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Gallery in the Round

The building of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Ames also serves as a community art gallery, open to visitors during regular office hours or at other times by appointment. To make an appointment, call the Fellowship office at 515-292-5960.

For more information about the gallery, or to purchase artwork from one of the exhibits, contact the Art Exhibition Committee.


Art Exhibition Committee Mission Statement

The goal of the Art Exhibition Committee of the UUFA is to exhibit spiritually enriching art work that supports the creative process in us all. The art exhibition area of the Fellowship building, known as the Gallery in the Round, has a dual role as a continuing aesthetic and artistic enrichment to the practice of ethical and liberal religious ideals within the UUFA and as a community-based professional art gallery, associated with the Ames Community Arts Council.

The Art Exhibition Committee supports and encourages freedom of expression in all its activities. Issues of diversity, individuality, complexity, inventiveness, artistic quality, and the presentation of ideas and issues are considered in the selection of the exhibition program. The content of each exhibit is at the discretion of the Art Committee, using the common principles of the Unitarian Universalist Association and the stated goals and policies of the UUFA as guideposts.

The Committee welcomes the open discussion of issues and ideas raised by the exhibited art works (and the artistic processes employed in their creation). Procedures for the educational resolution of differences in interpretation, opinion and taste are in place as the committee focuses upon the open sharing of views and support for spiritual fellowship within our religious community.


Current Exhibit

Painting Perambulations by Rex Heer: April 29, 2023-July 1, 2023

Reception & Artist Talk: Friday, May 26, evening

For me, painting is an open exploration similar to the rambling hikes I enjoy in the wooded hills where I live overlooking the Des Moines River valley. Even when I start off with a notion of where I want to go and what I want to do, experiences along the way can become irresistible enticements to pause, reflect, explore, and learn. Throughout the seasons, each excursion provides opportunities to see things in a new light.

My art appreciation and aesthetics span many forms. I delight in experimenting with a variety of techniques and media – from photography, to meticulous brushwork, to heavily textured nonrepresentational, to digital manipulation. Yet, no matter the technical approaches I employ, my works echo the basic forms, forces, flow, and features of nature – especially the play of light and shadow – and reflect my deep love of the natural world.

By becoming immersed in art and observant of aesthetics in general—whether creating one’s own object or expression, becoming entranced in works created by others, or noticing, contemplating or connecting with naturally occurring objects and phenomena—individuals cannot help but engage in the world around them more sensitively, deeply, and intensely.  ~Rex



Upcoming Exhibits

7/1/23-9/2/23: Kathy Svec

Shadowbox assemblages, showcasing the beautiful words of Kathy's favorite authors. Text is placed in small, hand-bound books or similar surfaces and then illustrated with layered collages. 

Kathy has been an exhibiting artist since 1978. Her current assemblage work had its beginnings in hand book binding. She hold two art education degrees, B.S. and M.S., from Iowa State and Florida State Universities. She taught high school art, managed the art programs at the ISU Memorial Union, and is now retired and enjoying creating art on her own schedule.



9/2/23-10/28/23: Mike Hassig

Hassig employs a collage technique that uses pieces of paper to develop a flat 2- dimensional surface. In this process he uses pictures from discarded color plate books. These are cut or torn into various shapes deconstructing the original image. These pieces function as the pictorial elements of shape, color, texture and patterns of light and dark. Hassig’s collages are created using good quality paper, scissors, an X-acto knife, and glue sticks. All collages are original, no copies or reproductions.

Printmaking (Hassig's area of study) is a very detailed, process-oriented discipline. This discipline has been carried into his collages. His work is abstract in imagery. The design itself is the subject, and he does not start with a preconceived image in mind but lets the random pieces by chance begin the construction. The places he has traveled to, books he reads, music he listens to, and the teachings he has absorbed over the years all accompany Hassig on his adventures with paper.

Hassig studied printmaking and paper making at Northwest Missouri State University and went to Drake University to further study printmaking. He retired around 7 years ago and has been dedicating time to his art since then. He’s won several regional and national awards with his collages.



10/28/23-12/23/23: Sara Spohnheimer

Sara Spohnheimer began drawing as soon as she could pick up a pencil. Art was central for her and so she attended Iowa State University to earn her Bachelor of Fine Art with a specialization in drawing, painting, and printmaking. Art, reading, culinary activities, history and language study became her favored pursuits in adulthood, and the synergy of these came into play when traveling to Europe in 1997. There she found not only a culturally-integrated application for all her areas of interest, but also a sense of belonging and rootedness she had not realized was missing from her life in the U.S.

Upon visiting Venice, Sara was struck by the sheer number of tourists and began to wander the city at night so she could escape the jostling hordes and be alone with the locals. At the time there were over 12 million visitors to the city per year, while locals numbered only around 50,000. The population of Venice was three time that in 1945, and the trend of ever more tourists and ever fewer locals is continuing. Great challenges and losses of many kinds result, and a correspondingly great amount of perseverance is demanded of the city’s residents to stay despite them. It is far easier to leave and let go. Adapting to life in that unique environment led to an incredible number of specializations practiced nowhere else. This deep knowledge and Venetian cultural roots are being lost.

Sara felt such an affinity for the city and was so alarmed by its condition that she became a student of Venice’s culture in particular – dialect, the biology of its shallow lagoon, history, cultural traditions, food dishes. She made more and longer visits. She spoke with residents about the tourists who bought pizza instead of seafood, about the centralized government far away in Rome, about the foreign investments changing the face and character of their city. Sara decided to become a Canaletto of the night, documenting the Venice of her day in paintings and reference photographs.

Spohnheimer has come to appreciate local culture even more after returning to Iowa after living in California for several years. We don’t fully understand how precious different cultures are until we step outside of or lose them, if even for a short time. Celebrating, practicing, and protecting each of our unique local cultures gives meaning, stability, and continuity to our lives and connects us to our ancestors. The importance of this has been brought to the forefront for Sara, and she wishes to offer the subject to you for consideration.



Previous Exhibits

For descriptions and photographs of previous exhibits, please click here.


Information for Artists and Visitors

  • Exhibits are displayed for approximately seven to nine weeks.
  • The gallery receives a 20 percent commission on sales.
  • Receptions are encouraged. Artists furnish the food; the gallery furnishes coffee, cold drinks, and all paper products.
  • Each exhibit is insured up to $20,000. Individual pieces are insured up to $5,000.
  • The Art Exhibition Committee will hang the exhibit, with the artist's input when possible.
  • Additional information for artists
  • Exhibition & insurance form

For more information, contact the Art Exhibition Committee or the UUFA Office (292-5960,


Bill of Sale blank 2015.09.pdf130.53 KB
Exhibition and Insurance Record.pdf1.78 MB
Information for Artists AW.pdf147.75 KB
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