Des Moines
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Apocalypse Maybe

Curtis Poortinga’s “Apocalypse Maybe”, Mars Cafe

April 2013


Ganesh, (Hindu master and remover of obstacles.)

Review by guest contributor Rua Arnold

April 26, 2013

Curtis Poortinga, of Des Moines, is currently exhibiting a colorful and surreal series at Mars Cafe. A modern take on religious and mythical stories, the pieces are a beautifully interesting take on life and death.

The movement, colors and shapes have a very midcentury modern feel, which is very appealing.

My favorite was Apis (perhaps because of sitting below it I got to spend the most time with it). In Egyptian mythology, Apis was a bull deity who represented a king who became a deity after death. The way the bull stares at the viewer almost feels like he’s challenging you — daring you to look away first.


Apis, (egyptian god of fertility, harvest, etc.)

Hades and Persephone, another beautiful piece, shows a modern take on the Greek myth where Persephone was abducted by Hades and taken to the underworld. In this instance, they are shown riding a motorcycle with Hades portrayed as a skeleton. Persephone seems unhappy and aware of her fate.


Hades and Persephone

Despite the dark themes in this show, there is joy in each piece. Go to Mars Cafe soon to take joy in these pieces before the exhibit is over.


Rua Arnold is a graphic designer living in downtown Des Moines whose opinions have previously been published on Her work can be found at and her blog is at Follow her on Twitter at @ruaarnold.