"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

The Muscatine Art Center will open an exhibition by Muscatine native Bill Maher on Sunday, January 29th from 1 to 5pm. A reception for the artist will be 2-4pm. The exhibit continues through March 4, 2012.

Bill Maher was born at Belleview Hospital in Muscatine in 1947. His mother was a homemaker and his father served as the Muscatine Chief of Police. As a child he enjoyed baseball, fishing and "drawing stuff: any stuff," and says the he was influenced by comic books and the Sunday funnies, but did not get support for his artistic interests from family or teachers. After graduating from Hayes Catholic High School in 1965 Bill attended Muscatine Community College, was drafted into Army and served in combat in Vietnam. After leaving the army he returned to Muscatine, married and raised five children. An author as well as an artist, Bill has written several books and numerous poems. He has completed a major mural in Fairmont, Minnesota and is known locally for his portraits and wildlife paintings. Throughout his life Bill says that he has found comfort in his art..."it doens't matter what I paint; how I paint, or even if it's any good. It's THAT I paint that matters. If there is anything I'd like people t take from this display (at the Art Center) it would be for them to say, 'well, I could do that!' -and they'd be right".
"Create something from nothing and don't believe the Dream Quellers". - Bill Maher

The Des Moines Metro Opera Company,

Iowa's Premier Opera Company performing

by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart


Mozart's delightful commentary on love, forgiveness, tolerance and the brotherhood of mankind has become one of the most beloved operas in all the repertory. Filled with star-studded queens, dragons, bird-catchers, heroes and heroines and noble priests, The Magic Flute is a spectacular potpourri of worldly and heavenly delights all set with sublime enchantment to some of Mozart's greatest music! It is the perfect opera to delight and dazzle audiences of all ages.


2 hour performance, sung in English

Tuesday, February 7, 2012 - 7:00 p.m.

Rogalski Center, St. Ambrose University

Premium Seating $25 (limited to 60)   General Admission $15

Sorry...no GAHC discount

Tickets in person at GAHC, by mail or phone order

(563) 322-8844 or contact kelly.lao@gahc.org


This performance is supported in part by the
Riverboat Development Authority

Attention GAHC Members and Friends!

Could we appeal for your help?


We are in preparation for two Readers Theatre performances of "The White Rose: A True Story of Freedom in Nazi Germany" on Saturday, Feb 11, 2012. We are in need of several items to assist with our staging and would like to ask if anyone can provide the following for use at GAHC from February 1 through February 11th.


Please contact Kelly Lao (kelly.lao@gahc.org) or Janet Brown-Lowe (admin@gahc.org) if you can help!


  • Standard wooden dining or occasional chairs, any type  (combined for 12 total)
  • Bar-type high stools (combined for 12 total)
  • White flameless candles of any size, votive type or holders particularly helpful
  • Outdated stationery or letterhead to print scripts on back side  (help GAHC save green and go green!)
  • Black 3-ring binders, 1" width or less (12)
White Rose Play

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:

The Moline Public Library is celebrating the arrival of the traveling exhibit In a Nutshell: The Worlds of Maurice Sendak with a kickoff event, Wednesday, January 4th at 3:00 p.m.  Attendees are welcome to take in the exhibit, enjoy refreshments, and view the illustrated short-film adaptation of Where the Wild Things Are.  In a Nutshell will be on display through Februrary 24th.  Sponsored by Friends of the Moline Public Library.  For more information, visit the Moline Public Library at 3210 41st Street, Moline or call 309-524-2470.


In a Nutshell: The Worlds of Maurice Sendak was organized by the Rosenbach Museum & Library, Philadelphia, and developed by Nextbook, Inc., a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting Jewish literature, culture, and ideas, and the American Library Association Public Programs Office. The national tour of the exhibit has been made possible by grants from the Charles H. Revson Foundation, the Righteous Persons Foundation, the David Berg Foundation, and an anonymous donor, with additional support from Tablet Magazine: A New Read on Jewish Life. 


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WEST BRANCH, IOWA–Herbert Hoover National Historic Site will partner with the West Branch Public Library from January through April of 2012 to offer
literacy and educational programs.

A National Park Ranger from Herbert Hoover National Historic Site will lead "Pajama Storytime" activities on the first Tuesdays of each month from January through April. The West Branch Public Library welcomes pre-schoolers, their parents, and families to "Pajama Storytime" each Tuesday evening in the Library Children's Area from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Story time helps develop preschoolers' early literacy and socialization skills. A bedtime snack is provided.

"Get to Know Your National Parks" on the first and third Wednesdays of every month from January through April with a National Park Ranger from Herbert Hoover National Historic Site. Children of all ages can learn how National Parks preserve America's natural and historical heritage with a focus on a different national park each time. "Get to Know Your National Parks" meets at 2:00 p.m. in the Library Children's Area. The program will last about one hour.

The West Branch Public Library is at 300 North Downey Street in West Branch, Iowa. For more information about library programs, call Youth Librarian Becky Knoche at (319) 643-2633. Herbert Hoover National Historic Site and the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum are in West Branch, Iowa at exit 254 off I-80. Both are open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Central Time. Parking is limited so please allow extra time to find a parking space. For more information go online at www.nps.gov/heho or call (319) 643-2541.

Herbert Hoover National Historic Site
110 Parkside Drive
PO Box 607
West Branch, Iowa  52358
319 643-2541 phone
319 643-7864 fax
In January and February Art @ the Airport features wood sculptures by Bettendorf artist Jay Stratton, black & white photographs by Judith Eastburn of Des Moines and oil paintings by Geneseo painter, David Murray.

Jay Stratton spends a lot of time studying trees as part of the process of creating wood sculpture. Once he decides upon a shape for his creation, he laminates pieces of wood together to define that shape. After that, he uses a variety of tools to carve the wood. Stratton explains, "Then, it's on to sanding, sanding, and more sanding until I achieve my required essence for the piece. I strive for an organic feel, sensibility and movement in my work to make the wood 'soft' and flowing." In addition to sculpture, Stratton creates bowls, boxes and furniture.

Judith Eastburn is a landscape photographer who uses traditional methods of exposing film and printing in the darkroom. Her gelatin prints are toned with selenium for permanence. She states that trees are a favorite subject. She enjoys the expressive gestures found in branches and "marvels at the leaning and twisting trunk formations that record the forces that shaped them." She finds that "even in decay, the textures of bark, wood and fungi are beautiful."

David Murray's large scale oil paintings reflect landscapes constructed from memory and imagination.  "They are meant to be ideals and transcend nostalgia or aesthetics to become an icon," Murray explains. "The only evidence of humans is the patterns and alignments of natural forms within the work. These forms corroborate our need to leave a mark in the world and participate in the elusive vastness of it all."

All three artists are inspired by and respond to nature in their own way to create unique reflections of our natural world.

Don't miss this is exhibit just because you don't have a plane to catch-the lights in the gallery are always on and the airport offers free parking for the first hour. Meet a friend for lunch and enjoy the art! Quad City International airport gallery is easy to access with one hour of free parking to allow plenty of time to browse the exhibit.

Quad City Arts is a nonprofit local arts agency dedicated to the growth and vitality of the Quad City region through the presentation, development, and celebration of the arts and humanities. All Quad City Arts programs are funded in part by Festival of Trees, Quad City Arts Partners and operating grants from the Illinois Arts Council (a state agency) and the Iowa Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Affairs. This gallery and exhibit is generously sponsored by the Quad City International Airport.


On display at the QC Arts Center from January 6th through February 10th are works by Helen Boyd, Jacki Olson and Emily Christenson, all of the Quad Cities.

These three women have designed an exhibit based on the idea of "Primitive Modern." The interpretations of primitive art, culture, or methods in this exhibit are an attempt to bridge time and to connect in a spiritual way to the ancient world. Drawing from the natural environment at several regional sites largely untouched through time these works represent an attempt to reach deeper into the world of our predecessors. What inspired them, what did they treasure, how did their imaginations fill their days and nights? The artworks use natural materials when possible and were created using primitive methods, such as wood fires, rubbings and water found on site yet also incorporate modern methods or materials to create a link between the two environments.

Join us for the opening reception on January 13th from 7-9 pm, in the gallery. Refreshments will be served and artists will be on hand to answer questions about their work.

The Quad City Arts Center Gallery is located at 1715 Second Avenue in the Arts and Entertainment District of Rock Island.  Gallery hours are Tuesday-Friday 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Saturday 11 a.m.-5 p.m. All Quad City Arts programs are funded in part by Festival of Trees; Quad City Arts Partners; and operating grants from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency; and the Iowa Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Affairs. Quad City Arts is a nonprofit local arts agency dedicated to the growth and vitality of the Quad City region through the presentation, development and celebration of the arts and humanities. For more information, contact Dawn Wohlford-Metallo 309-793-1213 X108.

The "Call for Entries" is out for the Thirty-sixth Annual Rock Island Fine Arts Exhibition, with a discount for entries received by January 13, 2012 ($25 for two entries). Final entry deadline is January 19, 2012 ($30). The annual juried competition, co-sponsored by the Rock Island Art Guild and Augustana College, is open to visual artists working in any media except video, and residing within a 150-mile radius of the Quad Cities. Entry forms, specifications and size limits are on the Call for Entries prospectus, which is available at http://www.augustana.edu, following prompts for Arts/Art Museum. 

More than $3,700 in awards will be given, including a $1,000 First Prize, $500 Two-dimensional Award in Memory of Bernice and Stanley Harris, $500 Freestanding Entry Award in Memory of Zeivel Harris; $500 "Sally MacMillan Watercolor Award;" $500 Second Place; $300 Third Place; and several $100 Honorable Mentions. During the exhibition visitors can vote on the People's Choice and Children's Choice awards of $50 each. The exhibition will be displayed at the Augustana College Art Museum from March 6 through April 22, 2012. The opening reception will take place on Friday, March 30, 4:30 - 6:30 p.m., with awards announced at 5:40 p.m. The exhibition catalog will be made available at the reception.

The 2012 juror is Joseph Mella, who has served as director of the Vanderbilt University Fine Arts Gallery, Nashville, Tennessee, and its collections since 1992. Prior to Vanderbilt, he served as curator of exhibitions and collections at the Rockford Art Museum, Rockford, Illinois, and in a similar capacity at the Art Museum of Southeast Texas, Beaumont. He holds an M.A. in modern art history, theory, and criticism from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Mella received a B.F.A. in printmaking from the University of Iowa, Iowa City. At Vanderbilt, he has curated and organized more than 80 exhibitions and collaborated on a public art series that has brought such highly recognized artists to Vanderbilt as Frank Stella, Tom Otterness, Stephen Antonakos, Beverly Pepper, and Richard Haas. He has been instrumental in developing a collection of contemporary graphics and artists' books with strengths found in works by living women artists.


The prospectus also is available in a brochure form. For more information, assistance or an entry form, contact the Augustana College Art Museum at 309-794-7231 during weekday business hours.