- Mat Greiner is no stranger to the Des Moines art scene.
- Look for several new works to be released in October.
Des Moines native Mat Greiner had his fair share of business trips before returning to the Hawkeye state capital as part of his final post.
“(I’m) thrilled and excited to see how Des Moines continues to grow, how many more people are contributing to arts and culture and having an exciting and vibrant lived experience in our metro area,” Greiner said about two weeks . in his new role.
During his lifetime, Greiner moved to Des Moines. Last month, he returned to the region as executive director of the Greater Des Moines Public Arts Foundation on September 1, replacing Mr. Jessica Rowe, who stepped down after 12 years in the role.
A few of the accomplishments she is credited with during this time include commissioning murals like “King Yore” and sculptures like “Lift Off,” partnering with several Central Iowa organizations in an effort to make the accessible art and the development of an online listing of local public art for community members and visitors.
“It has been a privilege to lead this venerable institution and support some of the most fascinating and adventurous artists working today,” Rowe said in the March press release announcing his departure.
During Greiner’s previous stays in Des Moines, he curated art galleries like the Transient in Valley Junction, co-founded the art group known as the Chicken Tractor, and helped facilitate the creation of local art during his time with Group Creative Services.
As he begins to find his footing in a familiar field, Greiner hopes to continue and expand the collaboration the Public Art Foundation is involved in through Rowe and others.
“I think we’ve seen recently that the public art and work in Dogtown and the 6th Avenue neighborhood shows just how much impact and excitement can be generated when public art has an eye on the public. community involvement.”
After:Take our walking tour of 12 Des Moines murals (and browse our gallery of many more)
In late October, the organization also plans to unveil new bus shelters — part of dozens of artistic bus shelters planned to see the light of day across the metro area — commissioned by DART and the 6th Avenue Corridor.
“We are thrilled to unveil new bus shelters commissioned by Sheena Rose and the 6th Avenue Corridor at the end of October.”
Before these shelters are revealed, Des Moines native Jordan Weber’s latest piece will be unveiled in the Oakridge neighborhood in early October. Weber’s work in the Des Moines area ranges from a mural in the heart of Des Moines to, most recently, the piece “King Yore” produced in memory of 14-year-old Yore Jieng, a Des Moines high school student killed in 2016.
At present, Greiner is primarily focused on completing work in progress before he arrives. As these projects are presented over the next two months, he hopes to continue to dig deeper into community development.
“Our tradition of working with artists of excellence, regardless of their career level, is part of what has inspired the success of the art – and the way the art has caught fire – around the subway”, Greiner said. “So I’m looking to continue to expand expectations to demonstrate, through excellence and through new ideas…demonstrating that I think we educate and lead by example.”
Isaac Hamlet covers arts, entertainment and culture at the Des Moines Register. Contact him at email@example.com or 319-600-2124, follow him on Twitter @IsaacHamlet.