Sunday, August 5, 2018

Creative Couples at the Left Bank Shop and Gallery - Iowa Art - Northeast Iowa

Over the weekend I popped over to McGregor to see the latest exhibit at The Left Bank Shop and Gallery. I am so glad I made it in to see this ADORABLE show that features artwork by four super talented Iowa artist couples! Adorable is an odd word to use to describe an art exhibit, but I couldn't help imagining these folks nestled in their studios, side by side, sharing ideas, brainstorming over coffee, giving each other space to be creative, and critiques to better each other... and ADORABLE is just what comes to mind. :) 

 I loved seeing all of the artwork individually and picturing it being made under the same roof. Not only is the idea behind this show heartwarming, the artwork is quite incredible.

Right away I recognized the fine artwork of Larry and Margaret Stone. Larry is pretty famous in Elkader (and beyond) for his nature photography. We even have a copy of his book "Iowa Landscapes" and one of his prints in our home. I had no clue that he was married to an artist as well, what a fun surprise! Margaret's basket work is absolutely stunning and it feels right at home next to the wooded landscapes of Larry's photography.  

Next, I noticed Rabecca Kobos and Joel Shoemaker's fun and inspired fiber art and pottery. I LOVE their work so much and am so excited that they'll both be at Art in the Park in Elkader, IA, Aug 18th and 19th. They use such great colors and fun patterns. I think it is the color and the texture of the two very different media that draws me to these guys. I love the smooth glossy ceramics with their vibrant color and whimsical designs. It's also neat how well the pottery goes right along with the whimiscal fiber art. Guys, it's beautiful and just makes me want to smile!     

Then I glanced around the room and I first thought I was looking at a photograph by Fred Easker, wow. Wow, that's an OIL painting! My photo doesn't do this piece justice, you've got to get in and see Fred's work for yourself. The detail is unbelievable. 

At first glance it almost seems like Fred and Velga's work is very different. While it is very different media, their attention to detail and meticulous style makes them more alike than different in my opinion. 

This is a Velga Easker piece below....

So at first glance I thought Fred's was a photograph and I thought Velga's was a neat, tidy,  patterned collage. That was just at first glance though. After studying their work a bit more, the realization that I was looking at an oil painting, and recycled material art, made my draw drop. I love how these two trick you at a glance and beckon you to come in close for a longer look. Awesome work from this Cedar Rapids couple! 

And of course.... no one could miss the impressive ceramic display in the center of the show! Nate and Hallie are a northeast Iowa favorite and have been making functional wood-fired ceramics for nearly two decades from their home studio.I am obsessed with ceramics and love the feel and look of their work. Have you ever been near ceramics and wanted to reach out and pick one up? These are just calling to be held. 

You have until August 27th to head over and see this really awesome exhibit!
You can read about the artists, their process, and more, so head on over to the Left Bank and purchase something that will make you smile for years to come!

It's a heartwarming, cozy exhibit, and these couples truly are quite creative!


PS Thanks to the Left Bank Shop and Gallery for helping us spread the word about Art in the Park 2018! It is great to see communities helping communities and artists promoting artists. We're all in this together friends.... :) 

Art in the Park - Regional Fine Art Festival 

Founders' Park, Elkader, IA
Saturday, August 18th from 10-5PM
Sunday, August 19th from 10-4PM

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