February 25, 2014

Just Desire

Jesper Just (born 1974 Copenhagen), "Something to Love" (2005), 8:10 minutes, Super 16mm. Photo: © Jesper Just

By Kellye Crocker


Who hasn't eyed artwork and mused, "What was the artist thinking?" Get the inside scoop from acclaimed Danish video artist Jesper Just, who will discuss "Jesper Just: This Is a Landscape of Desire" March 4, three days before the exhibit's Des Moines Art Center debut. Des Moines is the first city to host the show since its spring premiere at HEART-The Herning Museum of Contemporary Art in Denmark, which organized the exhibition.

For the March 4 discussion, Just will chat about his works with senior curator Gilbert Vicario. The event, which begins at 6:30 p.m. in Levitt Auditorium, is free but requires registration (here or call 271-0313).

The exhibit, which runs March 7-May 25, features nine films highlighting Just's last decade of work, including the new, eponymous "This Is the Landscape of Desire." His later works use multiple video channels to build a "spatial experience" in which viewers may feel as if they've stepped into the films.

Can't wait? Attend a preview party March 6, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. (Art Center members 5-6 p.m.), with live music, appetizers and a cash bar ($5; members free). On opening night, March 7, Art Noir presents "Hue," in which light and color will transform the lobby into an emerald spectacle. The event includes cocktails, hors d'oeuvres, dancing and a tour of the new exhibit ($15; Art Noir members $10).


In other Art Center news: 

  • The museum recently acquired works by esteemed Iowa artists Larassa Kabel, Mitchell Squire and Jim Shrosbree. Des Moines artist Kabel, whose work was featured on the 2012 White House Christmas card, works in painting, printmaking and drawing. Some of her most recent works feature stunning drawings of horses seemingly falling from the sky. Ames artist Mitchell Squire will be featured in a solo show at the Art Center in the fall. His works often reexamine the past by exploring material objects and their histories. Jim Shrosbree of Fairfield works with clay and found materials to create sculptures; he also draws and paints. 
  • Mark your calendar for the unprecedented Art Meets Fashion, Sept. 13-20. More info in the current issue of dsm here (see "Plan..."). In anticipation of the event, the Art Center will present four fashion-themed films during March. Details here


Preparation for spring build projects starts in winter as we work through design, product selection, details, and final pricing. Design...

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Splendid Salads

Freshen up your salad with mango.

By Wini Moranville


It's that time of year when I look at my potential salad ingredients and say, "Not again!" I'm so over apples and pears; I can't look at any more dried cherries. Root vegetables? Grape tomatoes? Uncle!

That's why I recently stopped into Vom Fass, the specialty vinegar, olive oil and spirits shop, to ask owner Melissa Bartholomew for some help. Since the store opened in 2012, Bartholomew has taught me to never underestimate the power of flavor-charged vinegars and oils to inspire new recipe ideas.

Sampling through the casks is like taking a mini culinary vacation, as flavors from around the globe infuse the products. Bartholomew does this tasty trick where she puts a drop of vinegar and a couple drops of olive oil together on a disposable spoon, allowing you to imagine how they'll taste together in recipes.

Here are some fabulous oil-vinegar combos I tasted recently, plus the late-winter/early-spring salad recipes they inspired me to create once home: 

  • Pomegranate Vinegar With Tangerine Olive Oil: Serve this perky combo with greens, tangerines or blood oranges, feta cheese and red onion.
  • Mango Vinegar With Basil Extra Virgin Olive Oil: Enjoy with greens, mango slices, avocados, thinly sliced celery and sliced green onions.
  • Black Currant Vinegar and Lemon Olive Oil: Toss with arugula; top with a few slices of French bread toast topped with melted brie. Sprinkle toasted pine nuts over all.

Vom Fass is at 833 42nd St.; 244-5020. More info here.

Also of note: 

  • Mardi Gras might not be until next Tuesday, but starting tonight, Django is going to let the good times roll with some Fat Tuesday features. Details here.
A brass chandelier from 
Global Views.
Brass Is Back

While silver, nickel and pewter--the "cool kids" of home décor metals--continue to dominate Des Moines, brass is hot in design circles. "It has a warm feeling," says interior designer Rick Schueder, who encourages clients to try it. "You feel good when you're in a room with brass."

Several high-end designers and popular retailers are embracing the sturdy, easy-care metal. Although brass isn't big here--yet--Schueder, who owns As Good As It Gets Interiors, expects that to change. "Once people start seeing it in other big areas of the country," he says, "that's when it hits." Here's how to bring in the brass:

Start small. Mix a new accessory with what you have. Brass works well with ceramics and crystal, for example. Schueder also loves topping a stack of hardcover books with a whimsical brass apple.


See the light. Brass shines in sconces, lamps and light fixtures. "That's when you're really going to notice a difference in your room," Schueder says. "It looks very, very pretty."


Edit. A key piece, such as a statement mirror or a table with glass or acrylic, is an easy way to take brass bolder. Just don't overdose on a good thing, Schueder says.  -K.C.

Kavilash Chawla
Global Lunch Break
World problems become personal through the Iowa International Center's Dialogue Series, sponsored by DuPont Pioneer, with support from Drake University, the Greater Des Moines Partnership and the Des Moines Public Library. The free monthly talks offer an easy way for Iowans to learn about and appreciate other cultures. The sessions run from noon to 1 p.m.--bring your questions and lunch--on the first Tuesday of the month at the Central Library downtown.

Next up, March 4: Kavilash Chawla, an international business expert working at Drake through May, will speak on "Social
Selin Yildiz Nielsen
Entrepreneurship and the Arab Spring." On April 1, Selin Yildiz Nielsen, who's also teaching at Drake and recently spent considerable time in Syrian refugee camps, addresses "Schooling in a Crisis: The Case of Syrian Refugees in Turkey." Find videos of past speakers here.

Other Iowa International Center happenings:
  • Iowans with limited English proficiency will have critical access to emergency services, thanks to a Prairie Meadows Community Betterment Grant. Hospitals, domestic violence shelters and other social service providers can call the one-of-a-kind, around-the-clock hotline, which provides interpreters for 220 languages.
  • Himar Hernandez, with Iowa State University Extension, and Kate Wolfe, a Hy-Vee Inc. executive, have joined the Iowa International Center's board of directors. -K.C.
Art for the Heart
Boost your well-being and creativity--or simply shake off the winter blahs--with Artdive's new "Turn It Into Gold" expressive arts workshops 1:30 p.m.-4:30 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday through March 23. Attend one or more sessions. No artistic skill is required, just imagination, a playful attitude and an interest in creating "a better travel experience" through life. All materials (and snacks!) are provided.

The sessions, led by Artdive owner Christine Mullane and visiting expressive arts therapist Elizabeth Jones from North Carolina, include active meditation, creative visualization, experimenting through crafting, exploring the senses and mapping intentions to help participants see their lives "with a new sense of possibility, creativity and awe." Mullane, an artist and longtime art teacher at Des Moines Community College's Urban Campus, met Jones in 2012 when both were studying expressive arts at the European Graduate School in Saas-Fee, Switzerland. Expressive arts uses an array of art forms to aid personal growth.

The workshops, each limited to 10 participants, are held at Artdive, 1417 Walnut St. downtown. Cost: $85 per session; $290 for four sessions. For more information, visit the Artdive website, call 245-9000 or email -K.C.
Kellye Crocker

Kellye Crocker lives in Clive and writes fiction for teens and nonfiction for adults. A former Des Moines Register senior reporter and current dsm contributing writer, she's also written for Parents, Better Homes and Gardens and Glamour, among other national publications. Connect with her on Twitter: @kelcrocker.
Wini Moranville

Wini Moranville, author of "The Bonne Femme Cookbook: Simple, Splendid Food That French Women Cook Every Day," is a food, wine and travel writer who covers the dining scene for dsm magazine. Follow her at All Things Food DSM - Wini Moranville and catch her food segment on Fridays at 6:40 a.m. on KCWI-23's "Great Day" morning show.

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