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Posted: Saturday, September 28, 2013 10:43 AM

Local artists. It's almost redundant in the implication that there might be artists in Ankeny and the greater Des Moines area that aren't local. Maybe there are a few larger venues nearby, but you don't have to leave town to find some outstanding (and free) exhibitions by local artists right here in Ankeny. If you are an art lover- here's two upcoming exhibits that you won't want to miss!


The Ankeny Art Center is presenting two unique and exciting art exhibitions that will run from October 3 through November 29th! The opening reception is Thursday, October 3rd from 5-7pm. The reception is free and open to the public; wine and appetizers will be served at the opening reception. Come mingle, linger and enjoy an opportunity to check out some spectacular creativity from these two inspirational artists!

Main Gallery: “Wonders of the Tallgrass Prairie” Iowa was once covered with twenty million plus acres of tall grass prairie. Today only 1% of those acres remain. Gary Tonhouse has been capturing the natural world through photography for over 28 years. He enjoys sharing the experience of being in nature with others by teaching them how to create their own photographic images of the natural environment. Additionally, Gary has a highly recognized natural photography website www.reflectiveimages.com where he displays his photographic work and other educational information about preserving our natural ecosystem.

Gary is irresistibly drawn to the essence of all elements within nature. The simple splendor of a single droplet touching a fragile petal on a wildflower captivates him. Capturing the deep-creased “worry” lines covering the brow of a lioness or catching the wise, grizzled countenance on the face of a snow monkey are the kinds of images that Gary seeks to create. Building a bridge between nature and people are his goal; creating images to help make that connection is Gary's passion.

Side Gallery: “Voices of Our Past” The current collection from Elyse Demaray explores pre-historic and ancient art through these media. Cycladic sculpture from ancient Greece, petroglyphs and rock art from the American Southwest, and African masks from many cultures have influenced the works in this exhibit. The pared-down, minimalist shapes and forms used in the past to represent the human form provide an entry into long-held ideas of human identity and interaction.

Elyse's exposure to visual art began as a child when she traveled with her family to other countries and visited some of the great museums of the world. Over the years, she has continued to make visual art and archaeology a focus when she travels. Trips to the Museum of Cycladic Art and the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, the British Museum in London, the rock art in Utah and the African art collections at the University of Iowa and Indiana University have all contributed to her knowledge of ancient art. Elyse's interest in semi-precious stones and lapidary work have also grown out of visits to other countries where she seeks out stones indigenous to each area. Argentina’s stones, especially, have added a rich variety of color and design to her collection.

The Ankeny Art Center is a local gallery space for artists throughout the Des Moines area. The AAC strives to be an innovative visual arts organization committed to providing superior art experiences that inspire, educate, and challenge all members of the community. To obtain more information about upcoming art classes or exhibitions, visit the Ankeny Art Center at 1520 SW Ordnance Rd, Ankeny or visit the AAC website at www.AnkenyArtCenter.com Gallery hours are: T-F 9am-1pm, Th 4pm-7pm, Sat 9am-noon.


1520 SW Ordnance Rd, 50023    google map | yahoo map

• Location: 1520 SW Ordnance Rd, Ankeny, IA, Des Moines

• Post ID: 7634354 desmoines
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