Beth Van Hoesen, "Fungi," aquatint (21/30), Bone Creek Collection

Gifts bolster Bone Creek

Published in the Columbus Telegram, July 1, 2015.

It’s half way through the year 2015 and the Bone Creek Museum of Agrarian Art’s collection has increased 16 percent in overall value thanks to a substantial gift from the E. Mark Adams and Beth Van Hoesen Adams Trust of San Francisco.

The trust specifically sought out Bone Creek Museum for its small size and unique mission.

“The number and value of gifts to the museum’s collection has grown every year,” said curator Amanda Mobley Guenther, “but this year we are likely to set a new precedent.”

The Bone Creek Museum  opened in 2008. The museum’s mission is to connect people to the land through art. Along with an average of four exhibitions per year, the museum hosts numerous educational events for the public. Building a permanent collection is often one of the most easily overlooked components of what the museum does.

A staff member involved with facilitating the gift from the Van Hoesen Adams Trust said that Bone Creek Museum was a perfect match for the subject matter of Van Hoesen’s work. The museum has received a selection of artworks of vegetables and farm animals.

Twenty-six original prints and drawings comprise the recent gift of artworks by Beth Van Hoesen (1926-2010), a prominent printmaker.

Van Hoesen studied at Stanford University and the California School of Fine Arts and abroad in France.

She and her husband, Mark Adams, worked out of their 1910 firehouse, turned art studio, in San Francisco for 46 years. Van Hoesen is recognized for her draftsmanship and printmaking of everyday subjects with numerous awards and solo exhibitions at museums. Now her works are in the collections of more than 150 museums across the country.

This year, Bone Creek Museum has also received a bronze of bighorn sheep by 19th Century French sculptor Jules Moigniez and a print by Keith Jacobshagen, a famous local landscape painter and professor emeritus from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

“Because of our small exhibition space, we can’t show the permanent collection as much as we’d like,” said Guenther.

Museum leaders know that within the collection the major attraction continues to be artworks by David City native, Dale Nichols. There is always at least one piece by Nichols on display.

The museum relies on gifts of art to be the primary basis for growing the collection. “We are truly grateful for all of the generous donations of art we received over the past year. We are excited and hopeful to be able to share all these new works with our visitors soon,” said Tim Wollmer, President of Bone Creek Museum of Agrarian Art.