Since Jim had to travel back to Chicago via I-80, he was able to stop in route back home, to spend a day in Cedar Rapids exploring one of his favorite artists, Grant Wood. The Cedar Rapids Museum of Art possesses the world's largest collection of works by Grant Wood. Despite the fact that Wood's most famous painting, American Gothic, is owned by the Chicago Art Museum there is much to see in Cedar Rapids. The Grant Wood Gallery is filled with his well-known works as well as earlier works that show a much more impressionistic style. We didn't take any pictures in the gallery (although non-flash photography is permitted) but did spend some time after the gallery tour, in the gift shop.
Before leaving town a drive-by of the Veteran's Memorial Building to see (at least from the outside) the superb stained glass window designed by Wood in the pre-WWII days - -a window honoring the veterans that served our county. Grant Wood was commissioned to design and supervise the construction of the 25 foot tall window. The piece was commissioned in 1927 by the Veterans Memorial Commission of Cedar Rapids— Woods home town. The window, currently worth $3 million, was damaged in the 2008 flood, and has been totally restored by Glass Heritage - skilled crafts people in Davenport, Iowa.
Glass Heritage cleaned and releaded the thousands panes of glass and reinstalled the window in 2011.
The day concluded with a traditional German dinner at the Ronneburg Restaurant in Amana (Iowa)
and then Jim and his wife Donna went on to stay at the newly renovated Zuber's Homestead Hotel.
A day in Iowa with Jim and Donna Aylesworth.
If you are interested in inviting Jim Aylesworth for an author appearance please contact us at McBookwords. He often speaks in schools with young readers, and at all types of groups that are interested in books and good reading.
Enjoy your reading and exploring YOUR community --
McBookwords has a dozen or more authors that speak with young readers. If you would like to investigate having an author visit your school or library -- for an author appearance please contact us at McBookwords. Each of these authors often speak in schools with young readers, and at all types of groups that are interested in literacy and books.