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After being closed to the public for 14 months, the Glema Mahr Center for the Arts is opening back up with a new art exhibit opening Monday and running through June 24.

The arts center will host the Kentucky Arts Council’s traveling exhibit, Native Reflections: Visual Art by American Indians of Kentucky, said center Director Brad Downall. The exhibit features 23 works by 12 Kentuckians who identify as Native American who either are enrolled tribal members or unenrolled.

“The Glema staff is excited to host this exhibit as an opportunity for a soft re-opening for the facility that has been closed to the public for the last 14 months,” said Downall.

The exhibit will feature art inspired by Native American tribes such as the Choctaw, Cherokee, Navajo, Shawnee and Chilluckittequaw, according to the news release. The art itself will range from acrylic, oil on canvas, acrylic on gourd, colored pencil on paper and wood.

Downall does ask anyone coming to visit the exhibit to stop by the office to let them know someone is looking at the exhibit because COVID-19 guidelines are still in place. Mask wearing, social distancing and hand washing are enforced.

“If someone is sick, stay home,” he said. “That is the number one thing.”

The center will release the other art exhibits scheduled for the rest of the calendar year, said Downall. Exhibits are scheduled from May through December.

A slideshow of work in Native Reflections is available online at the arts council website,

Downall said starting Monday, the gallery and the offices will be open to the public, though no performances are taking place.

“It is starting to feel like there is hope,” he said.

Downall said the auditorium will not open back up to the public until they get the OK from the community college system.

“Right now, the state restrictions are still in place,” he said.

Although some places can open at 60% capacity, that is with six feet distancing in mind and the auditorium is not spaced that way, he said. Downall is hoping to have performances starting in the fall of 2021 and be back to normal operations by spring 2022.

“Nothing is set in stone right now,” said Downall.

There is a Martina McBride concert scheduled for late spring of 2022, but the center is still in talks about an actual date, he said. The center is telling ticket holders that the arts center will not be printing tickets for events until it is eight weeks out, in case there are more changes.

The arts center is located at 200 College Drive on the campus of Madisonville Community College. The Anne P. Baker Gallery is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday. All exhibits are free and open to the public.

For more information on Native Reflections, contact Downall at 270-824-8651.

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