Art, Galleries & Museums
Figge Acquires Portrait of Maquoketa for Permanent Collection PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Natalie Dunlop   
Tuesday, 16 December 2014 12:06

Davenport, Iowa (December 15, 2014) – Local artist Rose Frantzen’s nationally celebrated Portrait of Maquoketa, a multi-panel artwork,  has been acquired by the Figge Art Museum and will officially be part of the permanent collection beginning in early 2015.

Portrait of Maquoketa includes 180 12x12” oil portraits of people from Maquoketa, Iowa as well as a 315 square foot landscape view of Maquoketa painted on 34 vertical panels ranging in length from four to 10 feet and suspended from the ceiling. The panels are arranged in such a way that when a visitor sits at one end of the installation, all of the panels come together and align as one unified view of Maquoketa as seen from the hills outside of town. The other sides of the landscape panels display all 180 portraits.

From July 2005 to July 2006, Frantzen democratized portraiture, inviting anyone in her hometown of Maquoketa, Iowa to sit for a portrait painted from life. The head and shoulder portraits were each painted in a four or five hour sitting in a storefront on Main Street that was open to the public.  “I wanted to bring to my community a tangible connection with the creative process,” says Frantzen.  “By making them the subject, I hoped that their interest would be stirred and that they would be touched somehow by what painting can reveal about the human experience.”  With ages ranging from 4 weeks old to 99 years old, Frantzen captured a beautiful and moving cross-section portrait of her town.

Taken as a whole, Portrait of Maquoketa is a strikingly complex portrayal of an iconic Midwestern town. It combines Frantzen’s remarkable skills as a painter with her determination to create an interactive installation that helps us understand and appreciate the community as a living and breathing gathering of individuals, living their lives within the sheltering circle of cornfields and clouds.

“This will be a treasured artwork at the Figge,” said Tim Schiffer, executive director. “People respond to its depiction of community, and to its innovative design, which includes sound elements. It will join Corn Zone and Deborah Butterfield’s Half Moon as Figge favorites.”

When Portrait of Maquoketa was displayed at the Figge in 2012-2013, it was very well received by visitors and the feedback was nothing but positive. Director of Development Raelene Pullen said, “It embodies the regional identity and values shared by the Figge and this community which is why so many were able to connect with it.”  Frantzen’s remarkable technical ability, combined with her empathy for the subject and with the innovative installation, evokes curiosity and stimulates conversation.

Frantzen added, “I hope Portrait of Maquoketa will travel to other museums or be seen here by travelers from other places, serving as a window into our communities, our region. When I painted the portraits I tried to look into and then convey the dignity and nobility of each person who posed, to sidestep a lazy cynicism so prevalent in our time. I tried to put into the project a way of seeing ourselves, our neighbors with openness to a self worth.  Having this view of ourselves showing in the beautiful Figge galleries or sent to other museums under the Figge umbrella satisfies something deep in my artistic need to serve.”

The purchase has been made possible by a major gift from two private donors, with additional funds from current and former Figge Trustees, other supporters, and from the Figge’s endowment for acquisitions.


About Rose Frantzen  

A Maquoketa native, Rose Frantzen studied art at the American Academy of Art in Chicago, the Palette and Chisel Academy and at the Academy College of Fine Arts. Her work is collected internationally, and has been shown at the Butler Museum of Art, the Dubuque Museum of Art, the Denver Historical Museum and at the Portrait Society of America Annual Meeting, in addition to her exhibitions at the National Portrait Gallery and the Figge Art Museum. She has lectured and demonstrated portraiture across the country. Her husband, Charles Morris, also an artist, assisted with the perspective planning for the landscape panels of “Portrait of Maquoketa.” 

About the Figge Art Museum

The Figge Art Museum is located on the riverfront in downtown Davenport at 225 West Second Street. Hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday and Sundays 12-5 p.m. Thursdays the museum is open until 9 p.m. Admission to the museum and tour is $7. Admission is free to Figge members and institutional members and free to all on Thursday evenings from 5 p.m. – 9 p.m. To contact the museum, please call 563.326.7804, or visit



Shop the German American Heritage Center for Christmas! PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by G A H C   
Tuesday, 16 December 2014 11:56

SPECIAL OFFER: $1 off all Ornaments, Mugs, Pretzels, & Books!

Great New Products Now in Stock!
  • new wood products handcrafted in Bavaria
  • arrival of restocked Swarovski crystal nail files, NEW tweezers and nail clippers with crystals
  • Unique photos of authentic German-style nativity scenes
  • books by author and GAHC presenter Rochelle Pennington, including "An Old Fashioned Christmas" with CD


A Modern Salon at Brucemore PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Tara Richards   
Saturday, 13 December 2014 10:42

SPT Theatre featuring special guests Angela Billman and Aaron Murphy

SPT Theatre will return to Brucemore for the twelfth year of A Modern Salon—January 16, 17, 23, 24, 30, and 31 at 7:30 p.m. The event emulates the Parisian salons at the turn of the twentieth century and continues the tradition of entertaining that was common for the families who called Brucemore home. Special guests Angela Billman and Aaron Murphy will join SPT in entertaining audiences with hilarious stories, engaging conversation, and outstanding music inspired by the 2015 theme, travel. Admission is $40 per Brucemore member or $45 per person in advance.  Admission includes pre-show wine tasting from First Avenue Wine House and appetizers from the Wright Touch Bake Shoppe and Catering beginning at 7:00 p.m. Champagne and desserts will be served during intermission. Evening dress is encouraged and valet parking is available (tips welcome). Space is limited; purchase tickets online at, by telephone at (319) 362-7375, or by visiting the Brucemore Store.

SPT Theatre (Small Professional Theatre) has entertained audiences with music, song, humor and wit since its establishment in 2006. SPT’s mission is to support, provide for and expand the artistic opportunities available to performers and arts patrons in the Cultural Corridor. SPT strives to coordinate performances with existing organizations and create new opportunities for actors, musicians, writers and artists. For more information about SPT Theatre, call (319) 361-5297 or visit  

Experience Brucemore, an unparalleled blend of tradition and culture, located at 2160 Linden Drive SE, Cedar Rapids, Iowa. At the heart of the historic 26-acre estate stands a nineteenth-century mansion filled with the stories of three Cedar Rapids families.  Concerts, theater, programs, and tours enliven the site and celebrate the heritage of a community.  For more information, call (319) 362-7375 or visit


BUCKTOWN WINE WALK SUPPORTS MENTALHEALTH CHARITY Final Opportunity to See “Angels Among Us” Juried Show PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Pat Bereskin   
Monday, 08 December 2014 12:57

DAVENPORT, Iowa (December 4, 2014) –The artists of Bucktown Center for the Arts will host a Wine Walk Friday December19, 2014, from 6 to 9 p.m. at 225 East Second Street, Davenport. Guests may purchase a hand-painted wine glass for $20, which entitles them to a tasting of five wines and light snacks. The evening will include a jewelry fashion show and music made popular by Frank Sinatra from Quad-City area performer Travis Hosette. RSVPs are welcome, but not required, at:

Participating galleries will donate a percentage of their art sales during the Wine Walk to support the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Greater Mississippi Valley. This 34-year old affiliate of the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization provides free education and support programs locally to individuals and families living with mental illness.

“Angels” Show Pays Tribute to Caregivers

“The Angels Among Us” exhibit honors all caregivers. It’s especially a fitting tribute for the holidays as many families are working hard to support those who may be frail or ill. We’ve chosen to support NAMI as their education programs prepare families to advocate for themselves and for their loved ones living with mental illness.” says Gaye Shannon Burnett, owner of Studio 56 Décor Fine Art and Photography. The exhibit includes visual art, photography, mixed media and sculpture.


About Bucktown Center for the Arts

Bucktown is a component of Midcoast Fine Arts, a Quad-City nonprofit organization focused on stimulating our community’s cultural and economic vitality through the support of regional visual arts and artists. The Center features unique shops and studios where you can purchase creative, unusual and useable works or art created by local artists. Contact the Center at or 563-424-1210.


About NAMI Greater Mississippi Valley

NAMI Greater Mississippi Valley is a 34-year old affiliate of the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization. NAMI advocates for early identification, and access to treatment and recovery supports. NAMI provides free programs for individuals living with mental illness and their families that accelerate recovery and prevent further harm. Their programs complement the work of local mental health professionals. NAMI serves families in Rock Island, Henry, and Mercer counties in Illinois, as well as Clinton, Scott and Muscatine counties in Iowa. Contact NAMI at or563-322-8870.

Niabi Zoo Passes USDA Inspection PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Marc Heinzman   
Monday, 08 December 2014 12:02

Coal Valley, IL – December 5, 2014– Niabi Zoo announced today that it passed its inspection by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) with a perfect report.

Niabi Zoo was inspected on December 2, 2014, by a member of the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. A USDA inspection consists of a thorough review of the wellbeing of Niabi Zoo’s animal collection, its animalrelated facilities such as habitats and holding areas, its animal records, veterinary program, diet preparation areas, storage facilities, and more. Inspections by USDA occur on a regular basis as part of the licensing requirement for Niabi Zoo to be open to the public as an animal exhibitor.

Niabi Zoo Director Marc Heinzman said this successful inspection is another in the zoo’s long history of positive USDA reports. “This successful inspection is one of many consecutive perfect reports for Niabi Zoo,” said Heinzman, “and is just further confirmation of what I already know: that Niabi Zoo provides top-notch welfare and care for our animals.” Heinzman went on to add that Niabi Zoo has received perfect inspections from USDA for many years, including the entire time (nearly seven years) that he has been at the zoo.

Niabi Zoo is currently closed to the general public for the winter, but is scheduled to reopen in March of 2015.

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