A logo projection covers the exterior of the Hardesty Arts Center in downtown Tulsa in 2012. MATT BARNARD/Tulsa World

Ahha Tulsa will begin a phased reopening of its Hardesty Arts Center on Wednesday, July 1, with new exhibits and new visitor policies to help safeguard against the spread of COVID-19.

These policies include limiting the number of guests in the facility, minimizing touch points, increased cleaning and sanitization, and physical distancing reminders.

Face masks or coverings will be required. Ahha Tulsa will supply masks to guests who do not bring their own.

Executive Director Holly Becker said it is her belief that the arts can help with the healing process, as the city and the nation work to deal with the coronavirus pandemic.

“In such unprecedented times, it’s important to have an outlet,” Becker said. “We hope that by safely reopening our doors, we can serve Tulsans by giving them a place to reconnect and make art together.”

Becker added that the center will offer free admission in July and August to any frontline or essential worker, calling it an opportunity “to give back in a small way.”

Regular admission to ahha Tulsa is $12.75 for adults, $8.75 for children.

On Wednesday, ahha Tulsa will open its third floor, which houses “The Studio” workshop space, as well as a new exhibit, “COVID-19 Artist Relief Exhibition.” Proceeds from artwork sales will directly benefit local artists who lost income and opportunities due to the pandemic.

On Friday, July 3, ahha Tulsa will open its main floor gallery with the debut of the exhibit “Re/Convening: Native Arts of Oklahoma,” which will spotlight contemporary Native American art. The exhibit, curated by Heather Ahtone (Choctaw/Chickasaw), is funded in part by a grant from Oklahoma Humanities and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Ahha will offer reduced admission prices ($10 for adults and free for children 12 and younger) during the monthly First Friday Art Crawl, and the total number of guests will be limited due to public health concerns.

The second phase of ahha Tulsa’s reopening will be Aug. 7, with the premiere of “The Experience: Imagine,” the second iteration of the organization’s immersive art installation, featuring works by six Tulsa-based artists that will involve the facility’s entire second floor.

For more, visit ahhatulsa.org.


James D. Watts Jr. 918-581-8478


Twitter: watzworld