Thursday, October 27, 2016

FORWARD opens at the Charles Allis Art Museum

Inverse, from the Lynden Sculpture Garden Series
I am honored to announce that two of my images have been included in FORWARD: A survey of Wisconsin Art Now at the Charles Allis Art Museum. The exhibition, which opened this evening, was juried by Susan Barnett and Brent Budsberg. The show includes 58 works in a diverse range of media and is particularly strong on painting and photography.

HL2016-3, from the High Line Series
FORWARD runs through Feb. 19, 2017 so there is plenty of time to see it. The Charles Allis is located at 1801 N. Prospect Ave. in Milwaukee. For more information go to their website.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

China Lights a huge crowd pleaser at Boerner Botanical Gardens

OK, is it art? Not sure, but it's definitely a visual spectacle. And, hey, I'm generous about the definition of art. No borders, after all. 

I went to see China Lights last night and on a Tuesday there was a long line of cars creeping through Whitnall Park towards Boerner Botanical Gardens. After finally parking, the ticket lines were also long. (Buy your tickets in advance, online!) The show, billed as a "lantern festival," opened Oct. 1. I can only imagine what the weekend was like. The only time I've ever seen so many people at a Milwaukee County Park has been at O'Donnell for fireworks displays. 

The show is definitely a crowd pleaser and family-friendly. I wasn't all that interested in the animals and cartoon characters myself, but the multitudes of children who were there--including my granddaughter--definitely were.

The highlight for me was the woodland boardwalk with the overhead lanterns (above and below).

Here are a few more images I managed to catch in the dark.

According to John Dargle, Milwaukee County Parks Director, this is normally the slowest time of the garden season at Boerner Gardens. "With China Lights we now expect it to be the busiest season," he said. There have been an estimated 20,000 visitors to date, with two more weeks to go!

China Lights was organized by The Park People and proceeds will benefit them as well as Boerner Botanical Gardens.

For more information go to the article in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel or to the China Lights website (where you can buy your tickets, good through Oct. 31.)

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Notebaert Nature Museum a great place for art

Canada warbler
I was pleased to discover the photographs of Art Fox at the Notebaert Nature Museum. Lusciously printed full color photographs depicted birds far larger than life-size. The birds were beautiful. They also were dead.

Baltimore oriole
Dark-eyed junco
Fox collected the dead birds from sidewalks around Chicago's skyscrapers. His poignant story is recounted on wall panels:

"Each spring and fall, in the safety of darkness, migratory birds journey for thousands of miles. Many travel astounding distances between Northern Canada and South America. They follow routes called flyways. The Mississippi Flyway follows our waterways and passes right over Chicago. Sadly, every year, in one square mile of downtown Chicago, thousands strike our lighted shiny buildings and die. Across North America billions die."

Installation view
Yellow-shafted flicker
The exhibit, entitled Broken Journey, was just one of several that are currently on view at the Notebaert. While I had been to this lovely gem of a museum in Chicago's Lincoln Park to see art exhibits on previous occasions, I was surprised at how many I found this time. It seemed like every time I turned a corner I found another art display.

I had come to the Notebaert on the recommendation of someone who had seen a particular art exhibit, one that featured chocolate. Unfortunately, I was too late for the chocolate. 

The exhibit had changed. Going up in its place was a series of woodcut prints, also of birds, by Catherine Game.

Her "Red-tailed Hawk" appealed to me in particular for its powerful composition and unusual perspective.

Photographer David Mayhew specializes in chasing extreme weather conditions and his photographs demonstrate the dramatic nature of his pursuits (above and below.)

Fields of Glory
Yet another photographer rounds out the list of current exhibitors at Notebaert. David Shea hails from New York.

Shea's work, called Plume, is decidedly more political than the others. He "traces the journey of coal from mines in West Virginia to power plants in southeastern Ohio." According to the wall text he intends to "record the impact of the power plants on the environment and the people living nearby."

Bill Jones Camping on the Ohio
While you're there to see all the interesting artworks, be sure to also check out the museum's other displays and collections. These include the ever-popular butterflies:

Some dead.

And some still fluttering around.