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Unexpected Vistas

This art project is a natural outgrowth of the work I did at the Whiterock Conservancy, in which I documented one particular area. In this project I have expanded my vision and have sought out special vistas in 13 of Iowa's State Parks.  In the process of creating this exhibition, I travelled to 17 of our parks and took a multitude of pictures as well as did plein aire paintings and drawings on location. 

The collection shown here is the first installment of an ongoing project.  There are close to 70 State Parks in Iowa that receive oversight from the Department of Natural Resouces.  You can find a list at their website.  I hope to continue to create works of art that open our eyes to the beauty that is present in these places. We all have our favorite parks and we visit them often, but this project seeks to help the people of Iowa to have a look at places they may not have visited.  Maybe it might inspire us to go and see for ourselves how special these places are.

The first exhibition of this work will be on September 10, 2010 at the Hudson River Gallery in Iowa City, Iowa.  A second exhibition will be at the Octagon Center for the Arts in Ames, Iowa on November 12.

Many thanks to the DNR and the head of the Parks Division, Kevin Szcodronki, for showing a special interest in this project and providing me with access to the park campgrounds during my onsite visits.  The DNR is also supporting the project with an upcoming article in the DNR magazine and with help in setting up future exhibitions.


The parks that are represented in this collection of drawings are:

Backbone State Park near Strawberry Point, Iowa.

Ledges State Park on the Des Moines River near Boone, Iowa.

Stone State Park in the Loess Hills near Sioux City, Iowa.

Maquoketa Caves State Park near Maquoketa, Iowa.

Waubonsie State Park in the Loess Hills near Sidney, Iowa.

Wildcat Den State Park near Muscatine, Iowa. (work in progress)

Geode State Park near Danville, Iowa.

Pine Lake State Park near Eldora, Iowa.

Pike's Peak State Park near McGregor, Iowa.

Dolliver Memorial State Park on the Des Moines River near Lehigh, Iowa.

Beed's Lake State Park near Hampton, Iowa.

Palisades-Kepler State Park on the Cedar River near Mt. Vernon, Iowa.

Pilot Knob State Park near Forest City, Iowa.