Save the Arts from Rising Rivers and Rents

Catastrophic flooding and a levee breach closed down Bucktown, MidCoast Fine Arts’ Davenport center. While Bucktown reopened several weeks later, their entire stock of program supplies was lost. In other words, this fundraiser is critical.

Visit the Quad Cities, Stay Current

A die-hard arts community can be hard to come by. Whether you’re near one or not, we’d love to have you come visit ours! And when you do, you can stay, play, and sleep in a living work of art.

The Art (& Politics) of Iconography

Hometown heroes are important. They prove success can come from anywhere – even the place you grew up in and swore you’d leave the second you turned 18, never to look back. Jon Burns grew up hearing about icons like the great Sauk war chief Black Hawk and legendary entertainer Bix Beiderbecke. It completely baffles…

New Gallery & Store

The Ugly Iowan’s identity has shifted many times over the years since its inception as a road trip diary in 2008. In its current incarnation, it serves as a low-key promotional tool for area artists and organizations. It’s a mental gymnasium and laboratory. Sometimes it’s a psychological playground, and at others it’s an emotional junk…

The Electric Outlet at Rozz-Tox, QC USA

The Outlet series may very well extend to the stores in Guangzhou and Shenyang (both in China), but this article I wrote for Little Village focuses on the much nearer Rozz-Tox of Rock Island, Illinois – about an hour east of LV’s Iowa City headquarters. As my four-or-so regular readers already know, I’m a big…

Cluney’s Art Show Biggest of 2019

Our very serious sister site Data and Lore – an LLC that offers seriously awesome writing and editing services – just posted about Johnnie Cluney‘s upcoming art show in downtown Davenport at CoworkQC’s gallery. This is a very special show because: For over a decade, Cluney was the resident artist of Daytrotter, producing over 10,000…

Naked and Screaming: An @mnhanson Exhibition

I never meant for any of this to happen. My 30s were supposed to pass in a windowless cube where I’d earn a modest salary with health insurance and maybe even a dental plan. Art would be a memory. Years into my uneventful employment, my co-workers would be scandalized when I got loose at a…

Deporting the Working Man

No one has ever accused the Midwest of being colorful. At the moment, we are a gloomy people. We celebrate our heritage of boiled potatoes and ice hockey, which is comforting for about ten seconds. Then you start to notice the dimensions where our community is a cultural desert. As much as I love the…

Witness the Club Artist Revolution

This month sees a radical experiment among our local champions. It’s the logical next step in a community that has been quietly on the move for years. We forgot about them for a while. I blame the advent of the mp3 player and its shuffle mode – the very same invention that’s led us to…

Down to the Wire

This has become my annual thing. As the year winds to a close, every project I’ve started in the past 12 months suddenly weighs ten tons on my shoulders. It’s irrational because time isn’t real. The last day of December is as arbitrary a deadline as the fourth day in January or the nineteenth of…