Summer seems fleeting and finite, and the list of things to do while our heavy coats hang in the closet seems infinite: parks, parades, fairs, gardening, house repairs, weather-proofing, painting, pruning, exhibits, concerts, chores and culture all in one giant grab-bag.
On Gallery Night, Friday, July 24, there’s a reception at Rosenblatt Gallery for our guest artist, Deidre Prosen (please see Sarah’s lively description of the exhibit at the end of this blog). Adolph’s and my works are also in the gallery, and Eli’s work is on the first floor (Artasia) and on the third floor (Cuvee).
Adolph and I will once again have a tent at Artist Marketplace on Saturday, July 25, 10-5, in front of the Milwaukee Art Museum. Every year we say we’re too old, this is the last time, and then we do it anyway, because we do enjoy talking to friends, passers-by, and Adolph’s ex-students and seeing the local art scene. Here’s our tent from last year.
There are also two projects in the works this summer that I’ll write more about in my next blog. One is the All-City People’s Parade and Pageant on August 8 here in Milwaukee, modeled after the Minneapolis “Heart of the Beast” annual May Day Parade. There are lots of opportunities for your creative participation!
The second project is Keith Schmitz’s plan to start a coop bookstore café, Open Book, in Shorewood now that we no longer have Schwartz Bookshop. It will only succeed with everyone’s support.
Our daughter, Sarah, captured the excitement of Deidre Prosen's work in her excellent description of the show:
Deidre Prosen, a Shorewood resident who has shown nationally, will display her current work at the
Rosenblatt Gallery through September 10. Her figurative paintings are huge, colorful, and wildly playful. The unruly and chaotic unconscious springs to life in every canvas. The underbellies of our minds surface with fears, grotesque visualizations, fairy tales, and dramas where animals merge and morph.
Some of her paintings are parodies of our economic times, filled with bankers who aided and abetted
the crisis. Deidre's works have psychological overtones, so it comes as no surprise to this viewer
that Deidre's father is a psychiatrist.
Rosenblatt Gallery, in Milwaukee's Historic Third Ward, has been in existence since 2007. The gallery houses much of the work of Adolph Rosenblatt, professor for 33 years at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and of his wife, Suzanne, visual artist and poet. Deidre was a student of Adolph's in the 1990s, and there is a kinship between her work and Adolph’s. The artwork of both is expressionistic, loosely rendered, playful, exploding with color and humor. The opening reception is on Gallery Night, July 24th, 6:00-9:00 PM, 181 North Broadway, above Artasia.
The circus parade flowed past. How did it feel to be one of those animals, a natural part of the jungle, yet instead pulled in a cage or clomping on cement down Wisconsin Avenue with hordes of two-legged creatures staring and pointing?
Part of being human is our ability to imagine ourselves in others’ shoes, or others’ hoofs! And another major parade taking place in Milwaukee this summer, on August 8th, will do just that. It’s a parade that will, in a sense, be the opposite of the circus parade: the animals that clomp or dance or trumpet past will be created by, not captured by, humans. You could say it’s the humans who will be caged in their self-made costumes. Aren’t we all?
Artists and non-artists of all ages, races, religions, and ethnicities are working together to create THE ALL-CITY PARADE AND PAGEANT, produced by Milwaukee Public Theatre and Milwaukee Mask and Puppet Theatre . The structure is based loosely on Minneapolis’s annual HEART OF THE BEAST parade; the content was developed through brainstorming sessions that began last April in the Milwaukee area.
I went to one. We sat in a circle and threw around our problems and pleasures, our nightmares and dreams, and the visual images these evoked. The sessions eventually provided the material for the parade’s themes: a close look at greed and all its implications, a look at where we’re heading and why, at problems and solutions. Participants will express all this through the senses, through the arts, visually, musically, in dance, in words.
I went to one of the workshops last month and saw the beginnings of the masks and puppets volunteers are creating.