This book is a hand-bound, autographed edition of Reynold Weidenaar's "Our Changing Landscape." Published in 1970 by the Kent County Council for Historic Preservation, this book is number 94 of a limited edition which was hand-bound by the craftsmen of the Wake-Brook House on Cape Cod in Hyannis, Massachusetts.
"Our Changing Landscape" is a reflective work, featuring sketches and quotations from one of Grand Rapids' most famous artists. Throughout the illustrated book, Weidenaar invites readers to look closely at his hometown of Grand Rapids, Michigan, and evaluate how it has changed over the years, combining the old and the new into a whole greater than the sum of its parts.
Through the Eyes of Weidenaar (2015) The Grand Rapids Public Museum is proud to present an exhibition commemorating the 100th anniversary of the birth of internationally renowned artist Reynold Weidenaar. "Through the Eyes of Weidenaar" will showcase a large portion of the GRPM’s unparalleled collection of Weidenaar’s prints, plates, tools and personal effects. The collection, a majority of which was donated by Jay and Betty Van Andel, speaks to the history of Grand Rapids from the artist's unique point of view. Approximately 100 works by Weidenaar will be on display. The exhibition will focus on the art of printmaking and how Weidenaar incorporated local scenes, humor, and his own personal worldview into his art.
Reynold H. Weidenaar Reynold Weidenaar was born in Grand Rapids in 1915, the eldest of two children of a Christian Reformed minister. In 1923, at the age of 8, Rey found a drawing of a train on a pile of garbage. The simple line drawing of a locomotive speeding down the tracks caught his eye and galvanized his imagination. And while many 8-year-old boys might love to draw trains, Rey Weidenaar was really, really good at it.
What followed was an extraordinary artistic career that Weidenaar pursued with diligence and passion right up until his death in 1985. While the critical successes of Weidenaar’s career can be measured by the hundreds of awards his works earned, here in his hometown, “Rey” was well known for his trademark red beret and his often-sighted license plate which simply read, “ARTIST.”
Weidenaar saw himself and his work as a bulwark of sanity and realism in an art world that frequently leaned towards the sensational and the abstract. His role as an arbiter of taste for Grand Rapidians is perhaps best summed up by a quote he gave to the Grand Rapids Press in 1978, “Abstract art offends me, and the lifestyle of some abstract artists offends me.”
Recommending designation of new historic districts
Reviewing applications for proposed alterations within historic districts
Enforcing the Historic Preservation Ordinance Chapter and cooperating with the state, federal and local governments in pursuance of its responsibilities
Conducting meetings or hearings necessary to carry out these purposes
The Historic Preservation Commission consists of seven members who reside in Grand Rapids. Members are appointed by the City Commission for three-year terms (two consecutive terms are allowed). Members shall have a demonstrated interest in or knowledge of historic preservation. Two members shall be appointed from a list submitted by the Kent County Council for Historic Preservation and one member shall be an architect duly registered in the State of Michigan.