In the Music Room at the Muscatine Art Center

Thursday, November 5, 2015 from 5:30-6:30 p.m.

FREE ADMISSION

 

Historian Tom Rasmussen and author Judith Healy will present "The Weyerhaeusers and the Mussers," explaining the important relationship between Peter Musser and Frederick Weyerhaeuser both as partners in the lumber business and good friends. The program, held on Thursday, November 5th at 5:30 p.m. in the Art Center's Music Room, is free and open to the public.

Tom Rasmussen is the great-great grandson of Sarah and Frederick Weyerhaeuser and has completed extensive personal research on the Weyerhaeuser family and Judith Healy is the author of the book, Frederick Weyerhaeuser and the American West (2013). Using amazing photographs of bygone days, of forests and villages and family celebrations, Rasmussen and Healy will present the story of these two self-made timbermen both of whom were as much family men as business men.

The history of Frederick Weyerhaeuser is also the history of the settling of the Midwest. A towering figure of the later decades of the 1800s, Frederick Weyerhaeuser made his fortune by founding and growing a timber business that depended on the mighty Mississippi. Although he made his home in Rock Island, his business affected the Iowa side of the border as much as the Illinois side, and all was fed by the timber his men took out of the Wisconsin forests.

In the book, Frederick Weyerhaeuser and the American West, Judith Healey presents Weyerhaeuser as a successful businessman and family man. With only six years of formal schooling himself, Weyerhaeuser sent his children to eastern colleges, and in his later years, became a philanthropist who generously supported projects locally and in his native German village.

Peter Musser was one of Muscatine's leading citizens. Born in Pennsylvania of Swiss and English parentage, his connection with the Iowa lumber trade began in the early 1870s. Musser was head of a saw mill which produced 40 million feet of lumber annually. He was also a large holder of Minnesota and Wisconsin timber lands and an active logging trader. Throughout the northwest, he was known for his farsighted business judgment.

In his northern ventures, Peter Musser was an associate of Frederick Weyerhaeuser, whose pioneer enterprise in timber tracts along the upper Mississippi and its tributaries made him nationally known as "Lumber King of the Northwest." Musser and Weyerhaeuser jointly located their two sons - Drew Musser and Charles Weyerhaeuser - in Little Falls, Minnesota to run a lumber operation. The two sons built mansion side-by-side - today, both homes are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Weyerhaeuser mansion is open as the Linden Hill Historic Museum.

The program on November 5th is free and open to the public. Reservations are not required. Please contact Melanie Alexander, Director, with any questions or concerns at 563-263-8282 or by email at 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. Visit www.muscatineartcenter.org for more information about programs and events and to download a class brochure.

Kick off your Fourth of July celebrations at the Annual Ice Cream Social presented by the Friends of the Muscatine Art Center. This family-friendly event will be held on Sunday, June 28th from 1 to 5 p.m. As always, there will be plenty of ice cream, desserts, children's activities, and live entertainment.

Families are encouraged to join the Family Bike Ride organized by the Melon City Bike Club and Harper's Cycling & Fitness. The group will depart from Discovery Park at 1 p.m. and will have the option of a short 3-mile round-trip ride or a longer 10-mile ride. Both rides will stop at the Art Center, and participants will receive a coupon for a free ice cream.

This year's entertainment begins with the family group "Tammy and the Fyffe's" at 1 p.m.; Chad Elliot of Wilderman's Treetop Tales will take the stage at 2 p.m.; and Muscatine favorite, "The Creepin' Charlies," will perform at 3:00 p.m.

Come inside and see the Art Center's new exhibitions: "Older than the State of Iowa: the 175th Anniversary of the Muscatine Journal" in the Musser Museum Gallery and "Pedal Power: Bicycles from the Collection of Charlie Harper" in the Stanley Gallery. The Muscatine Journal exhibition includes an interesting chronology with Orion Clemens purchasing an interest in the Journal in 1853 and the first issue of the "Daily Journal" in 1855. Highlights of the exhibit include two murals created for the Journal by Alva Runyon, displays of cameras, darkroom equipment, press tools and type, details on Editor John Mahin and the bombing of his home, and "Special Editions." The "Pedal Power" exhibition highlights Charlie Harper's collection to document the changing technology and design of American bicycles. It features 26 bicycles dating from 1886 to 1979 including 'highwheelers' dating to the late 1880s. The exhibition also includes a loan of an award-winning, custom-made bicycle from the Legacies for Iowa: A University of Iowa Museum of Art Collections Sharing Project, Supported by the Matthew Bucksbaum Family.

Activities for children include kids' games sponsored by Central State Bank, crafts in the studio, bike decorating, and demonstrations by Charlie and his grandsons on the 'highwheeler' bicycles. Freddie the Fire Truck will also put in an appearance thanks to the City of Muscatine Fire Department.

Admission to the Ice Cream Social and related events is free. All proceeds from sales of ice cream, desserts, and beverages go to the Friends of the Muscatine Art Center. Each year, the Friends of the Muscatine Art Center contribute financially toward the educational programs offered at the Art Center, provide scholarships for students to attend Art Center studio classes, and pay for busing for area schools to visit the Art Center.

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 ART CENTER

1314 Mulberry Avenue, Muscatine, Iowa 52761

563.263.8282

On View in the Musser Mansion Gallery at the Muscatine Art Center

April 26 - May 22, 2015

FREE ADMISSION

The Muscatine Art Center is pleased to present the Iowa Watercolor Society Annual Traveling Show for

2014 - 2015. This exhibit includes this year's top five award winning paintings, as well as, Best Translucent Watercolor, and five Honorable Mentions.  There are a total of 31 watercolor paintings in the show representing the work of 29 Iowa artists.   Internationally known artist Carol Carter, from St. Louis, Mo, juried and judged this year's annual competition that was held in West Des Moines, Ia.   There were 142 entries for this year's juried show, of these, sixty-one where chosen for the Annual Show.  Carol Carter chose the eleven award winners and twenty additional paintings for the traveling show.  One can truly say the Iowa Watercolor Society Traveling Show is the best of the best.

The Iowa Watercolor Society (IWS) is an organization made up of beginning, amateur and professional artists.  The only requirement for membership is an interest in watercolor painting.  The IWS was organized in 1977 by a group of devoted artists that loved watercolor painting.  They were led by Joe Messner of Cedar Rapids.  Each year the organization holds an annual meeting, an annual juried show and one or two watercolor workshops.  The organizations primary purpose is to promote and support the arts in Iowa with an emphasis on watercolor painting.

The exhibit will be on display in the Musser Mansion Gallery from April 26 to May 22, 2015.

Please contact Melanie Alexander, Director, with any questions or concerns at 563-263-8282 or by email at 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. Visit www.muscatineartcenter.org for more information about programs and events and to download a class brochure.

MUSCATINE ART CENTER

1314 Mulberry Avenue, Muscatine, IA 52761    563-263-8282

www.muscatineartcenter.org

CONTACT:  Melanie Alexander, Director 563-263-8282 or malexander@muscatineiowa.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 

Event: Recital by Sarah Snydacker

Date:  Saturday, March 28th at 3 p.m.

Location: Music Room at the Muscatine Art Center

Details: Admission is Free

Sarah Snydacker will present a recital, If I Loved You - Love Songs of Richard Rogers and Other Friends, on Saturday March 28 at 3 pm in the Music Room at the Muscatine Art Center. The recital is free and open to the public.

Snydacker, a native of Muscatine, graduated from the University of Iowa's School of Music with a PhD in voice. An active performer and college voice professor, Snydacker specializes in 20th and 21st century American music. The mezzo-soprano will accompany herself on piano for the program featuring love songs of Rogers as well as other contemporary composers.

Please contact Melanie Alexander, Director, with any questions or concerns at 563-263-8282 or by email at 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. Visit www.muscatineartcenter.org for more information about programs and events and to download a class brochure.

Exhibit: Cylinder & Disc Music Boxes

Exhibit dates:  January 22 through March 22, 2015

Program: Cylinder & Disc Music Boxes by Brian Walter on Thursday, February 12 at 5:15 p.m.

The Laura Musser Mansion Small Gallery now features the second in its series of music box exhibits from the private collection of Brian Walter and the Art Center's permanent collection. This second series highlights the history and chronology of "Cylinder" & "Disc" music boxes from the 1870-1900 era.

A "Cylinder & Disc Music Box" program will be presented by Brian Walter, at 5:15 on Thursday, February 12, 2015.

The period of 1870 to 1890 was the height of production for cylinder music boxes. The cylinder music box provided live music without performers and the sound it produced was very much like a group of harpists or a hand bell choir. Extensively inlaid cases and multiple cylinders (which included 'shifting' and 'removable' cylinders) mark this era as the most technically challenging period for cylinder type manufacturing.

The development of the first interchangeable disc music boxes in 1886, made it even easier and less expensive to add tunes. These "Symphonion" boxes were originally made in Leipzig, Germany and were destined to become some of the greatest music boxes ever known. Even this innovative design which accepted individual tune discs (allowing one music box to play multiple tunes), could not save the cylinder music box companies, as many were forced out of business due to increased sales and aggressive marketing of the new disc music boxes.

Other music box makers caught on to the new disc technology and began building their own masterpieces: most notably "Polyphon" in Germany and "Regina" in the United States. By 1900, the "Gramophone" (or record player) had replaced disc music boxes, due to lower price and greater variety of music available.

EVENT DETAILS:

What: "Cylinder & Disc Music Boxes" Program

Who: Brian Walter

When: Thursday, February 12, 2014

Time: 5:15 PM

Where: The Muscatine Art Center's Music Room

Admission to this program is FREE.

Please contact Melanie Alexander, Director, with any questions or concerns at 563-263-8282 or by email at 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. Visit www.muscatineartcenter.org for more information about programs and events and to download a class brochure.

The Friends of the Muscatine Art Center is a non-profit organization that raises funds each year to support educational programs at the Muscatine Art Center. The volunteers who serve on the Friends board make many events possible. The Annual Ice Cream Social at the end of June, family holiday events, and fundraisers, such as the "For the Love of Art" Tea, are all organized as Friends events.

This year some special celebrations are being planned around the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Laura Musser Museum and Art Center. Additional volunteers are needed. If you have ever considered being a Friends board member or volunteer, now is the time to get involved.

The Friends board meets on the second Thursday of the month at 5:15 p.m. in the kitchen of the Musser Mansion. If you are interested in attending a meeting, please call Melanie Alexander at 563-263-8282 or email malexander@muscatineiowa.gov. The next meeting is scheduled for February 12, 2015.

Muscatine Art Center's collections were significantly enriched by a gift of art by Georgia O'Keeffe. White Lotus

was given in honor of Elizabeth Mabel Holthues Stanley by her family. O'Keeffe created this work in 1939 while working in Hawaii on a commission from the Hawaiian Pineapple Company (shortly thereafter known as Dole Company). White Lotus recently traveled to Honolulu and Santa Fe to be exhibited with works by O'Keeffe and Ansel Adams. The painting has now returned to Muscatine and will be on display during the art talk about O'Keeffe.

Art History Speaker, Carol Ehlers will present "Georgia O'Keeffe: A Sense of Place" on November 13, the third Thursday of the month. The lecture will begin promptly at 5:30 p.m. in the Muscatine Art Center's Music Room. The lecture will feature images of O'Keeffe's work as well as photos from her life from 1929 to 1986. The lecture is FREE and open to the public.

 

Beginning in 1929, Georgia O'Keeffe began spending part of almost every year painting in New Mexico, first in Taos and later in and about Alcaide, Abiguiu, and Ghost Ranch. Her early subjects in New Mexico were the black crosses of the Penitentes. After her second and third trip to New Mexico, O'Keeffe returned home to the East Coast with an assortment of bone and skulls. Later she captured scenes of the vastness and beauty of the landscapes of New Mexico.

Photo images of O'Keeffe's New Mexico homes tell the compelling story of her life in New Mexico with each home satisfying different aspects of the artist's personal life. From these homes, she created paintings of the houses, surrounding landscape forms, and specific architectural components of the Abiquiu house. Her houses in New Mexico became essential elements in her painting. Ghost Ranch was isolated and gave her immediate access to the natural world. The Abiquiu house perched on a bluff overlooking the Chama River Valley made it possible for O'Keeffe to live more comfortably in the winter in New Mexico. Both houses are characterized by simple furnishing and minimalist esthetics.

By 1938, Dole Company invited O'Keeffe to the islands of Hawaii as its guest and, in exchange, requested two paintings of unspecified subjects for use in a national magazine advertising campaign. The Muscatine Art Center's White Lotus was one of the painting she created from Hawaii.

Georgia O'Keeffe: A Sense of Place

EVENT DETAILS:

What: "Georgia O'Keeffe: A Sense of Place" Lecture on her later life - Thursday, November 13

Who: Carol Ehlers

When: Third Thursday, November 13

Time: 5:30 PM

Where: The Muscatine Art Center's Music Room

Admission to this lecture is FREE.

Please contact Melanie Alexander, Director, with any questions or concerns at  563-263-8282 or by email at malexander@muscatineiowa.gov or www.muscatineartcenter.org

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.

What do the towns of Summit, Bayfield, Adams, Black Bass, Garden City and Madera have in common? They were all long ago stops on railroads in Muscatine County. Join local railroad enthusiast, Bill Lindsay, for a Railroad "Share your Stories" Show and Tell in conjunction with the exhibition, "Railroads of Muscatine County". Participants are encouraged to bring railroad related items and stories to share. The event will be held on Sunday, October 19, 2014 from 2:00 - 4:00 PM at the Muscatine Art Center. Admission is FREE.

Learn how Summit was on the original Rock Island main line from Wilton Junction that ran into Muscatine. The town had a depot, stock yards and a store. Bayfield (yes it was on Bayfield road) was on the Burlington, Cedar Rapids and Northern branch that ran from Nichols to Muscatine through the Heinz property. Adams was further west from Bayfield and also had a small depot. Black Bass and Garden City were one in the same.

Discover interesting tidbits about the local railroad and share your own stories! Do you have a great piece of history you would like to share with other railroad fans? Do you have a mysterious railroad-related item in your collection? Bring it with you, and perhaps Bill Lindsay can share some information about your item.

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.

Please contact Melanie Alexander, Director, with any questions at 563-263-8282 or by email at malexander@muscatineiowa.gov .

The Muscatine Art Center and the Friends of the Muscatine Art Center are pleased to announce that they are hosting Mr. B's Joybox Express this afternoon at 1:30 for a short concert. Combining athleticism and artistry, Mr. B's Joybox Express is fronted by Mark "Mr. B" Braun, an internationally recognized jazz and blue pianist.

Produced by Artrain, Inc., this epic 2,000-mile, 90-day trek began on September 1st at the Mississippi River headwaters in Minnesota and will conclude in New Orleans, Louisiana in December. Along the way the Mr. B's Joybox Express is stopping in cities, towns and villages to perform, educate and inspire blues, jazz and cycling appreciation.

How Mr. B's Piano Bike Dream was Built into Reality

Ann Arbor, MI - Nationally known bicycle frame builder Mark Nobilette is the man responsible for building the custom piano-bike that is currently traveling on Mr. B's Joybox Express Mississippi River Road Ride, an epic 2,000 mile journey from Lake Itasca, MN to New Orleans, LA.  As a custom frame builder he has built it all from professional racing bikes to pedicabs.  But jazz and blues musician and amateur athlete Mark Braun put him up to a challenge he had never been given before - to build a bike that could pull a full-upright piano.

Mark "Mr. B" Braun, an internationally recognized jazz and blues pianist, dreamt up a whimsical concept of a piano-on-wheels which results from a personal lifetime passion for arts and athletics.  "I am convinced that I am a better musician because I have always been active in sports.  A lot of people find art and athletics to be mutually exclusive, but I see clearly how both played a pivotal role as I learned valuable life lessons about endurance, ambition, passion, failure and achievement.  I started the Mr. B's Joybox Express as a vehicle to spread the joy of music and movement and help communities raise support for youth arts and athletics programs." said Braun.  When he decided to make this dream into a reality he knew just who he needed for the job; his local custom bicycle frame builder Mark Nobilette.

Nobilette was a part of the reemergence of bicycle frame building in the United States in the 1970s.  He studied with and learned his craft from the esteemed frame builder Albert Eisentraut who was referred to as the dean of modern USA (post Korean War) custom frame builders.  In the early 1990s Nobilette was building frames at Cycle Cellar in Ann Arbor, MI.  It was here that he first met Mr. B. "[H]e brought up this subject of a piano on a bike.  I kind of thought he was nuts," Nobilette said.

Eventually, Nobilette moved to Longmont, CO to start his own frame building business: Nobilette Cycle.  Several years later he and Mr. B reconnected and the idea of the piano bike resurfaced.  By this point, Nobilette had done some work for Main Street Pedicabs in Denver, CO building the rickshaw-like structures used as taxis.  He realized that an extended version of a pedicab could be a great design for Mr. B's piano bike.  This time Nobilette's response to Mr. B was different, "Yeah, let's do it!  No reason we can't."

So began the creation of Mr. B's Joybox Express, a custom-made tricycle capable of hauling a 387 lb. piano.  Nobilette's major concern in the construction was how to make it safely carry 500-600 lbs. (the weight of the piano plus the platform).  Also, the platform needed to be stable so the piano would not be bounced out of tune while traveling.  To solve these two obstacles, Nobilette equipped the bike with shock absorbers as well as places in the back for two more riders to attach their bike frames (minus the front wheel) to assist in pushing.  After lots of thought and energy the construction was a success.  In fact, Nobilette's original model of Mr. B's Joybox Express is traveling down the Blues Highway right now!

The collaboration of the talents of musician Mr. B and bicycle frame builder Mark Nobilette made the dream of a piano bike come to life.  Mr. B's Joybox Express is currently traveling along the Blues Highway to parade, educate and share the sounds of blues, jazz and boogie-woogie tunes performed by the Mr. B's Joybox Express Band.

Below are the locations and tentative dates for the remainder of the tour:


Galena, IL, 9/27/14

Muscatine, IA, 09/28-29/14

Burlington, IA, 10/7/14

St. Louis, MO, 10/15/14

Hickman, KY, 10/22/14

Osceola, AR, 10/25/14

Memphis, TN, 10/30/14

Clarksdale, MS, 11/2/14

Yazoo City, MS, 11/5/14

Baton Rouge, LA, 11/12/14

New Orleans, LA, 11/15/14

 

Communities interested in hosting Mr. B's Joybox Express should contact Artrain at 734.747.8300 or JoyboxExpress@ArtrainUSA.orgArtrain, Inc. is producing Mr. B's Joybox Express Mississippi River Road Ride.  For more than 40 years Artrain, headquartered in Ann Arbor, MI, has delivered world class arts and cultural exhibitions and education programs to under-resourced communities throughout the United States.  Winner of the National Medal for Museum Service, Artrain's mission is to deliver discovery and - through the galvanizing power of arts and culture - transform lives, organizations and communities.  Originally Artrain was a museum-on-a-train that used America's rail system to deliver art exhibitions.  Today Artrain produces and delivers cultural outreach programs of all types - art, cultural, history, science, environment, etc. - to people in villages, towns and cities through a variety of methods including mobile touring exhibitions and cultural education and engagement programs.  Artrain's current projects include : Mr. B's Joybox Express; CriticCar Detroit, Infinite Mirror: Images of American Identity; and Paths to Peace: A War of 1812 Arts Legacy Project.

Artrain and Mr. B's Joybox Express are supported by hundreds of individuals, businesses and, in part, by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and Wells Fargo Foundation.

For more information contact Artrain at 734.747.8300, JoyboxExpress@ArtrainUSA.org, www.ArtrainUSA.org or www.JoyboxExpress.com.

 

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