Reflecting on 30 years of art

Caroline Broderick, Features Editor

This year is not just a celebration of COD’s 50th year, but the 30th anniversary of professional art being on campus.


Before COD’s art gallery was known as the Cleve Carney Art Gallery, it was the Gahlberg Gallery, named after William E. Gahlberg, a suburban developer and avid art collector for 11 years before renovations provided by philanthropist and art collector Cleve Carney in 2012. Before 2001, the gallery was simply the “The Art Center Gallery” until the MAC was built in 1986.

This year marks the 30th year a gallery has been on campus, providing art for education and for culture for three decades.

In light of the celebratory anniversary, the gallery has opened its latest exhibition: “Long View / Long Game” curated by Brandon Alvendia, which runs until Oct. 1.


The exhibition displays artwork from the 30 years the art collection has been growing so community members may see the journey art has taken as well as the gallery itself.


Justin Witte became the gallery’s new director last year, and he has already immersed himself in its history.


“From the beginning, when Eileen Broido was the director, the gallery has been known as a top center for contemporary art,” said Witte. “Barbara Wiesen was the second director of the space and did exceptional work in building on the reputation Eileen started.”

Broido, an avid art collector, was the gallery’s first director and has donated multiple pieces for the gallery’s permanent collection as well as beginning its reputation. Barbara Wiesen ran the gallery through its establishment as the Gahlberg Gallery to its first years as Cleve Carney.


In that time, the galleries have been graced with exceptional works including over 100 polaroids by Andy Warhol, perspective pieces by Amy Vogel and an entire Native American artwork collection in archives.


“What a better way to expose and educate the community to the advancement of the visual arts than having a professional art gallery on a community college campus,” said Wiesen in an interview with COD in 2013.
Not only does the gallery display works through the years, but Alvendia has provided an interactive piece for the community: a time capsule. Students and the public may place anything they’d like into the time capsule to represent the current time. The capsule is set to be opened 30 years into the future.