Advocacy and Sustaining Life
October through December 2016
High Risk of Cancer - Scenes from Superfund Wisconsin
C. Matthew Luther: The Superfund Project is an emergent archive of environmental pollution in Wisconsin. Many of these sites are located within inner city neighborhoods labeled as Environmental Justice areas and defined as communities with high populations of low-income, minority or tribal residents who may endure a lop-sided share of the nationʼs environmental waste and pollution problems. Milwaukeeʼs Riverwest and Harambee neighborhoods are defined as Environmental Justice areas and home to two Superfund Sites along with numerous Brownfields.
C. Matthew Luther
Cranes Among Us
Ellen McGaughey: Cranes represent an ancient spiritual wildness, like their haunting bugle call that is a salve to spirit and an accelerant to creativity! In Wisconsin, cranes tell a tale of the Sandhill's emergence from near extinction in the 1930's and the Whooping Crane's perilous course of survival today.
Whooping Crane, 2015
8 x 10 inches
Adam Stoner: Stoner's work is a series of gut-driven travels through unfamiliar landscapes of the soul. Close encounters with the natural world become visual translations of human psyche, the religious impulse, and childhood memories that continue to speak with wordless emotion.
Discovered While Paying Attention
July through September 2016
Thomas Gaudynski: These drawings grow out of my practice of backyard gardening. Drawn with ink and brush in black on white, they explore some of the efforts of one urban gardener working with raised bed gardens acquired over years through Milwaukeeʼs Victory Garden initiative.
James Steeno: Painting with watercolor can be a challenge as water tends to move around, but that same changeable nature can lead to many great accidental visual discoveries. I love to paint local landscapes and wildlife, and enjoy hearing the stories people tell of Wisconsin. My works are on a scale similar to the nooks and crannies where stories are shared.
Untitled (domesticated in MesoAmerica), 2014
Drawing, ink on paper
18 x 24 inches
Jumping Fox, 2014
Acrylic on canvas
16 x 20 inches
Generation 3 (a special sculptural installation)
Spring - Summer 2016
April through June 2016
Rachel Clark: As our population continues to expand, habitats for monarch butterflies, as well as many other organisms, begin to dwindle. An industrial park in Wauwatosa has seen major construction, deterring these butterflies from returning to a once important breeding spot. Despite efforts from locals to protect and improve habitat, the butterfly numbers are not the same as they once were. Created in response to the continuing loss of monarch butterfly habitats, this exhibit draws attention to the value of urban natural areas as sanctuaries for these beautiful butterflies.
Generation 3, 2015
Steel and plastic
Delight and Wonder
April through June 2016
Carol Schwartz: Nature inspires every creative step I make and continually surprises and astounds me. Because so many of my illustrations for picture books are science and nature related, research is essential for an accurate finished piece. My art grows richer because of what I learn and understand about my subjects.
How Strong Is an Ant, 2014
10 x 8 inches
Wood and Stone
January through March 2016
Cynthia Brinich-Langlois: The lithographic prints tell a story that begins on the tundra, with the drying up of rivers and ponds, but the series expands to include diverse habitats, and the land itself begins to disintegrate. The work depicts a journey through changing environments, with surreal geographies suggesting an unsettled future.
Ken Vonderberg: The inspiration for creating artwork with the wood burning process or “pyrography” was the notion that wood, as a raw natural material, could be transformed into images through the use of heat, an elemental force, employed in the artist’s vision.
Lithograph and hot stamping foil on gray Pescia
11 x 30 inches
Above the Falls, 2014
Pyrography & white colored pencil on birch cradled panel
18 x 24 inches
(A special sculpture exhibit)
Through March 2016
Shannon Molter: Take a closer look above and below at the unsung forest understory. Sculptures will usher visitors into the Center, growing along the floor of the entrance alcoves and hanging overhead in the main hall. Molter's fibrous representations of the forest floor aim to create a palpably mysterious, spiritual representation of this rich and misunderstood ecosystem, which begs its viewer to spend time finding beauty in the spaces under foot. Woven from discarded leather scraps cut into leaf litter, sculpted into tree stumps, roots and fallen branches.
Detail: Forest Floor
The Nature of Prints
October through December 2015
Sally Duback: In making paper from rags, re-using natural materials that have been discarded, Duback’s finished works carry a deep level of meaning.
Barbara Manger: A river’s pulse and energy, secrets and constant change,lead Manger to explore and convey tangles, apparent disorder,and the river wending its own path of necessity.
"Specimens on Green"
monoprint/handmade paper, 24" x 38"
monotype, ink, woodblock, linoleum block, 38" x 50"
July through September 2015
Ghost Garden is a collection of memories in the form of botanical prints. Plants gathered from Vicki Reed's gardens, and from outings with her elderly patients, were used to create lumen prints - a historical technique of placing leaves and blossoms on photographic paper to produce ghost images of the original plants.
April through June 2015
Kevin Muente's paintings make the viewer understand that we need to protect as many wild places as possible no matter how big or small. At times the window of the canvas frames and perhaps allows places that are in our own communities to rival images of the greatest national parks.
January through March 2015
A continuing quest into being and seeing. Joyce Winter describes her paintings as a dance on paper using color, texture and space - a process that seems to connect memory and sensory impressions of our relationships with nature. Michael Kutzer paints one place, Seminary Woods, in its many moods. He is interested in how the working of your eyes, and your ability to focus at multiple distances, affects how and what you see in nature.
"This is Our Heritage"
acrylic-prisma pencil on watercolor paper, 40" x 32"
"Target 36: Forest’s Heart"
acrylic, 20" x 20"
The Mysterious, Magical World of Nature at Night
October through December 2014
Timothy Haglund is primarily a plein air painter. He works in nature, at night, a time that is unique and not always experienced by outdoor enthusiasts. Nature at night is a magical, mysterious time where one’s awareness of their surroundings is heightened, and one’s presence in the landscape feels noticeably alone. It is a time to come to know the land one exists within. The time, the mood, that stillness is alive in the subtleties of these painted night-scapes.
"Bats Over the River"
oil on gessoed birch plywood
July through September 2014
Two artists pay close attention to nature’s details. Kristin Gjerdset sees the world underfoot - often overlooked, yet as deserving of reverence as grand scenery. Hers is the world of tiny shrubs and flowers, visited by winged beings and fur-bearing creatures. Jamie Bilgo Buchman notices the natural world in our everyday lives and asks questions: where do things come from? How do they work? What does this mean?
"Horicon Marsh: A Day"
Jamie Bilgo Bruchman
mixed media on wood
Visual Reflections: Printmaker Collective
April through June 2014
By invitation, twelve fine art printmakers were linked with twelve ecologists, to engage in a conversation that inspired visual representations of each ecologist’s story. Bench Press Events organized this exhibit for the World Conference of the Society for Ecological Restoration to encourage further insight into the work of ecological restoration.
Featuring the work of Jonas Angelet, Douglas Bosely, Heather Buechler, Kris Broderick, Rhea Ewing, Katie Garth, Tyler Green, Laura Grossett, Kim Hindman, Niki Johnson, Yvette M. Pino, and Jay Wallace.
"Diversity in Small Parcels"
letterpress on handmade paper
"Return, Take Over"
Water and Light
January through March 2014
Abstraction and intimacy, water and light connect Kurt Kleman’s dramatic large-scale acrylic paintings (“shimmer” series) and Thea Kovac’s vibrant watercolors (“Floating Light” series). You might become mesmerized by our rivers and Lake Michigan all over again. In delightful and engaging counterpoint are bird carvings by Tom Petri.
Sara Daleiden, director of MKE <-> LAX will be on hand to host the event as well as moderate the question & answer session with the artists.
"18" Shimmer Series
Floating Light Series
watercolor on paper