Montgomery and the rest of Southeastern Alabama strongly supports the visual arts. The area holds a number of excellent art museums, and even many of the smaller communities are home to galleries featuring the work of local artists.
A modern 40,000 square foot building overlooking a 3-acre lake on the campus Auburn University, the Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art is one of the most respected arts museums in the South. Permanent collections primarily include American and European art of the 19th and 20th century. Works by such masters as Chagall, Renoir, Salvador Dalí, Picasso, Miró and Matisse can be found within the museum's eight exhibition galleries. The museum grounds themselves encompass 15 - acres of botanical gardens showcasing large sculptures, walking paths and water features.
Located in Dothan, a significant portion of this museum houses landscapes from the late 19th and 20th centuries. Visitors can also find fine art and artifacts from traveling exhibits amongst the museum's 6 total galleries. A lecture hall hosts events throughout the year aimed at increasing public appreciation and understanding of the arts. The museum also includes a new conference center that includes four meeting rooms, a catering kitchen and a ballroom-size great hall.
The Montgomery Museum of Art has been one of Alabama's most ardent advocates of visual art since its opening in 1930. The museum's goal is twofold: to collect and present works by history's most popular artists, and to present pieces by the most talented artists from our region. As part of its commitment to education, the museum has created a special ARTWORKS Gallery that allows young and old alike to explore and interpret 30 different works of art, some of which have been commissioned specifically for arts education.
Founded in 1991, this unique gallery buys and sells rare pieces of art created by self-taught artists. The gallery focuses on the work of contemporary folk and fringe artists, pieces shaped by life outside of the mainstream. The collection represents artists from many different areas, philosophical beliefs and personal backgrounds. The gallery's location in Montgomery is available for informal showings by appointment.
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