Davenport- The German American Heritage Center, located at 712 W 2nd St. Davenport,  presents Becky Wright "The Quilt Lady" as she gives a talk on "The Sequel: Christian Staffinger and his Civil War Quilt" at 2pm on Sunday February 19th. Becky will update us on the exciting events that occurred since her last talk at GAHC surrounding Christian Staffinger, the German immigrant who crafted Becky's beloved quilt. Event is free with admission.

For more information call 563-322-8844 or visit gahc.org. Join the Quilt Lady on Saturday February 18th from 1pm till 5pm for a quilting workshop at GAHC. Using one of her Orphans of War patterns "Reap the Whirlwind", Becky will show participants how to create one of these beautiful pieces. Registration fee is $35 and is payable at registration by February 15th. Patterns (a $10 value) are included in the fee. Materials list will become available at time of registration. To register call 563-322-8844 or email: director@gahc.org.

(Davenport, IA) - Thursdays at the Figge is back for another season of fun, food, music and art talks. The season opener on February 2 celebrates the exhibition Fins and Feathers: Children's Book Illustrations from The Eric Carle Museum of Art. Populated by an array of dazzling animals both real and imaginary, Fins and Feathers introduces viewers of all ages to memorable creatures from children's literature. The community is invited to an exhibition reception with complimentary appetizers and a cash bar at 6pm in the Figge Reading Room.  Rima Girnius, Figge associate curator, will lead an art talk about the exhibition at 7 pm.


Each Thursdays at the Figge in February will feature a 7pm art talk on a different subject.  On Thursday, February 9, Western Illinois University professor Jo-Ann Morgan will present the talk "Illustrating Uncle Tom, Topsy, and Little Eva: How Children Learned About 'Race' and 'Place.'" Professor Morgan will review illustrations of the main characters in Uncle Tom's Cabin, and will take a look at other children's books in which black children and white children interact, in order to consider how these portrayals may have impacted young reader's understanding of racial relations in the nineteenth century and since.  This art talk is offered in conjunction with Black History Month.


Myriam Stangherlin will present a program on Italy on Thursday, February 16 at 7pm.  Myriam's program, "Italian: The Language of Love," will use pictures of Venice, Florence, Rome, Naples and other "art" cities in Italy to introduce visitors to the beautiful language.  This program is an introduction to the five-week Italian language course Myriam will teach at the Figge beginning Wednesday, March 7.


"The Life and Times of Edward M. Catich" will be the topic of the art talk on Thursday, February 23.  Father Catich has an international reputation as a calligrapher and scholar.  In addition to being an artist in various media, Catich was also an accomplished musician.  The presenter, Paul Herrera, was a student, apprentice and friend of Father Catich, and he also worked with him at St Ambrose University. This talk is offered in conjunction with the many calligraphy workshops offered at the Figge this winter and spring.


Thursdays at the Figge programming in February also include live music by Lewis Knudson. The café and bar open at 5 pm for dinner and drinks and the museum is open until 9 pm. All programs, including the exhibition reception, are included with admission to the museum and all seniors receive free admission the first Thursday of each month.


What does the Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody, Wyoming, do with a 28-foot long, 1888 poster of Buffalo Bill's Wild West show? It puts it on display for visitors to see in the Center's newly remodeled Buffalo Bill gallery, set to open May 19, 2012.

The Center recently purchased the poster, thought to be the largest surviving poster ever produced for William F. "Buffalo Bill" Cody's Wild West. Printed in 1888 by the Calhoun Printing Company of Hartford, Connecticut, the poster consists of 32 separate sheets, measures roughly 28 feet long by 13 feet wide, and is in pristine condition.

In studying the colorful image on the floor, stretched out the length of the Center's Plains Indian gallery, the staff at the Historical Center christened this enormous advertising poster "simply extraordinary." Much like billboards today, posters pasted to the sides of buildings were used to publicize events like Cody's show that ran 1883 -1913. Generally meant to be scrapped once an event concluded, it's rare to find posters like this 28-foot example created in 1888 still intact.

There is some mystery surrounding the Center's acquisition, however. It was owned most recently by a private collector in Colorado who decided to dispose of it at auction. Before that, little is known about the history of this particular poster?where it originated, who owned it, and where it's been for most of the last hundred years. It's even possible the poster was never installed.

"My own hunch is that the poster?really a 'show bill'?was never hung because it had some minor flaws in it, such as where the ink ran slightly," explains Dr. John Rumm, the Center's curator of western American history. "They're barely discernible and require careful inspection to see. But it would be in keeping for the reputation of both the Wild West and the Calhoun Printing Company to not post a 'factory second,' no matter how minor the flaws were." Certainly, more research is in order to answer those questions.

Originally, the Center's Conservator Beverly Perkins planned an analysis of the poster including cleaning or making needed repairs. However, once unfurled on the floor for review, Perkins pronounced the poster "in remarkably pristine condition," and Rumm said the colors were so vibrant that "the poster seems as if it were fresh off the press." Other than some very minor tears along its edges, the poster is completely intact.

With a caption across the lower left corner exclaiming, "Grandstand at London Seating 20,000 People," the poster was created to commemorate the Wild West's special London performance in May 1887. Her Majesty Queen Victoria and other members of the Royal Entourage are pictured acknowledging Buffalo Bill's ceremonial bow from his white horse as show personnel salute the queen from the background.

Staffers Matt Bree and Jeffrey Rudolph have their work cut out for them as Rudolph creates a frame, and Bree builds a special case to both display and house the poster on the back wall of the "Man of the World" alcove in the new Buffalo Bill gallery.

The Historical Center acquired the poster in September 2011 through an auction held in New York City. Monies from the Center's Acquisition Fund (named for Buffalo Bill's niece who was also the first curator of the Buffalo Bill Museum)?together with contributions from several of the Center's trustees?made the acquisition and conservation of this poster possible. Once several months of remodeling are wrapped up this spring, the poster goes on display in the Center's Buffalo Bill gallery when that area of the museum reopens on May 19, 2012.

(Note: Only the Buffalo Bill gallery of the Center is currently closed to the public; the remaining galleries are open during regular winter hours.)

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We have officially set the re-opening date and time for the John Deere Pavilion.

We will re-open the all-new Pavilion to the public on Wednesday, February 15 at 1:00 p.m.

Also, we will celebrate the re-opening with an official ribbon cutting ceremony on February 15th at 10:00 a.m. 

GAHC is proud to host the talk: Easter Traditions in Germany presented by Kathlyn Hofmann on Sunday February 26, 2012 at 2pm at the German American Heritage Center, 712 W. 2nd St. Davenport, IA 52802. This presentation will acquaint you with German Easter traditions - some similar - some different from the way Easter is celebrated in the USA. 

Special highlight is a series of slides: "Osterbrunnen," elaborately decorated wells and fountains found in the Franconia area of northern Bavaria. Kathlyn lived in Germany for 27 years teaching German and ESL for the DoDEA School System. Since 2009, she has taught several beginning and intermediate German language classes at the GAHC. Free with admission.

The Figge Art Museum presents a special themed tour "All About Art" at 1:30 pm Sunday, January 29. This tour will examine several paintings which represent different genres, or types of art. Docents Barb Hansen and Sandy Cahoy will discuss the characteristics of each type of painting as well as the techniques the artists used in each genre. The tour begins with religious works in the Latin American Gallery and ends with Mural, Jackson Pollock's modern masterpiece. The tour lasts approximately one hour.

Admission to the museum and tour is $7. Admission is free to Figge members and institutional members. For a list of tours and other programs, visit www.figgeart.org.

The German American Heritage Center and the Jewish Federation of the Quad Cities are happy to announce additional showings of companion films to the current  "White Rose" Exhibit at GAHC.  We had a full house on Sunday, Jan.29 and apologize to those who had to be turned away!   Please try to join us for the following opportunities:


Saturday, Feb 4, 4:00 - "The White Rose" 1983    EXTRA SHOWING ADDED


Sunday, Feb 5, 1:00 and 4:00 "Sophie Scholl: The Final Days," 2006 Nominated as 'Best Foreign Film'


Figge Museum Auditorium                 $5 Admission; Students Free with I.D.
In partnership with the Quad City Symphony GAHC is seeking additional individuals and families who would be willing to host German muscians from the "Hochschule für Musik" (music academy) of Detmold, Germany.  We have 15 bed slots filled and need an additional 10; homes with 2 beds are preferred if possible.  These musicians are assisting with the QC Symphony's Requiem project, which is the largest and most ambitious concert ever undertaken here in the Quad Cities.  Your hosting responsibilities would include beds, some meals and local transportation to/from rehearsals and performances, located at the Adler Theater and Centennial Hall, Augustana College.  There is little time for "tourist" type hosting.


Friday, March 2 -  Sunday, March 4


Hosts will be provided with a detailed timetable and will qualify for four free tickets to the concert either Sat or Sunday.


If you can help, please contact Janet Brown-Lowe at admin@gahc.org no later than Tuesday, January 31st.  Previous volunteers need not re-contact; all will be sent info after the deadline.
One of the largest self-guided art drives in the midwest, MRVAD boasts of 50 participating sights, representing over 200 artists, upward of 30 mediums showing off a multitude of perspectives and techniques.

Individual artists may demonstrate from their home studios or galleries, some may present work in their preferred retail location, while some sights will offer classes. 

This self-guided art drive is unique in several aspects.  First, it offers local art work from Dubuque and Galena all the way along the Mississippi to Galesburg.  Secondly, the variety of art encompasses everyone's needs: decorating, gifting, adornment and practicality! 

The drive hours are 10am - 5pm, Saturday May 5 & Sunday May 6, 2012.  Visit www.MRVAD.com to verify participating location address, contact information and times.  A printable map availabe March 15, 2012 with all the details @ www.MRVAD.com

"Fins and Feathers" Celebrates Storybook Illustrations

New Figge Exhibition Features Original Works from Children's Literature


(Davenport, IA) - Dive into a watercolor world where "fish is fish." Join a little turtle on a big adventure. Head into the woods with John James Audubon. Or come face-to-face with a beautiful blackbird. "Fins and Feathers: Children's Book Illustrations from The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art" opens at the Figge Art Museum on Saturday, January 21, 2012.  The family-friendly exhibition celebrates the artistic achievements of children's book artists with 43 original storybook illustrations from the late 1960s through today. Populated by an array of dazzling animals both real and imaginary, "Fins and Feathers" introduces viewers of all ages to memorable creatures from children's literature.


Focused entirely on images of friendly and comical animals, "Fins and Feathers" features works from the collection of 'The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, Mass'. Established by artist and author Eric Carle in 2002, the museum is the first full-scale museum of its kind in America, devoted exclusively to original picture book art from American and international illustrators.


Included in the exhibition are works by Arnold Lobel, Ashley Bryan, John Par Miller, Eric Carle, Leo Lionni and John James Audubon. "Fins and Feathers" features daydreaming fish, stately egrets, day-tripping chickens, and one very mixed-up chameleon. By turns humorous and elegant, the illustrations sparkle with bright colors and even brighter original imagery. This family-friendly exhibition is the perfect attraction for children and children-at-heart.


In concert with "Fins and Feathers," the Figge is providing several other educational activities including a free family event sponsored by Wells Fargo and John Deere on February 4, and a workshop for aspiring children's book artists and authors on February 18.  For more information about "Fins and Feathers" and its related activities, visit www.figgeartmuseum.org or call the Figge at (563) 326-7804.


A portion of the proceeds from this exhibition to benefit the Genesis BirthCenter.

Exhibition Programs

Fins and Feathers Exhibition Reception and Art Talk
6 pm Thursday, February 2

The Luck of the Draw
1-4 pm Saturday, February 18
3-part program led by illustrator Cori Doerrfeld 


Free Community Event

Fins and Feathers Family Day
Noon-3 pm Saturday, February 4
Sponsored by Wells Fargo and John Deere