Center of Southwest Studies’ to host opening reception for new museum exhibits

Center of Southwest Studies

The Center of Southwest Studies at Fort Lewis College will host an opening reception on Wednesday, Feb. 20 from 5:30-7 p.m. in the Center’s Museum. The Center is unveiling its new exhibits rotation showcasing new items and artifacts in its two permanent galleries, one dedicated to Ben Nighthorse Campbell and the other, Treasures of the Southwest, featuring the Center’s own collection of fine art, textiles, and much more. A third gallery features the traveling exhibit, Cannabis: A Visual Perspective.

This rotation will display Ben Nighthorse Campbell’s collection of honors and awards presented to him by Tribal Nations. While in Congress, Campbell worked to pass legislation and bring awareness to Native American businesses, legal services, education and conservation concerns. The honors and awards, along with the acts and bills on display, reflect a career dedicated to the people of Colorado, the United States, and especially Native American communities.

Treasures of the Southwest: Hispanidad! will feature fine examples of huipiles, a traditional garment worn by indigenous women from central Mexico to Central America; a beautiful display of charro outfits and other various artifacts round out this exhibit featuring the Center’s Hispanic collections.

The Rocky Mountain Society of Botanical Artists developed the traveling exhibit, Cannabis: A Visual Perspective, featuring the plant in the botanical art of 20 artists. Botanical illustration was the only way to record the world’s plants before the invention of photography. This display seeks to merge the beauty of art with the realism of science, spurring curiosity and further information about the cannabis industry in Southwest Colorado.

The Museum at the Center of Southwest Studies’ normal hours of operation are 1-4 p.m., Mondays –Fridays, or by appointment. These exhibits will remain on display throughout 2019.

The Center of Southwest Studies, now in its fifty-fifth year, provides an active program of free public lectures and events year-round at its museum, research library, and archives facility on the campus of Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado. For more information, please contact the Center’s business office at 970-247-7456 or visit

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