The latest jewel in Provo’s art community is the Covey Center for the Arts. Since opening in October 2007, the center already has conducted more than 40 major events as well as outreach programs and art gallery exhibits. The 42,000 square-foot center includes a performance hall with 670 seats. In addition to symphony performances and art exhibits, visitors may enjoy theater, dance, and a variety of classes and workshops. The center is named for local philanthropist Sandra Merrill Covey, who recently said, “The arts enrich your life. You can have a terrible or dull day, and then you can see a wonderful performance or study a painting and come away on a high.”
Brigham Young University boasts four museums, including the BYU Earth Science Museum, housing one of the world’s top five collections of items from the Jurassic Period. Nearby, the Brigham Young University Museum of Art hosts a permanent collection of more than 16,500 objects with a special emphasis on American and religious art. Visiting exhibits include works from the Vatican and the Smithsonian Institution. In a 2004 survey of more than 150 member museums of the Association of Art Museum Directors, the Museum of Art ranked first in attendance among university campus art museums, with 334,774 visitors. Museum personnel frequently teach and supervise BYU master’s-level art students. Love of the arts takes a walk on the lighter, sweeter side each December, when local artists vie to win the Candy Window contest.
Entrants craft downtown window displays out of candy, a tradition that has fostered a friendly rivalry among area artists. During the rest of the year, residents and visitors may enjoy the Downtown Provo Gallery Stroll on the first Friday evening of the month. Local art galleries stay open late for this free event, complete with live music and refreshments.