YEON Cultural

A comfortable and inviting educational display was recently created at Blue Mountain Community College’s Betty Feves Memorial Gallery as a way to encourage people to visit art galleries and view exhibits.

PENDLETON — The Betty Feves Memorial Gallery recently created a new educational display to help break down perceived barriers about visiting an art gallery.

In addition to a seating area and table with art-related books, the wall just outside the gallery features large vinyl lettering stating “Art is for Everyone!” Also, two panels highlight information explaining what artwork labels tell the viewer, what an artist statement is, some aspects of color theory, an explanation of the elements of art and a cartoon to address people’s concerns about not understanding the art.

The creation of the display was made possible thanks to a $465 grant from the Umatilla County Cultural Coalition, Casey White-Zollman, vice president of college relations & advancement, said in a press release. As an educational gallery, part of the its mission is to foster an appreciation for art.

Recognizing that not everyone feels comfortable going to an art gallery or attending an exhibit, feedback was solicited from students who don’t typically visit art galleries. Responses indicated that some feel they don’t belong at an art gallery or they’re worried they won’t understand the art.

“We are very thankful for the support from the UCCC,” said Lori Sams, gallery director. “This educational display will provide a valuable teaching tool, offering information to help people feel more comfortable in an art gallery, which will help people better connect with art.”

The cultural coalition’s mission is to represent and support arts, heritage and humanities in Umatilla County.

Through the Community Participation Grant program, the cultural coalition, who receives money from the Oregon Cultural Trust, provides funding to support the goals of the Umatilla County Cultural Plan.

A nonprofit exhibit space, the Betty Feves Memorial Gallery connects emerging and established artists and their work with students, staff and the general public. It is open Monday through Thursday from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and by appointment. For more information, contact Sams at 541-278-5952, or visit

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