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For Immediate Release

Media contacts:
Jane Turnis
(719) 389-6138

Leslie Weddell
(719) 389-6038


Local donor to be recognized at “topping off” event today

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Aug. 30, 2007 – Colorado College has received a $2.5 million gift designated for the InterDisciplinary Experimental Arts (I.D.E.A.) Space in the Cornerstone Arts Center, currently under construction on the Colorado College campus.

The funding is the gift of siblings Susan Hoke Smith, a 1977 Colorado College graduate, and William S. Smith, a 1974 graduate. Colorado College President Richard F. Celeste will acknowledge the gift and recognize Susan Smith at a “topping off” event for invited guests at 3:30 p.m. Thursday at the Cornerstone Arts Center site.

The “topping off” event marks the completion of the building’s exterior superstructure, and a tree will be placed on top of the building to symbolize this milestone. The tree also symbolizes the college’s commitment to obtaining Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification for the Cornerstone Arts Center, and will be planted later as part of the building’s landscaping.

The I.D.E.A. Space is part of the larger Cornerstone Arts Center, a $33 million interdisciplinary teaching and performing arts building designed by Albuquerque, N.M.-based architect Antoine Predock, winner of the 2006 AIA Gold award, the highest honor conferred by the American Institute of Architects.

When completed, the I.D.E.A. Space will be home to a variety of exhibitions, speakers, films, workshops and performances. Launched on campus a year ago, the I.D.E.A. Program integrates the visual and performing arts into the academic and social fabric of Colorado College and the broader community, says Jessica Hunter Larsen, I.D.E.A. curator. Among the events scheduled this academic year are the Tekcno Powwow, a multimedia participatory event by artist Bentley Spang, who melds Native American drumming and dancing with techno-rave music and hip-hop culture; a documentary film about seven women enrolled in a U.S. intelligence agency interrogation training course, with lecture by filmmaker Coco Fusco; and a music/comedy/monologue performance by Sandra Bernhard, who will present the Cornerstone Presentation in the Arts event in February.

When the Cornerstone Arts Center opens in mid-2008, the I.D.E.A. Program will move into the building’s I.D.E.A. Space, which will be an eclectic teaching, art installation and performance venue.

“The I.D.E.A. Space is committed to supporting a culture of learning and exploration both at Colorado College and within the Colorado Springs and Rocky Mountain region by bringing innovative arts exhibitions and experiences to southern Colorado,” Hunter Larsen says. All exhibitions and associated educational programming are open to the general public.

The Cornerstone Arts Center is located at the corner of Cascade Avenue and Cache La Poudre Street. To ensure that students, faculty, alumni and community members may all participate, the building’s official grand opening events will be scheduled in October 2008, during the college’s homecoming festivities.

About Colorado College
Colorado College is a nationally prominent, four-year liberal arts and sciences college that was founded in Colorado Springs in 1874. The college operates on the innovative Block Plan, in which its 1,945 students study one course at a time in intensive 3½-week blocks. For more information, visit www.ColoradoCollege.edu <http://www.ColoradoCollege.edu>.