Museums accumulate a lot of artwork over time. So in the Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art's nearly 35 years of existence, it has gathered quite an impressive permanent collection.
So large a collection, in fact, that Bobby Moore, SAMA's registrar and former interim curator, took three years to put together SAMA's latest exhibition, "SAMA 3D: Sculpture from the Permanent Collection. The exhibit, which opened on April 23, will be on display through Aug. 1 at SAMA's main location on the St. Francis University campus.
"I started planning it three years ago," Moore said. "I just thought it was time we did a show to share with the public our incredible and diverse sculpture collection."
“Self-Portrait” (1989) is an oil-painted resin and mixed-media work by Carole A. Feuerman.
"It's many different media - everything from paper to glass to metal," Moore says. "The subject matter is very diverse as well."
The exhibit's more than 150 pieces include both local and national artists, including:
n Milton Elting Hebald - A New York City native who had his first solo exhibition in the city in 1937 and regularly exhibited at the Whitney Museum. According to his website, Hebald has 23 sculptures on view in New York City, including two in front of the Delacorte Theatre in Central Park, and created the famed "Zodiac Screen," which once hung in John F. Kennedy International Airport;
If you go
What: "SAMA 3D: Sculpture from the Permanent Collection
When: through Aug. 1
Where: Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art at Loretto, St. Francis University campus, Loretto
Hours: SAMA at Loretto is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and from 1 to 5 p.m. Saturdays. Call 472-3920 for more information
n Paul Joseph Stankard - One of the most acclaimed glass paperweight artists in the world, his work appears in the permanent collections of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Louvre in Paris;
n Thomas Dow Jones - The 19th-century sculptor was famous for his busts and medallions of famous political figures, including the bust of Abraham Lincoln on display at SAMA;
n Glenna Goodacre - A sculptor of bronze, her most famous works are the design of the Sacagawea dollar in circulation in the United States and the Vietnam Women's Memorial in Washington, D.C., which honors the women who served in the Vietnam War;
n Peter Calaboyias - The artist who grew up in Johnstown and now lives in Pittsburgh, is renowned for his sculpture "Tribute," which was a centerpiece of Atlanta's Centennial Olympic Park during the 1996 Summer Olympics;
n Rob Fisher - A State College artist whose large "American Dream" sculpture is featured in the Philadelphia International Airport.
Fisher also has several pieces on display in Altoona, including the semaphores adorning the 8th Street Bridge; and
n Helen Gorsuch - The Altoona artist is known for her Raku-fired, anthropomorphic figures.
"SAMA 3D" also features large collections of Steuben Glass and many glass paperweights.
While most of the pieces in the exhibit have been shown before, there are a few that will be getting their debut showing.
"We have a collection of face jugs that we received in 2006," Moore said. "This is the first time they've been exhibited. It's a very popular form in the South - it's just starting to make its way north."
The range of the exhibition has impressed at least one of its visitors - new SAMA-Loretto curator Scott Dimond.
"It's got an awful lot of material there," said Dimond, who came to the job in mid-April. "It covers the range of what we've obtained in the past 30 years. What impresses me about it is that there's an awful lot of material and it's all contained in one room."
When pressed to pick a favorite piece, Dimond eventually decided on a work by Norwegian-born artist Arild Juel Pettersen.
"I tend to prefer more of the naturalistic things," he said. "There's a piece by a sculptor named Pettersen called 'Between Dances.' It's very well done and that caught my attention."
With more than a month gone already, the exhibit seems to be a hit.
"Everybody that has come to see it has only had the highest of praise," Moore said. "People love 3D and they don't get to see it enough."
"SAMA 3D" is also a family-friendly display that can be enjoyed by all ages, she says.
"This is an exhibition that I strongly encourage parents to bring their children to," Moore said. "It's a great way to introduce your kids to art."
Mirror Staff Writer Keith Frederick is at 946-7466.