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New Exhibit At The Ankeny Art Center

Posted September 06, 2013 in Ankeny, Community Web Exclusives

Gary Tonhouse
“Wonders of the Tallgrass Prairie”
In the main gallery

Elyse Demaray
“Voices of Our Past”
In the Side Gallery

Exhibition Showing: October 3rd- November 29th
Opening Reception: Thursday, October 3rd , 5pm-7pm

The Ankeny Art Center gallery and receptions are free and open to the public.
Wine and appetizers will be served.

“Wonders of the Tallgrass Prairie”- Iowa was once covered with twenty million plus acres of tall grass prairie. Today only 1% of those acres remain.  Gary Tonhouse has been capturing the natural world through photography for over 28 years.  Join us in sharing the captivating and powerful imagery of photographer Gary Tonhouse.

Gary Tonhouse– Driven by a life-long love and respect for our natural world, Gary Tonhouse has been photographing fascinating images of landscapes, flower and wildlife for over 28 years. His fine art photography collection captures the simplest, most everyday subjects and transforms them into elegant, breathtaking images. Gary’s unique perspective and gifted photographer’s eye produce photographic portraits that are often compared to paintings.

Gary has also been teaching nature photography workshops for over 20 years to people from all walks of life. He enjoys sharing the experience of being in nature with others by teaching them how to create their own photographic images of the natural environment. In addition, Gary has a highly recognized natural photography website Reflecting Images, in which he displays his photographic work and other educational information on preserving our natural ecosystem.

“I’m irresistibly drawn to the essence of all elements within nature. The simple splendor of a single droplet touching a fragile petal on a wildflower captivates me. Capturing the deep-creased “worry” lines covering the brow of a lioness or catching the wise, grizzled countenance on the face of a snow monkey are the kinds of images I seek to create. Building a bridge between nature and people is my goal; creating images to help make that connection is my passion.”

“ Voices of Our Past”-
The current collection explores pre-historic and ancient art through these media. Cycladic sculpture from ancient Greece, petroglyphs and rock art from the American Southwest, and African masks from many cultures have influenced the works in this exhibit.  The pared-down, minimalist shapes and forms used in the past to represent the human form provide an entry into long-held ideas of human identity and interaction.  Both the similarities and the differences that appear in the art of other cultures provide clues to a central question we still ask ourselves today: what does it mean to be human?  Through metal and stone, materials that make up the foundation of our physical world, I strive to capture the voices of our collective past, thereby creating a palimpsest, or complex layering, of perspectives over the ages.

Elyse Demaray- “My exposure to visual art began as a child when I traveled with my family to other countries and visited some of the great museums of the world.   Over the years, I have continued to make visual art and archaeology a focus when I travel, and trips to the Museum of Cycladic Art and the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, the British Museum in London, the rock art in Utah and the African art collections at the University of Iowa and Indiana University have all contributed to my knowledge of ancient art.  My interest in semi-precious stones and lapidary work have also grown out of my visits to other countries where I seek out stones indigenous to each area.  Argentina’s stones, especially, have added a rich variety of color and design to my collection.

After establishing a career in a different field, I finally began to create art of my own.  Over the last 8 years I have developed my skills in metals classes at the Revere Academy in San Francisco and the Des Moines Art Center, where I have had the privilege to study with Robert Sunderman and Larry Niday, both talented metal smiths with MFA degrees from the University of Iowa”.

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