Three Upcoming Loveland Museum Exhibits to Feature Colorado Artist James Disney

Hagues Peak by James Disney.

The Loveland Museum’s upcoming Main Gallery exhibits include James Disney & Erik Stensland: Double Vision as well as James Disney: Legacy. A complimentary Dunning Gallery exhibit will feature Climbing Mountains: The Life and Work of James Disney.

About James Disney: Legacy

For over 50 years, James Disney’s paintings and photographs have explored various schools of artistic expression. His major body of work focused on the mountains and landscapes of the Western United States, paintings which he referred to as “portraits of old friends.” Ever growing as an artist, Jim also explored abstraction and conceptual art. Growth and transformation, an acknowledged part of the mountain world he loved, were a guidepost for his career as an artist. His is a legacy of challenge, change, and a championing of freedom within the artistic vision.

Disney twice served as the Artist-in-Residence in Rocky Mountain National Park. He helped establish the Open Lands Visual Artist Program for Larimer County, Colorado, and served as the program’s Artist of the Year in 2006 and 2007. From 1993 to 2001, Jim was elected to the Board of Larimer County Commissioners.

During his two terms, he was known for working on establishing the Open Lands Acquisition Program, environmentally responsible land use planning, and long-range transportation planning. In 1996, he received the Environmental Stewardship Award from Rocky Mountain National Park for his work with citizens, and local, state and federal governments to permanently ban commercial sightseeing flights over the park.

This exhibit will open on September 17 and run through November 13. The exhibit admission is $7 for ages 13+ and visitors are welcome to come to view the exhibit during operating hours (see below).

About James Disney & Erik Stensland: Double Vision

James Disney (1939-2021) continually and persistently sought ways to challenge himself as an artist and to find new ways of expressing ideas and seeing the world. Jim had long promoted Erik’s vision as a photographer, and over the years developed an exhibit idea that included the two of them. Kindred spirits in their knowledge of Rocky and the natural world, Jim could see the aesthetic potential of photography and painting side by side, the differences and similarities creating a fuller appreciation of artistic creativity and nature’s wonder.

This exhibit sees that idea come to fruition. Erik Stensland recalls, “It was all his idea. Several times over the course of about two years Jim came to me and said, “Let’s put on a show. Let’s do a big gallery showing at the Loveland Museum.” One of the things Jim often mentioned is that people said his paintings looked like photographs and he saw that people were often commenting online that my work reminded them of paintings. There was this interesting overlap between our two forms of expression where it was difficult to see at times which was which. Each form had the same purpose, to communicate a love for this remarkable world and to inspire that same love in others. Yet each of our approaches were vastly different.”

This exhibit will open on September 17 and run through November 13. The exhibit admission is $7 for ages 13+ and visitors are welcome to come view the exhibit during operating hours (see below).

About Climbing Mountains: The Life and Work of James Disney

Disney’s love of the outdoors started with his childhood in Glen Haven, close to Rocky Mountain National Park. Jim climbed to the summit of the park’s 14,259-foot Longs Peak 93 times, all of the park’s 128 named peaks at least once, and 1,000 summits during his climbing career. He was proud to have climbed Denali, the highest peak in the United States at 20,320 feet, and donated his climbing boots to the Loveland Museum after his ascent.

Disney was a friend of Harold Dunning, the Museum’s founder. They shared a love for the outdoors and the history of the region. Jim contributed to the Museum’s permanent history exhibits utilizing his artistic skills to create wonderful murals depicting early Loveland scenes. These murals as well as his portrait of Harold Dunning are still on display. This exhibit explores James Disney’s life as an artist, an environmentalist, and a community member.

This exhibit will open on October 14, 2022, and run through January 29, 2023. The exhibit admission is free and visitors are welcome to come to view the exhibit during operating hours (see below).

Public Opening Reception

Friday, October 14, 2022, from 6-8 pm (Free Main Gallery admission during Night on the Town and no registration required)

About the Loveland Museum

The Loveland Museum is an accredited art and history museum that was founded in 1937 by local author, collector, curator, and mountain guide Harold Dunning. Dunning began collecting pioneer artifacts and stories as early as 1919, and today, the Loveland Museum is home to a variety of historical exhibits, hosts world-class art exhibitions, and provides family events; adult and youth classes; lectures; poetry readings; and other programming opportunities for the Loveland community and visitors from around the world.

The Loveland Museum is open Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday 10 am – 5 pm; Thursdays 10 am – 7 pm; Saturdays 10 am – 4 pm; Sundays 12 pm – 4 pm. The Loveland Museum is located at 503 N Lincoln Avenue, the corner of 5th and Lincoln, in Loveland, Colorado. For more information visit thelovelandmuseum.org.

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