The Bruce Gjovig Collection - Presented by the Public Arts Commission

Public Art Commission, in cooperation with Alerus Center, has created a gallery in the meeting room prefunction hallway to showcase local artists.




I cannot imagine a world without art. Art is a public good. I have been collecting art from regional artists for 35 years, thus I have more works than wall space. I do not believe in storing art out of sight.  Art needs to be seen, so I want to share my collection with the public through PAC. Ever notice how many people take a photo in front of a signature work of art when they visit a new city?  


Why is art so important?  Art communicates ideas. Art reflects and reveals our lives and thoughts, taps into our experiences, expands our perspectives and perceptions, enhances aesthetic beauty, adds meaning to public spaces, and provides uniqueness to our community. Art often helps defines civilization, culture, and a community. Art makes space special as it represents our surroundings or incorporates fantasy, and thus provides a refuge that helps us bond to our community.  It may even inspire us to do something creative, innovative, and entrepreneurial – thus be a better person.

As my art collection was expanding, the works were exhibited at the In the Ina Mae Rude Entrepreneur Center from 2005 to 2018.  I wanted to explore the relationship between artistic creativity and entrepreneur innovation. The goal was for artist’s work to inspire the “artists of business – i.e. entrepreneurs - to innovate and create more by providing them creative space. I also wanted entrepreneurs to inspire artists to gain entrepreneur skills to enhance their livelihood in a vibrant marketplace.  The art exhibit was about creative people, living vividly and pursuing their opportunities.  It grew to be the largest private art collection available for public view in North Dakota, perhaps in surrounding states as well. The experiment worked wonderfully well.

Now I would like my art collection to inspire and engage the public in a new way at Altru and the Alerus Center. It is an opportunity to get to know and appreciate the art and artists from North Dakota and Minnesota. The art has new work to do to inspire others in new ways.

Bruce Gjovig

CEO Emeritus, Founder, & Entrepreneur Coach, UND Center for Innovation Foundation

Art Collector, 1984-present

Trustee, Vice Chair, Public Arts Commission

Jan 2019


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