William Villalongo's recreation of the Brookes slave ship


A Space for Powerful and Thought-Provoking Art Experiences

The Grinnell College Museum of Art presents exhibitions of regional, national, and international artists throughout the year in the Faulconer Gallery, a 7,420 square feet of state-of-the-art exhibition space at the heart of the Bucksbaum Center for the Arts. Exhibitions in the Print and Drawing Study Room and Burling Gallery, located on the lower level of Burling Library, focus on objects in the Grinnell College Art Collection as well as objects directly related to Grinnell College classes during the spring and fall semesters. Click on the links below for exhibitions current, future, and past, as well as student-curated exhibitions resulting from Mentored Advanced Projects (MAPs) and the gallery's triennial Exhibition Seminar.

Currently on View

  • An etching by Arpita Singh showing four figures in robes walking in different directions along a map of winding paths.

    Sept. 27 – Dec. 10, 2022

    Paper Trails: Modern Indian Works on Paper from the Gaur Collection

    Within the context of modern and contemporary India, works on paper offered artists a way of cultivating transnational modernist expression while continuing to explore the potential of a medium that had deeper roots in older artistic traditions native to the subcontinent. This exhibition features watercolors, drawings, etchings, sketches, and lithographs by senior Indian modernists, born primarily before the 1950s, who came of age in the decades directly following Independence in 1947. These artists span the transition from colonial to postcolonial India, and each represents a unique engagement with what Rebecca Brown has described as a fundamental paradox facing this generation of artists: that of how to be both modern and Indian. These artists are not afraid to embrace both realism and abstraction, to explore complex metaphors, and to make political statements that directly engage India’s past, present, and future.

    This exhibition, drawn from the collection of Umesh and Sunanda Gaur, is curated by Dr. Tamara Sears, professor of art and architectural history of South Asia, Department of Art History at Rutgers University.

    Image: Arpita Singh, I could see London through clouds, 2007. Etching on paper, 32 7/8 x 27 ¾ in. Courtesy of the Gaur Collection.

  • Close up view of a rug composed of red, green and gold.

    Sept. 27 — Dec. 10, 2022

    Reverent Ornament: Art from the Islamic World

    Comprising works of fine glassware, ceramics, metalwork, painting, weaponry, weaving, and much more, Reverent Ornament shares 45 timeless treasures from a region whose everyday life, history, and culture offer many parallels to our own. If it is true that peace begins through understanding, then this ambitious collection offers us a rare opportunity for artistic exchange — a living bridge between cultures.

    Reverent Ornament: Art from the Islamic World was organized by the Huntington Museum of Art, and is toured by International Arts & Artists, Washington, DC.

Past Exhibitions

  • Detail of collage by Rashaad Newsome, Showing a bust-length human Black figure combined with African statuary head.

    Sustaining Vision: Recent Gifts and Purchases for the Museum of Art Collection

    While we install our fall exhibitions, we continue to show recent acquisitions by Damon Davis, Rashaad Newsome, Shimon Okshteyn, and William Villalongo.

    The art collection of Grinnell College has been growing since the institution's early days. The uncertainty of the past three years has had little impact on this expanding diversity and growth. In the visual arts, as in the human creative impulses at their heart and in the heart of every Grinnellian, the supply chain is not an issue.

    When space allows, we are proud to present objects from our growing collection here in the museum. The five recent additions to the collection on view will help sustain and enrich the College’s teaching mission for generations of future Grinnellians, nimble yet steadfast astride the changing times.

  • Detail of quilt in Jewel Box Ribbons exhibition

    June 28 — Aug. 27, 2022

    Jewel Box Ribbons

    This exhibition of the Jewel Box Quilters Guild features quilts of all sizes, techniques, colors, and patterns, designed and quilted by local guild members. This will be their first exhibition at the museum since a pattern has been set for all of us by the pandemic: isolation, stasis, discovery, emergence, renewal.

  • BAX Reception

    Apr. 22 — May 23, 2022


    BAX, the Bachelor of Art Exhibition presents work in the creative arts by third- and fourth-year Grinnell College students.

    With support from GCMoA staff, students manage all the exhibition details: from the submission of proposals, to the selection of a juror, to the installation process, and the creation of an exhibition catalog and website. The exhibition includes photographs, drawings, sculpture, paintings, video, installations, and works created digitally.

  • Matthew Kluber's digital collage of blue screen patterns, a horizontal bright blue against a vertical deeper blue in a cross shape, set against a vibrant red background.

    Jan. 28 — Apr. 9, 2022

    Digital Vision

    In Digital Vision, six artists draw inspiration from electronics: the images on the screen and the screen itself; digital animations and the code behind them; even the inner guts of our machines to create works of art. These artists are adept as digital creators, but they are equally entranced by computers, projectors, and peripherals as things, as subjects, and as materials for their art. Nam June Paik might be the best ancestor for these 21st century creators.

    Digital Vision builds on the work of Matthew Kluber, professor of art at Grinnell College, who brings together printing, painting, digital art, and sculpture to make wholly new art. In a studio practice that combines paint, 3D printers, and computer programming, Matthew finds a new interface between physical and virtual.

  • Two men laying side by side in an intimate gesture

    Sept. 7 – Dec. 12, 2021


    This exhibition presents eight artists — Louis Fratino, Jordan King, Jeremy Laing, Doron Langberg, Catherine Opie, Christina Quarles, Paul Mpagi Sepuya, and Devan Shimoyama — whose works enable dialogue at the intersections of identity expression: race, gender, individuality, and otherness, equality within differences, with a focus on the body as expressive terrain. The artists represent distinct voices across a spectrum of media, reflecting diversity in identity expression where it intersects with contemporary political, social, and economic issues, always relevant but particularly charged at this moment.

    Curated by Associate Director Daniel Strong and Guest Curator Greg Manuel.

    Explore the website for Queer/Dialogue

  • Image of the Coretta Scott King Award

    June 25–Aug. 15, 2021

    Our Voice: Celebrating the Coretta Scott King Awards

    The Coretta Scott King Illustrator Awards annually recognizes outstanding African American artists of children’s books who demonstrate an appreciation of African American culture and universal human values. Our Voice is the first retrospective of all winners and honorees since the establishment of the award in 1974. This exhibition is organized by the National Center for Children's Illustrated Literature, Abilene, Texas. Special thanks to Nick Glass and TeachingBooks.net.

    Explore the Our Voice virtual exhibition

  • Black forms suspended from the walls and ceiling in the gallery by red bands

    Bachelor of Arts Exhibition

    BAX 2021

    BAX features works in the creative arts by third- and fourth-year Grinnell College students.

    With support from GCMoA staff, students manage all the exhibition details: from the submission of proposals to the selection of a juror to the installation process and creation of an exhibition website. The exhibition includes photographs, drawings, sculpture, paintings, video, installations, and works created digitally. This year at least half of the work by the 30 student artists are available only on the exhibition website since many of the artists have done their creative work while working remotely around the U.S. and the world. During the pandemic, a team of students has taken the lead in organizing BAX for this year. They include: Sophie Doddimeade ’21, Clara Dingle ’22, Tess Kerkhof ’21, Tommy (Guhn) Lee ’22, Caroline Shea ’22, and Hannah Taylor ’21.

    The juror this year is J.M. Culver of Minnesota, who awards Best in Show and other prizes. Additional prizes are awarded by the Office of Student Affairs, the Student Government Association, and the Studio Art Department.

    Visit the BAX 2021 website

  • Charles Bierk's Tau

    Face Forward

    How many faces (besides your own in the mirror) have you laid eyes on in the past year? It’s time to look again, and so we're pleased to present Face Forward, an opportunity to present the diversity of portraiture and figurative works we have in our collection, as well as feature new acquisitions that you have not seen on campus before. 

    Explore the works in the exhibition, Face Forward

  • View of a Black figure from behind with a camera perched on his shoulder aimed at the viewer.

    Face Forward

    Introduction to the Exhibition

    Daniel Strong, associate director and curator of exhibitions, discusses works of art featured in Face Forward.

  • Photograph by Aida Muluneh

    Fall 2020 Virtual Exhibition

    Let Yourself Continue

    August 2020 marks the centennial of the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution.

    In commemoration of this event, the Grinnell College Museum of Art is presenting work by more than 50 women artists represented in the Museum of Art’s collection.

    Explore the Let Yourself Continue virtual exhibition

  • Print by Aaron Rothman

    April 17–Aug. 2, 2020

    Nature, Made

    What happens when an artist doesn’t just represent the natural world, but makes it anew, through a creative lens?

    Five alumni artists work with animals, plants, and environments, crafting them into personal expression and commenting on the human impulse to alter the world around us. The exhibition, curated by Lesley Wright, director of the Museum, will include painting, printmaking, sculpture and drawing by artists Fay Stanford ’72, Pamela Crockett ’76, Aaron Rothman ’96, Regan Golden ’00, and John Martin Bell ’08.

    Explore the Nature, Made virtual exhibition.

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