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Kimball Art Center Plans For The Future

Kimball Arts Center

The Kimball Arts Center is moving to a new space in the area known as The Yard on Kearn’s Boulevard.

KPCW has details on the new locale and the efforts underway to raise money for their future location which will be in the 5 acre Arts and Culture District on Bonanza Drive and Kearns Blvd.

For 50 years, the Kimball Arts Center has relied on its Arts Festival as its most important fundraiser. With the event canceled this year, Executive Director Alday Miliken says they have had to remain nimble and have made cuts across the organization. However, he says they’re trying to keep artists, educators, and curators on staff.

“This is actually a good year for us to reflect about the future. We've got of course the dynamic cultural district project on going and then we're moving to the yard space sort of in preparation for that. So, for us it's a time to really distill down what our values are and how we best serve the community going forward. I think a lot of us dwell on the challenges but actually I think that as we come out of this, I like to think of the pandemic of 1918 and think of the roaring 20s that came after that. And I think we're in for a dynamic time for culture, and people need art more than ever.”

The Kimball Arts Center signed a 4-and-a-half-year lease to occupy a space at The Yard, not far from their current spot. Doors close on the 24th of November, and they plan to open in the new space in mid-January.

They will offer the usual fare of classes, with many being done virtually while the pandemic continues to limit gatherings. They’re curating the special opening exhibit to accompany The Yard grand opening in January.

“We’re working on our first exhibition which is going to be incredibly dynamic nationally recognized exhibition that's really going to I think sort of set us off in a great path. So, actually in that regard I'm kind of looking forward to the future in this in this space. I know a lot of people, a lot of Parkites know The Yard space as an event space. We're going to make it a really dynamic workspace.”

Miliken says they worked on visioning with the Mayor’s office and community members through this summer. He thinks the future Arts and Culture District is an ambitious and complicated project that will have a big impact on Park City.

“We were able to distill down what the community wanted. What kind of activities they and wanted in the cultural district? We’ve taken that information and then tried to figure out what we can actually accomplish, and I think that's the challenging part. We all want way more than we can provide. My job is to distill it down and really prioritize what we can perform an art as a cultural institution.”

They continue to fundraise for the project, and Miliken believes it is a great opportunity.

“We’re turning a gas station into a nationally recognized cultural district, and that's a vision that I think people like to support. When we really go strong in the fundraising part of it, we're still reflecting.  We're reflecting and I'm kind of really making sure that what we're building is is something that is sustainable.”

They’ll open in January with an Exhibition called When Evening is Passed and Tomorrow Comes.

“It’s four women of color looking at female utopias. Kind of exploring their own with their own cultures and then also their own visions of how the world could or should look like.”

The Kimball Arts Center continues with its online fundraising auction until November 27. For more information go to kimballartscenter.org.

KPCW reporter Carolyn Murray covers Summit and Wasatch County School Districts. She also reports on wildlife and environmental stories, along with breaking news. Carolyn has been in town since the mid ‘80s and raised two daughters in Park City.
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