Category Archives: Art in the Media

Teen Tech Week: Art Bot Workshop

Celebrate Teen Tech Week by making your own art-creating robot.

March 9
4:30 pm – 5:30 pm

Siouxland Libraries Caille Branch
4100 S. Carnegie Circle
Sioux Falls, SD

Betsy Rice


Art show brings artists, community together

This weekend, Sioux Falls hosted the Artists of the Plains Art Show and Sale downtown at the Hilton Garden Inn.

The show and sale is designed to educate the public about the cultural importance and variety of regional art and artists.

However, through this event, people are learning about more than just art.

Kristi Thomas says both the artists and the public can fully immerse themselves into a greater sense of a caring community.

“It’s sort of a village, it’s nice to see family members come back again to this show year after year,” she said. “We also get brand new artists that we discover and come to the show and start building their careers from here.”

Thomas has been participating in the art show for several years, and looks forward to the event each and every year.

via KSFY. To view more, click here.

New Arts Council leader sets focus

Kara Dirkson became executive director of the Sioux Falls Arts Council in late 2016. She previously served as director of the Visual Arts Center for the Washington Pavilion.

Question: How did you become interested in your field?

Answer: It feels like a natural progression and culmination of my personal interests, past experiences and professional strengths. The arts and humanities have always been my natural inclination. This was solidified for me intellectually in college when I took part in an interdisciplinary program called the Great Conversation at St. Olaf. A passion for the arts combined with what I think is a propensity for leadership, strategic thinking/planning and relationship-building make arts administration and advocacy a good fit.

Q: What attracted you to the opportunity with the Arts Council?

A: Its tremendous potential. Seeing what it can be and the challenge of getting it there excite me. Previously I focused on ‘smaller picture’ arts in my business endeavors and oversight of the Visual Arts Center at the Washington Pavilion…

via the Argus. To view more, click here.

Telling Stories Through Art At Touchmark

A local artist is partnering with Touchmark of All Saints to celebrate “Inspire Your Heart with Art Day” by creating a unique piece of art that shows the power of story telling in South Dakota.

Altman E. Studeny will create 65 small tiles in the shapes of each of South Dakota’s counties and encourage residents to consider communities where they grew up or previously lived and to share their stories about those places. Individuals will paint and collect collage items to reflect these personal narratives to be used in the project entitled “The Great State of the Land.”

Touchmark Life Enrichment and Wellness Director, Ellen Kelly says the project is important for their residents because “Creative endeavors and art inspire people and feed their spirits. The process of collaborative creation is central in this project, which also serves to celebrate participants’ lives and preserve their history while creating a community legacy.”

Studeny will hold classes with residents on Tuesday, January 31 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at the Touchmark at All Saints location. Members of the public are welcome to attend the classes and share their stories as well. Once the piece is completed, it will be displayed in their building…

via KDLT. To view more, click here.


artinmediaSioux Falls, SD – January 13, 2017 – Thanks to a local effort, Sioux Falls architect Ward Whitwam is the recipient of one of the most revered arts awards in South Dakota. On Feb. 15, in Pierre, SD, Whitwam will be given the 2017 Governor’s Award for Distinction in Creative Achievement.

The effort to nominate Whitwam was led by Sioux Falls Arts Council board member and long-time area arts advocate Charlotte Carver. Carver enlisted the help of local writer Jill Callison to develop a nomination package highlighting Whitwam’s achievements over several decades.

“Whitwam’s forward-thinking designs have been around since the late 1950s. His work is recognizable not only in landmark structures throughout Sioux Falls, but across the state with ‘Whitwam’s wigwams’—the distinctive tipi-like structures at interstate rest stops,” says Kara Dirkson, Executive Director of the Sioux Falls Arts Council.

An award-winning architect, Whitwam served in World War II and completed undergraduate and graduate school at UC Berkeley before eventually returning to Sioux Falls to begin his own architectural firm. His favorite project was designing his office on West Avenue. Proud of his South Dakota roots, he says, “I am not from New York or Los Angeles; I am a local boy from Watertown, SD.”

The Governor’s Awards in the Arts are a joint initiative between Arts South Dakota and the South Dakota Arts Council. The awards ceremony is Friday, February 15, 2017 at the Ramkota Hotel and Conference Center in Pierre, SD. Tickets can be purchased by calling 605.252.5979 or visiting


Photo attached; Source: Kelly Martin, Wikimedia Commons

For Whitwam’s biography, click here.

For more information on the Governor’s Awards, click here, or contact Shari Kosel at 605.252.5979 ext. 1 or


Sioux Falls Arts Council
326 E. 8th Street, Suites 106A & B
Sioux Falls, SD 57103

via The Sioux Falls Arts Council.

New Director Brings New Life to Pavilion

artinmediaWhen Matt Rogers bought his first family pass to the Washington Pavilion of Arts and Science four years ago, he often found Sioux Falls’ primary science and art center a bit drab, run down and tired.

But he considered it his family’s best option and kept renewing – and as a result unknowingly watched the Pavilion transition from a facility that couldn’t break even to one that’s relying less on taxpayer subsidies and donations to keep the lights on.

“They never did anything new. Now it’s way better than it was when we first started going,” said the 34-year-old Garretson father of three, who of late has noticed a major turnaround at Pavilion, particularly in the Kirby Science Discovery Center. “Even right down to being cleaner – it just seems like they just take care of it better.”

If you ask Darrin Smith, who took over as Pavilion president in May 2016, that’s deliberate and has been year’s in the making.

Since its opening in 1999 the Washington Pavilion and its art gallery, concert hall, large-format theater, and science museum struggled to maintain membership and consistent revenue streams.

via the Argus. To view more, click here.

Store’s unique ‘break room’

artinmediaGRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KJCT) — A Grand Junction, Colorado businesswoman is “breaking” into a new industry.

Behind the scenes of a humble housewares store is an emotional oasis, where you can de-stress, do team-building activities or channel some anger in a positive way.

It’s called The Break Room.

It’s a place where customers can pick up some fine china and other glassware and throw it at a wall… seriously!

The new business gives a whole new meaning to, “You break it, you buy it.” In this case, you buy it to break it.

Owner Nancy Woolery said the process is simple: you grab a glass or piece of glassware, or write messages on a plate, then send it crashing into the wall.

“Many times I wanted to break things, but if broke my own things, I had to clean up my own mess, and probably get in trouble for it,” said Woolery. “Instead, I thought this would be a great solution to that issue. I’m sure I’m not the only person who has had that desire.”

Woolery said area thrift shops donate incomplete sets that can’t be sold to her business. Then once the items are broken, she donates them to other people who can use the glass pieces for art or other projects…

via KSFY. To view more, click here.

Artwork of Eugene Christopherson

artinmediaPainter, illustrator, and sculptor Eugene Christopherson found the “South Dakota” in us all, great and small.

Chosen to immortalize five South Dakota governors, he also took pride in celebrating the diversity of our remarkable state: from the youth who would carry our dignity, tenacity, and generosity into the future to the wisdom and bemusement staring back at you from the eyes of a Native American woman telling her story with every crease on her face. His work is a window to a South Dakota of years gone by, whose spirit, strength and ingenuity laid the very foundation we stand upon today. Eugene captured all of it…he captured us all…he captured South Dakota.

Please join us January 12, 2017, at 7 p.m. for a presentation by Eugene’s brother, Stan Christopherson, celebrating the life and work of a true South Dakota icon.

The presentation is free and open to the public.
Elmen Gallery of the Fantle Building
The Center for Western Studies
2121 S. Summit Ave, Sioux Falls, South Dakota
For more information please contact the Center for Western Studies

via KDLT.


artinmediaSioux Falls, SD – The Sioux Falls Arts Council will feature DAVID UNZICKER in its first Featured Visual Artist exhibit for 2017. Unzicker will be on display from January until the end of February.

DAVID UNZICKER received his BFA in Art from Augustana in 1971. During his time at Augie, David studied under Carl Grupp and Palmer Eide. He would later attend the University of South Dakota where he had the privilege to study under Bob Aldern, Wick Knaus and John Day. Six total artists will be showcased throughout 2017.

David became a structural engineer, but still had the opportunity to use the skills he learned in school to tap into his creative nature. He has gradually transitioned his themes from still life and landscapes to more abstract works. The art showcased in the Featured Artist Gallery is an example of his transition to abstract art.

Sioux Falls Imagined: A Cultural Plan for a Vibrant and Prosperous City, approved by the City of Sioux Falls in July 2014, named the Sioux Falls Arts Council as the organization given the charge of implementing the plan. From the Artists and Creative Workers task force findings, a strong need identified for the local art community was alternative exhibition space(s). The Featured Artist Exhibit at the Sioux Falls Arts Council office opened in May 2016 as a way to start filling this need.

The Sioux Falls Arts Council, located in the Crane Centre at 8th & Railroad 326 E 8th St #106A, is open Monday-Friday 10:00 am – 3:00 pm, First Fridays 5:00 – 7:00 pm, and by appointment. Visit for more information.

via The Sioux Falls Arts Council.

Airport Adds Collection of Local Art

artinmediaA collection of work by local and regional artists will greet travelers passing through the Sioux Falls Regional Airport.

The unofficial art gallery will be installed in the next couple weeks. One signature piece installed recently called “Flights of Fancy” features glazed ceramic-tile mosaics by college professor Scott Parsons. It was one of nine pieces chosen to enhance the traveling experience in the newly reconfigured lobby area and elsewhere, said Dan Letellier, the airport’s executive director.

“We wanted to make it inviting and the central focus point for travelers and the family and friends there to greet them,” Letellier said. “We wanted to make it inviting, and for new people to the area, we wanted to let them know this is more than a prairie city and airport. We have a lot going on in the airport and a lot of great local artists.”…

via the Argus. To view more, click here.