Giving Tuesday & Colorado Gives Day

Dear Friends, 2020 has been a year to remember. It was only one year ago that we celebrated the conclusion of the Roof & Dick Building Phase 1 rehabilitation program. It is hard to imagine the extreme challenges we continue to navigate as this year comes to an end. We extend our best wishes for the coming months as we await effective therapeutics. Here is an overview of what we accomplished during 2020 - MoF has remained open and offered online programming. Because of your support Colorado Humanities/NEH and Colorado Creative Industries has entrusted MoF to spread the power of the arts and humanities in Huerfano County by:

  • Creating a new website by Zooma Design’s Michelle Tschetter

  • Collaborating with the Fox Theatre Technical Crew on cataloguing the complete permanent collection on the 2nd floor – and launching the long awaited audio visual tour – the brain child of volunteer and MoF member Valarie Abney

  • Curating a new exhibit COVID-19 Crisis or Opportunity with nationally known artists

  • Hosting The Smithsonian Exhibit Votes for Women on the 2nd floor

All while pivoting towards the future with plans for more interactive and virtual programming to address the new normal. Please view this short film to see the programs mentioned. We are asking for your support and generosity to:

  • Set up a teaching studio where we can demonstrate the art making process with content development that recognizes the isolation and trauma created by the pandemic. We will teach effective communication skills through art making meant to strengthen our community and children of the quarantine as they express themselves.

  • Continue the rehabilitation of the Roof & Dick building with the installation of an ADA restroom and stairway directly from the 1st to the 2nd floor

  • Present Who’s Walsenburg? Photographic Narrative works by Zoe Childerley and Claude W. Appel Photography at the County Court House with Walsenburg’s children’s artworks and documentary photographs from MoF’s: The School Tour; After School; The Friday Art Lab; and Post Visit in the Classroom programs.

  • Host Talking it Out photo exhibit via Conflict Resolution Month in Colorado a traveling exhibition.

  • Begin a new program: Artists and Veterans Work Project using 3D printers and CAD design to create jobs and economic opportunities in conjunction with an Art in Society grant awarded by the RedLine Contemporary in Denver.

We thank you for donating by filling out the pledge form or by visiting Colorado Gives Day on Tuesday December 8, or to view fundraising pages: https://www.coloradogives.org/MoFCOVID2020 and https://www.coloradogives.org/VeteransandArtists3DWorkProject Also please visit Spanish Peaks Business Alliance Holiday Giving Celebration virtual mixer on December 7th at 5:30, and please register here to be able to donate as well. Please see below to learn about the new projects that your support will help fund. Thanking you in advance. Sincerely,

Maria Cocchiarelli-Berger Executive Director of the Museum of Friends


With your help we would be creating a new Art Educational Series for Youth Children Coping with the COVID Quarantine This Virtual Online Program would be available for pre-K through 12th Grade youth. The COVID-19 Crisis has forced us to reexamine how we deliver programs to our community. The shut down last spring helped us to pivot towards more online programming. Please visit the newly designed website to view and hear audio tours of over 100 works from the permanent collection. Your funds would help to pay for technical support to create more on-line and virtual tours and educational programs that address the current needs of our local students. Art will be used as the vehicle to get our youth to open up about the trauma of these times and communicate what they are going through in narrative content, color and form – these are our children of the quarantine. We would set up a virtual studio where the lessons can be delivered effectively. Your support would help to fund the purchase of equipment; pay technical support staff; publicize and promote the new programs making them available for our local schools. URL for 2 films related to this project:

  • Film describing challenges created by the COVID-19 Pandemic

  • Film describing opportunities created by the COVID-19 Pandemic

Photo of current exhibit at the Museum of Friends COVID-19 Crisis or Opportunity

Gary Weston with his COVID-19 Lamp and Curator Maria Cocchiarelli Please see virtual opening on Facebook. Your support would help fund a new project Reaching Out and Connecting to the Continuum of Arts for Change in Walsenburg through Veterans Work Project with 3D printers at the intersection of artistic creation and civic engagement will explore community Pride and how its integral role plays out in civically, socially engaged art and change thereby instilling equity, inclusion and social justice. During the process of working on the CHDPHE mural Public Health is a Puzzle at Miner's Plaza we worked with four Afghan war Veterans sent to MoF from the Probation Department. They learned the practice of mural making thereby allowing the project to become transformative and authentic for our community. They expressed being disenfranchised and feeling not appreciated as they are unemployed. This new project will create jobs for our Veterans with 3-d printing and CAD design over the next two years and is the first step towards a “Makers’ Space” in Huerfano. Background: This mural depicts the history of Miner’s Plaza in Walsenburg, CO in an anthropomorphic narrative. The mural includes a statement regarding how the evolution of public health is built on the sacrifices and suffering of those who have come before, in this case the miners who lost their lives and health, thereby changing labor laws that impact our current state of public health. The message that public health is a right not a privilege and should be equitably available to all members of our community/society no matter economic status, gender, race or age. The images of the donkeys holding up contemporary public health benefits above them are symbolic of the donkeys who blindly entered the coal mines and suffered for progress. The canaries are symbolic and represent how they were used to determine the air quality before the miners would enter. Each individual makes up the health of a community and now more than ever shares responsibility to protect others from the COVID-19 virus.


Image: Public Health is a Puzzle


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