Joe Maierhauser has been the President and CEO of Reptile Gardens in Rapid City, South Dakota since 1994 and is an avid collector of Oceanic Art. When he's not researching opportunities to acquire new specimens for the Reptile Gardens collection, increase their medley of botanicals and flowering plants, or finding new ways to entertain and accommodate guests, Joe is passionately involved in the collection of New Guinea art and the preservation of this amazing culture.
A 1976 honors and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Colorado, Boulder, Joe holds two bachelor's degrees: one in Art History and the other in Anthropology.
Joe has been a guest lecturer on tribal art for a South Dakota State University extension art history class in Rapid City, as well as an upper division Papua New Guinea art symposium at the University of Oregon, where he also consulted with students on their projects. He has served as anthropological and museum design consultant for Colossal Cave Mountain Park, a non-profit institution in Tucson, Arizona.
Joe provided the art works for the following exhibits:
2000 - NewGuineaArt.com web site featured in Christmas issue of Elle magazine
"Art, in the most general sense of the word, as a phenomenon that attempts to reach beyond the everyday world and at first sight pursues no readily apparent or understandable purpose, is something that is found in all human communities. It would be impossible to imagine the existence of man without art in some form or another..."
- Buehler, Barrow, and Mountford, The Art of the South Sea Islands 1962