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.

The Muscatine Art Center is pleased to announce the opening of a new exhibit by Iowa City artist, Connie Roberts on June 17 with an artist's reception on Sunday, July 1 from 1 to 5pm in conjunction with the annual Ice Cream Social.

Connie Roberts call herself a "thing maker."  In her work, she bridges the realms of fine art and folk art and tackles many subjects with sharp wit and unrestrained humor. Trained as a figurative painter, Roberts carves and then paints sculpture, which also happens to be whistles. "Every Piece has a whistle somewhere in it - like a signature. I love building sculptures out of wood and complicating the process by making them whistle, so that they become engaging toys as well as art."

Roberts incorporates a variety of wood in her work, occasionally using hardwoods for smaller, more fragile pieces. She uses power tools for major cutting, sanding, and drilling, and dremels for fine carving and finish work. Acrylic paints are then applied to her sculptures, with a final coat of shellac for a mellow patina. Her art is meant for the collector to handle, play with and blow into.

Roberts has had numerous exhibits at art galleries and museums across the nation and has been the subject of multiple publications and contributed artwork to several books.

Collectors of her work include : Jim Leach, Steven Speilberg, Alan Greenspan, Andrea Mitchell, Rudy Guilliani, Whoopi Goldberg, Dick Cheney, John Williams, Penny Marshall, Letitia Baldridge, "The FOnz", Dr. Michael DeBakey, Carole Burnett, Carrie Fisher, Sonny & Gloria Kamm, Phillip Cooke, Erica Jong and more.

Roberts work is shown in the Stanley Gallery with Pieced Elegance: Quilts by Clara Oleson and will be on view through September 2, 2012.

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