WATERLOO – Next Sunday, some of the Cedar Valley’s best-known artists will open their studios and let the public step inside to see how they work.
The Artist’s Studio tour is from 1 to 5 p.m., presented by the Waterloo Center for the Arts.
“Artists are so passionate and work so hard, and creating art is often a solitary task. The tour offers an opportunity for a wonderful conversation for artists to have with people who are interested in art and their work,” said Kent Shankle, WCA director.
“Artists like to connect with the community, and it’s a way for their work to be seen by more people. It gives the public insight into an artist’s life and work and gives them an appreciation of what goes into creating art,” he explained.
Eight artists are participating in the tour: Kim Behm, painting; Jerry Grier, photography; Chaveevah Banks-Ferguson, painting/mixed media; Jana Fink-Bowman, recycled glass; Greg Hargreaves, painting; Jim Kerns, ceramics; Midwest Pressed, printmaking; and Pat Moreland, ceramics.
“I think it’s a good cause, and I think the public would enjoy how various artists operate. They’re going to get what they get (in my studio) — I’ll clean it up, but not to the bone,” Grier said.
Grier works as both a commercial and art photographer and taught commercial photography at Hawkeye Community College for more than 35 years.
“The most fun is to talk about the images and the concepts behind them, as opposed to the craft of them,” Grier explained.
Hargreaves said it should be “great fun for people interested in how crazy artists work.” He is a painter and illustrator who works in a variety of mediums in commercial and illustrative work.
Although his studio usually looks like “a bomb exploded in it,” it has been recently redecorated, “so it looks better than it ever did, and I’ll probably have two or three paintings in various stages of completion.”
Proceeds will support Friends of the Art Center. In previous years, the Friends group has hosted “Party With Friends” gatherings that support the arts and raise funds. An artful garden tour also paired artists with gardens, Shankle said. The studio tour was created to give the public a behind-the-scenes experience.
Behm has been a professional artist, illustrator, graphic artist and educator for more than 40 years and is head of the art department at HCC.
Fink-Bowman is a mixed media artist and owner of Green Earth Glass. She specializes in recycled glass jewelry, mosaics and items for the home. Ceramist Kerns has taught clay at various levels, including at the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls, and is a regular at area art festivals.
Moreland is both a painter and ceramics artist whose work is influenced by time spent studying classic ceramic techniques in Japan. He creates thrown and sculpted pieces including vessel work, cups, bowls, steins and platters.
Banks-Ferguson is a writer, illustrator, editor, artist and publisher who operates BaHar publishing, specializing in literature about African-American experience and achievements. She works in a variety of mediums.
Midwest Pressed is Aaron Wilson and Tim Dooley, both University of Northern Iowa art professors who create artwork centered on nonconventional printmaking formats in numerous artistic applications.