventually transformed into the Utah Museum of Fine Arts in 1951, by way of a large gift of paintings, furniture and decorative arts from Winifred Kimball Hudnut, daughter of a prominent Utah pioneer family.