Davenport, Iowa (August 20, 2018) – The Figge Art Museum will be presenting an exhibition of works by beloved local artist John Bloom in the second-floor Katz Gallery beginning Saturday.
John Bloom: Close to Home will feature more than 60 works of art by the beloved local artist. In addition to well-known paintings, the exhibition includes childhood drawings, sketches, woodcarvings and rarely seen industrial designs. John Vincent Bloom (1906-2002) lived within 200 miles of the Quad Cities for most of his life. Memories from his childhood in the small town of DeWitt, Iowa, often surfaced in his artwork, from his recollections of a swift escape from Sunday services at St. Joseph’s to watching farmers at work in the fields. At 18 years old, Bloom moved to Davenport and attended St. Ambrose College (now University) before enrolling at The Art Institute of Chicago in 1926. He attended Stone City Art Colony in 1932, where he met his future wife Isabel and studied with Grant Wood. He and Wood worked on the Iowa State University Library murals together. Following Wood’s example, Bloom was dedicated to celebrating Midwestern life in his artwork. In addition to his celebrated paintings, sculptures and prints, Bloom’s figure sketches and examples of his work as an industrial designer will be on display, offering a new way to look at the familiar artist. An illustrated booklet, published with funds from the new William D. and Shirley J. Homrighausen Endowment for Publications, will accompany the exhibition. The exhibition is sponsored by Baird, TBK Bank, Sue Quail and The Reeg Group at R W Baird and will be on view through January 13, 2019.