Since the summer of 2000, when it attracted an estimated 2,000 visitors, MidCoast Fine Arts' annual ArtStroll street festival has been the go-to event for both area artisans and connoisseurs of the arts, a union of not-for-profit arts and cultural organizations designed to showcase the quality and diversity within the Quad Cities' art community.
When searching for a new necklace or a piece to hang in the living room, a state park might not be the first place you'd think to shop. Yet the Black Hawk State Historical Site will soon be teeming with artwork, as the Left Bank Art League presents its 49th annual Fine Art Fair from 10 a.
Most of us have had the experience of running into someone who went to school with us years earlier. Very little, if anything, usually comes of those chance encounters. But for local artists Nicole Miller and Justin Elvidge, both 22, a surprise meeting has led, a mere four months later, to a shared exhibit of oil paintings at the Peanut Gallery in Rock Island, the first local showing for both Quad Citians.
Editor's note: This is the debut of a new feature in the River Cities' Reader highlighting news, events, and other information about local libraries. • In celebration of William Shakespeare's birthday, the Rock Island Public Library will present "A Whole Lotta Shakespeare Going On," hosting many Shakespeare-related activities for the culture hound.
When I walked into MidCoast Gallery West in Rock Island to see the current exhibit featuring works by B. Thomas Lytle and Steve Banks, my senses were bombarded. I was overwhelmed by the number and disparateness of pieces on display, and didn't really know where to begin.
The Quad City Arts Center's Garden Show is a bright and cheerful exhibit that invites spring to come and stay a while. All participating artists were juried by Quad City Arts after a call for entry. The seven artists selected for the Garden Show were invited to take part because of the common theme in their art - flowers and nature.
Hella is a band from Sacramento, California. But Zach Hill wants you to know that Hella is also a person. Sort of. Hella is "a musical thing that became a person unto itself," Hill said. "There's such an evolution.
The skeleton is now covered in glass that sometimes looks green and sometimes looks blue, depending on the light. That skin matches the accents on Davenport's new parking garages, and the building itself - while monumental - currently appears closer to that aesthetic than art - boxy and blank.
Recently, at dinner with some Quad Cities politicians and lobbyists, I was asked to name the "best" local artists. Feeling put on the spot, I waxed regal about the subjectivity of art and how critical acclaim and commercial success are but two measures of artistic achievement.

Mystery Box

For his current art exhibition, Felix Morelo started small, creating intricate painted boxes that can fit in one's hands. One wall of the Peanut Gallery is covered with them. But as intriguing as these works are, Morelo was unhappy with them.

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