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Let's get ready for those warmer afternoons and make your own sidewalk chalk! I enjoy the plaster of Paris recipe best because I can keep the chalk I don’t use for next time, but this chalk paint recipe is pretty neat too! Haga clic aquí para encontrar esta información en español. Translated by Angélica Sánchez Mora.

Thursday, 31 January 2019 06:47

Where Art Meets Ecology

I got started volunteering at the Urban Ecology Center through small mammal monitoring in the summer of 2012 and have been fortunate enough to help with that project at least a few times every summer since, alongside numerous other projects. These opportunities and the UEC have helped me get to where I am professionally, granted me steady friendships, taught me so very much, and, most importantly, welcomed me, enthusiastic quirks and all, with open arms.

As our art exhibits enter their tenth year, Sally Duback, one of the founding members of our arts committee offers this reflection about the beginning and growth of the program.

Ten years ago, UEC board member Danni Gendelman convinced the board that it would be a good idea to host nature-related art exhibitions in the community room. In order to make this happen, she pulled together a small committee of Milwaukee area artists/arts professionals Barbara Manger, Sally Duback and Leon Travanti; and discussions began among them about how this could work.

Wednesday, 06 January 2016 00:00

Art in the Menomonee Valley

Brianna Seipel & Hannah Ribbens

March-May 2022 

Opening Reception: Friday, March 11, 5-7 p.m. brianna siepel

Brianna Seipel

As an avid hiker, Brianna Joy Seipel believes in the power of wild spaces to heal, inspire and transform. Inspired by backpacking trips with her husband, Joel, her vibrant oil paintings reveal the expansive beauty of national parks, forests, and wilderness areas. Her work invites us to consider landscapes as “places of refuge” and time outdoors as restorative care for the spirit, mind, and body.

 

 


 

 

Hannah Ribbens

hannah ribbensHannah P Ribbens’s work draws inspiration from her years as a Peace Corps Volunteer in a small Ecuadorian fishing village where she spent most of her time by the ocean and where she learned to see the world with a renewed sense of wonder. Her work seeks to share the awe and joy she experienced living by the ocean and now as a mother, the wonder she observes in her young children as they explore, experience, and learn to love the natural world around them. Her paintings are colorful and cross freely between the real and the imaginary.

 

Wednesday, 06 January 2016 00:00

Art at Riverside Park

Four The First Time

Miriam Sushman, Adria Rose, Bev Richey and Jonathan Ellis.

May-July 2022

Opening Reception: Wednesday, May 18th, 5-7 pm at Riverside Park

Four artists are showing their work together for the first time. Each has their own distinct style. Their unifying theme is nature displayed through stained glass, paintings, mosaics, and more.

These four artists have gotten to know each other through their involvement in the Jewish community. Our work has two main themes –nature-based representationalism and abstract expressionism.

MiriamS IMG 5610 002Miriam Sushman:
Miriam Sushman will be showing a series of stained glass mosaic stepping stones of Wisconsin birds and abstract designs. She will also be showing mosaics for the wall inspired by her house plants, local flowers and flowers that she has encountered on her travels.

“I have always been in love with the natural world. My early years were spent playing in the woods surrounding my suburban Baltimore neighborhood. I tried to save baby birds and played with tadpoles in the nearby creeks. By age ten I had convinced my father to dig up our backyard so I could have an organic garden. I saved stones, leaves and fossilized wood and used some of these materials in my artwork. From an early age I have also been a collector of objects that I would find while playing. As an adult I still collect discarded objects either bought or found and incorporate them into my work.  As a mosaic artist most of my work is inspired by nature. Many of my ideas have come to me during daily walks in nearby Kadish Park in Milwaukee. Not only is nature a source of inspiration but it also has been a healing presence for me during stressful times. While looking at the prairie that overlooks the Milwaukee River I meditate on the flowers, birds, and insects and feel a sense of calm. My childhood love of gardening continues as I grow annual and perennial flowers. These flowers often appear in my work. I am always looking forward to the next flower that I will render in stained glass.”

mosaicmirm.com

Adria Rose:

My artwork is inspired by nature and the natural world. I find daily inspiration which greatly influences my work. Throughout the years, I have enjoyed working in many mediums including watercolor, oil, acrylic, and textile. PurpleWavesII 4x6 watercolor acrylic 002

"Since my childhood, I have had a deep appreciation for nature which has served as a constant theme throughout my artwork. As I live on a partially wooded lot within walking distance of Lake Michigan, I find daily inspiration which greatly influences my work. Throughout the years, I have enjoyed working in many mediums including printmaking, acrylic, textile and currently watercolor. I grew up in a multi-cultural home and have been surrounded by artwork from many different backgrounds particularly that of a great uncle, a Chilean printmaker. The vibrant colors, attention to detail, and stories behind each painting have had a huge impact on my artwork. Another theme reflected in my artwork deals with diversity. Given the diverse landscape we live in, I see nature as a unifying theme because nature is something that everyone can appreciate and like art can be a unifying force in people's lives."

http://adriarosedesigns.com/

Bev RicheyBev Richey
Richey will be showing a sampling of her project "The First Hundred Paintings"; her process of becoming a painter. 

New to Milwaukee, in 2014 Beverly Richey became a member of the Midwest Jewish Artists Laboratory. This unique program provided and required a fairly demanding commitment to studying with other artists and creating new work for regularly scheduled annual exhibitions. Richey thrived in this structured environment and remained a part of this regional program from 2014-2021. She used this project to develop herself as a painter. After decades of working in a range of materials best known for the feminist medium CAKE, Richey used the laboratory project to reinvent herself as a painter. In 2016 she launched the “First Hundred Paintings” series (FHPS). 

“For The First Time”, Richey will exhibit a sampling of works that when shown together represent the development of her new practice. She accepts the need to continue to make changes, begin again and commit to the awkwardness required for doing new things. “Four the First Time” takes you on a small piece of the journey Richey has taken to be able to recognize and identify herself as an artist who now engages with paint, brushes, and flat surfaces.

jonathan ellisJonathan Ellis

A devoted visual artist, educated at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC), Jonathan Ellis has a prolific body of work and unpredictable contemporary style rooted in emergent truth, love, humor, and theory. His drawings, paintings, and sculptures are reflective of a refined artist exploring identity, materials, and life itself as art. Self-portraits, landscapes, conceptual abstracts, and surreal floral pieces. The work is often transformed over many years, as stories evolve in the course of a lifetime. What is to be found in all is a vibrant confirmation of life and beauty, a joyousness that has been revealed out of profound struggle. Jonathan nurtures community building through exhibitions and painting events that are both healing and inspirational at Gallery 1033, on Historic Mitchell Street in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Wednesday, 30 December 2015 00:00

The Intersection of Ecology and Art

“I realized I truly wanted to study ecology – a seed that was planted during my time at [the Urban Ecology Center] but took a few years to sprout.”

This is the opening line of an email from a former High School Outdoor Leader, Robby Friedlen, to Riverside Park Branch Manager, Jamie Ferschinger. He was eager to share the reason behind his decision to shift his research studies to “the intersection of ecology – through the lens of permaculture – and the arts.” As a High School Outdoor Leader in 2009, Robby spent a portion of his summer working with internationally known artist Roy Staab.

Monday, 29 June 2015 00:00

2015 Art in Menomonee Valley

Neighborhood and Nature: Inspired Art

Unfolding over the past several months, fourteen invited Plein Air artists painted outdoors in Three Bridges Park and at the Menomonee Valley Urban Ecology Center. Their works depict native plants and animals, the Menomonee River, activities at the Center and environs, and the neighborhood.

Join us as we host our first-ever art show in the Menomonee Valley! See the results of three seasons' worth of work on display at our Menomonee Valley branch now through December. And don't forget about our current show at Riverside Park!

Organized and led by artist Lynn Rix, participating artists include Tom Buchs, Audrey Dulmes, Kathleen Flaherty, Gail Franke, Barb Hayden, James Hempel, Sybil Klug, Carolyn Larkin, Les Lengwell, Gary Millard, Daniel Rizzi, Pam Ruschman, and Wendie Thompson. After the reception the exhibit will be on display at our Menomonee Valley branch through December.

UEC-MV-LynnRixPleinAirProject-2015 2 EDIT

What is "Plein Air" Painting?

The seasons each have unique inspirations: in Winter, the white snow and the clear blue sky produce a kaleidoscope of vibrant color; Spring and Summer with landscapes full of life and bloom; Autumn when oranges, reds and golds of the trees and golds vibrate against the cool blue sky.

Plein Air is a French term meaning "open air" and refers to the act of painting outdoors as opposed to the controlled conditions of a studio. Capturing what they see in natural light requires quick brush work and a limited palette, forcing an artist to work spontaneously. Paintings capture that particular moment in time; an impression of a beautiful effect of light. Paintings are usually worked on smaller canvases to be able to complete a painting in two to four hours capturing the sun before it moves on.

UEC-MV-LynnRixPleinAirProject-2015 painting EDIT
Painting by Lynn Rix

 

 

Friday, 26 June 2015 00:00

2014 Art at Riverside Park

The Urban Ecology Center is a neighborhood-based, not-for-profit environmental, community center that educates and inspires people to understand and value nature as motivation for positive change, neighborhood by neighborhood. Our quarterly Art Shows support this mission through locally produced, nature-related artwork.

All Opening Receptions are 5 - 7 pm, with artists speaking informally at 6.
Refreshments provided. Urban Ecology Center - Riverside Park, 1500 E. Park Place, Milwaukee


Water and Light
January through March 2014
Opening Reception Thursday, January 16th, 5 - 7 pm

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.

Kleman Kovak Petri

“18”, Shimmer series
Kurt Kleman
30”x60” acrylic painting

Floating Light series
Thea Kovac
Watercolor on paper

Black-capped Chickadee
Tom Petri


Visual Reflections: Printmaker Collective
April through June 2014
Opening Reception Thursday, April 10th, 5 - 7 pm

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.

Buechler Garth

“Diversity in Small Parcels”
Heather Buechler
Letterpress on handmade paper

“Return, Take Over”
Katie Garth
Serigraph

Additional artists: Kim Hindman, Niki Johnson, Jay Wallace, Rhea Ewing, Yvette M. Pino, Douglas Bosely, Laura Grossett, Tyler Green, Jonas Angelet, Kris Broderick


Intimate Nature
July through September 2014
Opening Reception Thursday, July 10th, 5 - 7 pm

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?

Gjerset Bruchman

“Horicon Marsh: A Day”
Kristin Gjerdset

“Veining”
Jamie Bilgo Bruchman
Mixed media on wood


The Mysterious, Magical World of Nature at Night
October through December 2014
Opening Reception Thursday, October 9th, 5 - 7 pm

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.

 Haglund

“Bats Over the River”
Timothy Haglund
Oil on gessoed birch plywood


Being / Seeing
January through March 2015
Opening Reception Thursday, Jan 8th 2015, 5-7 pm

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.

 Winter  Kutzer

“This is Our Heritage”
Joyce Winter
Acrylic-prisma pencil on watercolor paper, 40”x32”

“Target 36: Forest’s Heart”
Michael Kutzer
Acrylic, 20”x20”

Friday, 26 June 2015 00:00

2015 Art at Riverside Park

The Urban Ecology Center is a neighborhood-based, not-for-profit environmental, community center that educates and inspires people to understand and value nature as motivation for positive change, neighborhood by neighborhood. Our quarterly Art Shows support this mission through locally produced, nature-related artwork.

New this year is our first-ever art show at our Menomonee Valley branch!

All Opening Receptions are 5 - 7 pm, with artists speaking informally at 6.
Refreshments provided. Urban Ecology Center - Riverside Park, 1500 E. Park Place, Milwaukee

The Urban Ecology Center typically issues an annual Call for Artists in the fall of each year, to choose artists for up to six quarters ahead. Watch this page for information.

Artworks are often available for purchase. The artist contributes a portion of the sales price to the Urban Ecology Center. If you would like to purchase an artwork, please speak to Riverside Park branch manager Jamie Ferschinger or another Urban Ecology Center staff member.


Being / Seeing
January through March 2015
Opening Reception Wednesday, February 11th 2015, 4:30-7 pm

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.

With a collection entitled aRound the Deer Creek, Michael Kutzer shows one place, Seminary Woods, in its many moods. The compositions’ round shape, circles and center are inspired by old painted targets, but their meaning has become more spiritual.

Winter

“This is Our Heritage”
Joyce Winter
Acrylic-prisma pencil on watercolor paper, 40”x32”

Kutzer

“Target 36: Forest’s Heart”
Michael Kutzer
Acrylic, 20”x20”


Sacred Places
April through June 2014
Opening Reception Thursday, April 9th, 5 - 7 pm

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.

kevin muente resize


Ghost Garden
July through September 2015
Opening Reception Thursday, July 9th, 5 - 7 pm

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.

vicki reed


The Nature of Prints
October through December 2015
Opening Reception Thursday, October 8th, 5 - 7 pm

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.

sally duback

Sally Duback
Specimens on Green
Monoprint / handmade paper, 24x38"

 

barbara manger

River's Path
Monotype, ink, woodblock, linoleum block, 38x50"


Forest Floor
(A special sculpture exhibit)

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.

shannon molter

Shannon Molter
Detail: Forest Floor


Wood and Stone
January through March 2016
Opening Reception: Thursday, January 14th, 2016, 5-7 pm

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.

cynthia brinich langlois

Cynthia Brinich-Langlois
Underworld
Lithograph and hot stamping foil on gray Pescia, 11 x 30 inches, 2014

 

ken vonderberg

Ken Vonderberg
Blue Ridge
Pyrography & acrylic wash on birch cradled panel 14 x 18, 2014

Wednesday, 03 September 2014 00:00

When You Give a Kid a Camera...

Last year, while brainstorming ideas for summer camps, I suggested a photography camp for middle school aged campers. This summer was the first year, to my knowledge, that we offered a photography camp, and I was lucky enough to lead it.

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