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Copper Art Museum in Clarkdale, AZ

October 7, 2014 , , ,

One highlight of my recent trip to the historic and supposedly spooky Historic 89A from Cottonwood to Jerome was the new museum housed in the old Clarkdale high school. This old building with giant windows lets in an abundance of natural light. This is really the perfect place to display copper. Jerome, the mining town up the hill, is a famous ghost destination and artist colony. There was a very large copper mine that brought wealth to the town. The family that has started the museum owns a copper shop in Jerome. They rent the ground floor of the high school building, and rent the upstairs to residential tenants who serve as security at night. I think it is a great gig to live upstairs because the view, the location, and the fact that the copper art is always downstairs make it uniquely attractive.

The very extensive military and kitchen collections are on permanent loan from private collectors. There is a temporary collection of antique tin cookie forms, mostly Santas, but bunnys and other holiday shapes as well. I learned a lot from the extensive charts and informative posters. The museum covers the history, the myth and meaning, the mining, and the art that resulted. I love the look of copper, but appreciate the other qualities it has, such as antibacterial. Everything is covered well and the staff (owner) checks in frequently to see if the patrons have questions about the exhibits. I saw him take great care and a lot of time when kids were visiting with parents. There is no formal tour, but the space is small and the guest is invited to ask for more guidance. I normally spend an extra long time in museums, and this was no exception. I was fascinated and needed to look at all the detail. I noticed other patrons were also sitting down and spending time looking deeply at the displays. One of my favorite rooms contains spent artillery shells from WWI that were turned into “trench art” by soldiers. I believe anyone would enjoy seeing this museum. It has artistic and historic value displayed in a place that makes it shine. If you are in the Clarkdale area to ride the train, don’t miss this awesome museum just around the corner from the train station.

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I love this photo series. I am a huge fan of metals.. This shows so much about copper mining and metalsmithing. what a cool place to check out!!


Stevie Wilson (@LAStory)

October 12, 2014

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