The Muscatine Art Center will open its latest exhibition, "A Journey Down River: Celebrating the 75th Anniversary of the Great River Road" on Sunday, June 30th as part of the Friends of the Muscatine Art Center's Annual Ice Cream Social. The exhibition will be on display in the Stanley Gallery through October 27, 2013.

The Mississippi River has always served as a muse for artists, songwriters and authors. "Old Man" River has been described as mighty, muddy and wicked, but the word "spectacular" describes both the river itself and the Muscatine Art Center's collection of works depicting the river. The collection includes paintings, drawings, prints and maps which historically and aesthetically document the river and the communities built along its banks.

The Great River Road, which travels the length of both sides of the Mississippi River, is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year. In 1938, the Mississippi River Parkway Commission (MRPC) was established for the purpose of collectively preserving, promoting and enhancing the scenic, historic and recreational resources of the Mississippi River.

The Muscatine Art Center exhibition will follow the Great River Road as part of the anniversary celebration. Highlights from the River Collection include a variety of works by Henry Lewis, an oil on pressed wood by Sally MacMillan, a painting by Muscatine's own William Bunn, a lithograph by John Page, a view of "Bloomington" (Muscatine) by John Casper Wild, prints by Karl Bodmer, hand colored engravings by Herrmann Meyer and a pen and ink drawing by Rudolf Cronau.

As a compliment to the River Collection, the Art Center has on display the speedboat racing trophies of Charles (Chap) Hanley. Hanley was born in Muscatine in 1878 and raced his first boat in 1904, eventually becoming a national champion. He set the world's speed record in 1923 and won trophy after trophy with the boats that he often designed and built himself.

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.

"View of the Mississippi from Wyoming Hill" by William Bunn, 1946 Collection of the Muscatine Art Center, Gift of the Raymond Titus Estate.jpg

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