Curator has big vision for Fairview Museum
FAIRVIEW — The Fairview Museum of History and Art is under the guidance of a new curator, and his vision for the museum’s future is multifaceted and ambitious.
After Don Stewart, museum curator for more than a decade, retired from the position, David Brown, 69, of Mt. Pleasant heard about the opening.
Brown, an artist himself, had been working for a few years as a Red Cross volunteer traveling to areas across the country where flood damage had taken peoples’ homes.
“I went home to the wife and asked her what she thought,” Brown said. “Working with the Red Cross to help people pick up the pieces of their lives after a flood had been very rewarding, but I had been traveling around the country for a while, so I thought maybe it was time to do some volunteering here at home.”
Brown approached the museum board about the position, and after a few weeks of deliberation, the board appointed Brown as the new curator.
With a bachelor’s degree in advertising and public relations from Southern Utah University, Brown says he decided from the get-go he wanted to see a transformation for the museum.
“The museum here has been very similar for the last 10 years,” Brown said. “If you had seen it once, you didn’t really need to come back again. I really want to use my background in PR to get the museum more publicity and to start bringing in exhibits that are changing monthly.”
He said he wants to partner with the University of Utah and Brigham Young University to start to bring more exhibits in on a monthly basis, but universities aren’t the only educational institutions he wants to partner with.
He has plans to partner with the North Sanpete School District (NSSD) to help enhance the learning experience of the local students.
“Through our planned partnerships with BYU and the University of Utah, we want to bring in exhibits that correlate with things students of the district are studying at the moment,” Brown said.
He said he also wanted the student artists in the school district to bring in their art for a student art gallery open house.
He also said he would like to fill the gift shop with educational, hands-on materials based on earth science, history and art.
Another of Brown’s plans is to install a new room dedicated entirely to the history of veterans of Sanpete County. He said he plans to track down their histories and artifacts supporting them and have a whole room that will chronicle and honor men and women from Sanpete who have served their country. Browns said he hopes to go as far back as the Revolutionary and Civil Wars in the veterans exhibit.
“I am looking for veterans who have artifacts or stories that can be a part of it,” Brown said. “I want to make it where a young person can come in and get a glimpse of the Sanpete guys who fought in our country’s wars.”
As an artist, Brown has a particular interest in art. He says he wants to create a local artist gallery that will be the largest art sale gallery in the county.
“I want people to come in here and be able to buy original art, hopefully at an affordable price,” Brown said.
He said he would like the museum to become more widely known.
“This museum is probably the best-kept secret in the county, and I want that to change.”
Brown will have assistance with his grand plan from his wife Roberta “Bobbie” Brown, who will act as a co-curator. Roberta Brown will also work in the gift shop.
Brown, a disabled Vietnam War veteran, said the couple were high school sweethearts, torn apart by the Vietnam War and reunited later in life.