2017 Arts & Literary Festival: Celebrating Nebraska’s Women

September 21-27, 2017

Now in its seventh year, the Joslyn Castle Arts & Literary Festival returns this fall celebrating women of Nebraska.  As Nebraska celebrates its sesquicentennial, marking 150 years of statehood, the Joslyn Castle is proud to focus on the artists and authors of our state.  For this festival, our primary goal is to create an awareness and appreciation for women artists who have, and still are, significantly contributing to the cultural fabric of Nebraska.  

A full festival schedule is below.

Purchase your tickets to individual events by clicking here!

Exhibits open for the duration of the festival:

  • For our art enthusiasts, we are pleased to welcome the Museum of Nebraska Art (MONA) back to the Joslyn Castle. They will be tailoring their exhibit this year to showcase female Nebraska artists.
  • We are thrilled to partner up with artist Judith Welk for the first time. Living in Dundee, Omaha, Nebraska, for over 40 years, she has produced hundreds of paintings and serigraph prints.  She will be displaying her beautiful work which is a reflection of the love of the people and places in the Dundee Neighborhood.
  • The Union for Contemporary Art in partnership with Girls Inc., will collaborate on a large-scale mural to be displayed in the Castle during the festival. They will design floral forms from manipulated words and text, tying together our theme of celebrating female artists and writers. 

Special Art and Literary Festival Events:

  • Thursday, September 21, 7-9pm: If poetry is your passion, then Nebraska State Poet Twyla M. Hansen should be a familiar name. Raised in northeast Nebraska, and currently living in Lincoln, she is the third Nebraskan and first woman to hold the position of Nebraska State Poet.  Twyla will have poetry reading of her celebrated works in the Music Room. Our guests will be delighted to hear passages from three of her books: Rock * Tree * Bird, Dirt Songs: A Plains Duet, and Potato Soup, named as one of Nebraska’s 150 Notable Books.
  • Friday, September 22, 5-8pm: Celebrate the official kick-off of the festival at our Artists Reception. At 6 p.m., we’ll celebrate the Joslyns’ involvement in the newspaper industry with a talk from Eileen Wirth, professor and chair of the Department of Journalism, Media and Computing at Creighton University. Eileen will join us to talk about her book, From Society Page to Front Page: Nebraska Women in Journalism.   Also, artist Tom Kerr will debut a new painting of our own Sarah Joslyn in front of our guests. 
  • Saturday, September 23, 9-11am – Come for a book club at the Castle!  Nebraska author, Barb Mohrman will be on hand to lead and discuss her book, Four Stars in the Window in partnership with the Omaha Public Library. This is a free community event, just call 402.595.2199 to RSVP. 
  • Saturday, September 23, 4-5pmAnne Nagosky, director of one of the largest private violin and viola studios in Nebraska, will lead a performance of her students. The performance will include students of various ages followed by a Q&A with Anne and several of the students.
  • Saturday, September 23, 7-10pmJuno’s Swans, Nebraska Shakespeare‘s all-female performance program, will remount select scenes from the much-acclaimed reading of Richard 3 (originally presented at the Blue Barn Theatre.) This unique event will include a discussion about the impact of women’s voices in Shakespeare performance. The evening also includes musical performances from two local female songwriters.
  • Sunday, September 24, 2-4pm – Sally Bisson-Best, an Omaha attorney and Associate Professor at the College of St. Mary, will give a talk about one of the first suffragettes, Doris Stevens, who was an Omaha native and rose through the ranks of the National Woman’s Party in the early 1900s. You may have seen a recent article in the Omaha World-Herald about this remarkable woman.
  • Sunday, September 24, 5-9pm – “A Showcase of Women Who Rock: Presented by BFF Femme Fest,” a rocking concert event in the Castle, featuring All Young Girls Are Machine Guns.

The 2017 Literary Festival runs from Thursday, September 21 through Wednesday, September 27. 

Do not miss your chance to experience this fantastic display of Nebraska artistry! 

Purchase your tickets by clicking here!