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Mies/Weese at Drake: An Interview with Dr. Maura Lyons

An Interview with Dr. Maura Lyons on Mies/Weese at Drake, a new exhibition opening at The Anderson Gallery, curated in collaboration with students from her Art History Capstone and Curating Class.

Anderson Gallery: What is the premise of the exhibition?

Dr. Maura Lyons: The premise of the exhibition is to highlight Drake’s campus architecture in the 60s and 70s, focusing on the work of Mies van der Rohe and Harry Weese and Associates. But from the beginning, I had the goal of having the exhibition both address the architect’s visions and designs, but also how users have interacted with and modified the buildings over time. So, thinking about the meaning of buildings as being a kind of combination of both the architect and the users… We have worked to gather stories from faculty and students, both current and former to get an idea about some of the maybe lesser known ways that people have interacted with the buildings, and [the class has tried] to bring the buildings to life in addition to being thorough in terms of what the intentions of the architects were.

Continue reading “Mies/Weese at Drake: An Interview with Dr. Maura Lyons”


APPARATUS officially closed this past weekend, and we are working to bring you another great show, Mies/Wies at Drake: Where We Live and Work. The opening is November 9th, and we hope to see you there! All of the objects have come out of the gallery, packaged up, and sent back to where they belong. During a couple of noisy days, walls have come down, pedestals have returned to the workroom, and everyone has been working to return the space to its original form in order to get the next exhibit put together.


Just like the past few weeks, there are more and more staff profiles going up on the website. Keep checking back to read about some more of our lovely gallery workers! The Anderson Gallery’s new video series is also being put into production, which will provide a look into the goings on in the gallery, art on campus, and a variety of other art & gallery related topics.

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where have we been?

APPARATUS has been open for almost three weeks now (which if you haven’t seen yet, consider this a reminder to stop in before it closes!) , and though it may seem as our work here is done, there has been much going on behind the scenes since my last update.

In terms of literal behind the scenes work, the workroom became a bit of a disaster pre-opening, and had to be cleaned up, rearranged, and restocked.


Some business-type things have to happen as well in preparation for the upcoming deinstallation, such as receipt balancing, coordinating object returns, and scheduling for the de/installation of APPARATUS & installing our next exhibit, Mies/Weese at Drake.

Director’s to-do list

Outside the gallery’s physical space, Jodie has been posting staff profiles that highlight our lovely staff, so far you can read about Katie, Katherine & yours truly! We’re also about to launch a new video series with the first being posted next week. Stay tuned for more staff profiles & those upcoming videos in the weeks to come!

Last but most definitely not least, I wanted to include my favorite “overheard in the gallery” quote from the past few weeks monitoring APPARATUS,

“Y’all I love art”, October 5th, 2:34 pm. 

Staff Profile | Katie Jensen

Katie is a senior in the School of Art & Design, completing a BFA in Painting, and she is originally from here in Des Moines. Katie says that she was always interested in art growing up, and this was specifically nurtured by her mother, who always encouraged Katie’s engagement with creative activities. She also received scholarships as a child to attend art classes at the Des Moines Art Center, further fostering her interest and technical skills. Despite her constant immersion and interest in the arts, she started her freshman year at Iowa State with a major in the science department. It was Katie’s roommate, an art major, who Katie credits with her realization that she wanted to study art. She says that seeing her roommate’s projects, and the opportunities and experiences she was receiving convinced her that art was what she really wanted to study. She, therefore, returned to Des Moines and enrolled in Drake’s Art & Design Department as a BFA Painting major.

Katie’s favorite part about The Anderson Gallery is her ability to participate and observe the process of putting an exhibition together, as well as learning the ins and outs of running a gallery space. After graduation, Katie plans to do some traveling for artistic inspiration, and in addition to that, she is also planning on partnering with fellow Des Moines artists on collaborative works and projects. When not working in the gallery, Katie can be found in the painting studio, working on her latest project.


Staff Profile | Katherine Claes

Katherine is a junior in the College of Arts & Sciences, studying Rhetoric, Media, and Social Change, as well as Art History. She is from Johnston, Iowa, and as a child she was always very creative, constantly drawing and painting; which contributed to her continued interest in pursuing art. Katherine still has another year of undergrad, but she knows that after graduation she will be continuing her academic studies, though undecided yet between Law School, and pursuing a Master’s in Art History.

Her favorite part about working at The Anderson Gallery is that she has had the opportunity to see the inner workings of what it takes to put an exhibition together, and the ability to be hands-on and participate directly in that process. Katherine worked very hard on The Anderson’s most recent exhibition APPARATUS; helping with much of the detailing and painting work that was specifically created for the exhibit. She is very excited to continue working in the gallery this year and she looks forward to the opportunity for more hands-on and educational experiences. Katherine is also part of the Art History Curating Capstone class this Fall and will be participating in the planning and installation process of The Anderson Gallery’s next exhibit – “Mies/Weese at Drake: where we live and work” opening in November. We are very excited to see Katherine’s work and her contribution to the exhibit.


Staff Profile | Clio Cullison

Clio is a Senior in the school of Arts & Sciences, completing a double major in Printmaking as well as Rhetoric, Media, and Social Change, with a minor in Graphic Design. She is from Minneapolis, Minnesota, and she grew up surrounded by art; attending various art camps, visiting museums, and going to art openings, as her father is a painter. Clio credits these experiences, along with the great art programs she experienced in elementary school and high school as very influential in her continued studies at Drake. 

Clio’s favorite part about working at The Anderson Gallery is the wide variety of jobs and tasks to be completed, and that there is always something new to be working on. Clio is currently involved with our Social Media team, strategizing marketing plans, and contributing to The Anderson’s “back of the house” blog. When not working at The Anderson Gallery, Clio can be found in the printmaking studio working on her latest project, or analyzing characters from the popular tv show, “Bojack Horseman.”