Muscatine Art Center

1314 Mulberry Avenue, Muscatine, IA 52761 - United States





Free Everyday

Once the private home of a lumber heiress, the Musser Museum features many distinctive architectural details of the Edwardian period. The adjoining Stanley Gallery hosts national, traveling art exhibitions. The Muscatine Art Center is one of only 802 museums nationwide accredited by the American Association of Museums. This honor signifies that the Art Center has undergone a rigorous and lengthy process involving intensive self-examination, peer review and a thorough examination by the Accreditation Commission. Accreditation by the AAM means the Muscatine Art Center is recognized for demonstrating excellence and operating in accordance with the best practices and highest standards in the field. Funded in part by the Iowa Arts Council, a division of the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts.


On view January 18 - April 12, 2020
When looking at family photos, most people have old, faded photographs that capture a fleeting moment in time. Artist Tara Moorman takes her family history a step further. Letters to My Ancestors presents a series of paintings celebrating her maternal grandmother’s lineage and inspired by family photos from the 1860s to the 1960s.

Tara Moorman was raised in a family of men and women who were always making something; building homes and furniture or designing clothes and beautiful quilts, productivity was valued. Tara embraces their creative and artistic traditions. Rescuing a box of old family photographs became a jumping off point to bring her ancestors and their story to life through art. This work allows her to merge art with love of family, history, and storytelling. Her ancestors beckon her to keep working and sharing her creativity with the world.

Tara’s most recent solo show was at the Lawrence (KS) Arts Center. She has exhibited at numerous juried exhibitions at the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, Black Earth Gallery, Cedar Rapids, Polk County Heritage Museum, Des Moines, Figge Art Museum, Davis Art Center, Ft Myers, FL, The Albuquerque Museum of Art and the Sedona Art Center. Her work is found in many public and private collections, including the United Way of East Central Iowa, Cedar Rapids Bank and Trust, The American Cancer Society, Hope Lodge at the University of Iowa Hospitals, St Lukes Hospital, Providence Medical Group Cardiology and the Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences.

Tara is from Newton, Kansas. She earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas. She lives and works in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

In our Local History Room will be Muscatine's Pearl Button Industry from the Permanent Collection.

In the two smaller galleries and the main hallway gallery is Art Array, art from the Muscatine County Arts Council Juried show.

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