The Colfax Cultural Center is one of four buildings on the Colfax Campus. It is a former elementary school that was built in 1898. In the early 1980s, it was purchased and renovated by South Bend Heritage, a community development corporation serving the surrounding urban area. The building has three exhibition spaces that are managed by a gallery committee of area artists and art educators. Many diverse groups hold their meetings in these same spaces. As a result, new and fresh audiences, along with seasoned gallery patrons, respond to the changing exhibitions.
Once called the Genesis Gallery, the Robert Seifert Gallery is in a room that used to be a class room. It was renamed to honor the first gallery preparator who hung the exhibitions over 18 years. Many meetings are held in this room.
The Court Gallery is the main hall of the building and now is used as a waiting area for the tenants of the building. The wood sculpture of an alligator stands prominently in this gallery and delights the children.
The Paper Room is a space that is one half of a former classroom in size. The exhibitions here are more intimate. It doubles as a conference room.
The Gallery Coordinator, together with the Colfax Campus Gallery Committee organizes six exhibitions a year:
1. Community Arts Organization. There are a number of community arts organizations in the South Bend area which are always looking for exhibition space for its members. The Colfax Campus Gallery offers its space to one of these organizations each year.
2. Annual Intermediate School Exhibition. Once called the Annual Middle School Exhibition (grades 7 & 8), it was renamed when the South Bend Community School Corporation reorganized itself into Primary Centers (grades 1 – 4), Intermediate School Centers (grades 5 – 8) and High School (grades 9 – 12). Students from all 10 Intermediate Schools participate in this exhibition.
3. Annual Art & Social Justice, a juried exhibition. “Art and Social Justice” was the title of a joint exhibition of work by local artists Jake Webster and Douglas Kinsey. The theme, a socially just world, is particularly reflective of South Bend Heritage Foundation’s mission – it inspired this annual juried exhibition. It calls artists from 4 states: Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Ohio.
4. “On Exhibit” Series. This series of exhibitions represent the current work by area artists who live and/or work within a 50-mile radius of South Bend. There are usually 3 “On Exhibit” exhibitions each gallery season. Each exhibition shows the work of three individual artists.
The Colfax Campus Gallery welcomes Francisco Avila, Linda Fritschner and Scott McKibbin at a reception to meet the artists and talk about their work at the First Friday of May. Avila’s oil paintings of buildings in Elkhart and acts of kindness in Venezuela hang in the Court Gallery. Fritschner’s icebergs of the Antarctica and Greenland along with walks in the garden dominate the walls of the Robert Seifert Gallery. McKibbin’s manipulated photographs Intrigue visitors to the Paper Room. The exhibition is up until June 9, 2017.
The gallery hours are weekdays 9 am to 7 pm and Saturdays 9 am to 1 pm.
CALL FOR ARTISTS
May 26, 2017: Deadline for receiving entries
June 9, 2017: Notification of juried results
June 23, 2017: Deadline for receiving art
June 30, 2017-August 11, 2017: Exhibition open
July 14, 2017 . . . Reception