Jan 9, 2007

the Figge

my family and i went to the Figge Art Museum on Sunday. being a native of the Davenport area, I've looked forward to the opening of this space for quite sometime- it's been long overdue.

David Chipperfiled's design of the space is nothing short of spectacular. unfortunately, he has created an international institution in a decidedly un-international town. i was so saddened to see the state of Davenport's downtown. i expected growth. i expected, a downtown that had developed into a community- a community that could sustain itself. it made me sad to see an empty museum, empty streets, and a frustrating lack of investment (both financially and socially) in a downtown that has no excuse for not thriving.

my parents said that there had been many angry citizens when the city commissioned Chipperfield to build the Figge. "what about the Iowa architects", they said. the answer is plays in a loop in the Figge theater- the architect speaking about his vision. he speaks of the Mississippi, the disconnect between our modern culture and the river that made this town, the responsibility of a gallery, and it's ability to revitalize. he speaks of community and art. he speaks of art as a catalyst for change.

sometimes it takes an outside eye to see what those that are too close can not.

i hope Davenport can find it's way.

As for the collection? I will speak more in depth later. In short, I loved the large scale Martin Mull paintings, but was disappointed that their Lauren Greenfield collection was stashed away.

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