Friday, November 11, 2011

Crystal Bridges Persuasion

This Veteran's Day, 11-11-11, Wal-Mart heiress Alice Walton and the Walton Family Foundation open the doors to Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas. The 200,000 square-foot complex, designed by Boston-based architect Moshe Safdie, sets on 120 acres of pristine Ozark land, a gift to Americans present and future.

Alice Walton's vision, funded by $1.4 billion in family contributions, plus many donations from other philanthropists, brings to fruition the dream of honoring her parents memory.

The land where Crystal Bridges sets is very special to her family, she grew up in those woods and wanted the museum to seem as though it was set down into nature. When you approach, you can't see the magnitude of the 6 year project. It's only from the inside that you're able to view the eight pavilions, stretched out along the water on a lower level. Two of them span Crystal Creek, which has been dammed to form two large pools. These buildings, with their roofs constructed like suspension bridges, gave the museum its name. There are six galleries, each designed to respond to the nature of the art inside. A gift shop, a restaurant named Eleven and a large research library make it a great place for events or meetings.

The natural beauty that surrounds the museum are a work of art as well. The many trails that surround the museum will allow visitors to enjoy the native trees and plants. Beautiful Crystal Springs trickles over limestone rocks and you feel as if you are the middle of a unfound forest, birds twittering and the silence of nature make this a place to come and take a deep breath from life's busy schedules. The gift that the Walton Family have given us will allow generations to see American History through art, possibly the best interpretation of all. 

*A big Thank You to Zeek Taylor, talented Arkansas Artist (who served on Crystal Bridges planning committees) for sharing his personal photos of pre-opening parties for the slideshow!


  1. They are very generous & inspiring people for the American dream successes. How beautiful a place to of peace for reflection & memories .. set in the middle of God's precious forests.

    Wonderful share, Joycee. Have a beautiful day ~
    TTFN ~

  2. Ms. Walton is a beauty. and so is her vision.

  3. Simply beautiful. I would love to visit! K

  4. When are you going? Some of that artwork is really neat! Do you think Alice shops at Wal-Mart?

  5. What a beautiful place, I wouldn't mind visiting.

  6. We have tickets for Sunday, can't wait! And I'd be very surprised if Alice Walton didn't shop Walmart... her parents were some of the most down to Earth people I've ever met! By the way, if anyone is planning to come visit Crystal Bridges Museum, the admission is FREE thanks to a generous 800 million dollar gift from the Walton Family Foundation...forgot to mention that!

  7. I saw a little of the museum last week on Sunday Morning. I penciled it then on my bucket list!

  8. Can't wait to get back to Northwest Arkansas to go to the museum. We were actually at Bull Shoals last weekend with my son and daughter-in-law. Her parents have a house on the lake, and it we made it our base from which we traveled to Fayetteville for the South Carolina game.

    Didn't get to go back this weekend, but Ben and Claire did so and also we out to the castle that is being built in the area. That should be interesting as well.


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