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Rose Frantzen

Portrait of Maquoketa

*The Portrait of Maquoketa book is now available
from Old City Hall Press

Typically, the subject in a portrait is a person who can afford to commission a painting or someone the artist finds intriguing for his or her own reasons.  In a Main Street Maquoketa storefront, Rose painted portraits from life of anyone in her hometown that wished to pose for her.  “I wanted to paint my neighbors and fellow Maquoketans without any selection or choice on my part, attempting to capture a direct portrayal of the people around me,” said Rose.  “Together, we could democratize portraiture, allowing anyone to be painted just by showing up and participating.”  From July, 2005 through July, 2006, Rose painted 180 12x12” oil portraits.  Shown here are the first 62.

Portrait of Maquoketa is being shown at the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. from November 6, 2009 through July 5, 2010.

Supported in part with a grant from the Iowa Arts Council, a division of the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts.

All images, text, and design © 2009 Old City Hall Gallery