Museum idea picks up steam

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Upcoming events > Los Alamos Museum of Art plans to host events at Karen Wray Fine Art Studio March 18, Project Y

By Tris DeRoma

A group of residents are continuing to drum up support through speaking engagements for an art museum in Los Alamos.
Their latest event was at the UnQuarked Wine Room Feb. 9, where Ruth Tatter and Amy Bjarke explained their case as to why Los Alamos needs its own art museum.
“We always think it’s great when we meet people who we think can get the word out,” Tatter said at the event.
Their talk at UnQuarked centered on getting a building for their museum and their strategy going forward.
While they look for a building, the Los Alamos Museum of Art group plans to give more talks and start volunteer and art programs the community can participate in. They are due to speak again at Karen Wray’s Gallery in March where they will show some artwork from the museum’s board members. They also plan to have lectures and events at Project Y. They are also a 501 C 3 corporation.
The group has already been promised some art collections from some Los Alamos residents. Keeping those collections together, and in Los Alamos, is also an important priority.  
“There is a sense of urgency,” Tatter said to the audience. “We have these collections promised to us, but they are currently being housed with the collectors. We really want to make a new home for them.”
The museum group already has some staff members in place, and they are also putting some programs together as they get closer to their goal of actually having a physical structure.
“A lot of those things we can do before we get a building,” Tatter said. “What we don’t want to do is get into the trap of people saying ‘just continue doing this.’ That’s not what we’re all about.  We want to be about the collections.”
Audience members were all for the group for getting a building and getting started.
“I think it would be great to have an art museum in Los Alamos. I think it adds a new dimension to our community,” Liz Martineau said. “I don’t think art is separate from science and history, it’s just another part of what makes us who we are, and it’s a really important part that would be nice to have.”  
Some were wondering why it hasn’t happened already.
“We have a wonderful science museum and history museum. I’m kind of surprised frankly, we don’t have an art museum in addition to science and history museums,” Dick Martin said.
He thinks it would add more opportunities for Los Alamos’ young people, too.
“I’m personally very excited about that,” Martin said. “This will benefit kids of all ages.”
The museum’s next event will be at the Karen Wray Fine Art Studio March 16.
LAMOA Treasurer Amy Bjarke said everyone is looking forward to the future.
“This was really great,” Bjarke said of the event. “We are getting the word out to the community and we really want to see this grow.”
The Los Alamos Museum of Art has a website, lamoa.us.
The event at Karen Wray Fine Art Studio will be from 5–7 p.m. March 16. Karen Wray Fine Art is located at 1247 Central Ave., Suite D.