Paint Me a Picture

Iowa’s rich cultural history includes talented artists who have left their mark not just on the state, but the country as well. The state’s famous artists include the creator of “American Gothic,” a sculptor who left his mark on Iowa State University and a world-renowned wildlife painter.


Grant Wood

Grant Wood Scenic Byway
Included in the travel book "1000 Places to See in the U.S. and Canada," eastern Iowa's rounded hills and colorful woodlands inspired "Stone City" and other legendary Grant Wood paintings.


Grant Wood Art Gallery, Anamosa
Gallery in downtown Anamosa features historical photos of Wood and his artist colony, along with books, prints, posters and notecards of Wood and his art. Short film on his life and art. Changing display of American Gothic caricatures.


Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, Cedar Rapids
The museum's rich holdings include the world's largest collection of Wood's works.


Grant Wood Studio & Visitor Center, Cedar Rapids
Tour the original studio where Wood worked and lived from 1924 to 1934. Designed and built by Wood, this light-filled carriage house loft was where he painted “American Gothic” and many other famous works. Visitor Center includes a gift shop with an extensive selection of Grant Wood items.


American Gothic House Center, Eldon
Background inspiration for Grant Wood’s most famous painting, “American Gothic.” Visitor center, opened in 2007, includes costumes available for photos in front of the house as well as famous parodies of the painting. The house is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


Iowa State University Parks Library, Ames
Protege John Bloom served as one of the painters for the Grant Wood-designed murals now found in the Grant Wood Heritage Area of the library.


John & Isabel Bloom

De Witt
John Bloom’s hometown celebrates the artist through the John Bloom Fine Arts Festival every September. The Post Office for which he created the mural “Shucking Corn” is now City Hall. Planned Streetscape project plans include two John Bloom entrance sculptures with dedication plaques.


Tipton Post Office, Tipton
Tipton’s Post Office still includes John Bloom’s “Cattle” mural completed in 1940 as part of the WPA program.


Harborview Production Studio, Davenport
Guided tours of the production studio for Isabel Bloom sculptures. Visitors have behind-the-scenes access to every step of the production process. In addition to previewing new designs, participants can also offer opinions on future sculptures. Some of Isabel's original art and photos are on display.


Christian Petersen

Christian Petersen Art Museum, Ames
The Christian Petersen Art Museum opened in 2007 in Morrill Hall on the Iowa State University campus. It is home to both the Christian Petersen Collection, consisting of more than 700 works of art, and the Art on Campus Program that focuses on acquiring new works of art, education and conservation.


Iowa State University Campus, Ames
Petersen’s work can be found across campus at the Dairy Industries Building, State Gym, Veterinary Medicine Building, Memorial Union, Family and Consumer Sciences and the Library.


Maynard Reece

Maynard Reece Art Gallery, Des Moines
Owned and operated by the Reece family for nearly 30 years, the Maynard Reece Art Gallery is the premier source for his wildlife art. They specialize in limited edition prints, custom framing, Duck Stamp prints and conservation stamp prints. Inventory includes older, hard-to-find prints, all of the new releases and special editions available nowhere else.


Rathbun Fish Hatchery, Moravia
Hatchery includes original Maynard Reece paintings.

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