Sandra Louise Dyas Photography


Monday, December 1, 2014

Robert W. Dyas (Uncle Bob) May 4, 1919 - November 10, 2014

Robert W. Dyas in the Field (photo by his student Damon Ohlerking) 1970
My dearest Uncle Bob (Robert W. Dyas) passed on November 10th in the evening soon after Jamie Elizabeth Hudrlik and I left his side at Northcrest in Ames, Iowa. He was 95 and one half years old. Uncle Bob touched so many lives as a professor, uncle, brother and friend. He was married to dearest Aunt Lu (they were married in 1956) who passed away in June of 2004. We will all miss him dearly and his spirit lives on in each of us. This photo was taken in the field by a student of his, Damon Ohlerking, in 1970. The inscription on the back of the photo says "my teacher". Bob retired as a Distinguished Emeritus Professor in 1989 from the Landscape Architect Dept. at Iowa State where he taught from 1960 - 1989. My Uncle Bob meant the world to me.

Uncle Bob Dyas and Myself, May 2007, Ames, Iowa
Dick, Bob and Jack Dyas on the Dyas Farm, September 2005

Robert W. Dyas Obituary with Links

Robert W. Dyas ARCHIVES at Iowa State University 

Jamie Elizabeth and Uncle Bob, Chait Gallery, Iowa City, Iowa 2010

November 16, 2014
Silver Star

Awarded for actions during the World War II

The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress July 9, 1918, takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to Captain (Infantry) Robert W. Dyas (ASN: 0-1288027), United States Army, for gallantry in action while serving with Company K, 242d Infantry Regiment, 42d Infantry Division, in action on 15 March 1945 near Althorn, France. While leading his Company under heavy enemy mortar and small arms fire, in an attack upon German positions near Althorn, France on 15 March 1945, Captain Dyas was wounded in the arm by an exploding mortar shell. In spite of the pain, Captain Dyas refused medical treatment and continued to command his Company. Making a reconnaissance of enemy positions, he drew a sketch of the German installations and, running more than 250 yards to the rear, oriented his Executive Officer as to the enemy situation, enabling him to assume command of the Company without delay. The courageous leadership and outstanding devotion to duty exhibited by Captain Dyas inspired his men to overcome all enemy opposition and reflect distinct credit upon himself and the armed services of the United States.
General Orders: Headquarters, 42d Infantry Division, General Orders No. 53 (May 7, 1945)

Action Date: 15-Mar-45

Service: Army

Rank: Captain

Company: Company K

Regiment: 242d Infantry Regiment

Division: 42d Infantry Division
- See more at:

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Charles D'Ambrosio - Poets & Writers Magazine

New York City called. I said YES, would LOVE to. Picked up new-to-town, Writer's Workshop faculty member, Charles D'Ambrosio, and we drove outside of Iowa City to make some photographs for the prestigious literary magazine Poets & Writers

I never know what to expect when I meet someone for the first time, let alone meet them and then spend a few hours shooting their portrait. Charley is a down-to-earth, witty, smart and fun person. It was pure pleasure and I am proud to say the magazine liked my work. You can buy a copy of the Fall/Winter 2014 issue at Prairie Lights Bookstore, your very own LOCAL bookstore. You can also buy Charles' newest book Loitering - and go to his book reading at Prairie Lights on November 17th as well. Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

"Long After I'm Gone" Old & New Collages & Constructions

Two rooms of my collages and constructions, dating back to the mid-1990s to the present. The exhibition is at Cornell College, Mount Vernon, Iowa in the Hall Perrine Gallery, Thomas Commons.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Art Expanded, 1958-1978

June 14, 2014 – March 8, 2015
HUGE SHOW at the WALKER ART CENTER -- this collection of work is most inspiring to me - the exhibition looks at the work of artists from 1958 to 1978. An extremely transformative time of history during the 20th century, artists made work that challenged and critiqued culture and most definitely traditional art. "The teachings of John Cage, the emergence of event scores and Happenings, the dissemina­tion of Fluxus material and editions, and the embrace of conceptualism, performance, video, television, avant-garde film, and experimental music—all of these factors in the context of a rapidly changing world influenced artists and thinkers as they tested art’s evolving status as object, information, and experience."

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Alex Soth and Little Brown Mushroom


Homecoming Faculty Art Show Reception at Cornell College

Saturday, October 18th, 2014  -- LUCE GALLERY -- CORNELL COLLEGE 
FACULTY ART SHOW Closing Reception  
3-5 PM

Some photos from the opening reception + photos of my installation "my eyes are not shut". 

The exhibition includes work from Doug Hanson, Vivian Meier, Susannah Biondo-Gemmell, Susan Coleman, Tony Plaut, Hugh Lifson and myself.

Tony Plaut
Sue Coleman
Tony Plaut

Vivian Meier

Tommie, Jamie and Matthew
Sandy Dyas (me) with Ray Mullen
Hugh Lifson

Katy Hoffer - with "my eyes are not shut"

Sue Coleman

Sue, Dee Ann, Susannah and Sarah

Caroline Louise and Jenna L. Nims

Sunday, October 5, 2014

DIRTY BIRDIES VINTAGE #16 on the ETSY's List of TOP 100 Vintage Stores

My two daughters are A M A Z I N G. They work hard - long hours - but they also LOVE what they do! named their online store DIRTY BIRDIES VINTAGE #16 in their TOP 100 Vintage Stores! So proud to be their Mama Bird! SHOP HERE online.
Jamie E. and Jenna L., Canfield Hotel, Dubuque, Iowa 2008                                                   (


FOTOGRAFIA MAGAZINE ONLINE has a huge list of photo festivals to check out!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014


Fall Issue of The Iowa Review, cover image by Sandra L. Dyas

THE IOWA REVIEW'S FALL 2014 ISSUE IS ON THE STANDS. My photograph, The Yellow Chicken Car, taken in Los Angles, CA is on the cover and back cover, too. It looks like a great line-up of out-standing fiction, poetry and non-fiction.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

PICTURING MAQUOKETA - Photography Workshop 2013

This workshop was held in the summer of 2013 - I know this is late! The workshop was held on two consecutive Saturdays at the Maquoketa Art Experience, Maquoketa, Iowa. I am from Jackson County so I really was happy to conduct a digital photography workshop there.
Standing in front of "Picturing Maquoketa", an installation of work done by the participants of the workshop.
Our Workshop in Digital Photography Class, Maquoketa Art Experience, August 2013
Caroline Louise, Maquoketa, Iowa

Cannot Stop Thinking About Obselidia

I just wanna slow things down a bit.

Kristine Heykants and Myself - Stuart Pilkington's "The Swap"

Happy to take part in Stuart Pilkington's newest project - THE SWAP. This is the 3rd online photographic project of Stuart's I have participated in. Kristine Heykants and I decided to work together to create a new portrait of each other. 

Interview on Tumblr about our process - THE SWAP.

Kristine Heykants, Oasis, Iowa

Friday, August 15, 2014

Experimental Video Accordion Shoot with Dave Moore by Jason Levi Smith

lizmungerphotoclub --- Jason Levi Smith's brainchild -- love JASON SMITH'S work! This was an ACCORDION EXTRAVAGANZA WITH
The Red Cabin Shoot.

It's the Iowa City Song Project

   very cool


Thursday, August 7, 2014

Sean Preciado Genell, After the Fact

Sean Preciado Genell, Marco's Taxicab, Iowa City, Iowa                                                                           (c) Sandra L. Dyas
Sean is a talented man. He has a new book coming out this year! I was lucky enough to make this portrait of Sean last year. Sean is part of my on-going series, Lost in the Midwest. My work was recently shown in the 2014 National Prize Juried Show presented by the Cambridge Art Association at The University Place Gallery in Cambridge. James Welu, Director Emeritus at the Worcester Art Museum. I think we have an author photo out of this deal, too. Sean expressed to me that it was really hard to get a good picture of himself....I have to disagree. 

                                                                  Sean Preciado Genell, Iowa City, Iowa                                      (c) Sandra L. Dyas

Thursday, June 26, 2014

She Doesn't Blink - Response to Yoko Ono's EYE BLINK

She Doesn't Blink is in response to viewing Yoko Ono's infamous EYE BLINK - a flux film she made in 1966. I saw this work in Denmark, north of Copenhagen last summer in 2013. I was visiting my friend Lene Wyke and we saw posters and billboards everywhere promoting Yoko Ono's major retrospective at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. Beautiful place on the coast with the sea in plain view. The exhibition was truly a gift and I was so incredibly lucky to be there at that time. All chance. The film says so much about who Yoko Ono is as a woman - She Doesn't Blink. Thank you YOKO for your inspiration!

This work is part of a video dialogue with LeAnn Erickson - called HOMEGROWNSTORIES.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Sunday, April 27, 2014

NEW WORK: Collaboration with Esther Baker-Tarpaga

Thank you Esther for inviting me to collaborate with you to create new work. The experience of making new photographic portraits to be in direct conversation with Grant Wood's infamous portraits was challenging and rewarding. Proving to me over and over how different it is to use a camera verses a paint brush. The work also speaks to my Midwestern roots and to the challenge of being a regional artist.

Grant Wood Tableaux Vivants is a new work that combines visual art with performance. Esther Baker-Tarpaga is a Fellow at the Grant Wood Art Colony at the University of Iowa. Her vision for this piece was to frame a queer, racially diverse utopia. The work was performed in the Art Building West at the University of Iowa on April 25, 2014. It was part of the 2014 Grant Wood Symposium.


Thursday, April 24, 2014

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

2014 Grant Wood Symposium | School of Art & Art History | College of Liberal Arts & Sciences | The University of Iowa

2014 Grant Wood Symposium | School of Art & Art History | College of Liberal Arts & Sciences | The University of Iowa

Collaboration with Esther Baker-Tarparga. Six new large scale photographs/portraits made in dialogue with Grant Wood's paintings. Esther Baker-Tarparga, Grant Wood Fellow, will be performing Grant Wood Tableaux Vivant.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Doris Mae (Gonner) Dyas - My Beautiful, Talented Mama

August 6, 1927 - February 23, 2014


Doris Mae (Gonner) Dyas, 86 of rural Andrew, passed away very gracefully on Sunday evening at 7:30, February 23rd, 2014, at the Mill Valley Care Center. Doris was surrounded lovingly with her entire family at her side.
Visitation will be held from 4 - 7pm on Wednesday at the Hachmann Funeral Home in Bellevue and again Thursday morning from 9:30 - 10:30am at the Saints Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Springbrook. Funeral Mass will be held on Thursday, February 27th at 10:30am in the Saints Peter and Paul Catholic Church. Burial will follow in the Springbrook Cemetery.
Doris Mae Gonner was born on August 6th, 1927 in the Bellevue Hospital to Joseph and Florence (Jaynes) Gonner of Springbrook. She had one sister LaVonne (Gonner) Welsch. Doris attended Bayless Business College in Dubuque, following her graduation from Marquette High School in Bellevue.
Doris married John Wilbur Dyas on January 31st, 1951 at the Saints Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Springbrook. The newlyweds drove south on their honeymoon to Mardi Gras in New Orleans. Doris and Jack made their home on a beautiful farm outside of Andrew and raised two children, Sandra and John. Doris and Jack celebrated their 63rd wedding anniversary this year.
Doris enjoyed traveling, playing Euchre with their close friends and family, taking care of her grandchildren, her asparagus patch and her gardens. Doris took extra pride in her flower gardens. She loved taking photographs of her family, pets and her flowers. Documenting her life with a camera began during her teens. Doris was a very strong, independent woman who cherished her family. Her culinary skills were above and beyond what was typical. Exploring recipes such as croquettes and homemade donuts in the 1960’s, Doris was an exceptionally wonderful cook and baker who also enjoyed planning family gatherings on holidays. Every detail was in place, from Easter baskets to her creme de menthe cake. She sent her grandchildren boxes of decorated sugar cookies for Valentine’s Day every year. P.S. “Gams” your cinnamon rolls and sugar cookies were the best!
Doris was an active and devoted member of the Catholic Church. She will be remembered for her incredible flair for style in both her dress and decorating. KMAQ was always on her radio. Music was an important part of her life beginning with playing an accordion as a young girl and having a large collection of records including Johnny Cash, Kitty Wells, Glen Miller, Perry Como, Dean Martin and Willie Nelson. She enjoyed playing bingo, watching Wheel of Fortune and on Sunday night we watched 60 Minutes and had pizza on paper plates in the living room. Her grandchildren enjoyed her card playing superstitions. If her cards were not in her favor, Doris would circle the table or the chair or even switch seats. We will miss her special twinkle in her eyes and the way we could get her to laugh so hard, she would cry. She will be deeply missed.
Those left to honor her memory include her husband John W. Dyas, her two children Sandra Louise Dyas of Iowa City and John R. Dyas of rural Andrew; three grandchildren, Jenna (Tony) Nims of Maquoketa, Jamie Elizabeth Hudrlik of Iowa City, Tasha (Slade) Volk of Blackhawk, South Dakota and three great grandchildren; Caroline Louise, Ayden John and Owen Jacob. Doris was preceded in death by her parents, sister LaVonne, brother-in-law Greg Welsch and her infant daughter Mary Jo.
The family would like to extend their thanks to Mill Valley Care Center, Jackson County Hospice, Father Kruse and the Hachmann Funeral Home

I'll Fly Away....