(Davenport, Iowa - May, 2011) The Figge announces the fall exhibition, Restoring the Spirit: Celebrating Haitian Art and the recent reinstallation of the Figge's Haitian Gallery with an event on May 18.  The upcoming exhibition celebrates Haiti's complex visual traditions and the devotion of artists to creative endeavors in the face of national adversity.  The exhibition will open September 17 and run through January 15, 2012.

The Figge's Haitian Collection is one of the first and most comprehensive collections of Haitian art in the United States.  The collection was established through a gift from Davenport native Dr. Walter E. Neiswanger and charts the growth and development of the country's rich artistic tradition from its origins in the 1940s through today.

Now on view in the reinstalled Haitian Gallery is the triptych Azaka, Agro Rex by Edouard Duval-Carrie.  Duval-Carrie, who was featured in the solo exhibition, Migration of the Spirit at the Figge in 2006, will have work included in Restoring the Spirit exhibition.  Duval-Carrie will visit the Figge on October 13 to lead a "Thursdays at the Figge" art talk on his experiences as a Haitian artist.

On May 18, in honor of Haitian Flag Day, the Figge will host an event to celebrate the announcement of the exhibition and the recent Haitian Gallery reinstallation.  The Figge is partnering with Kids Against Hunger Your Quad-Cities to bag life saving food which will be delivered to Haiti.

Kids Against Hunger is an international food relief organization working to save the lives of starving people. The local chapter has provided over 500,000 meals to starving people in Haiti, Honduras, and Nicaragua, many of whom suffer from malnutrition and resort to eating mud cakes to stave off the hunger.  In addition, they have provided nearly 60,000 meals to hungry people in the Quad Cities. The bagged meals, made up of rice, soy, six vegetables and twenty-one vitamins and minerals, provide a nutritionally complete meal and cost $0.25 per meal.

The Figge is seeking over 100 volunteers to help bag food from 2:30pm to 4:30pm on the May 18.  Individual cash donations of $20 are encouraged to help cover the cost of these meals.  For a fee of $360, teams of 12 volunteers can sign up to create 1440 meals in an hour.

Leading the bagging efforts will be Keith Donohue.  Donohue is the founder of Positive Present®, an organization devoted to making a positive impact through philanthropy. His organization is currently embarking on a unique project called "50Give," where Donohue will trek cross-country to volunteer in each of the 50 states as well as Canada, Mexico and the District of Columbia.  Travelling by car, plane or boat, Donohue will devote over five months of his time helping various nonprofits, charities and other worthy causes.

Donohue volunteers at one non-profit in each state and has chosen to spend his time in Iowa volunteering at the Figge.  In addition to helping bag food, Donohue will help in the administrative offices and assist Figge outreach staff with an elementary program in the Davenport School District.

There will be a brief program at 2pm with remarks by Figge staff and community members. Haitian gallery tours will be offered at 2pm, 3pm and 4pm by Sally Ruggeberg, a Figge Docent who has spent time volunteering in Haiti.

To volunteer, please contact Jennifer Brooke at the Figge Art Museum 563.326.7804x2048 or j.brooke@figgeartmuseum.org

For more information on 50Give and Keith Donohue visit www.50give.com/contact.

For more information on Kids Against Hunger Your Quad-Cities, contact John Kessler at info@kahqc.com or 309.762.0437.

This event is being sponsored by Thrivent Financial for Lutherans. As the country's largest fraternal benefit society, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans does much more than offer financial services. It offers programs and outreach opportunities where members can connect with each other, learn new things, and help their communities. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans supports two foundations that address a variety of needs and serve charitable purposes that support individuals, organizations and communities.

For more information on Thrivent Financial for Lutherans contact Tom Brooke at 326.650.2389 or Thomas.Brooke@Thrivent.com.


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