CCC Bickelhaupt Arboretum hosts Arts at the Arb


Circle of life statueThe Clinton Community College Bickelhaupt Arboretum is making final preparations to host the second annual artistic experience, “Arts at the Arb.” The public is invited to the opening reception to introduce the portrait artist Jean Black on August 5 from 5 - 7 p.m. at the Bickelhaupt Arboretum, 340 South 14th Street in Clinton, IA. A program featuring the artist discussing her work will be at 6 p.m.

“Arts at the Arb” will continue through September 30. During the festival, artist Jean Black will display her unique portraits of area children. The nearly 130 portraits are printed in large format on weatherproof Tyvek and displayed throughout the grounds of the Arboretum. The Clinton Convention and Visitors Bureau has been a partner in the planning of this opportunity to view a vision of Clinton’s youngsters on the beautiful grounds of the Bickelhaupt Arboretum.

CCC President Dr. Karen Vickers commented, “We are looking forward to this year’s Arts at the Arb as it gives us an opportunity to highlight the work of a local artist in a wonderful setting. We are hopeful that the community will join us as we celebrate Jean’s work.”

Williams Lyndon ArtJean Black is a portrait artist in Clinton. Her “Hats Off to Clinton” project in 2013 featured 240 black and white portraits of community members smiling from under unique hats. These portraits were hung throughout the community in a walking photo gallery, and highlighted the diversity of age, gender, race and hat choice of our citizens. 2014 featured hundreds of kids sharing their musical and athletic talents in a similar community gallery. Black began taking the photos for the 2017 Arts at the Arb display in 2016. She photographed children in a variety of settings and all seasons. The collection will be a spectacle for all to enjoy.

“We’re very excited about this project,” said Margo Hansen, Bickelhaupt Arboretum Director of Programs. “It is always fun and interesting when you mix kids and nature. Jean’s photos capture a great connection between the two that will make your heart smile!”

Jean Black will also be available from 2 - 4 p.m., Sunday, August 6, to informally talk with visitors about her portraits. A program will be presented at 3 p.m. This is a family friendly event and refreshments will be served. Area non-profit organizations are invited to attend a reception on Tuesday, August 8 from 5 – 7 p.m. with an introduction of the artist at 6 p.m. Other groups hosting events during the exhibit will be the Clinton Rotary Club and the Clinton Kiwanis Club.

Tours are free and open to the public. Self-guided maps are available at the Arboretum at the lower parking lot kiosk. The grounds are open from dawn until dusk throughout the year. The public is encouraged to come and explore.

For more information, contact Margo Hansen, Director of Programs at the Bickelhaupt Arboretum. 563-242-4771.