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Discover art in Ames

September 21, 2022

Ames itself, with its picturesque scenery and beautiful, historic charm, is an artistic town at heart — and that includes supporting the arts! Check out these upcoming special events and some places in town to discover the work of Ames artists year-round.

Octagon Center for the Arts

Octagon Center for the Arts is a non-profit community art center in downtown Ames offering a free community gallery and a shop featuring the work of local artists. It’s also the organization behind the annual Octagon Art Festival!

This year, Sept. 25, the festival will feature the original work of more than 100 artists on the streets of downtown Ames. You can browse the tents and enjoy live street music, food trucks and family-friendly activities.


Ames Artists’ Studio Tour 

The Ames Artists’ Studio Tour is produced annually by the Ames Community Arts Council. It is a free, self-guided tour through unique studios showcasing the original work of Ames artists in nearly every form of media. This year, Oct. 1-2, the studio tour will feature 18 different artists. Visit the artists in any order you please, and get to know the local artist community in Ames!


Brunnier Art Museum

The Brunnier Art Museum is a one-of-a-kind gallery located in the Scheman Building in the Iowa State Center complex. In the Brunnier Collection, you can view magnificent works in historic mediums such as glass, ivory, jade, enamel, and even dolls! Featuring both permanent and visiting collections, the Brunnier Art Museum acts as a unique and visually stunning space for lectures, receptions and conferences.



Anderson Sculpture Garden 

Skirting the outside of historic Morrill Hall on the Iowa State University campus, the Elizabeth and Byron Anderson Sculpture Garden features works of primarily American 20th and 21st century sculpture. Adorned with vibrant greenery and exquisite perennials, this courtyard-like art experience immerses you in the diversity of modern and contemporary sculpture in a serene, natural environment.


Christian Petersen Art Museum

Named after the nation’s first permanent campus artist-in-residence and former Iowa State educator, the Christian Petersen Art Museum features a permanent collection of works by Petersen himself as well as a rotating schedule of diverse and educational exhibitions. The Christian Petersen Art Museum features two main galleries, the Lyle and Nancy Campbell Art Gallery and the Roy and Bobbi Reiman Public Art Studio Gallery.


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