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Friday, October 2, 2009

Designer Spotlight: Acanthus Apparel

Here is a past article from the April edition of the Vitae newsletter. It was written by Julie Punelli about Acanthus Apparel.

Acanthus Apparel is a very high profile line here at Vitae and in the independent fashion scene. Husband and wife, Joshua and Alyssa Bowers, are the team behind the label. The two met at Iowa State where both persued fine arts degrees. Josh is in high demand as a tattoo artist and his work is recognized globally for its stark beauty and deep, murky symbolism. Alyssa brings his designs to life through very wearable cotton pieces for men and women by a process of hand dying, screen print, and distressing.

Photo: Erin O'Grady

Their clothing line has a very loyal following. Since each piece is a work of art, many look forward to acquiring a 'copy' in some form of every new design and often seek to fill in their collections with work from previous seasons,though they are for the most part limited runs. Their work speaks for itself, but there's so much more that they bring to the table. Alyssa has a keen analytical nature and puts it to work to bring our collective and many artists endeavors to fruition with amazing grace and vision. As a team they bring their unique perspective to the world as a kind of starting place for discussion as if all kinds of possibilities and impossibilities are lined up to become possible. The dichotomy of the dark, haunting imagery and the unassuming almost playful presentation are engaging to a wide range of people.

Photo: Gen X Visuals

Acanthus apparel defies typecasts and opens up boundaries from the deepest corners of the soul and exposes them to the light of day. Joshua seems to possess the ability to stir up the ancient sea beds and abandoned, forgotten promises and lies and hands them all a daisy from tomorrow.

Western Gateway (the 1700 block of Grand Ave)

...and now we are 5...yup, count em! There are now 5 small businesses in the Western Gateway (Art and Fashion District). The Robert Spellman Gallery was first (way to go, Rob!), followed by Dorothea's Closet Vintage, then along came Vitae. Jaded Lotus Tattoo and Piercing opened up in August and were SUPER excited to welcome Erin Bollman's, Finders Creepers, to the fold. Set to open this Halloween! Stay tuned for deets!

-from the Vitae October Newsletter

Vitae is 1!

Thanks to all who came out for the Art Stop/1 year anniversary party on Sept. 11! BIG THANKS to our sponsor, Fashion Alliance of Des Moines. The turn out was great and it was a swell time. We can't say enough about how grateful we are to be here doing what we love. Thanks, Des Moines! Here's some stills from the evening. Check out more candids on the vitae blog!

Everyone having a jolly time!


Chief PBR Old Style Stop Action breaking it down!

-Article from the Vitae September newsletter.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

I saw this wonderful spectacle on my way to pick up some dinner the other night, yes the sign says, " chocolate covered bacon"