These three art galleries are living proof that you don’t need to travel to the big city to view high-caliber pieces of art.
With a generous visual arts community and revolving exhibitions, LaGrange has not one, but three art galleries waiting with their doors wide open to entertain and educate the community.
In 2007, Wes and Missy Cochran opened the doors to the Cochran Gallery in downtown LaGrange. Although the gallery has been open for 13 years, Wes and Missy have been adding to their impressive collection since the 1970s. The couple started collecting art after Wes gained an interest in original prints by popular contemporary artists.
The Cochran’s diverse collection doesn’t only stay in LaGrange. The Cochrans boast a collection of some of the most captivating American art made in the 20th century, including pieces from Warhol, Rosenquist, Gilliam, Woodruff, and many others. The works in their collection are some of the most important documentations of 20th century America’s social and cultural situation. While their collection, one of the most significant private art collections in the United States today, often makes appearances in town, their collection tours galleries around the world.
Whether or not their collection is in town, the Cochran Gallery always has an intriguing exhibition to explore. Some exhibitions feature works available to purchase. Located on Lafayette Square, add exploring the gallery to your next date night or Saturday afternoon! It is a stone throw away from all of your favorite restaurants and shops in town.
Housed in a victorian county jail building from 1892, which also once served as a furniture store and the LaGrange Daily News offices, the LaGrange Art Museum opened its doors in 1963 by a group of local artists. The building itself is a large part of the artistic heritage of the museum. The permanent collection of the museum launched when local hero Lamar Dodd, a celebrated visual artist, donated a painting to the museum. Filled with interesting exhibitions by both distinguished and local artists, the gallery has a high-quality collection, all available to view with free admission (although donations are highly encouraged).
The LaGrange Art Museum is committed to educating the LaGrange community on the visual arts and encourages locals to find enjoyment in exploring its collection, exhibitions, and educational opportunities. Its mission is to “support lifelong learning that reflects the value of diversity and contributes to the viability of the region,” with a special emphasis on serving the region’s youth demographic.
The Lamar Dodd Art Center is located on LaGrange College’s campus and hosts a constantly revolving collection along with the college’s art department. The museum’s namesake is well-known artist Lamar Dodd, who took his first formal art class at the college. Funded by a grant from the Callaway Collection, the three-story building holds a retrospective collection of Dodd’s artwork, the Josephine Altman Case Collection of Plains and Southwest American Indian Art, a Masters of Twentieth-Century Photography along with singular works by Rembrandt, Dali, Picasso, and others.
Along with the display of prominent artworks by renowned artists, the art center displays art created by the college’s art students. Every spring, preceding graduation, senior art majors display an exhibit of their best work as a celebration of their education in the visual arts.
The building itself is visually stimulating. With beautiful lighting and interesting visual displays, the gallery is well worth a few hours of your time. Take the chance to explore LaGrange College’s campus while you are there, the beautiful historic buildings are a great way to get to know LaGrange and its history!