March 26, 2013

As part of the temporary exhibition, "The Other Side of the Earth" by Chun Arthur Wang, the Muscatine Art Center is hosting a panel discussion about the relationship between Muscatine and China. Mayor DeWayne Hopkins will serve as moderator for the discussion on Thursday, April 4th from 5:15 to 6:30 p.m. in the Muscatine Art Center's Music Room.

Mayor Hopkins will share photographs from his recent delegation trip to Hebei Province and will lead a session that explores the past, present, and future of building a relationship between Muscatine and China. Several panelists were part of the Mayor's delegation while others are "old friends" who hosted Xi Jinping, now the President of the People's Republic of China.

Panelists include members of the Mayor's Muscatine China Initiatives Committee such Tony Joseph, President of the Initiatives Committee and President of Joseph Industries; Sarah Lande, one of Xi Jinping's Old Friends, former Executive Director of Iowa Sister States and also a member of its first Board of Directors; Albert Liu of Musco Sports Lighting; Deb Hutton, President of Muscatine Sister Cities; and Bob Allbee, President of Muscatine Community College.

The panelists will explore topics related to the establishment of the friendship between Hebei and Iowa in the early 1980s, Sister States/Sister Cities past and present initiatives, the purpose of the Mayor's committee, Muscatine companies with operations in China, the 100,000 Strong Initiative, and other efforts to prepare current community and business leaders as well as future generations for working in China and with Chinese leaders.

In addition to the exhibition of paintings by Chun Arthur Wang, the Art Center has on display several cases of items on loan from Joan Axel, an Old Friend of Xi Jinping, and Mayor Hopkins. Among the items are gifts from Xi Jinping including a China Red tea set and two porcelain Chinese Gift Tea containers. Several photo books, scarves, and scrolls are also on display.

The Muscatine Art Center is located at 1314 Mulberry Avenue in Muscatine, Iowa. Hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Thursday evenings until 7:00 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. Admission is free. Donations are appreciated.

 

 

 


The public is invited to join the Muscatine Art Center in welcoming Carol Ehlers, art history speaker, as she presents a 45 minute lecture on Edgar Degas's influence on Pablo Picasso. The lecture will take place Thursday, March 28 at 5:30 pm in the Muscatine Art Center's Music Room. Admission is free.

When Pablo Picasso moved to the Montmartre district in Paris in 1904, he lived and worked in the same neighborhood as Edgar Degas. The pair had several friends in common, used the same models and shared Ambrose Vollard as their art dealer, but it is unlikely that the two ever met. Degas was from an earlier era (he was 47 years older than Picasso) and was classically educated and from a well-off family, but was famously aloof. Picasso on the other hand was struggling, impoverished and frequented the brothels, cafes and nightclubs so commonly seen in both of their works.

Despite their differences in age, temperament and background, Picasso had an enduring fascination with Degas. Throughout his long career, Picasso would produce works of art in response to what his artistic predecessors created, often "quoting" their compositions. Picasso is said to have observed that "good artists copy; great artists steal." Thus was his relationship with Degas. Picasso's early compositions were wrought with scenes of cabarets and cafes, portraits, women bathing, and ballet dancers; the same subjects that had come to define Degas's iconic works.

Pablo Picasso Looks at Edgar Degas explores Picasso's lifelong fascination with Degas's art and personality, while also shedding light on the development of twentieth-century modernism.

In 1992 the Muscatine Art Center's collections were significantly enriched by a gift of twenty-seven works of art from the estate of Mary Musser Gilmore in honor of her parents, Richard Drew Musser and Sarah Walker Musser. Represented in this collection are works by Toulouse-Lautrec, Matisse, Degas, Boudin, Chagall, Renoir, and other European artists. These pieces are on permanent display in the Laura Musser Mansion.

"Muscatine's Golden Key" is the title of a new painting which is making its public debut in the exhibition, "The Other Side of the Earth" by Chun Arthur Wang. The painting depicts Xi Jinping, soon to be announced or newly announced (press note: this depends on the timing of the story) President of the People's Republic of China. In the foreground is a portrait of then Vice President Xi during his 2012 visit to Muscatine while the background features Xi receiving the key to the City of Muscatine during his 1985 visit. Xi Jinping is believed to be the only person to hold the honor of receiving two keys to the City of Muscatine - one in 1985 and the other in 2012.

Artist Chun Arthur Wang states, "Most Chinese had never heard of 'Muscatine' until the Chinese and global press reported on Xi Jinping's return visit to this Iowa town in 2012. People were touched by the story that Mr. Xi did not forget the local family that hosted him for three days during his visit in 1985. The profound friendship between Mr. Xi and ordinary American people impressed many Chinese people, including me."

Wang was preparing for his exhibition at the Muscatine Art Center when his family and friends encouraged him to create a painting about Xi Jinping's connection to Muscatine. Xi is depicted twice in the painting - once as a younger man and once as the new leader of China today. Wang describes his depiction of then Vice President Xi: "Mr. Xi looks high-spirited and vigorous as the dignified and confident new leader. He holds the second key to the City of Muscatine in his left hand while using his right hand to wave to his old friends in Muscatine. From his mild eyes we find his joyfulness in reuniting with his old friends. And from his smile we seem to hear an emotional voice from his heart, 'Muscatine, I am back after twenty-seven years'."

The Mississippi River and the Muscatine Bridge are also featured in the painting. The friendship between America and China is symbolized by the Mississippi River both of which "will never be interrupted", as described by Wang. Behind the clouds, Wang has painted two traditional Chinese vermillion red gates which are open in the middle. These gates are intended to symbolize the opening of friendship between the two countries and also the blending of two different cultures.

The painting, "Muscatine's Golden Key," along with 18 other works of art by Chun Arthur Wang will be on view at the Muscatine Art Center through April 21, 2013. Wang will be in Muscatine from March 17th through 19th. An Artist Reception will be held on Sunday, March 17th from 1 to 5 p.m. Wang will speak at 1:30 p.m. The reception is open to the public, and admission is free. On March 18th and 19th, Wang will visit local classrooms and meet with community leaders.

The Muscatine Art Center is located at 1314 Mulberry Avenue in Muscatine, Iowa. Hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Thursday evenings until 7:00 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. Admission is free. Donations are appreciated.

Muscatine's Golden Key.jpg

Muscatine Art Center's collections were significantly enriched by a gift of twenty-seven works of art by Toulouse-Lautrec, Matisse, Degas, Boudin, Chagall, Renoir, and other European artists. The collection was a gift in 1992 from the estate of Mary Musser Gilmore in honor of her parents, Richard Drew Musser and Sarah Walker Musser.

This spring, the Muscatine Art Center welcomes Carol Ehlers, art history speaker, to present lectures on featured artists from the Mary Musser Gilmore Collection. The series is called "Artists Inspirations" and features artists Pablo Picasso, Paul Signac, and Raoul Dufy, and the artists that influenced each of them. The lectures will be held on the fourth Thursdays of the month beginning in March, and will be begin promptly at 5:30 pm. These lectures are FREE and open to the public.

Thursday, March 28: Pablo Picasso Looks at Edgar Degas

Pablo Picasso is said to have remarked that "good artists copy; great artists steal." Throughout his long and prolific career, Picasso often made works of art in response to his predecessors, quoting famous compositions by other artists. The subjects that had come to define Degas' works- cabarets and cafes, portraits, women bathing, and ballet dancers- can be seen in a variety of pieces from Picasso's early periods. Picasso's interest in Degas even inspired a series of etchings, made late in his career, in which Picasso depicted Degas himself.

Thursday, April 25: Paul Signac and the Utilization of Scientific Theory and Pointillism

Neo-Impressionist Paul Signac adopted the scientific theory of color and light refraction published by Eugene Chevreul and the model of pointillism he developed with his contemporary Georges Seurat to create a new phase of Post-Impressionism: Pointillism. See how these theories of color and phenomena of perception influenced Signac's art.

Thursday, May 23: Raoul Dufy Looks at Pissarro, Matisse and Braque

Like the Camille Pissarro and the Impressionists at the time, Raoul Dufy's cheerful paintings depict events of the time, including views of the French Riviera, and musical events. However, Impressionism was simply a step artistically- he then fell under the influence of the Fauves after being mesmerized by Henri Matisse. Later, he found that he needed to instill more austerity and soberness in his works, and Cubism fit the bill. Dufy preferred Georges Braque's neutral, fractured paintings to the wild and painterly Fauvist style. He later gained a reputation for being a commercial artist after a lifetime of borrowing from different artistic movements.

EVENT DETAILS:

What: "Artists Inspire" Lecture Series

Who: Carol Ehlers

When: Fourth Thursdays starting in March, 2013

Time: 5:30 PM

Where: The Muscatine Art Center's Music Room

Admission to these programs is FREE.

Are you responsible for the historic documents, photographs and objects belonging to your organization, church or family? The Muscatine Art Center and Musser Public Library are teaming up to provide a basic overview to caring for collections.

Attendees will learn about ways to provide basic collections care on a small budget and without professional training. Discussion topics will include organizing materials, storing materials in a more stable environment, handling and exhibiting materials to limit the risk of damage, and digitizing records and photographs. Art Center Registrar Virginia Cooper will cover the basics of working with acid-free materials for storage. She will examine storage for textiles, books, and historic documents. Sheila Chaudoin, Photo Archivist at Musser Public Library, will discuss photograph and photo negative storage and scanning and managing digitized images.

The free session will take place on Thursday, March 7th at 5:30 p.m. in the Music Room at the Muscatine Art Center. The session will last approximately 1 hour plus time for questions.

To register in advance, call 563-263-8282 or email malexander@muscatineiowa.gov.

The Muscatine Art Center is located at 1314 Mulberry Avenue in Muscatine, Iowa. Hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Thursday evenings until 7:00 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. Admission is free. Donations are appreciated.

 

The Muscatine Art Center will provide visitors with an escape from Iowa winter with the opening of an exhibition of works by Beth Van Hoesen. This exhibition will be the first opportunity for the public to view the twenty-six prints and drawings of flowers gifted to the Art Center in 2012. The exhibition will be on view from February 1 through June 16, 2013.

Van Hoesen's flowers are richly colored and draw attention to the idea of art being all around us. Van Hoesen takes everyday objects and highlights the sublime hidden in small things. Her works are nearly scientific in detail but also quite charming.

For much of her career, Van Hoesen functioned outside of the "fleeting and fashionable" movements of the time. Van Hoesen was a realist when many artists tended towards abstraction. Her printmaking technique was highly regarded, and her work is represented in the collections of major art museums. These include the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Art Institute of Chicago, Boise Art Museum, Brooklyn Museum, Cincinnati Art Museum, Honolulu Academy of Arts, Smithsonian Institution and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

Born in Boise, Idaho in 1926, Van Hoesen studied art at Stanford University, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1948. After graduating from Stanford she studied art in France and later at the California School of Fine Arts (San Francisco Art Institute). Her career spanned more than five decades.

The E. Mark Adams and Beth Van Hoesen Trust of San Francisco, California gifted the works to the Muscatine Art Center. The collection includes the medias of graphite, colored pencil, watercolor, aquatint, etching, drypoint, engraving and lithography.

The Muscatine Art Center is located at 1314 Mulberry Avenue in Muscatine, Iowa. Hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Thursday evenings until 7:00 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. Admission is free. Donations are appreciated.

The Muscatine Art Center is pleased to announce the upcoming exhibition, "The Other Side of the Earth" by Chun Arthur Wang. The exhibition will open on Sunday, March 10 and run through Sunday, April 21, 2013.

In conjunction with Wang's exhibit, the Muscatine Art Center is offering a class on the art of Chinese calligraphy. An instructor from the Confucius Institute, a branch of the University of Iowa's International Program will be conducting the class. There is no experience needed, and all supplies will be provided.

The English word "calligraphy" refers to that which is "beautiful writing", which includes both aspects of calligraphy- as a practice and as an art form. Chinese calligraphy is functional as a means of communication- at its basic level calligraphy is focused on writing well. However, calligraphy is also considered an art form in its own right, where works are appreciated more or only for their aesthetic qualities. Calligraphy has also led to the development of many different forms of art in China, including seal carvings, ornate paperweights, and inkstones.

CLASS DETAILS:

What: Chinese Calligraphy Class

When: Thursday, March 28, 2013

Time: 5:15 PM

Fee: $10.00 /$9.00 for Friends Members

Where: The Muscatine Art Center's Art Studio

To register, please contact Katy Doherty, Program Coordinator, at 563-263-8282 or by email at kdoherty@muscatineiowa.gov. Registration is appreciated no later than Wednesday, March 27. Class size is limited. For more information about the University of Iowa's Confucius Institute, please visit: http://international.uiowa.edu/confucius.

The Muscatine Art Center is located at 1314 Mulberry Avenue in Muscatine, Iowa. Hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Thursday evenings until 7:00 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. Admission is free. Donations are appreciated. Go to www.muscatineartcenter.org for more information about programs and events and to download a class brochure.

The public is invited to join the Muscatine Art Center in welcoming Carol Ehlers, art history speaker, as she presents a 45 minute lecture on the art of Russian artist Marc Chagall. The lecture will take place Thursday, November 15, 2012 at 5:30 pm in the Muscatine Art Center's Music Room. Admission is free.

Marc Chagall was a Russian artist associated with several major artistic styles and was one of the most successful artists of the 20th century. He was an early modernist and created works in virtually every artistic medium, including painting, book illustrations, stained glass windows, stage sets, ceramics, tapestries and fine art prints. Chagall did not want his work to be associated with any school or movement and considered his own personal language of symbols and motifs to be meaningful only to him.

Marc Chagall was born July 7, 1887 in Vitebsk, Belarus, then part of the Russian empire. He received his primary education at the local religious school, where he studied Hebrew and the Torah. He soon began copying images from books and found the experience so rewarding he decided he wanted to become an artist.

At the age of 19 he moved to St. Petersburg which was then the capital of Russia and the center of the country's artistic life. After a few months at the art school there, Chagall realized that academic portrait painting did not suit his desires and relocated to Paris, where he remained until 1914. After Paris he returned to his village of Vitebsk where he founded Vitebsk Arts College, which became one of the most distinguished schools of art in the Soviet Union.

In 1941 at the age of 54 he traveled to America where he discovered he had already achieved international fame. Initially, Chagall's fellow artists did not understand or even like his art, but those attitudes began to change when the son of French artist Henri Matisse became his representative. After several successful years in America, Chagall returned to France where he spent the remainder of his life. He died in Paris on March 28, 1985 at the age of 98.

In 1992 the Muscatine Art Center's collections were significantly enriched by a gift of twenty-seven works of art by Toulouse-Lautrec, Matisse, Degas, Boudin, Chagall, Renoir, and other European artists. The collection was a gift from the estate of Mary Musser Gilmore in honor of her parents, Richard Drew Musser and Sarah Walker Musser. The paintings are on permanent display in the Laura Musser Mansion.

The Muscatine Art Center is pleased to announce the return of artist Steve Gerberich with a new exhibit entitled "Holiday Springs & Sprockets".  Visitors may remember Gerberich's 2010 exhibit at the Muscatine Art Center, "Springs Sprockets & Pulleys" that broke attendance records with his masterful transformation of ordinary objects into inventive and witty mechanical sculpture.

Featuring five large-scale holiday-themed sculptures and installations, Holiday Springs & Sprockets explores scientific principles using everything from teapots to tin cans to fashion a world of blinking lights, moving parts and quirky scenarios. "This industrial strength exhibit will unite the youngest at heart with fond memories of old Americana - kitchen appliances associated with holiday traditions," says Gerberich. With a touch of a button visitors bring to life the whirling motions of assembly line automation. The Cookie Workshop shuttles cookies in and out of the oven while keeping two automatons busy washing loads of dirty dishes. An early 20th century vertical drill press is put to good use creating candy canes in the Candy Cane Assembly Plant, while Santa and his Exercycle Reindeer are propelled across the gallery by exercise bikes.

This holiday-themed installation made its debut at New York's Bloomingdale's and has been featured on The Today Show and NBC Nightly News.

Holiday Springs & Sprockets is on view October 21, 2012 through January 6, 2013. The Friends of the Muscatine Art Center will host a free public reception on Sunday, October 21 from 1 to 5 pm where visitors will meet artist Steve Gerberich and enjoy the exhibit with family and friends.

The Muscatine Art Center is open to the public Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 10 AM to 5 PM, Thursday from 10 AM to 7 PM and Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 5 PM. Admission is FREE.

The public is invited to join the Muscatine Art Center in welcoming Carol Ehlers, art history speaker, as she presents a 45 minute lecture on the art of the French Impressionist Edgar Degas. The lecture will take place Thursday, September 20 at 5:30 pm in the Muscatine Art Center's Music Room. Admission is free.

Edgar Degas was born on July 19, 1834 in Paris, France, the oldest of five children. Degas began to paint early in life and in 1853 he registered as a copyist in the Louvre. He exhibited at the Salon for the first time in 1865 but his painting gathered little attention.

At the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War in 1870, Degas enlisted in the National Guard. During rifle training his eyesight was found to be defective and for the rest of his life his eye problems were a constant worry to him. From 1870 on Degas increasingly painted ballet subjects, partly because they sold well and provided him with needed income after his brother's debts had left the family bankrupt. He produced much of his greatest work during the decade beginning in 1874.

During his life, public reception of Degas' work ranged from admiration to contempt. He is considered one of the founders of Impressionism, though he preferred to be called a realist. His paintings, pastels, drawings, and sculptures are included in the collection of numerous museums around the world. Although Degas had no formal pupil he greatly influenced several important painters. His greatest admirer may have been Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec.

In 1992 the Muscatine Art Center's collections were significantly enriched by a gift of twenty-seven works of art by Toulouse-Lautrec, Matisse, Degas, Boudin, Chagall, Renoir, and other European artists. The collection was a gift from the estate of Mary Musser Gilmore in honor of her parents, Richard Drew Musser and Sarah Walker Musser. The paintings are on permanent display in the Laura Musser Mansion.

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