“Four Sessions of Exploration and Discovery Through Creative Writing and 3D Carnaval Art.”


What’s your favorite Iowa place? A University of Iowa professor is encouraging Iowans to bring their heritage, memories and fondness for the state to a creative process that will inspire floats, costumes and more for an Iowa City Carnaval Parade planned for June 2013.

“A carnaval parade is art on parade to celebrate both individuality and community.,” says Carnaval organizer Loyce Arthur, who is also head of design, director of undergraduate studies and associate professor UI Theatre Arts Department.  “In an increasingly technological and impersonal world, the carnaval arts can be utilized to bridge differences and celebrate human resilience and creativity.”

To help make that vision a reality, Loyce is arranging what she calls “Four Sessions of Exploration and Discovery Through Creative Writing and 3D Carnaval Art.” The sessions will all be held at the UI’s Old Capitol Museum and will take place from 6-8 p.m. on Oct 4, from 1:30-4 p.m. on Oct. 20, Nov. 3 and Nov. 10. She hopes that participants will be inspired by George Ella Lyon’s poem “Where I’m From,” which can be viewed at http://www.georgeellalyon.com/where.html<http://www.georgeellalyon.com/where.html> .

The sessions will include conversations, writing exercises and art making centered on themes of community and historically significant landmarks and buildings like Old Capitol. During the first two sessions, participants will create stories and poems based on Iowa City and Coralville community spaces. During the last two sessions participants will transform stories collected into drawings and 3D representations. The final products of these collaborative sessions will be combined with several other artful sessions as inspiration for floats, costumes, props, masks, and puppets for the parade in June 2013.

 If you are unable to attend the sessions, there will be an information kiosk and story drop off site through December in the Discovery Center on the ground floor of the Old Capitol Museum. In addition, stories and poems can be submitted online at http://iccarnival.tumblr.com/submit <http://iccarnival.tumblr.com/submit> .

 Loyce’s sessions are not the only carnaval programs planned for this fall. Three others are:

  • Oct. 25-28, A Weekend of 101 Stories!  Special guest workshops will be offered with artist and storyteller Steve McGuire, Oct 25, 4:00pm – 6:00pm, UCC Conference Center and Carnaval designer Fitzgerald DeFreitas, Oct 26, 4:00pm – 8:00pm, Oct 27, noon – 5:00pm, and Oct 28, 10:30 – noon, North Hall, lower level, (registration information will be posted on the International Programs website).
  • Storytelling Open Mike Night at Prairie Lights Bookstore, Oct 27, 7 – 9pm.
  • Oct. 28, a performance of the play “Carnival Time is Here for You and Me, or How Hummingbird Saved Carnaval!” at the Iowa Children’s Museum, Coralville, 1:30pm.  (Mask making workshops will be held before and after the performance.)

For more information on the upcoming creative sessions, workshops, lectures and 2013 Iowa City Carnaval Parade, please email Loyce Arthur at loyce-arthur@uiowa.edu.

 For more information on the UI Pentacrest Museums and the Old Capitol Museum please call Katie Moermond at 319-335-0546.


Teacher's, you're invited!  Click here to find out how you can bring a visit to the Old Capitol Museum and the poem by George Ella Lyon into your classroom!


Click here to download a poem prompt.


Click here to download more information about Carnaval in Iowa City.



© 2013 The University of Iowa
Old Capitol Museum
Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development