What We Do

Art in the Menomonee Valley

Steel, Concrete, and Water: Forming the Industrial American City
March through May 2017
Opening Reception: Thursday, March 9th, 2016 | 5 - 7 pm

Artist Emmett Gross explores the relationship between human built patterns and natural forms. As he studies the industrial history of American cities, he tells a story of the physical, social, and economic forces that shape these urban forms. He hopes that his work will lead the viewer to delve into the history of cities

emmett gross resizeEmmet Gross


Jenie Gao: The Globe Weaver
June through August 2017
Opening Reception: Thursday June 8th 2017 | 5 - 7 pm

The Globe Weaver is Jenie Gao's most recent series of prints and drawings that together tell the story of what it means to be local in a globalized world. This story is told through animals in urban and rural settings, each one navigating its own complicated relationship with the world. Some thrive. Some adapt. Some struggle to survive. Some fight to make a life again, after past threats of displacement, disease, and genocide. Many assimilate. Still others enjoy impressive and precarious success, challenging the stigmas they can't ever seem to shake.

The purpose of this work is to get us to think more critically of how we judge the world around us, by making us aware of the ways in which we successfully coexist with or conflict with others. Our problems are not simple and building trust is not easy, and yet our understanding and connection with one another has the potential to be.

May the metaphors of this work help to strengthen our sense of humanity and make us more willing to do better for one another.

art by Jenie Gao
Jenie Gao
Auditioning for the Choir


Nicole Acosta: PachaMAMAS y Niñxs
September through November 2017
Opening Reception: Thursday Sept 14th, 2017 | 5 - 7 pm

"Born and raised in Milwaukee, I have devoted my life fully as a compassionate pictoralist and my work often reflects the exploration and preservation of culture, identity, movement and oral & visual storytelling. I am inspired by travel, magical herbs and my children. I use photography as a tool to preserve my personal stories and Illustrate what I witness while navigating through motherhood, a womyn of color and as a chicana.

As a Mexica womyn with two children, I seek to understand what home means for us. I teach them to dance, to use their hands, ask questions, be kind and to spend time in nature. They often teach me to slow down, have patience, play with bugs, look for the perfect walking stick and look up to the skies. This series of work is dedicated to mothers and children who aren't afraid to dig their bare feet into the Earth; the best medicine for the soul when we lose our sense of home. My hopes for this photo project is to activate a space for mothers and their children in nature, while I document the pure exchange of love, exploration and connectedness."

Nicole Acosta


Sue Lawton: The Forgotten Invasion: Artifacts
December 2017 - February 2018
Opening reception: Thursday December 14th 2017, | 5 - 7 pm

The artifacts and images in this installation tell the story of time-traveling refugees from a distant moon as they struggle to adapt to their new homes and lives. Using found objects, ink on paper and altered mirrors, along with natural samples of lichen and moss, the works reexamine the classic "alien invasion" story and it's misguided parallels and comparisons in discussions of invasive species and of human migration. They are based on The Forgotten Invasion; a series of science fiction artist books that draw on themes of invasion and reclamation, collective amnesia, and cultural abandonment.

Art by Sue Lawton
Sue Lawton
Composite Organisms

Upcoming Events

Event Listings

Early Morning Bird Walks (Washington Park)

Washington Park

Wednesday, January 17th

8:00 AM - 10:00 AM

More Details...


Wednesday, January 17th

9:00 AM - 11:00 AM

More Details...

Find event


Email Sign-Up

Which Emails would you like to receive?

Connect Now

facebook instagram twitter linkedin snapchat

Get Involved

Become a member today!

Copyright © 2016 The Urban Ecology Center. Website by Savvy Panda.