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University of Iowa News Release


June 8, 2009

'A Legacy for Iowa' exhibition extended, additional programming announced

The University of Iowa Museum of Art (UIMA) will extend "A Legacy for Iowa: Pollock's 'Mural' and Modern Masterworks for the University of Iowa Museum of Art," its first exhibition at the Figge Art Museum in Davenport, through Dec. 31. The exhibition had been slated to close Aug. 2.

The UIMA proposed the extension after it decided it would be too risky to move the paintings again, UIMA Interim Director Pamela White said. The museum had tentatively planned to send "A Legacy for Iowa" to other Iowa museums, including the Des Moines Art Center, after it closed at the Figge.

"These paintings have been through a lot," White said. "We need to have them carefully examined before we will be able to share them as widely we would like. Right now, the best thing for the art is to leave it at the Figge, where it is in a safe, stable environment."

These works, some of which never or rarely travel because they are so fragile and difficult to move, were evacuated from the former UIMA building on Riverside Drive in Iowa City to Chicago in June during the 2008 flood. In March, they were moved to their new temporary home in Davenport. White said that before the paintings tour, she wants to have them examined by a conservator to ensure they will be able to travel safely.

Sean O'Harrow, executive director of the Figge Art Museum, said the Figge staff has been busy planning programming to surround the exhibition. A new series of informal talks, "Thursdays at the Figge," starts June 11. Six of the talks (June 18, June 25, July 2, July 9, July 16, and July 30) will focus on artists with works in "A Legacy for Iowa," and the first three of those will be given by UIMA staff members.

"This will be a fun, relaxed way for our visitors to engage with the Figge and the works of art on display," O'Harrow said.

Each talk begins at 7 p.m., with the Figge bar open from 5 to 9 p.m. On the first and third Thursdays of each month, there will be live music from 6 to 8 p.m. A full schedule of talks is available online at the Figge Web site,

In addition, the Figge will offer tours of "A Legacy for Iowa" at 1:30 p.m. every Saturday in June and July.

Admission to the Figge, located at 225 W. Second St. in Davenport, Iowa, is free for UI students, faculty, and staff who present their university ID cards, UIMA donors who present their donor courtesy card, and Figge Art Museum members. The general public is also welcome at the event for regular Figge admission prices: $7 for adults, $6 for seniors and students, $4 for children ages 3-12. 

The Figge Art Museum, Iowa's oldest art museum, is an encyclopedic museum with more than 4,000 works of art in its collection, ranging from the sixteenth century to the present. The Figge is best known for its extensive collection of Haitian, Colonial, Mexican and Midwestern art, particularly pieces by Thomas Hart Benton, John Steuart Curry, Marvin Cone and Grant Wood, including the only self-portrait Wood ever painted. The three-year-old, state-of-the-art museum building was designed by Stirling Prize-winning British architect David Chipperfield. For more information visit

Due to the 2008 flood, the UI Museum of Art offices have been relocated to the Studio Arts Building, 1840 SA, Iowa City, IA 52242, and Museum of Art events and exhibitions are being held at various locations. For up-to-date museum information, visit or call 319-335-1725.

For UI arts information and calendar updates, visit To receive UI arts news by e-mail, go to and click the link "Join or Leave ACR News," then follow the instructions.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACTS: Maggie Anderson, UI Museum of Art, 319-335-1739,; Dan McNeil, Figge Art Museum, 563-326-7804, ext. 2047;; Peter Alexander, Arts Center Relations, 319-384-0072 (office) 319-541-2846 (cell),

PHOTOS: To request images for publication contact Maggie Anderson, 319-335-1739,