A native of Maquoketa, Iowa, Rose Frantzen has gained national and international acclaim for her oil paintings from life that bring contemporary and innovative perspectives to a traditional alla prima approach. In addition to landscapes, still lifes, and figurative works, Frantzen often moves to the allegorical, including abstract or surreal settings that present the subject as an archetypal character seen on his or her own internal stage. For these multi-dimensional works, she incorporates diverse stylistic elements along with gilding, stained glass, and mosaic.
With a grant from the Iowa Arts Council, a division of the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs, Frantzen completed Portrait of Maquoketa, a yearlong community-oriented project in which she painted any Maquoketa residents willing to sit for a four or five hour session. All 180 portraits completed for the project were shown at the Smithsonianís National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. from November 6, 2009 to July 5, 2010. Her work has also shown at the Butler Museum of Art, the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, the Dubuque Museum of Art, the Denver Historical Museum, the World Food Prize, and the Portrait Society of Americaís International Portrait Competition. From October 27, 2012 through January 20, 2013, the Figge Art Museum in Davenport, Iowa showed Portrait of Maquoketa - The Dimensional View, a new installation that includes 315 square feet of landscape painting showing a view of Maquoketa, along with the 180 portraits that Rose painted of her townspeople. The landscape is broken up on 34 vertical panels suspended throughout the space... when you sit in one spot, the landscape comes together as one.
Frantzen is a frequent guest lecturer and panelist discussing art and the artistís life in the 21st century at museums and national art conventions. Her paintings have been featured in numerous national and international art magazines and journals, and she demonstrates portrait painting each year as a faculty member for the Portrait Society of America and for the annual Weekend With the Masters conference. Frantzen is represented exclusively by Old City Hall Gallery in Maquoketa, Iowa, where she shows with her husband, Charles Morris.
Frantzen studied at the American Academy of Art in Chicago, the Palette & Chisel Academy with Richard Schmid, and at the Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts, studying anatomy with the late Deane G. Keller.