Cedar Rapids, an American Gothic

Iowa is filled with rolling hills and many farms. There are lots of giant silos bursting with grain and many wind farms, too. Highway signs confirm that there are Czech and Danish communities with authentic windmills and cultural museums. The state is also home to the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library. We skipped all of those options and stopped in Cedar Rapids at the Grant Wood studio. There is a short film about the artist followed by a docent-guided tour of the studio where he lived and worked from 1925-1935. It is where he painted his most famous and familiar painting American Gothic. We learned that his dentist and his sister were the models for the famous couple. Sundays, the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art closes early and we did not get to see the local collection of Grant Wood’s paintings along with other artists works. We also missed the stained glass window he designed for the Veterans Memorial in the city government building. The Figge Museum in Davenport, Iowa also has a great collection of Grant Wood artwork along with a collection of contemporary art from the Americas.

Our limited time in Iowa left us with a desire to return to enjoy the art and the food of this ‘fly-over’ state.

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