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An elderly man in a safari outfit claps his hands and shouts.

Independent Film Series: Radical Naturalism

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On Thursday nights this summer, venture to The Jule for experimental and creative films, free of charge and open to everyone. Each selection is programmed with “Radical Naturalism.” Award-winning filmmakers explore new relationships with nature, image-making techniques, interview subjects and cultural investigations.

What is “Radical Naturalism?”

Guest curators and contemporary artists inspired by nature consider the environment and conservation by creating new work and researching Auburn’s collection of Audubon etchings and other natural history collections.

Free Admission | Open Auditorium Seating | Donations Welcome and Appreciated

Special Musical Guests on June 2

Lefty Bey
Musical collaborator with artist Tommy Coleman

Austin ‘Lefty’ Bey is a multi-instrumentalist & singer from Baltimore, Maryland. While growing up in West Baltimore, Hip-Hop culture, along with his family influenced Bey to express himself musically. From a relatively early age, Bey spent his time learning to curate sound, producing for acts in Baltimore. Mainly his uncle, Rickie Jacobs; then for himself.


Photo by Nick Hughes
A man holds an electric guitar against a bright backdrop.
A man holds an acoustic guitar while leaning against a graffitied wall.

Sleepy Sword


Photo by Michael Crowe

Produced Exclusively for The Jule

Cinephiles, deck your walls with the film series poster by artist Jason Sturgill. This limited edition screenprint measures 18×24 and is only available in The Museum Store. Your purchases support programs like the Independent Film Series.

Illustrated promotion of the museum's independent film series with dates and film titles
A group of children smile together in a museum gallery.

Museum Maker Summer Camps 2022

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Your child can become a “Museum Maker” this summer with The Jule!

The Museum Maker Summer Camp series offers an interactive artistic growth experience for children ages 8 to 13. We will be hosting 2 separate 1-week camp sessions which vary depending on your child’s age. Read below for more information.

Raiders of the Lost Art (Ages 8-10) – June 27 – July 1, 2022

Campers will uncover art techniques and materials of the past and make connections across time to the work of contemporary artists. Projects will include everything from creating their own paint using natural materials, working with plaster and clay, and 3D printing.

The Art of Game Design (Ages 11-13) – July 18 – 22, 2022

Campers will learn all about the game design process for creating analogue (board and card) games and basic digital games. Students will make their own games and complete working versions of them by the end of camp.

Important Info:

  • Each camp session is 5 days long with each day lasting from 8:30am – Noon.
  • Each session cost $150, with a 10% discount to families signed up with siblings. Use code SUMMER.
  • We will be limiting camp sessions to 10 campers.
  • Campers will supply their own snacks (no nuts) and water bottle.
  • Campers will receive a free t-shirt with registration.
Sign Up

Measurement of Museum Social Impact (MOMSI)

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The Jule is partnering with the Utah Division of Arts & Museums on a national research study to evaluate the social impact museums have on their communities. There is an open call for individuals to participate in the study.

Existing participants are asked to visit three times through May 2022. You can visit the galleries or attend one of our engaging programs. After the final visit, there is a 30-minute online survey your experience.

Those who complete the survey will qualify for a grand prize drawing. Both first-time visitors and regular visitors are welcome to participate.

Submit an application at For questions, contact the museum at 334-844-1484 or email at

DIY Origami Firefly

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John James Audubon filled his artwork with birds and plant life. Look closer: they also contain insects. Drawn life-size, the Audubon prints on view at the Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art feature tiny bugs that tell us amazing details about the bird’s environment. How many insects can you find?

You can make a firefly using the art of paper folding — origami (aw-ruh-gaa-mee). In traditional origami, artists fold a single paper square into a sculpture without cutting, gluing, taping or marking the paper. Electricity powers the firefly. The energy travels along a copper tape path – a circuit – from the battery to the light. You can make the firefly blink on and off by breaking the flow along the circuit.

What You’ll Need

Origami paper

Copper tape

3V lithium battery

LED light

Scotch Tape

Part 1: Origami Firefly Construction

Fold the square of paper diagonally, bringing two opposite corners together.

With the right angle facing up, fold the left and right corners up to the center.

Flip vertically, and fold back the top corner to the center. Fold upwards, approximately one centimeter away from your previous fold, creating the head of your firefly.


Take the left and right side corners and fold them towards the center. The origami firefly is now complete.


Part 2: Build the Paper Circuit

We need to fold open the wings to start the paper circuit. To do this, flip your firefly over and fold the wings outward. These folds will allow you to open and close the circuit, turning the lightbulb on and off.


Place your two pieces of copper tape as pictured. Place your battery positive side down on top of the cooper tape on the left.


When securing your battery with Scotch tape, be sure the right side of the battery is exposed. When you close your firefly, the copper tape on the right should touch the battery.


The light bulb has a longer prong and a shorter prong. The longer prong is positive, and the shorter prong is negative. Tape the positive prong on the left piece of copper and the negative prong on the right piece of copper.


Fold your wings. As the copper tape on the right-wing touches the battery, your light should glow. Your firefly and the circuit are complete.

Be sure to post your firefly on Instagram or Facebook, and tag @JCSMAuburn. Explore the “Outside In” through Sunday, January 2, 2022, and experience Audubon etchings alongside specimens from the Museum of Natural History.

We want to hear from you. Submit a question for Nick Cave.

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Artist Nick Cave joins us for a conversation at The Jule on Thursday, Sept. 9, 2021, from 6 to 8 p.m. His special engagement is presented in conjunction with “Crafting America,” organized by the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas. The galleries are open from 10 a.m to 8 p.m. on Thursdays, with a light reception at 6 p.m. on the Terrace. The program begins at 6:30 p.m.

Participants are welcome and encouraged to pose questions in advance.

Advance registration is required, with auditorium seating on a first-come, first-serve basis. Auburn University requires the use of face coverings indoors.

Neat piles of handmade masks

Share Your Craft Story: Crafting During COVID

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I’ve been a crafter my whole life. If it can be made, I’ve tried to make it. Pottery, furniture, baskets, quilts, yarn, cloth… you name it. However, when the pandemic hit in the spring of 2020, making things for pleasure fell to the wayside. I got out my sewing machine and started sewing masks.

Nearly 800 hand-crafted masks were mailed out, donated to local efforts, or put on my porch for folks to pick up. My goal was to protect everyone I knew, and anyone else, through crafting. Crafting is folk engineering- it’s taking materials and using them in creative ways to solve problems! Of all my crafts, the masks I made to protect people make me feel the most proud.

Neat piles of handmade masks

Crafting is folk engineering. It's taking materials and using them in creative ways to solve problems!

Chris Schnittka
A rough and well-loved wooden footstool with the name Amy Cates carved on the top.

Share Your Craft Story: “Memorial”

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Amy Cates

My Uncle Travis made and engraved this wooden stool as a gift for my second birthday. He died in Vietnam two months before my third birthday. As a little girl, I set it across my knees and used it as a lunch table while I watched cartoons, but I also found its great versatility as a stage for my Barbies’ performances and a step stool to reach high places like kitchen cabinets and bathroom mirror.

Over the years, the grooves of the lettering softened, and the stool’s utility expanded to serve as a small bookshelf, a lunch table for my own kids to fight over, and a thing to tuck away, out of sight. It had aged to the point of being a fragile memorial best kept under a bed or on a high shelf in a closet. In recent years, I determined a memorial is best seen and shared, not preserved between old quilts and forgotten cardboard boxes. This sturdy little thing now resides in my home office, and some days, it finds its way under my desk, where I put it to work as a footstool.

A memorial is best seen and shared, not preserved between old quilts and forgotten cardboard boxes.

Amy Cates

Art is Pride: A Look At the Lives of Maud Hunt Squire and Ethel Mars

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Maud Hunt Squire: Illustrator, Painter, PrintmakerMaud Hunt Squire, 1920

The daughter of a musician, Maud Hunt Squire was born in Ohio in 1873. She was second in her class at the Art Academy of Cincinnati, where she studied under Lewis Henry Meakin and Frank Duveneck. Her intaglio prints and her work in colored pastels gained her international notice in the art community. While still a student, Maud began working as an illustrator (along with Ethel Mars), and by 1907 she was exhibiting and selling her works in Paris and America.

Le panier de poissons, eau-forte en couleur (1910), Maud Hunt Squire

Not only an accomplished artist, Maud was also a talented musician and spoke multiple languages. Her works are shown in multiple museums, including The Jule.




Ethel Mars, 1924 (passport photo)

Ethel Mars: Bohemian Artist and Teacher.

Ethel Mars, born in Springfield, Illinois in 1876, was a talented artist from childhood. The daughter of a railroad clerk, her childhood works won her prizes at the Illinois State Fair. After grade school, she gained a scholarship to the Art Academy of Cincinnati, where she learned drawing, illustrating, and painting under Meakin and Duveneck.

 Ethel Mars, Woman with a Monkey, by 1909 - May be self portrait
An ambulance driver at the beginning of WWI, Ethel lived a rather bohemian lifestyle, often dying her hair purple and wearing orange lipstick. Her work, like her partner’s, is a part of collections all over the world.




Ethel and Maud: Miss Furr and Miss Skeene

Ethel Mars and Maud Hunt Squire began their lifelong relationship after meeting at the Art Academy of Cincinnati, where they began working together as illustrators. After their graduation, they were immediately hired by publisher R.H. Russell, and their illustrations were shown in a joint exhibition in the Cincinnati Art Museum in 1903.

In 1906 the couple moved to France and began traveling through Europe.
Their careers excelled throughout their lives, and both women exhibited their works in Paris and the United States. During their visit to Munich, Ethel learned about color woodcut prints and began teaching the techniques to other American artists in Paris.



"Wealth" from Children of Our Town, 1902, written by Carolyn Wells and illustrated by Ethel Mars and Maud Hunt SquireThey became a part of Gertrude Stein’s circle, making friends with Pablo Picasso and Henri Matisse.  Stein immortalized the pair in her poem “Miss Furr and Miss Skeene,” believed to be the first work of literature to use the word “gay” as a descriptor of same-sex relationships.

As the outbreak of World War I put more pressure on the couple, Ethel and Maud relocated to Provincetown, Massachusetts. It was here that Maud created her first and only woodblock prints, using modulated colors to depict the scenes in Provincetown. The women became part of a group of artists known for their white line woodcuts, called the Provincetown prints.  The seaside town’s bohemian art community soon became internationally known, possibly thanks to the Squire and Mars’ reputation.

Image: Provincetown print Example

After the war, they were able to move permanently back to Vence, France, except for a brief time in Grenoble during World War II. While Maud stopped her artistic endeavors in the 30s, Ethel drew portraits and landscapes well after the war. The two lived and thrived in France until their deaths. They are currently buried with one another in the cemetery of Saint-Paul-du-Vence.

Throughout their lives, these women adapted and molded their own artistic talents and voices. Still, one thing remained constant. Their relationship with each other and their artistic collaboration helped shape their work and impact in the art community. With color techniques that have contributed to modern color prints, and illustrations that still serve as an example of capturing a child’s spirit, Maud and Ethel’s works continue to resonate in today’s art community.

Ethel and Maud at The Jule

Ethel Mars’ and Maud Hunt Squire’s works grew and shifted as the women traveled through Europe and America. Their subject matter and their technique seem to have changed with their location and their experiences. These works are a part of the collection at The Jule.

Mars, Ethel 1876-1959 Untitled (Storefront) DATE: ca. 1916-19

Mars, Ethel 1876-1959 Untitled (Storefront) DATE: ca. 1916-19

ARTIST Squire, Maud Hunt 1873-1934 Untitled (Clam diggers, Provincetown) DATE: ca. 1915

ARTIST Squire, Maud Hunt 1873-1934 Untitled (Clam diggers, Provincetown) DATE: ca. 1915

These works were both done during the couple’s time in Provincetown. What similarities do you see? What differences?


The artists’ styles changed as they traveled the world. How do these works differ from other works seen throughout the article?


In Stein’s poem, “Miss Furr and Miss Skeene,” Squire is Miss Georgine Skeene, who loves to travel. Mars is represented by Miss Helen Furr, who likes to stay in one place. Can you see those personalities in these two paintings?







Museum staff install an artwork.

Behind-the-Scenes of Exhibition Changeout

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Closed for Exhibitions Changeout:

June 1, 2021-June 28, 2021
Museum Grounds Remain Open

Contact Museum Staff

The Jule’s museum professionals are getting an exciting new slate of exhibitions ready for you.

After an exhibition closes, considerable conservation and construction work takes place. A gallery changeout can take anywhere from a few days to three weeks depending on the scale of the exhibition and gallery size. Artwork is removed, walls are repaired and temporary displays are constructed by the preparators. The registrar and curatorial assistant document conditions, handle the artwork for transport and work closely with lenders and cultural institutions on agreements. Designers, educators and curators finalize gallery resources and interpretation. Pieces are loaded in, carefully hung and finishing touches applied. Now, it’s showtime!

It takes a skilled team to produce high-quality exhibitions like the ones you see on your visit. It’s our pleasure each and every time you explore, experience and engage.