Visitors at the Bismarck Art & Galleries Association are signing off their well wishes for Linda Christman, who is retiring as Executive Director of Bismarck Art & Galleries Association.

“Actually, it hasn’t really soaked in yet, it’s just two weeks out and so it’s very new,” Christman said.

Under Christman’s leadership at the gallery, they replaced windows, added a new entrance with a wheelchair lift, and improved lighting; bringing art to everyone in the community.

“You name it, we kind of just redone the whole place. It’s good for another 25 years, so that’s a really good thing. It’s been fun, it’s been challenging, but it’s been wonderful,” Christman said.

Many art exhibits have been displayed within these walls over the years. Looking back at the art, she said she enjoyed seeing it all.

“Mixed media, to glass exhibits, pottery exhibits to water color,” Christman said.

When asked the reasoning for wanting to retire Christman said, “I have a grandchild in West Fargo and he’s 17 months old and he’s adorable. We just want to watch him grow up.”

Now, Christman is leaving the gallery in the hands of the new executive director, Lynae Hanson. Hanson has a passion for art and has been an artist since the third grade.

“Just recently, I was a full-time artist for the last year before taking this job. With this job I have the opportunity to meet a lot of people and be surrounded by art and artists all day long,” Hanson said.

Hanson said she expects great things to come under her leadership role at the gallery.

“I have a lot of ideas as an artist about what we can do to help artists get their work out there and just to make sure people in the community understand art and the value of it,” Hanson said.