Art, Galleries & Museums
Maquoketa Art Experience Hires Director PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Bob Osterhaus   
Monday, 27 September 2010 14:02
(MAQUOKETA, IA, September 23, 2010) – Maquoketa Art Experience, a not-for-profit arts organization dedicated to revitalizing downtown Maquoketa through artist-in-residency programs, workshops, and exhibitions, has appointed Paula Neuhaus as Director of Maquoketa Art Experience.

In this role Neuhaus will be responsible for coordination and promotion of all arts programming, residencies, workshops, exhibitions, and ongoing expansion and promotion of the Eastern Iowa Cultural Corridor.

With five years of not-for-profit arts administration experience and degrees from both Loras College and The University of Iowa Paula Neuhaus brings a wide range of abilities to Maquoketa Art Experience. Through her efforts with the Dubuque County Fine Arts Society, Voices From The Warehouse District fine art exhibit, Dubuque Area Writers Guild, DubuqueFest Fine Arts Festival, and Dubuque Main Street, Ltd. Paula has demonstrated the impact that arts and culture can have as a tool for revitalization and economic development.

“We have experienced a lot of success since we organized in 2008,” said Maquoketa Art Experience Board President, Bob Osterhaus. “Paula brings new energy as we continue to grow Maquoketa Art Experience and enhance the Eastern Iowa Cultural Corridor. We are delighted to bring someone with Paula’s arts and culture experience to our program.”

In her free time Paula continues her work as a poet and writer, volunteers with several Dubuque art groups, and manages two independent projects; Wordcure Spoken Word Series and Art Gumbo Micro-funding Program.

Maquoketa Art Experience is working to turn downtown storefronts into studios, galleries, and workshop space for visiting and resident artists. Maquoketa Art Experience hosts a variety of art programs and workshops for all skill levels. The exhibition space houses thematic shows created in collaboration with visiting, regional, and resident artists. For more information visit


Galena Cellars Vineyard hosts first annual Fall Harvest & Art Festival PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Janelle Keeffer   
Thursday, 26 August 2010 07:29
Experience the sights, sounds, and tastes of rural Jo Daviess County

GALENA, Ill. - August 25, 2010 - Celebrating the fruits of their labor, Galena Cellars Vineyard & Winery and the Galena Cultural Arts Alliance are excited to announce their partnership in planning a new Fall Harvest & Art Festival.

The first annual two-day event will take place at Galena Cellars Vineyard, 4746 N. Ford Road, Galena, on Saturday and Sunday, September 25th and 26th, with activities spanning from noon until 6 p.m. both days.

Nestled in the vineyard clearing will be tents of area artists, each demonstrating their talents. Artist wares will range from watercolors to pottery, textile arts to exotic wooden pens. “We think this partnership will create a great weekend for everyone. Our artists participate in our shop ‘Hello Galena!’, as well as in galleries, museums and art fairs throughout the year, but to be able to exhibit and sell in such a beautiful setting is a real treat,” said Toni Klingler, Galena Cultural Arts Alliance president.

“In addition to showcasing the amazing work of our local artists, we have a full weekend of fun for the entire family: food booths, hayrides, pumpkin painting and grape stomping,” said Rob Steger, events and tours coordinator for Galena Cellars.

The Jo Daviess County Beef Association will be grilling up succulent steak and chicken sandwiches along with beef brats and hot dogs. Locally produced cheeses and fruit will also be featured. And of course, there is always the opportunity to sample wine, explore “tasting” through all of your senses and tour the vineyard.

Visitors are also invited to “kick up their heels and have a little fun” as the vineyard barrel room comes to life with music - rags, waltzes and hoe downs - with more local talent, the Fever River String Band.

Admission to the event is free. Vineyard tours are $5 each and include a sensory tour and wine tasting. An art auction will be held a 5 p.m. on Saturday, with proceeds benefiting the Galena Cultural Arts Alliance, a 501©(3) not-for-profit organization.

For more information, visit Additional area offerings and visitor information may be found at the Galena/Jo Daviess County Convention and Visitors Bureau by calling 877-Go Galena or at

Galena Cellars, a Lawlor family winery, offers more than forty varietals of wine produced in Galena, Illinois. Many Galena Cellars wine utilize Illinois-grown grapes from the recently appointed Upper Mississippi River Valley Area Viticulture Area, the largest designated AVA in the world. Galena Cellars Vineyard & Winery is proud to offer three tasting room locations: 515 S. Main and at the Vineyard at 4746 N. Ford Road in Galena, and in 477 S. Third Street, Dodson Place in Geneva, Illinois.

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Figge Docent Training Program PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Dan McNeil   
Thursday, 19 August 2010 07:31

Informational meeting 10:30 am Wednesday, August 25

Share your knowledge and love of the visual arts with others by becoming a Figge Docent! Docent candidates are taught to look at, analyze and discuss works of art in order to engage visitors to the museum in conversations about selected works in the galleries. Candidates should have a strong interest in the visual arts, enjoy public speaking, and have a genuine appreciation for all visitors.

For more information, contact Dan McNeil, Director of Development, 563.326.7804 Ext. 2047; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Todd Woeber   
Tuesday, 10 August 2010 08:43

Figge Art Museum executive director, Dr. Sean O’Harrow, accepts position as director of the University of Iowa Museum of Art.

The Figge Art Museum would like to announce that its executive director since 2007, Sean O’Harrow Ph.D., will become the next director of the University of Iowa Museum of Art. Dr O’Harrow will take up his duties in November. Until then, he will help lead the Figge through this transition period. “This move is good for both museums and for our region,” said Andrew J. Butler, Figge Board of Trustees President. The Figge Art Museum recently celebrated its fifth anniversary and has hosted a number of popular and well-attended exhibitions, including new galleries dedicated to the work of Frank Lloyd Wright and the John Deere Art Collection. “I am very happy with the current state of the Figge Art Museum. It is a wonderful institution with great art and a strong support base.

People in the Quad Cities are justifiably proud of their museum,” stated Dr O’Harrow. Under O’Harrow’s leadership, the Figge has seen increases in popularity and media attention, as well as donations, revenue and other forms of support. This year saw record attendance and participation levels at the museum of over 69,000 people. In recognition of its successes, the Figge was recently re-accredited by the American Association of Museums.

A task force will be formed with both members of the Board and the community to conduct a national search for the Figge’s next Executive Director as soon as it is feasible.


Artists Invited to Paint the Grant Wood Scenic Byway PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Art, Galleries & Museums
Written by Maquoketa Art Experience   
Monday, 09 August 2010 14:40

Maquoketa Art Experience will display all paintings and drawings that artists create of scenes along the Grant Wood Scenic Byway and will host a landscape painting workshop focusing on the region presented by renowned pastel artist Ellen Wagener.

Maquoketa , Iowa, July 30, 2010: In conjunction with the return of Ellen Wagener for a weekend landscape workshop, Maquoketa Art Experience (MAE) announces an upcoming exhibition that will consist of paintings and drawings that depict scenes along and near the Grant Wood Scenic Byway.

Exhibition Dates: August 23rd through September 19th, 2010

Location: Maquoketa Art Experience Studio and Gallery, 124 S. Main Street , Maquoketa , IA 52060

Hours: Monday-Thursday: 11-5pm, Friday-Saturday: 11-7pm, Sunday: 12-5pm

Workshop Dates: August 20th, 21st & 22nd, 2010

Location: Maquoketa Art Experience Studio and Gallery, 124 S. Main Street , Maquoketa , IA 52060

Cost: $295 for the weekend, $95 for Saturday the 21st at Tabor Home Winery.

For more information or to register: Call 563-652-9925.

Workshop deposits can be mailed to PO Box 993 , Maquoketa , IA 52060 .

The Grant Wood Scenic Byway Landscape Show will be on display from August 23rd through September 19th in the spacious galleries of Maquoketa Art Experience on Main St. in downtown Maquoketa.  Any and all artists are invited to tour and paint along the Byway from Stone City, the home of Grant Wood’s summer art colony, through Anamosa, Maquoketa, the Maquoketa Caves, through Andrew, then Springbrook, and on to the beautiful Mississippi River views at Bellevue.  Paintings depicting scenes along and near the Byway can be brought to Maquoketa Art Experience at the close of Ellen Wagener’s landscape workshop, from 5 to 8pm on August 22nd.  Artists, who cannot deliver their works at that time, can call MAE at 563-652-9925 to make arrangements for delivery prior to that time.  Owners of original paintings that show scenes from and near the Byway can also place those works on display.

A map of the Byway is available online at

The paintings and drawings that are brought in for the exhibition do not have to be for sale, but a sales price can be listed if the artist so chooses.  Maquoketa Art Experience will take a 25% commission on any sales.  Only original paintings and drawing will be accepted.  No photography and no prints/reproductions will be accepted for the show.

Ellen Wagener’s summer landscape workshop is the third of four seasonal workshops offered by MAE focusing on the natural resources and beauty of Eastern Iowa .  Dewitt native Ellen Wagener is best known for her large pastel landscape paintings of Iowa and Arizona , her new home.  She returns for a second year to MAE to share her masterful skill of the basics and fundamentals of pastel painting, focusing on working processes including sketching, idea-generation, composition, and color palettes.  Special emphasis for this workshop will be given to pastel techniques in the creation of cloudscapes and attention to atmospheric conditions leading up to a final composition.  All of the painting outings will occur along and near the Grant Wood Scenic Byway.

This three-day workshop is well suited for both beginning artists and “seasoned masters” and will also include an optional bonus afternoon on Thursday, August 19, to join Ellen in a trip to the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art’s Marvin Cone exhibit, “The Sky’s the Limit”.  This thirty-work exhibition, tracing Cone’s work from the 1910s to the 1940s, will be used later in the workshop to explore and discuss the many ways and styles that Cone used to capture the majestic power of “cloudscapes” and his fascination with the sky that is portrayed in his paintings.  A trip to the studio of Grant Wood, Turner Alley, and dinner in Cedar Rapids will also follow.

In addition, artists who cannot attend the entire weekend workshop are invited to sign up for a single day, Saturday, August 21st.  From 9am to 5pm a plein air painting outing led by Wagener will be held at nearby Tabor Home Winery.  The fee for this single day is $95.

Participants in last summer’s first annual MAE Ellen Wagener workshop had this to say:

“She (Ellen) is an excellent teacher. She is unusually willing to be open and sharing with all her techniques and methods that she has worked out for herself over a long period of time…To be able to interact with artists at (her) level of achievement is a real privilege.”  – Marcia W.

“As an attendee at the Maquoketa Art Experience Workshop…The learning experiences were interspersed with opportunities abounding for participants to expand their horizons.  It was a truly worthwhile encounter.”  – Grace Z.

“The (Maquoketa) Art Experience is a great space for a workshop, and you are most fortunate to have artists of such high caliber and skill to be working in your area – it is indeed exciting.”  – Linda F.

Biographic Information:

Ellen Wagener received her B.F.A. from the Corcoran School of Art in Washington , D.C. in 1989.  Her work has been exhibited in numerous galleries and museums including the Des Moines Art Center , Phoenix Art Museum , Tucson Museum of Art, Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, and Art in Embassies, Vilinus , Latvia , and J. Cacciola Gallery, New York City.  Her work can be found in many private and public collections, such as the Figge Art Museum , Davenport , Iowa , Tucson Museum of Art, MasterCard Corporation, New York City , and Iowa State University , Ames , Iowa .

Information about Maquoketa Art Experience:

Maquoketa Art Experience is dedicated to bringing accomplished artists to Maquoketa , Iowa for short- and long-term residencies, workshops, and exhibitions.  Springing up in one of the Grant Wood Scenic Byway communities, Maquoketa Art Experience exists to nurture artists and provide opportunities for developing art-related businesses in the area.  Recognizing what Grant Wood saw in Iowa , Iowans and the surrounding landscapes, the artists and board of Maquoketa Art Experience are dedicated to creating easily accessible resources for Midwest artists.  Similar to the Stone City Art Colony of the last century, Maquoketa Art Experience is committed to supporting arts and artists by creating local opportunities for artists to nurture and expand their talents and skills within the inspiring landscapes of Eastern Iowa .  This project is made possible by the Iowa Community Cultural Grants and the DNRBOG grants.

For more information: or phone: 563-652-9925.

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