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Category Archives: DHA Featured

Resource of the Month

This new series will focus on one database or resource per month in Utah’s Online Library to provide a focused experience for libraries and their patrons. We will host a free webinar for libraries and library workers on the chosen resource so that you will be prepared to help your patrons. Additionally, we will market our Resource of the Month on social media and our website. Register to attend the webinar or check back after the training date to view the archived webinar.

October 13, 2016 – Register
October Resource of the Month – EBSCO Explora
October 27, 2016 – Register
November Resource of the Month – OverDrive
November 30, 2016 – Register
December Resource of the Month – EBSCO TOPICsearch



Utah Designers Showcased at the Rio Gallery – 13 Sept 2016

SALT LAKE CITY – DesignArts ’16, an exhibition of Utah design, is now open at the Rio Gallery in Salt Lake City and will continue through Oct. 21, 2016.  The Rio Gallery is open Mon. – Fri. from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and is located at 300 S. Rio Grande in Salt Lake City. A reception and celebration coinciding with Salt Lake Design Week and Salt Lake Gallery Stroll will be hosted in the gallery on Oct. 21 from 6-9 p.m.

Juror Jim Childress selected 39 designs by 18 Utah designers ranging from lighting design to salt and pepper shakers. The juror’s award winner in the professional category is Jessica Greenberg for her lighting design work with SB Dance and Off-Broadway Theater. There are two juror’s award winners in the student category: DesignBuildBLUFF for their “Cedar Hall” project in architecture and Jun Li’s architectural design concepts for five projects.

The juror, Jim Childress, is a partner at Centerbrook Architects and Planners. Childress has worked over the past 30 years on numerous projects at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, the world-renowned center for molecular biology research. He was the architect for notable projects in the West, including the Headquarters for the National Outdoor Leadership School in Lander, Wyo., and three projects at the University of Colorado: the LEED Gold Wolf Law School and the LEED Platinum Center for Community, and the Health Sciences Library on the Anschutz Medical Campus. A graduate of Rhode Island School of Design, Childress’s work has been recognized with 60 design awards including the American Institute of Architects 1998 Architecture Firm Award. He was invested into the College of Fellows of the AIA in 2001 and served as the Chair of its Committee on Design.

The Design Arts Program of the Utah Division of Arts & Museums sponsors DesignArts Utah annually with exhibitionsfeaturing designs, prototypes, and produced samples by designers in Utah’s various design fields. Further information is available online at  If you have questions about the DesignArts Utah program or the exhibition please contact Jim Glenn at and 801.245.7271.

Department of Heritage and Arts Executive Director Steps Down

julie-fisherAfter five years as the executive director of the Utah Department of Heritage and Arts, Julie Fisher will step down at the end of August to accept a management position at a global consulting firm. Prior to her service with Heritage and Arts, Fisher served four terms in the Utah House of Representatives

Since being appointed by Governor Gary R. Herbert in 2011, Fisher has led a department that includes the Division of Arts & Museums, Division of State History, Office of Multicultural Affairs, Division of Indian Affairs, UServeUtah, and the Utah State Library. Prior to her appointment, Fisher served four terms in the Utah House of Representatives.

“Heritage and Arts represents the heart and soul of Utah,” Fisher said. “It has been an honor for me to work with so many talented and dedicated people who come to work each day focused on making Utah a better place to live.”

During her tenure as executive director, Fisher led the successful transition from the former Department of Community and Culture to the department’s current organizational structure. She also oversaw the digitization and cataloging of state historical records and more than 30,000 artifacts. The entire state art collection is now available for viewing online. Fisher also spearheaded efforts to significantly expand Gov. Herbert’s annual Native American Summit.

“Julie leaves a legacy of stewardship of Utah’s unique cultural identity and resources,” Gov. Herbert said. “She has fostered a commitment to accountability and efficiency in the management of taxpayer dollars and has laid a foundation which will support the department into the future.”

Brian Somers, who was appointed deputy director of the department in February 2013, will serve as the interim executive director while a search for a new director is conducted. Before joining Heritage & Arts, Somers served as the associate director of communications for Governor Gary R. Herbert. Prior to his service in the Governor’s Office, Somers provided contract communications, marketing, and strategy consulting services to the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and other public and private sector clients.

“Julie has brought together a diverse group of divisions in a way that encourages collaboration in improving the lives of Utahns,” Somers said. “On behalf of all employees in the Department of Heritage and Arts, we thank her for her long public service as our executive director and in the Legislature and wish her well in her future endeavors in the private sector.”

Chase Home Museum

The Chase Home Museum of Utah Folk Arts is the only museum in the country dedicated to displaying a state-owned collection of contemporary folk art. It features objects made by living Utah artists from the state’s American Indian, rural, occupational and ethnic communities offering a snapshot of Utah’s contemporary culture and heritage. The Chase Home, built more than 150 years ago in a traditional hall-and-parlor style from adobe bricks, is a fine example of 19th century folk art.

The three permanent galleries are in the process of getting new exhibitions installed. The museum will be closed from October 18, 2016 through January 19, 2016.

Workshop Space and Temporary Exhibitions

A workshop space on the first floor features both folk arts and museum programming at the Chase Home. We offer classes, hands-on workshops, artist visits, and many more events. Follow our Facebook page for the latest announcements.

The workshop space also serves as a gallery for temporary exhibitions of Utah folk and traditional arts or new work featuring emerging folk art genres or innovations of tradition. We accept proposals for 8-12 week exhibitions by Utah artists. See our Exhibition Guidelines to submit a proposal. Contact Adrienne Decker ( or Jennifer Ortiz ( to learn more.

Folk Art Collection

View the State of Utah Folk Art Collection.

Location & Hours

The Chase Home Museum will be closed
10/18/16 ~ 1/20/2017

The interior of the Chase Home is getting painted and new exhibits are being planned. The Utah folk arts collection is still our focus, and with rotating exhibitions of contemporary Utah folk artists in our temporary gallery on the main floor.

The Chase Home Museum is located in the middle of Liberty Park. To visit, enter the park from either 900 South or 1300 South at about 600 East and follow the signs to parking near the center of the park.

Labor Day-Memorial Day (Winter Hours):

Tuesday-Friday: 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Saturday-Monday: Closed

Memorial Day-Labor Day (Summer Hours):

Tuesday: 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Wednesday: 11:00 AM – 8:00 PM

Thursday-Saturday:11:00 AM – 4:00 PM 

Sunday-Monday: Closed

Chase Home Museum Map


Call 801.533.5760

Facebook IconVisit the Chase Home Museum of Utah Folk Arts on Facebook!

Summer of Service

Summer of Service is Utah’s statewide initiative to celebrate and mobilize youth 5-25 to make a meaningful difference in their local communities by volunteering June 1 to August 31.

Why serve:

  • Make a difference in someone’s life
  • Learn new skills to build your resume
  • Keep active, stay busy, avoid boredom
  • Have fun and make new friends
  • Earn a Presidential Service Award
  • Read this blog post for more details about why and how youth can serve this summer


  • Nonprofit Organizations
  • Faith-based Organizations
  • Community Events
  • Government Agencies and Schools
  • Individuals (neighbors, family, others)

Qualify for Prizes:

to access the participant login page click hereEach month, qualifying youth are entered into a drawing for prizes. Drawings are held at the end of June, July and August. Prizes include (but are not limited to):

  • VIP passes to Airborne Sports
  • Games of bowling at All Star Bowling & Entertainment
  • Two tickets to Tuacahn Ampitheatre’s Peter Pan
  • Dozen donuts from Banbury Cross
  • Unlimited fun passes at Boondocks
  • Ice cream gift certificates
  • All day passes to Cherry Hill
  • Round trip airfare in continental U.S.
  • Buffet meals at Chuck-A-Rama
  • Gift certificates to Classic Fun Center
  • Funday passes to Glenwood Caverns
  • Day at the Natural History Museum package
  • Universal Day pass to Seven Peaks
  • and more

To see how to qualify for prizes, visit our participant portal.

Earn Presidential Service Recognition:

The President’s Volunteer Service Award (PVSA) is a premier volunteer awards program.  Youth are invited to participate and be recognized by our nation’s president for being active citizens. Along with the ultimate honor of presidential recognition, recipients will receive a personalized certificate, an official pin and a congratulatory letter from the president of the United States. Youth must complete the following amount of hours June 1 to August 31 for the PVSA:

  • Kids 5-12 (50 hours)
  • Youth 13-18 (75 hours)
  • Young Adults 19-25 (100 hours)

Thank You Sponsors!

Tuachan logo GCAP-logo-2016 Logo     unnamed       Logo USAll-Star_Logo_WhiteBckrnd (1)   Rec center logo   BC    Aggieunnamed (1)      Wasatch Valley Pizza Logo   Red Butte Garden logo Airborne Trampoline Arena logo Seven Peaks Logo SALT LAKE COUNTY LOGO Cherry Hill Logo Command Deck Logo BYU Creamery logo SLC Bees Logo    USNatural History Museum   USThis is the Place Heritage Park   USColor me mine logo

Desert Star Playhouse
Christopherson Business Travel
Natural History Museum
Logan Aquatic Center
Roy Aquatic Center
Salt Lake County Ice Center

Need Help?
Call Katie Barlow at 801-245-7281 or for more information

Circleville Massacre Memorial

In April 1851, Mormon settlers in Circleville, a small hamlet in central Utah Territory, slit the throats of as many as 30 men, women, and children belonging to the Paiute Koosharem band. The massacre happened during the Black Hawk War because of unfounded fears by the settlers that the band posed a threat.

Despite being the worst atrocity committed against Native Americans in Utah, the massacre is not well known. Circleville residents—none original descendants of the perpetrators—do not much discuss it. The massacre is hardly mentioned in general histories of the state, and even the Paiute people know little of what happened to their ancestors.

That will begin to change, however, when the victims will be memorialized with a new memorial in Circleville. The memorial will provide a solemn place of contemplation and commemoration to honor the victims of one of Utah history’s saddest episodes.

A dedication ceremony for the new memorial is scheduled for April 22 at 11 a.m. The brief ceremony will be held at Memorial Park (Main Street and 100 East) in Circleville. Speakers include representatives of the Paiute Koosharem band, town of Circleville, LDS Church history department, and Utah Division of State History.

The memorial has become a reality because of the efforts of the Paiute Tribal Council, Utah Division of State History, town of Circleville officials, LDS Church Historical Department, Utah Westerners, and a number of independent historians who felt compelled to band together and give proper recognition to the slain.

Additional Background Information on the Circleville Massacre

The massacre occurred in an atmosphere of fear and conflict as the “Black Hawk War” led to violence among settlers and native peoples in many areas of Utah. Late in 1865, some Utes raided the town of Circleville, killing four citizens. In early 1866, ​Parowan militia officers decided to “take in all straggling Indians in the vicinity”—Paiutes included—eventually requesting several to come into Fort Sanford, where they were questioned. The militia targeted Paiute Indians due to paranoia and distrust, believing that they had allied with the Utes.

On April 21, an express sent from Fort Sanford to Circleville stated that two formerly friendly Paiutes had shot and wounded a member of the Utah militia. What the dispatch did not report was that one of the Paiutes had been injured, while the other had been shot and killed by a soldier’s long-range rifle. The military commander at Fort Sanford sent an express to Circleville and Panguitch advising that Paiutes encamped near the settlements ought to be disarmed. Later, another express rider from Fort Sanford erroneously reported that “friendly Paiutes had shot and killed a white man who belonged to the militia”—though in fact no militiamen had been killed.

Settlers and local LDS church leaders​ in Circleville met to decide what course to pursue. They decided to take the local Paiutes prisoner and sent a messenger to them to come into town and hear a letter read by the local LDS bishop. Those who complied were directed into the log church meetinghouse. When the settlers told the Indians to disarm and the Paiutes indicated reluctance, the settlers forcefully disarmed them. Men were sent to bring in the Indians who had refused to come in the first time. One Paiute who attempted to escape was shot. The prisoners, including women and children, were taken to an unused cellar to be held under guard.

LDS Church Apostle Erastus Snow received a report from Circleville and instructed that prisoners should be treated kindly and let go unless “hostile or affording aid to the enemy.” But the dispatch arrived too late—except for two prisoners who escaped and four children thought too young to bear witness, Mormon settlers massacred as many as thirty men, women, and children of the Koosharem Band, mostly by slitting their throats. Reportedly, the bodies were taken to the cellar of an unbuilt mill and buried in a mass grave.


The event is little-known in Utah and barely receives mention in general histories of the state. Only a few scholarly sources, including a 1989 Utah Historical Quarterly article, document its history. In order to raise awareness and honor the memory of the innocents, several groups have worked together on creating a monument.

The monument is the result of cooperation among the Paiute Tribe of Utah, Utah Division of State History, town of Circleville, LDS Church History Department, Utah Westerners, and many contributors. The LDS Church Historical Department made an initial contribution that paid for the design of the monument. Utah Division of State History Director Brad Westwood and Utah Westerners President Steven A. Gallenson spearheaded a fundraising campaign, and a number of history-loving individuals and organizations have pledged their financial support of the project.

At the request of the Paiute Tribe, on the granite stone will be an image of an eagle in flight (conveying the deceased to their resting places). The text will include an oral account of the massacre and an inscription written by the next of kin of those slain.

The memorial has the promise of not only bringing recognition to the massacre but also of bringing healing for Paiutes and the people of Circleville. The inscription reads: “In remembrance of the innocent who were lost in this place so long ago. None of us could ever hope to describe the feelings of emotion that these people might have felt. All we can do is honor their existence as human beings.”


Weeks, Sue Jensen. How Desolate Our Home Bereft of Thee: James Tillman Sanford Allred and the Circleville Massacre. Melbourne: Clouds of Magellan, 2014.

Winkler, Albert. “The Circleville Massacre: A Brutal Incident in Utah’s Black Hawk War,” Utah Historical Quarterly 55 (1987): 4–21.

NHPA 50 Year Anniversary

Join the nationwide celebration for the 50th Anniversary of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) in 2016. This Act transformed the face of communities throughout the United States and Utah by establishing a framework and incentives to preserve historic buildings, landscapes, and archaeological sites.  Coordinated through, the nationwide celebration is designed to inform and engage all ages and backgrounds in this significant law’s effects on local communities and history. Since 1966, the NHPA has shaped preservation efforts on America’s history and culture while generating positive social and economic impacts. In 2015, the Utah State Historic Preservation Office (formed in 1973) gathered stakeholders to organize a year of events and to gather engaging stories and media for the celebration.

This website is a portal to a year of events and activities that cover all corners of Utah.

Events Calendar     Media     Preservation Apps     Links     Partners


Shipwreck at the Great Salt Lake


Veterans Utah History Project


Where were you when WWII ended?

The Division of State History and the Utah Department of Veterans & Military Affairs have joined together on the Veterans Utah History Project.

Whether you are a WWII veteran and want to document and share your experiences and memories or you want to volunteer to interview a WWII veteran there are opportunities to participate.

Visit the Utah Department of Veterans & Military Affairs website to learn more and get involved to collect, document and archive this important part of our history.

Historic Salt Lake City Apartments of the Early Twentieth Century

Text and Photographs by Lisa-Michele Church

Salt Lake City contains many beautiful examples of early twentieth-century apartment buildings constructed to house a growing urban population. With whimsical names such as Piccadilly, Peter Pan or Waldorf, these buildings beckoned to Utahns interested in a new approach to residential life. Apartments became places of beginnings and endings for the young couple starting out, a single woman with her first job, an immigrant family new to the area, or a widow no longer able to care for her home. Apartments were a stage on which the rest of your life came into view. As one resident put it, “You moved in with a suitcase, and out with a truck.”

The buildings were designed with style and architectural flair. Residents could enjoy amenities such as electric stoves, night watchmen, elegant entryways, and, for some, Murphy “disappearing” beds. Local families, including the Coveys, Downings, and Sampsons, constructed many of the complexes. Monthly rents ranged from $30 to $50. The last of the distinctive buildings was built in the 1930s; after World War II, people preferred cozy bungalows in the suburbs.  But about half of the original 180 apartment houses are still standing as a vivid illustration of the boldness with which Salt Lake City entered the twentieth century.

The following photo gallery features a few of these buildings. Download a self-guided walking tour brochure to see the historic apartments buildings at your own pace.

1 Pauline

Pauline. The Pauline was built at 278 East 100 South in 1904. This is a “walk up” design where each apartment has its own entrance landing and balcony. Note the cut sandstone foundation, iron railing balconies, and brick details.

2 Woodruff

The Woodruff, located at 235 South 200 East, was built in 1908 and contained 51 units. The building advertised to “young men looking for desirable apartments close to their work.” There was a café, The building featured steam heat, hot water, telephone, gas range, a dresser, buffet, and Murphy bed. Tenants had the option of choosing the color of their walls. A night watchman and janitor were assigned to the apartment, and a café was an added amenity to residents.

3 Woodruff detail

Note the lovely lamp posts, now gone, and the bold entrance. Abraham Gross and his wife, Vera, were typical residents in the 1930s, living in unit 60 and raising their young son, Jerome. Abe and Vera were Polish immigrants; he worked as a cattle buyer. When Abe was killed tragically in a 1935 train accident, Vera and Jerome moved out and the apartment stood vacant for two years.

4 Altadena

The Altadena, at 310 South 300 East, was built in 1905 at a cost of $21,000 by the Octavius Sampson family. The Sampsons originally named it Vivian Flats but changed the name a few years later to match that of their baby daughter. Typical residents included sisters, Annette and Martha Rustad, Norwegian immigrants who worked as seamstresses in Salt Lake department stores. They lived at the Altadena for many years; neither ever married.

5 Altadena detail

The entrance doors at the Altadena are especially detailed. Both buildings feature pediments, Tuscan columns, dentillated cornices and accented cornerstones.

6 Sampson

The Sampson building is at 276 East 300 South, around the corner from the Altadena. It contained seven “walk up” units. The Altadena and Sampson Apartments are almost identical plans. Both buildings have red brick, white trim, substantial balconies, and oak doors. One luxury item was an elevator at the back of the building.

7 Elise

The Elise, at 561 East 100 South, features a massive columned entrance with decorative iron railings and balconies.

8 Elise detail

The detail on the Elise columns is striking. The building was built in 1914 and contains eight “walk up” units.

9 Hillcrest

The Hillcrest is located at 155 East First Avenue and was built in 1915. It joined other apartment buildings financed by the Covey family, including the Covey Flats (now LaFrance), Buckingham, Kensington, New Hillcrest, and Covey. All were built by W.C.A. Vissing, a popular apartment contractor of the time and member of the Covey family.

10 Buckingham

The u-shaped court of the Buckingham (241 East South Temple) is echoed in the other Covey-designed buildings. All were carefully landscaped with generous courtyards and flower beds.

11 Ruby

The Ruby, at 435 East 200 South, was built in 1912. It contains 21 “walk up” units and beautiful wood framed doors and windows. The detailed brick work is also remarkable.

12 Ruby too

One resident of the Ruby, Sadie Baldwin, worked as a dressmaker earning $720 per year in 1940. Sadie was a young widow with three children to raise.

13 Embassy

The Embassy was built at 130 South 300 East in 1926. It contains 31 units using a double-loaded corridor plan where each room opens off a central corridor, and few have balconies. This plan type was a particularly efficient use of Salt Lake City’s deep lots, and was common in the buildings built after World War I. It is currently called the Pauline Downs.

14 Embassy detail

Most early apartment buildings used bold signs to attract attention and convey style. The Embassy sign is no exception. The Embassy was built, along with two adjacent apartment buildings, by Bessie P. Downing and her husband, Hardy. Hardy was a famous tandem bike racer and boxing promoter. Bessie lived in this building and managed it until Hardy’s passing.

15 Embassy Arms

The Embassy Arms was a little fancier than the Embassy, with its French door balconies and elaborate stone entrance. It was built by the Downings next to the Embassy, at 120 South 300 East, in 1930. Note the stone “D” over the sign; it was originally named the Downing Deluxe.

16 Embassy Arms too

These French door balconies were unusual in a double loaded corridor plan. Note the brickwork and stone accents.

17 Spencer Stewart

The Spencer Stewart, at 740 East 300 South, was built in 1926 and included 29 units. It was advertised in the 1935 Salt Lake Telegram for its “three rooms, electric refrigerators and ranges, furnished or unfurnished, disappearing beds, nice large rooms, moderate rent.”

18 Stratton

The Stratton was built in 1927 as part of a building boom where at least ten new apartment buildings appeared on the downtown skyline. It is located at 49 South 400 East and features some castellation along the roofline, two balconies, and an imposing entrance.

19 Peter Pan

The Peter Pan is located at 445 East 300 South. It is notable for its tile roofs, brick detailing and lovely sign. The building was built in 1927.

20 Peter Pan detail

The name signs on the early apartment buildings were often neon and included colorful metal designs.

21 Bell Wines

The Bell Wines apartments were built in 1927 by a married couple, Hazel Bell and Stanley Wines, who combined their surnames. It is located at 530 East 100 South. The building is evocative of a southern plantation home, with a center porch and tall columns around a courtyard.

22 Bell Wines too

The building contains 30 units opening off a long hallway. One early resident, Eva Harmer, became engaged to her sweetheart, Blaine Allan, while living here in 1934. She was alarmed when she discovered she had dropped her engagement ring down the apartment’s sink. Fortunately, city water officials blocked off the pipes until the ring could be found.

23 Annie Laurie

The Annie Laurie, located at 326 East 100 South, and its sister building, the Lorna Doone, were both built in 1928 by the Bowers Investment Company at a cost of $80,000 each. The Lorna Doone has 33 units and the Annie Laurie has 30.

25 Lorna Doone

The Lorna Doone, at 320 East 100 South, shared an interior block parking lot with the other nearby apartments. Between the two sister buildings is a landscaped courtyard.

24 Lorna Doone detail

Both buildings feature elaborate gargoyles and ornaments at the entrance and on the roofline.

26 Armista

The Armista, located at 55 East 100 South, is a substantial building of stone and brick with little ornamentation. Its doorway features beautiful lamps. Herrick and Company built it with 30 units in 1927. Its name was later changed to the Waldorf Apartments. A 1927 Salt Lake Tribune ad read: “$40.00 to $42.00. One of the most modernly equipped and conveniently located apartments in the city.”

27 Piccardy

The Piccardy, at 115 South 300 East, was built in 1930. It has 40 units: five one-bedroom and five studios on each floor. It features Jacobethan styling, twisting columns at the entrance and some leaded glass windows.

28 Piccardy detail

Acanthus leaf trim and original light fixtures adorn the Piccardy entrance.

29 Los Gables

The Los Gables is one of the largest apartments of the early period with 80 units. It was built at 135 South 300 East in 1929. Note the imposing stone work and arched doorways.

30 Los Gables detail

The Los Gables also features inset stone pieces and timber accents.

31 Piccadilly

The Piccadilly is a typical double-loaded corridor plan, built in 1929 at 24 South 500 East.

32 Piccadilly detail

The doorway at the Piccadilly features the original light fixture and decorative sign.

33 Bigelow

The Bigelow apartments were built in 1930 at 223 South 400 East, containing 30 units. A 1940 ad read: “2 r[oo]m modern, lots of space, light, all electric, good service, exclusive.”

34 Premier

The Premier was built at 27 South 800 East in 1931 for $50,000. The site features an unusually large front courtyard with lush landscaping. Note the upright metal sign on the roof.

35 Premier detail

The Premier entrances have striking stone work and wrought iron gates.

36 Chateau Normandie

The Chateau Normandie, 63 South 400 East, was built in 1931. It is a rare example of a “walk up” design built at the end of this apartment era. It has stately trees and extensive timber accents.

37 Chateau Normandie detail

The windows at the Chateau Normandie are extensively decorated.

38 Eastcliff Westcliff

The East Cliff and West Cliff buildings sit together on 200 South between 400 East and 500 East. They were built in 1927–28 and originally named the Cummings apartments.

39 Mayflower

The Mayflower, at 1283 East South Temple, is one of the largest and most elegant apartment buildings of the first half of the twentieth century. Built in 1929 from a design by the architect Slack Winburn, each floor has only five 2,600-square-foot units. Arches and ivy adorn the exterior.

40 Knickerbocker

The Knickerbocker apartment building at 1280 East South Temple was built in 1911 by W.C.A. Vissing. It has a large carved cornice and massive columns with iron railing balconies.

41 Castle Heights

The Castle Heights apartment building opened in January, 1931 to great acclaim. A Salt Lake Tribune ad dated January 18, 1931, read: “Every kitchen in this ultra modern apartment house is equipped with a genuine Frigidaire unit.” It still stands at 141 East First Avenue. Note the stone work, arched entrance, and neon sign.





Art-o-mat creator Clark Whittington helps an art lover make a purchase.

Utah Arts & Museums introduces Utah’s first Art-o-mat, a cigarette vending machine that has been transformed to sell small pieces of art. Purchased in April 2014, this Art-o-mat is the creation of Artists in Cellophane (AIC), an organization based in North Carolina that encourages “art consumption by combining the worlds of art and commerce in an innovative form.” AIC believes art should be progressive, yet personal and approachable.

There are currently 100 active machines in various locations around the country. Utah Arts & Museum’s model will be housed primarily at the Rio Gallery in the Rio Grande Depot for 12 months while it’s under an exclusivity contract. After that, it will be leased to other organizations in Utah on a first-come, first-served basis.

At the Art-o-mat’s Utah debut at the Mountain West Arts Conference, 46 conference-goers fed the machine a five-dollar bill for a cigarette box-sized work of art. Utah’s machine holds work by 11 artists. Each artist includes a brief description of what’s inside, such as “earrings with a twist” or “alcohol ink painting,” and the works are as varied as you might imagine: tiny robots with movable arms and legs, barcode flip books, painted ceramic tiles, earrings, small paintings, and more.

There are approximately 400 contributing artists from 10 countries currently involved in the Art-o-mat project, and AIC says it is always searching for fresh work. Artists are asked to submit their art for review, and if they’re chosen, Art-o-mat pays them to create work that will then be distributed to machines all over the country. Each piece includes a small paper with contact information and details about the artist. Utah Arts & Museums hopes Utah artists will participate so that local talent can be represented in the project.

To learn more about Art-o-mat, visit