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Crystal Bridges and Beyond: Oklahoma City, Tulsa, and Bentonville

November 3–7, 2014

$2,650 per person; single supplement, add $300

Join Cynthia Noble on this art-filled trip to Oklahoma and Arkansas.

Monday, November 3
Arrive at the Tulsa International Airport on independently arranged flights. Board a private motorcoach and continue to lunch at Tavern on Brady. After lunch, visit a prominent private collection of contemporary art before checking in to the historic Hotel Mayo located in downtown Tulsa. This evening, we enjoy a private tour and reception at Philbrook Downtown, the Philbrook Museum of Art’s new satellite facility in Tulsa’s Brady Arts District. Philbrook Downtown features the museum’s growing collection of modern and contemporary art as well as highlights from the Native American collection. Our Philbrook visit is followed by a festive welcome dinner in town this evening.

Tuesday, November 4
Depart Tulsa this morning via motorcoach and drive to Norman, Oklahoma. Begin with a visit to the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art (FJJMA), located on the campus of Oklahoma University. The museum has grown exponentially over the years, the most recent addition being the Stuart Wing, an 18,000-square-foot expansion that opened in October 2011. See highlights of the permanent collection, and take a private tour of the new exhibition Microcosm/Macrocosm: Abstract Expressionism in the Southwest. After lunch at the University Club, continue for a specially arranged visit to the privately owned H. E. Ledbetter House. Built by architect Bruce Goff in 1948, the home is based on a series of designs using composite geometry and contrasts natural forms and materials with modern and futuristic elements, including its suspended saucer-shaped carport and patio roofs. Continue to Oklahoma City for a thought-provoking visit to the Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum, which remembers the tragic bombing of 1995. Take a private tour of the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, considered to be America’s premier institution of Western history, art, and culture and boasting an internationally renowned collection of art of the American West. This evening, we are invited for dinner in a stunning private home that is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Our host is a former president of the Cherokee Historical Society and a great-great-grandniece of Will Rogers. We have the opportunity to view her diverse collection of Native American art, as well as meet several prominent Native American artists and discuss their work.

Wednesday, November 5
Today we embark on a full-day excursion to Bentonville, Arkansas, for a visit to the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. Designed by renowned architect Moshe Safdie, the museum stands in the heart of the Ozark forest, a setting that unites the power of art with the beauty of nature. We spend the balance of the day at the museum, enjoying a private tour of the special exhibition State of the Art: Discovering American Art Now as well as lunch and time to explore independently. State of the Art is the culmination of a yearlong process that began with a focus on some 10,000 American artists and included more than 1,200 hours of in-studio interviews and thousands of miles logged by traveling curators. The result of this unprecedented journey is a one-of-a-kind exhibition that draws from every region of the United States and offers an unusually diverse and nuanced look at today’s American culture through the work of more than 100 contemporary artists. Continue to the 21c Museum Hotel for a curator-led tour of the hotel’s fantastic collection of contemporary art, followed by dinner at the Hive, before heading back to Tulsa.

Thursday, November 6
Depart Tulsa this morning for a day trip to Bartlesville. Begin at historic Price Tower. Measuring 221 feet to the top of the spire and standing 19 stories high, Price Tower is Frank Lloyd Wright’s only realized skyscraper. View the original Wright interiors on the historic floors of the building, and enjoy lunch at the 15th-floor Copper Bar. Continue to the 3,700-acre Woolaroc Museum and Wildlife Preserve, the former country estate of oil baron and founder of Phillips Petroleum Company Frank Phillips. With its name derived from the woods, lakes, and rocks that are indigenous to the area, Woolaroc is now a stunning wildlife preserve, historic homestead, and museum which holds one of the world’s most outstanding collections of art of the American West. Tonight we enjoy a private curator-led tour and farewell dinner at the Philbrook Museum of Art. Gifted to the city in 1938 by oilman Waite Phillips, the 72-room Italianate villa and surrounding 23 acres of picturesque gardens act as an art center for the city of Tulsa.

Friday, November 7
This morning we see examples of Tulsa’s abundant and significant Art Deco architecture. Our first visit is to Christ the King Church (1928), designed by Chicago modernist Barry Byrne. Beveled piers accent the brick exterior of the church, which also features terracotta ornamentation and stained-glass windows designed by Italian artist Alfonso Ianelli and mosaics and furniture by Bruce Goff. Next we take a driving and walking tour of the fantastic architecture on Boston Avenue, including Goff’s stunning Boston Avenue Methodist Church (1929), considered to be one of the finest examples of ecclesiastical Art Deco architecture in the United States. Also on the tour are the stunning Art Deco lobby of the ONG building, the Art Deco Philcade building and lobby, the Gothic Revival Philtower, and 320 South Boston building, the gorgeous lobby of which has vaulted ceilings painted in an intricate “grottesca” style. After brunch, transfer to the Tulsa Airport for independently arranged flights home.

Terms and Conditions
Cost: $2,650 per person based on double occupancy; single supplement, add $300.
Full payment is due at time of reservation and indicates acceptance of all group arrangements. COST INCLUDES: Four nights’ accommodations at the Mayo Hotel; breakfast daily at the hotel, five lunches, four dinners, one reception; all activities described in the itinerary; transportation by private motorcoach; airport transfers in Tulsa for those meeting designated group transfers; all taxes, gratuities, fees, and porterage; services of Cynthia Noble as study leader and local docents and guides. NOT INCLUDED: Airfare to and from Tulsa [contact the Member Travel department at (312) 443-3115 for suggested flights]; meals or beverages not specifically mentioned as included; items of a personal nature. Upon registration, each participant will be provided with an Art Institute of Chicago Waiver and Release form that must be signed and returned to the Member Travel department prior to program departure.

Cancellation Policy
The Art Institute of Chicago (“AIC”) reserves the right to withdraw the tour or any part if it and to make such alterations in the itinerary as it deems necessary and desirable. In the event of the cancellation of the tour prior to departure, a full refund will constitute full settlement between all parties. No refund shall be due from AIC in conjunction with changes in rates or itineraries or substitution of suppliers. No refund will be made for any unused portion of the tour. AIC reserves the right to decline to accept or retain any person as a member of the tour if AIC determines that the participation of that individual is objectionable and, in the event such authority is exercised, the participant waives any right and all claims for damages. Baggage and personal effects are the sole responsibility of owners at all times. Cancellation notification must be in writing. Participants may cancel on or before September 22, 2014, with a cancellation fee of $100 plus any nonrefundable costs and cancellation fees incurred by hotels and other venues at the time of cancellation. After September 22, 2014, there will be no refund, unless canceled space can be filled from an existing waitlist. Trip cancellation insurance is highly recommended; an application will be sent with reservation confirmation.

Download the brochure.
To register, call (312) 443-3115.

Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, view east at dusk. Photo by Timothy Hursley. Courtesy of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, Arkansas.