Spreading the Word: ‘Osage’s Glenda Ross Molds the Clay of Daily Life’

Iowa Culture
Iowa Arts Council
Published in
2 min readDec 2, 2022

The Iowa Arts Council appreciates media coverage of artists, arts organizations and creative activity across the state. From time to time, we share timely stories on social media as well as this blog.

The following excerpt comes from an article Jason Selby wrote for The (Mason City) Globe Gazette, originally published on Nov. 27, 2022, under the headline “Osage’s Glenda Ross Molds the Clay of Daily Life.”

Until only a few years ago, Glenda Ross was uncomfortable describing herself as an artist. She is a potter. On the farm, she grew up in a world where everything must have a purpose, and pottery allowed her to combine utility with fine art.

“Even when I thought I was planning aspects of my future, life has always taken me way off-course,” Ross said. “I hung on for dear life and luckily, most of the time have been happy with where I have landed.” …

Glenda Ross with an alabaster sculpture of a bat. (Photo submitted by the artist.)

Like many area artists, Ross is a member of the Fine Arts Council of Mitchell County (FACMC), which is headed by Pat Mackin.

“Glenda has been a generous, active participant in many Fine Arts Council of Mitchell County activities and has been a strong leader in support of our projects,” Mackin said. “She is also an amazing artist. She has exhibited her amazing work in a number of our shows.”

Ross joined FACMC to share her appreciation for creative work.

“Whether it is performing in a play, being creative with a singing voice or instrument, writing creatively, carving wood, stitching wondrous fabric designs, drawing, painting, printmaking, sculpting and painting a miniature train world — the list goes on and on — the act and art of creating is the most awesome experience of all.

“As a member over the years, I have been introduced to Simon Estes and other outstanding musicians, basket weavers, printmakers, painters, writers, quilters, wood carvers, gourd artists, actors, metal workers, photographers, graphic designers and more, directly through the Fine Arts Council.”

Ross believes rural areas can often be sources of isolation for artists, and FACMC helps combat that feeling of isolation. …

“I believe everyone has creativity within them, but contrary to common thought, it isn’t always easy to use it. Art-making involves many hours, much practice, hard work, and lots of failure even for the naturally talented. Failures are frustrating, but some of the best art is the result of learning from mistakes. As Picasso said, ‘Unless your work gives you trouble, it is no good.’”



Iowa Culture
Iowa Arts Council

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