Grinnell has a very active arts community. Between the Faulconer Gallery at Grinnell College and the Grinnell Area Arts Council, creative projects and artistic expression are a staple of the community and can be seen in many areas around town so keep your eyes out for pieces that aren't listed below!
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833 4th Avenue
No tour of the arts in Grinnell would be complete without a visit to the famed Sullivan Jewel Box. Designed by legendary architect Louis Sullivan, this “Jewel Box” bank was designated a National Historic Landmark by the U.S. Department of the Interior and currently houses the Grinnell Area Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center. It is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays and is often open on weekends. Call in advance to confirm hours.
818 4th Avenue
Walk west on Fourth Ave. to the alley and cross the street to see the mural painted on the side of the building. Members of the Grinnell College Student Organization of Latinas and Latinos (SOL) led this mural project to represent the growth of diversity on campus and their relationship with the community.
817 Commercial St (behind the building building)
This unique piece was brought to life but a handful of local Grinnellians looking to add to the downtown art scene. Village Decorating Studio donated the wall, local business owner Colleen Klainert with local artist Ryan McGuire brought the piece to light with the financial help of Grin City Collective.
731 Park Street
Home to a model railroad that includes models of Grinnell buildings from decades ago. On the side of the building, you will find another colorful mural painted by college students and young children from the community. The restaurant in the old train depot across the street boasts delicious food and a great view of the railroad crossing.
926 Broad Street
Step inside the Grinnell Arts Center in downtown Grinnell. Built in 1901 as the original community library and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the building has served as the home of the Grinnell Area Arts Council and its programs since 2009. Stewart Gallery, on the main level, features rotating exhibits showcasing local and regional artists. Facility hours are weekdays 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to Noon. Call in advance to confirm hours. Check out their website to see the latest installation. (They've also got a couple of cool public art pieces outside the building that are worth a visit!).
930 Park Street
Check out the newest addition to the Grinnell Art scene. "Prairie Song" was created by Michele Gutlove from Design Studio GH, LLC. Each piece is hand blown and Michele and her team travel from Massachusetts to install the displays. Pictures don't do this piece justice so make time during your visit to stop in and see for yourself! Want more info? You can read all about the installation process on Michele's Blog.
1108 Park Street
Head north to Grinnell College’s Bucksbaum Center for the Arts, designed by world-renowned architect Cesar Pelli. Faulconer Gallery, just inside the main entrance, presents notable international, national, and regional exhibitions. The gallery is open every day from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Visit www.grinnell.edu/faulconergallery for details on current and future exhibitions.
1111 6th Avenue
Home of Grinnell College’s extensive art-on-paper collection, the Print and Drawing Study Room is located in the lower level of Burling Library. View over 3,000 works on paper, ranging from prints such as Francisco Goya’s The Disasters of War series to photographs, drawings, and even original Japanese scrolls made with handmade paper.
1115 8th Avenue
Smith Gallery, located in the Joe Rosenfield Center near the dining hall entrance, is committed to the exhibition of innovative contemporary art from Grinnell College students. These exhibits offer student artists an educational gallery experience.
1501 Broad Street
The Benjamin J. and Mabel T. Ricker House was designed by Walter Burley Griffin and Marion Mahony Griffin in 1911 and completed in 1912. This 5 bedroom, 3.5 bath home bears many of the hallmarks of the mature Griffin style. Notable on the exterior is the brick-and-tile decoration framing the windows on all four facades, a signature of Marion Mahony Griffin. While the Ricker House is now a private residence and not open to public tours you can learn more about it here:
1021 Main Street
Stop by McNally’s local grocery store for a cool beverage, a bite to eat, and a view of the indoor mural painted by Grinnell native Joe Lacina. The mural, which depicts food favorites in town, was installed in the summer of 2013 to celebrate the opening of the grocery store’s new location.