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“A great museum!”

Museum of Nebraska Art
Ranked #3 of 20 things to do in Kearney
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The Museum of Nebraska Art (MONA) celebrates the history of Nebraska's visual art for diverse audiences. MONA collects, preserves, researches, exhibits, and interprets the work of artists who were born, lived, trained, or worked in Nebraska or who created artworks that reflect the culture of Nebraska.
Terre Haute, Indiana, USA
Level Contributor
200 reviews
53 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
“A great museum!”
Reviewed March 19, 2014

The museum is well-laid out. Artwork from Nebraskan artists is great! An enjoyable experience and highly recommended!

Visited March 2014
Thank nightingale1972
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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80 reviews from our community

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English first
Great Falls, Montana
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed February 21, 2014

A reviewer complained about the "rude staff" at MONA. What she failed to provide was her own rude behavior. She pushed her way past a tour group and demanded a ticket. When it was explained on 3 occasions that the museum was free, she left abruptly and complained loudly about being treated rudely. She was not even in the museum for 30 seconds. The staff person asked if he had been rude and 5 different memebers of the tour group said no but that the woman in question had been exceedingly mean spirited and demanding. Consider both sides and the source. I witnessed her behavior and she was far ruder than the museum staff.

Visited October 2013
1 Thank mustwander
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
195 reviews
95 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
“A little treasure”
Reviewed October 13, 2013

While staying overnight in Kearney during our trek across Nebraska on I-80, we read about a special exhibit at their Art Museum so made a stop. It doesn't open until 11AM but since we were also touring another museum, it worked out. Otherwise, I wouldn't have hung around just for this museum. It's not a very large building so can't house a big collection but they've done a nice job w/different exhibits, a nice gift shop and a few interesting outdoor sculptures. Definitely worth the time if you're in town. The Kearney community is lucky to have such a resource.

Visited October 2013
Thank Genevieve K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
163 reviews
62 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 138 helpful votes
“Extremely rude staff”
Reviewed October 10, 2013

As I planned to make my way across Nebraska I thought it would be fun to stop at sites in some of the rural towns along the way. MONA was high on my list as I am a confirmed museum junkie and have a special affinity for art. The museum is housed in the original classical-styled post office in Kearney. I love communities that value their history enough to creatively repurpose original buildings for modern uses! So, I was preconditioned to enjoy my stop. However, The staff at MONA are obviously not accustomed to travelers from outside the local area visiting the museum. When I stepped up to the desk near the entry and asked to purchase a ticket for 1 to tour the museum, the attendant just looked at me blankly. I repeated my request and he rolled his eyes and said "Miss, this museum is free." I explained, I had never visited before and did not know the museum was free and he again just looked at me blankly. At no point did he offer me information about the museum (or a map--although the place is so small you really don't need a map). Nor did he make any move to be anything beyond rude. Now, I'm from a major US metropolitan area, so I don't need (or expect) ear-to-ear grins and a lot of chit-chat. However, I do expect some common courtesy and it would have been nice to be given a brochure and a small explanation of the local art exhibits...alas that was not to be. Therefore, if you want to stray off the interstate at Kearney, head for the Great Platt River Road Archway Museum...the staff are courteous and it is a nice museum.

Visited October 2013
3 Thank HaveSuitcaseWillTrvl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Omaha, Nebraska
Level Contributor
129 reviews
55 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 90 helpful votes
“A Great Month for MONA”
Reviewed August 14, 2013

This classical-style former post office makes for an impressive, if small, museum, with a constantly changing collection of exhibits, all by Nebraskans or related to the state in some way. The art is presented in modular fashion, with several galleries of rotating "classic" works, or exhibitions with a built-in audience, occupying the main floor. The top floor is usually given to emerging artists, with more quaint, accessible pieces displayed in the basement.

The bedrock of the place is probably its collection of the great "ashcan" artist Robert Henri's work, most prominently his portrait of artist/model Eulabee Dix modeling bridal costume. This month, the museum features an exhibit built around the portrait. It includes other pieces Dix modeled for, as well as her own eclectic work ranging from conventional oil paintings to fabric art. The curators have taken pains to outline Dix's life, including her struggles during the depression which saw her become delusional about her success, or lack thereof.

The energetic curation of the Dix exhibit is characteristic of the MONA. My favorite exhibit this month was the interactive gallery's collection of Grant Reynard's work, collectively titled "Art Speaks; Viewers Respond". These portraits feature staid, wealthy patrons reacting to then-radical works, including some now seen as bedrock pieces by Pablo Picasso. Reynard succeeds on several levels here, presenting a cogent critique of Picasso himself, the less than comprehending art audience, and the perceptions of the viewer. This is a remarkable exhibit, and one hopes that MONA can assemble further exhibitions with similar energy and imagination.

Also among the highlights of this month is an exhibit of original Western American photography by Peter Brown, accompanied by the text of Kent Haruf from their collaboration 'West of Last Chance'. Rounding things out is a collection of Wright Morris photographs along the classic Lincoln Highway from the forties and fifties, presented here to mark the Lincoln Highway's 2013 centennial. This is a very strong month for the MONA in many ways; if you visit other times of the year, you may see impressive works from the Audubon or Bodmer archives. Highly recommended for anyone interested in art.

Visited August 2013
1 Thank Stuthehistoryguy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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