Utah Tech University’s Sears Art Museum to showcase Zion National Park in next exhibition

Showcasing Zion National Park through the eyes of various artists, Utah Tech University’s Sears Art Museum presents its latest exhibit, “The Might Five: Zion National Park.”

On display from Dec. 1 until Jan. 12, 2024, the exhibition will open with a reception from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Dec.1 in the museum, located in the Eccles Fine Arts Center on the Utah Tech campus. Open to the community, the opening reception is free to attend, features the opportunity to meet with some of the artists and includes light refreshments.

“The Mighty Five is the first in a series of five exhibitions based on the parks in Utah,” Dr. James Peck, director and curator of the Sears Art Museum, said. “Each show will consist of works from the museum collection as well as works from Utah artists.”

Capturing the attention of the artistic community since it was declared the first national park in Utah in 1919, Zion is located 40 miles from St. George and welcomes more than 4 million tourists each year.

Much like how Yellowstone and the Grand Canyon gained recognition through artistic representation, Zion earned its place on the map through the efforts of artist Frank Dellenbaugh. In 1904, Dellenbaugh’s illustrated article, “A New Valley of Wonders,” was published by Scribner’s Magazine, spreading the word about Zion and initiating a trend where artists became pioneers, storytellers and custodians of Zion’s immense beauty.

From the Great White Throne to the Court of the Patriarchs, Zion’s iconic scenes have become part of the national lexicon. The park is consistently among the three busiest in the national park system, alongside the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the Grand Canyon National Park. This exhibition provides an opportunity during the winter months to reflect and enjoy the park’s scenery without the usual crowds.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to see the many Zion masterpieces in the Sears collection all in one place,” Peck said. “It also offers a spotlight on several talented regional artists who have contributed.”

Offering a variety of art styles from traditional to contemporary, the Sears Art Museum at Utah Tech University features several unique exhibitions each year. Thanks to the contributions of Robert N. and Peggy Sears, the museum has been a part of the university since 2004. The museum is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and admission is free. Learn more at www.searsart.com.