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Lake Region State College:

Celebrating 75 years

Page 3

Chautauqua Gallery grand opening

T

he new Leo and Alma Me-

hus Studness Chautauqua

Gallery is located in the

space vacated when the library

moved to its new home in 1995.

This beautiful facility has been

made possible by a generous gift

from Alma Mehus Studness in

honor of her late

husband,

Leo.

The Chautauqua

Gallery—a large,

mu l t i - p u r p o s e

room with adjoin-

ing small meeting

rooms—was ap-

propriately named

to commemorate

the phenomenon

of the Devils Lake

Chautauqua.

Based on the

Chautauqua prin-

ciples of educa-

tion, inspiration,

and patriotism, the Gallery will be

used for lectures, seminars, recit-

als, and art exhibits ... all types of

gatherings where learning occurs!

The area is large and bright

with a wall of windows on each

side facing lawns and College

Drive on the east and a beautiful

courtyard on the west. The stage

is finished with lustrous, polished

hardwood. Flowered carpeting in

shades of blue and rose covers the

rest of the floor. The whole room,

from the elegant furniture to the

works of art displayed on white

gallery walls, has been carefully

designed to create a warm a invit-

ing environment.

Prominently exhibited are

portraits of Mr. and Mrs. Studness

by Bela Patheo, art professor of

St. John’s University, Collegeville,

Minnesota. The Gallery is a fitting

memorial for Leo Studness who

is remembered by his daughter,

Anne-Marit Bergstrom, as “a

great appreciator of the arts .”

His wife, Alma Mehus Studness,

was a pianist who launched her

professional career on the Chau-

tauqua circuit.

Anne-Marit Bergstrom is her-

self an artist. Her series of Chau-

tauqua paintings was given to the

college and will be permanently

displayed in the Chautauqua Gal-

lery. Anne-Marit, depicts in nine

paintings a fam-

ily’s experiences

attending Chau-

tauqua in about

1915. Among the

scenes are the trip

by narrow-gauge

railroad from

Devils Lake to

Chautauqua Park

on the shores of

Devils Lake, the

meeting of Native

American and

immigrant Ameri-

can cultures, the

Grand Audito-

rium which seated 3,000 to 5,000

people, Captain E. E. Heerman’s

Minnie H steamboat transporting

passengers and cargo across the

lake, and the beauty and tranquil-

ity of the lake itself.

Also being shown are paint-

ings by Anne-Marit’s daughter-

in-law, Candace Bergstrom. Lake

Region Pioneer Daughters has

made its collection of original

Chautauqua programs available

for display, and a beautiful red,

white, and blue star quilt created

by Grace Lambert—a member of

the Spirit Lake Sioux Tribe—is

hung near the entrance.

The grand opening of the

Chautauqua Gallery featured

a recreation of the Chautauqua

experience with music, poetry,

oration, ballet, and lecture. As

a grand culmination to the pro-

gram, and to everyone’s great

delight, Mrs. Studness reflected

back to her Chautauqua roots by

performing beautiful Chopin and

Beethoven piano music. ●

— Branches, fall 1996 —

A home

for the

arts ... and

much , much

more!

Introducing

Prairie Art

in the hallway

A

lunch table is a wonderful

incubator for great ideas. So,

when the topic shifted to how to

make our campus more inviting,

a dream began to emerge. The

long, wide hallways that link our

campus together could become a

visual feast, an intellectual experi-

ence.

Why not fill them with art ...

original pieces created by re-

spected prairie artists ... prints

of master works ... interesting

vignettes ... picture-stories about

people who made differences dur-

ing their lives. Passing through

our hallways could become an

educational experience!

As the discussions continued,

ideas emerged. Framing sponsors

were sought for a set of fifteen

posters honoring literary masters.

That effort was so successful that

another set of posters was framed

introducing viewers to world-fa-

mous paintings and to the masters

who produced them. Not to be

outdone, the library also matted

and framed a set of posters about

literary greats.

The lunch table dream took on

another dimension when a num-

ber of friends of the college took

a different approach. They pur-

chased and donated some beauti-

ful pieces of art for permanent

display in what we have come to

call the

Prairie Art in the Hallway

Collection

.

Come and take a tour of the

beautiful artwork in our hallways,

and then join us for lunch! Or con-

tact the Foundation Office if you’d

like to know more about our art

collection. ●

— Branches, spring 2001 —