Art & Culture

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"I believe it is impossible to make sense of life in this world except through art." ~ Daniel Pinkwater

Art is alive and well in Boone County. The visual artists who produce this art are hidden treasures in our midst. Tucked away in rural areas and small towns, artists of many disciplines create art from studios, porches, and workshops. These local artists promote their work by word of mouth, networking with other artists, and through participation in open studio tours and demonstrations. They all sell their art locally and some exhibit their creations nationally in museums, galleries, and gift shops.

To enrich your experience of living in Boone County, get to know, support, and promote local artists. Learn more about each artist here. Contact them directly if you would like to get additional information, purchase art, or commission a piece.

Ciccotti Art Glass –Art Ciccotti
Art Ciccotti produces hand-blown glass in his studio located in the town of Napier. His studio has a gift shop/gallery and an area where visitors can watch Art in action. Check out Art’s website for additional information, directions to his studio, and dates of monthly open houses. Visit:  

Arterrys- Terry Dooley –Watercolors
Terry Dooley paints city landscapes, nature and wildlife scenes. She travels to find and then photograph wildlife and places of interest that inspire her creations. Recently retired, she now focuses full time on her paintings including several that have captured a sense of some of Des Moines’ unique architecture and “cityscapes”. Terry supports the High Trestle Bike Trail (formerly known as the Ankeny to Woodward Trail) with sales from her cards and paintings. She will consider commissioned projects. E-mail:  

Sculpture -Pam Dennis, Ryk Weiss
Pam Dennis has been a rostered IAC Artist in the Schools for 16 years. She has taught classes in many venues including schools, museums, and art centers, and has even presented mixed media workshops in Mexico and Nicaragua. Pam has exhibited her art nationally at museums and galleries.

In addition to producing her own art, Pam collaborates with her husband, Ryk Weiss. Together the have exhibited nationally at art fairs for over 20 years. In addition, Pam and Ryk have created and installed sculptures such as the Vision Sculpture Park “Calaveries” willow project in 2006 for the Blanden Memorial Museum in Fort Dodge. Other collaborative sculptures are located in the DOT main office in Ames, the DMACC campus in Boone, as well as other sites including homes around Iowa and the country. Their work can found at several galleries around Iowa, as well as their home studios near Ogden. For additional information, e-mail to schedule a visit, register for one of their workshops, commission a piece or purchase art.

Fiber Artist-Catherine Huisman
As a fiber artist, Catherine Huisman creates 16-inch square decorative pillow covers using oil paint-sticks, rubbing plates for the relief patterns, and fabric. She uses iridescent colors for her work. Batik fabrics are mainly used for the pillow covers, however, the rubbings are done on plain Kona cottons for the center of each cover. Catherine is a retired educator, and is now able to work full time on her fiber art. She has a studio in Madrid and exhibits at local art shows. E-mail:  

Quilts and Screen Printed Art -Diane Muse
Diane Muse creates hand-quilted wall hangings. She also designs humorous and retro-graphic artwork to generate screen prints onto shirts, towels, cloth napkins, and other useful fabric items. Diane works and sells from her rural home near Sugar Valley, north of Madrid. Her work is also available at The Octagon Center for the Arts in Ames. E-mail:  

Boone Pottery -Marck Nystrom
Marck Nystrom is a potter who designs and produces high-fired stoneware plates, mugs, bowls and other kitchenware, as well as bass and walleye pottery sculpture for fish aficionados. His studio and sales gallery is located at 1827 Boone Street, Boone. To ensure that Marck’s gallery is open, call him at 515- 423-7597 before you visit. E-mail: 

Richard Parker- Watercolor Paintings
Richard Parker paints landscape watercolors from his rural Sugar Valley home and studio north of Madrid. Some of his paintings are available for purchase at the Iowa Arboretum gift shop. ( Richard can be contacted by e-mail:  

Painted Wings Studio- Dorothia Rohner
Dorothia Rohner is a painter and illustrator who works from her rural studio in Hope Valley near the Des Moines River. Her creative specialties include botanical, butterfly, bird, and nature images. Dorothia’s original paintings, prints, note cards, mugs, coasters and lace wall hangings are available at her studio gift gallery. She has illustrated children’s books and has signed copies available including the popular Numbers in a Row, An Iowa Number Book. Call 515-795-3265 or e-mail to set up appointment.
E-mail:  Visit her online Gift Shop and Gallery at:  

Fine Art Gourd Artist- Amy Schleier
Amy Schleier grows gourds of so many shapes and sizes that she transforms into fine art pieces (e.g. bowls, baskets, and whimsical figures) at her rural Sugar Valley log home just north of Madrid. Each gourd used in Amy’s art must undergo extensive cleaning before she finalizes the specific design, carves, “burns”, paints and/or embellishes (e.g. with beads, leather, rope) it into 3-dimensional works of art. Some of her award-winning gourds are available at the Iowa Arboretum or e-mail:

“The stage is not merely the meeting place of all the arts, but is also the return of art to life.” ~ Oscar Wilde

Boone Community Theatre
The Boone Community Theatre is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization based in Boone, Iowa. The organization was formed in 1975 with a mission to bring the theatre arts to the community - for actors and audience alike. They are located in the former Garfield elementary school at 106 S. Webster St. in west Boone.
Boone Community Theatre presents four full-stage productions each year, and also has a children’s summer musical and spring workshop. They welcome anyone who wants to get involved with the theatre. To see what’s on stage or coming up, audition notices, how to become a member, and other information, check their website at or contact them at or 515-303-0393.

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