--Dan Cummins (Board President)
And Now For Something Completely Different!

We are fortunate to live in a community filled with a wide range of art offerings. No, we are not bringing back Monty Python's zany 1971 film "And Now For Something Completely Different”. But, in that spirit we are hosting several different art forms over the next month. 
On April 24th talented local poets, Cory-Hutchinson-Reuss and Kathleen Maris Paltrineri, are featured as part of our monthly Art in the Afternoon series on Zoom. And for those that would like to experience art firsthand, starting April 19 Tango Iowa is offering Argentine tango lessons free at The ArtiFactory. See below for more details.
Come out and support these talented artists.

April 24 @ 1:00 pm on Zoom

In recognition of National Poetry Month, Art in the Afternoon in April will feature two local poets, Cory Hutchinson-Reuss and Kathleen Maris Paltrineri, reading some of their works and discussing their ideas about poetry on Zoom. ...more
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Life Drawing at the ArtiFactory
Join us for life drawing in the lower level of Wesley House at 120 N. Dubuque St., Iowa City, IA. Please register for each session.  We will be drawing from nude, scantily clothed or dressed models. Must be over 18 to attend.
Phil Dorothy Drawing Studio
Apr 21 - 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
May 12 - 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
May 26 - 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Long Pose Studio Group
May 1 - 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
May 22 - 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Body Parts
Apr 23 - 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
May 7 - 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
May 23 - 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Your leader in this effort is Beppie Weiss. She has drawn and painted hundreds, maybe thousands, of portraits and people drawings, and will help you improve your own drawing skills. Our class will work on drawing all the body parts from different positions. Our goal will be to understand how it all comes together, and be able to draw it with more accuracy. ...more
The Foiling Studio Group
Apr 23 - 1:00 pm -  4:00 pm
Apr 30 - 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm
May 7 - 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

What is Hot Stamped Foiling?
The application of metallic, matte, glossy, and holographic textures of foil onto materials such as plastics, paper, and card, using heat and pressure. Professor Virginia Myers of the University of Iowa pioneered the use of hot stamped foil in fine art printmaking.  ,,,more
The Foiling Studio Group will be an ongoing studio group open to both new foilers and those with past experience. Plan on taking multiple sessions to take your foiled prints from start to finish. Sessions do not need to be consecutive. 
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--Beppie Weiss | beppie.net

Dear Art Friends,

I hope you are all well and not working too hard cleaning up the flowerbeds. I thought I would start my note to you with a bit of news about Russia. A $43 million shipment of art returning to Russia from Japan and Italy has been seized by Finland in accordance with sanctions imposed on Russia by the European Union. A London gallery with a huge show of Fabrege pieces is considering doing the same, and France is talking about keeping the Morozol collection. Is this a new form of art theft or was the loot stolen in the first place? So many questions! But at a museum at home, a newly hired guard penned in eyes on a painting, Anna Laporskaya’s 1930’s avant-garde work, “Three Figures”. The museum director fired the guard and said, “He made a stupid mistake”.
Back in London, the Institute of Digital Archeology has asked the British Museum for permission to make a high-relief Metope of a piece in their collection of Greek sculpture taken from the Acropolis in Athens years ago. They have been refused. The IDA wants to reproduce it in its original marble and give it to the Acropolis museum, whose collection is made up of poor quality plaster casts of the looted sculptures. This is the group who, from photographs only, recreated the Palmyra Triumphal Arch destroyed by the Islamic State in Syria.
Back in Iowa City, USA, there is a lot going on.
The ArtiFactory is happy to have the Tango group dancing in our gallery every Tuesday evening from 7-9:30. It’s FREE, No Partner and No Experience needed. Karen and Dwight will get you started, and lessons from a pro are scheduled to begin soon. Valerie Williams, dance instructor, professional dancer and choreographer from Ames, will be here 4/19, 4/26, 5/3 and 5/10 to teach. For more information you can contact Karen at 319-360-1249.

Life Drawing at the ArtiFactory continues on alternating Thursdays and Sundays. A new Saturday class, “Body Parts,” will meet on a regular basis.
Printmaking and Foiling are ongoing and plans are in the works for new summer programs. Check our website for details on all of these.

Some fun activities for kids at Iowa Arts Festival the first weekend in June are in the works. We will be collaborating with the Iowa City Public Library all day Saturday June 4th.

Finally, I want to remind all you plein air painters to sign up for a fun weekend of painting, June 10-13 in Washington, Iowa. Go to Art Domestique to download the entry form.
Goodbye for this month.
Please send any art related events or news that you would like to share in our next newsletter. Enjoy the Spring flowers!

--John McGlinn | artshowjourney.com
Giorgio Morandi: His Still-Life Artwork Overview
Another long-time favorite of mine, but who may not be familiar to all. 

The expert variations exhibited in his pared-back artwork defy easy categorization. Sure, they’re still-lives, but that does not tell his whole story.

This video does a very good job of introduction, shows excellent samples and telling close-ups of his subdued brush strokes, color management, understatement, and magic.

I simply cannot chose a favorite, and given their modest size, one would have to have several to get anywhere near enough!
4:00 minutes long.
Morandi link

Victor Pesce Introduction
I came across this artist’s work some time ago. When I decided to highlight Giorgio Morandi in this month’s newsletter, I thought contrasting Victor Pesce with Morandi would be fun. Both Italian from Italy and have common interests.

Pesce (died 2010) seems to mimic Morandi (died 1964) in some works and diverge in others.

So right there is a big difference: Morandi’s focus versus Pesce’s diversity. There is even a hint of Rene Magritte in the pregnant tension of his object spacing, like something is going on here that I don’t quite see yet. But actually that is because of his more minimal style.
Not so in Morandi’s lush, compressed subtleties.
2:26 long.
Victor Pesce Intro

Figurative Work by Dorothy Tanning
Rubinesque, eh?
Dorothy Tanning is modern, living 1910 – 2012 and born nearby in Galesburg, IL, where Blick Art Supplies shipping is located.

This is an Artnet.com coverage of a currently open exhibition of her work at the Kasmin Gallery in New York City.

Just click the link below then again on the front-piece picture of her works on the gallery wall to see a multi-image review of the exhibit’s contents.

As long as you want to spend!
Tanning link

Landscape Painting: Terri Ford
Simply beautiful paintings!

Terri Ford is a contemporary California artist.
Check out her website and select “Paintings” for a starter. Then please click to enlarge the thumbnail images that strike your fancy.

Again, as long as you want to spend!
Terri Ford artwork site
--Phil Beck
This month we celebrate the birthday (April 15, 1915) of American sculptor, painter, and printmaker Elizabeth Catlett, who has a significant connection to the University of Iowa. The granddaughter of former slaves, Catlett came to Iowa to study art after graduating with honors from Howard University. One of her Iowa teachers was Grant Wood, who encouraged her to draw inspiration from what she knew best. Accordingly, Catlett focused her art on the lives of black people, especially women. Among her best-known works are the linoleum cut Sharecropper (1952), a stark portrait of a woman fieldhand, and a series of sculptures entitled Mother and Child, which depict the figures of a woman and her baby in various poses. These sculptures show the influence of African art on her work.

In 1940 she earned the very first MFA in sculpture awarded at the UI. To say this was a groundbreaking achievement is an understatement. It was still a deeply segregated time, and she faced her share of racism in Iowa City, such as having to live off campus (the dormitories weren’t integrated until 1946). None of that stopped her. Committed to civil rights and issues of social justice throughout her life, Catlett moved to Mexico in 1946, where she taught art at the college level and lived until her death at 96 in 2012. Because of her political activism, the U.S. government revoked her visa; she couldn’t reenter the country through the 1950s and 1960s. After being declared an “undesirable alien,” she renounced her U.S. citizenship (it was restored in 2002).

Fortunately, she lived to see enough changes in American society that she was eventually welcomed back and made the recipient of numerous awards and honors. In 2017, the University of Iowa named its latest dormitory, Catlett Residence Hall, after her. That was partly to honor of one of the university’s most historically important alumni and partly to offer symbolic restitution for the racism that kept her from experiencing dormitory life when she was a student here in the 1930s. .

To learn more about her, you can check out Elizabeth Catlett: Sculpting the Truth, a short documentary about her artwork and life. And then there’s this exciting news: local filmmaker Kevin Kelley (Jackson Pollack’s Mural, Stout Hearted) is currently working on a feature-length documentary about her, Standing Strong: Elizabeth Catlett, which will explore her life in detail.  Can't wait to see this film!  You can follow his progress on the New Mile Media Arts Facebook page. 

In “Art Musings” in last month’s newsletter, Beppie Weiss discussed the problem of art theft in connection with two recent cases of restitution (she writes more about art theft in this month’s “Musings,”above). At one point she said she needed to ask me about films dealing with this issue. She did, and I’m glad, because it started a productive conversation about this very important and troubling subject, one that interests me as well. Art theft is a big topic, but since one of the restitution cases Beppie mentioned involves a painting stolen by the Nazis from its Jewish owner during World War II, let’s begin there.

There are few subjects in history as horrifying as the Holocaust, and when you consider what it cost in human lives, the thought of stolen property might seem relatively unimportant. But it isn’t unimportant to the survivors of concentration camps or the descendants of those who perished in them. For them, reclaiming what was stolen from their families is the only way they have left of reestablishing some semblance of contact with relatives who were brutally murdered so many years earlier.

The Rape of Europa, an award-winning 1994 book by Lynn H. Nicholas, examined the systematic effort by the Nazis under Hitler to loot Europe of its art treasures. Her exhaustive account became the basis of a powerful 2007 documentary by the same title. At this late date, you wouldn’t think any film could make the Nazis look worse, but Europa accomplishes just that. Not only were they power-mad mass murderers, they were also reckless thieves who tried to steal everything of value that stood in their path. Following the plan of Nicholas’s book, through interviews with her and many others, Europa describes the epic scope of the Nazis’ burglary, the heroic efforts of the Allies to find and restore the stolen art (including the famous “Monuments Men”), and the heartbreaking legal battles that continue to this day over ownership claims by descendants of Jewish owners who were put to death. Truly a film not to be missed, The Rape of Europa makes it sadly clear that World War II is not yet over, and the Nazis’ heinous legacy of racial and cultural destruction is still with us today.

In subsequent newsletters, I’ll review other films about art theft. As Beppie wrote last month, there are good ones out there, and I’ll tell you about the ones I’ve seen and others I discover.

Elizabeth Catlett on Film: Art Theft on Film:
Seen any of these films?  Tell us what you think of them, or suggest others not covered in the newsletter. Email us at “Artists in the Movies.”

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Graphic design by: Robert Richardson