July 13, 2023—Miller Art Museum is pleased to debut Blind Spot — to pass among them, organized by the Museum of Wisconsin Art, and Séjour: Impressions of Giverny by Brigitte Kozma on the second floor Ruth Morton Miller Mezzanine.
Both exhibitions will be on view from July 22 - September 9, 2023. An opening reception with the exhibiting artists will be held on Friday, July 21 from 5:30 – 7pm. The reception is free and open to the public; light refreshments will be served and music will be provided by Craig Schultz and Mike Miller. The solo artist exhibition featuring the work of Wisconsin artist Suzanne Rose in the museum’s main galleries encompasses a collection of 27 large-scale photographs that explore the understated study of human folly and nature's resilience through an aesthetic influenced by pioneer photographers of the nineteenth century. The photographs resist timestamping. The lush black-and-white images are toned with a custom gradient that Rose developed by studying vintage prints. Their rounded corners, emerald-cut rectangles, and elongated oval formats are directly derived from the 1860s. Despite the influence of yesteryear, Blind Spot is resolutely of the present, gently nudging viewers toward a more thoughtful relationship with their environment.
July 7, 2023 – The Miller Art Museum in downtown Sturgeon Bay has announced preparations for the organization’s annual Art & Treasures Fundraiser, now in its 18th year and scheduled to open to the public on Saturday, August 5, 2023. The Museum is seeking tax-deductible donations of new and gently used art and art-related items from the community to support its fundraising efforts.
The Art & Treasures Fundraiser presents a fun an eclectic collection of items from year to year, including new and gently used original fine art and reproductions, art-related items, objects d’ art, art supplies, books, a diverse selection of high-quality frames, household décor, vintage goods, collectibles, holiday items, fabrics, small furniture items, linens and unique oddities. This year’s fundraiser will again be held at M3, 142 S. 3rd Avenue in downtown Sturgeon Bay, the organization’s newly launched satellite education space.
June 28, 2023—The Miller Art Museum in downtown Sturgeon Bay is pleased to announce Christopher T Wood as its 2023 Dome House Al & Mickey Quinlan Artist in Residence. Wood will be in residence in Door County from August 1 – September 25, 2023.
The residency, now entering its third year, is administered jointly with the Quinlan/Wagner family and carries on the original intent of the Dome House, as visioned by Al Quinlan, to serve as a creative haven for living artists. The program advances the museum’s mission to expand its role in education and to shape and influence the artistic development and growth of artists in the area. Milwaukee-based artist Christopher T Wood was selected from a pool of 24 applicants by the program’s Artist Selection Committee. In addition to being awarded an unrestricted $500 stipend, he will receive access to time, space, and resources to advance his work at the iconic Door County structure.
“I plan to immerse myself in the local environment and the character of the Dome House. As a Pataphysician I am drawn to study that which is exceptional, and the house surely is. I will listen to the stories the Dome House has to share and represent them within the tales of the supplementary universe as depicted in my ethereal powdered graphite drawings.”
By applying unique processes Wood has developed over time, he creates drawings consisting of powdered graphite and exquisite shading that form distinct creations. He plans to draw a new piece each day that will eventually become a set of drawings, each serving as an extension of the other. The drawings may overlap, enhance or repeat to further showcase the experiences felt at that particular point in time. Wood’s work has been exhibited in exhibitions around the globe.
In celebration of Expanding Perspectives by Mauree Childress and Door County Through the Eyes of Joseph Friebert and Betsy Ritz Friebert, an opening reception is scheduled for Friday, June 2 from 5:30 - 7pm. The reception is free and open to the public; music will be provided by Craig Schultz and Mike Miller and light refreshments will be served. The two new exhibitions open to the public on Saturday, June 3, 2023 at 10am.
Expanding Perspectives presents 35 artworks by Milwaukee-based artist Mauree Childress whose artwork magnifies issues of social equity for women and people living with disabilities. As a person living with a physical disability these two subjects have been, and continue to be, the focus of the artist’s sustained activism.
1. Mauree Childress, Homage Teacher, acrylic. 2. Mauree Childress, Yikes!, acrylic on dyed canvas. 3. Mauree Childress, Dreaming of the WASP, acrylic on dyed canvas.
A lifelong Wisconsinite, Childress received her degree in art education from the University of Wisconsin—La Crosse. She spent the early years of her career teaching, which preceded a 30-year period in television advertising. She went on to serve in development roles with the American Red Cross and later the Neville Public Museum Foundation in Green Bay. Now retired, she creates in her fully accessible home in Milwaukee and is actively engaged as a docent for the Milwaukee Art Museum where she contributes to Docent Learning Community workshops and Art for All, a docent committee dedicated to developing and promoting strategies and behaviors that encourage inclusivity for all visitors.
Childress’ Strong Women series, featured in the main gallery, presents paintings that highlight women who have contributed to making a difference. The series recognizes the importance of everyday women, who perform the necessary work to make our society function. From the 1942 machinist who worked in the factory during WWII to the 2021 essential worker, whose collective efforts in resilience saw the nation through the global COVID-19 pandemic, the series pays homage to the contribution of women’s work across history.
“I am interested in the everyday lives of people who push equality forward and expand our perspectives,” Childress states. “Since I was a young woman, I have been passionate about gender equality and women's rights.”
A collection of works in the west gallery on the main floor depict a variety of day-to-day experiences through the lens of people living with disabilities. These paintings invite the viewer to understand with a newly expanded perspective. The paintings are accompanied by a series of “groundscapes” that showcase the beauty and challenges of living with a mobile disability.
In 2013, Childress experienced an incomplete spinal cord injury and was paralyzed from the waist down. This forced her to transition her artistic practice from textiles, which required challenging physical ability, to painting and drawing. “Becoming disabled expanded my perspectives. I learned about the challenges of disability. I also discovered there is still value and beauty beyond, and through my artwork I portray aspects of my life. The groundscapes interpret and honor the often-overlooked precious ground we roll and walk on.”
Betsy Ritz Friebert, Man and Boats, Jacksonport, pen and ink, 1938. Joseph Friebert, Blue Landscape, gouache, 1966.
The Miller Art Museum in downtown Sturgeon Bay announced at a free public reception held Monday evening April 17, the award winners for the 49th Annual Salon of Door County High School Art, on display now through Saturday, May 27, 2023. The multi-media exhibition features original artwork by 116 students in grades 9 – 12 from the 2022-23 academic year who attend school at one of the Peninsula’s five high schools: Gibraltar, Sevastopol, Southern Door, Sturgeon Bay, and Washington Island.
Certificates of Participation were presented to all student artists by their respective art teachers. Students receiving an Award of Excellence or Honorable Mention were announced and presented by Museum Curator Helen del Guidice during the reception. Awards of Excellence, a $100 cash prize, were presented to: Lilly Cihlar (Sturgeon Bay), Victoria Fiscus (Sevastopol), Joseph Lux (Washington Island), Emily Purdy (Southern Door), and Gwendolyn Sohns (Gibraltar).
Six $50 Honorable Mention awards were presented to Dasia Daubner (Gibraltar), Rayna Hoffman (Sturgeon Bay), Anna Ibarra-Gallardo (Sevastopol), Dezaray LeRoy (Southern Door), and Rita Valentincic (Washington Island).
Image Credit: 49th Annual Salon of Door County High School Art award winners pictured from left to right: Rayna Hoffman (Honorable Mention, Sturgeon Bay), Victoria Fiscus (Award of Excellence, Sevastopol), Anna Ibarra-Gallardo (Honorable Mention, Sevastopol), Joseph Lux (Award of Excellence, Washington Island), Gwendolyn Sohns (Award of Excellence, Gibraltar), Emily Purdy (Award of Excellence, Southern Door), and Dezaray LeRoy (Honorable Mention, Southern Door).
In addition to cash prizes, the museum, through a generous financial gift from the Cramer Family Fund in memory of long-time art supporter Tricia Cramer, provided awardees certificates for art supplies from the Artists Guild in Sturgeon Bay and instruction to further their individual artistic endeavors through workshops at the Peninsula School of Art in Fish Creek.
Executive Director Elizabeth Meissner-Gigstead had the honor of presenting Sevastopol High School sophomore Amolia Jefferson with the Mr. Rericha Legacy Award, a $100 cash prize, for her work titled “Hot Buttered Toast.” Mr. Rericha was a longtime art teacher and theater director at Sevastopol who had a significant impact on the lives of those he taught and mentored; he passed away in September 2022 and an anonymous financial gift made the establishment of the award possible.
Image credit: Miller Art Museum Executive Director Elizabeth Meissner-Gigstead congratulates Amolia Jefferson (Sevastopol) as she receives the inaugural Mr. Rericha Legacy Award.
“I am not alone in saying that he was one of the best,” says Elizabeth Meissner-Gigstead, executive director. “He was an incredible artist in his own right, with a quirky sense of humor, and a mentor and friend to all the students whose lives he deeply touched, including mine. It was an exceptional honor to select and present Molly with this award; her work embodies the characteristics, most prominently a hint of whimsy, that Jim so loved. I hope this award provides motivation for the chosen student to continue pursuing art, just as Mr. Rericha always pushed his students to do¬¬.”
In addition to the student awards, the museum also presented monetary awards to each high school art department, made possible through gifts from the Cramer Family Fund and DCAL. DCAL was a longstanding coalition of artists and art lovers who were committed to promoting the creative arts in Door County and supporting each other through mentoring, exhibitions, workshops, and fellowship. Upon the dissolution of that organization in 2016, the museum was gifted of a portion of these funds specifically so that it could serve as a conduit for the support of students through the exhibit.
The awards, unless otherwise stated, are given as recognition for achievements in art class, and have been made possible by the following exhibition sponsors: Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant, Door County Medical Center, and Hermke & Elke Timm with additional financial support provided by Blue Moon Framery, John and Katherine Campbell, Dennis and Bonnie Connolly, Chris Cramer, the Jacksonport Women’s Club, Barb and Mike Madden, and Ruth Scholz with in-kind and grant support from Third Avenue PlayWorks, and the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts.
The 49th Annual Salon of Door County High School Art will be on view at the Miller Art Museum through Saturday, May 27, 2023.