Did you know that the largest gathering of artists in Wisconsin takes place every June in Cedarburg? Are you familiar with Cambridge being home to a long tradition of pottery and ceramics arts? How about the working waterfront of Sturgeon Bay's rich maritime history? Or that Madison is home to an immense collection of artwork that is completely free to visit?
We’re visiting local artists, museums and events, exploring the impact art has on four communities across Wisconsin, and highlighting the history and culture that surround it.
01:03 Chazen Museum of Art on the UW-Madison campus. Join us on a personalized tour with the museum’s director Amy Gilman, who refers to the gallery as the largest art room on campus that’s not just for students. The museum strives to create a space that provides every visitor with a “Chazen moment”, where one can be free and engage with the artwork, understanding more of who we are as humans and how we live in this ever-changing world. Come as you are, sweatpants and all, and enjoy the museum that sometimes is a quiet and reflective space, and other times incredibly dynamic. Explore more for yourself: https://www.facebook.com/ChazenArtUW/
05:43 Door County Maritime Museum in Sturgeon Bay. This museum puts the rich history of one of Door County’s biggest industries right on display. We hear from the museum’s director Kevin Osgood, who starts out with some of the “unknown” facts surrounding the 102-year-old John Purves tugboat stationed outside, note: the guided tour is actually conducted by the same people who have been working on the restoration over the years! We then venture through the brand-new 10-story tower, which tells the maritime history of Door County from its geological formation all the way up to the working port of today. There are more than 275 shipwrecks just off the coast of Door County, with a large concentration up in Death’s Door. Before weather systems were in place, lighthouses were life or death during the severe storms every fall across the Great Lakes. In fact, Door County has 11 lighthouses! You can’t find that many lighthouses within this short a shoreline anywhere else in the United States. Learn more about how water defines this community and plan your visit today: https://www.facebook.com/dcmaritime
10:03 Cambridge Wood-Fired Pottery & Rowe Pottery Works. We join Mark Skudlarek to discuss the evolution of Rowe Pottery, an artisan studio and hand-crafted manufacturing facility first opened in the mid ‘70s, that is still in operation today. Many people thought potters were drawn to Cambridge because of the clay, but really it was because of the market and the growing community of individual studios rooted in the tradition of clay and wood-fired pots. Mark notes it’s almost like continuing to speak a language that’s being lost. Electric kilns or gas-fired kilns let you walk away from the process, whereas a wood-fired kiln is more visceral and requires constant maintenance. The temperament of these kilns is almost like an animal, so it’s no surprise the Chinese call theirs “Dragon kilns”, you’re feeding this beast - as the temperature gets hotter, its appetite becomes more veracious. Each year, there’s seasonal events that feature local pottery, including the Clay Collective Spring Tour and Fire Fest with its big dramatic sculpture reveal while at top temperature with flames a-blazing. Be sure to check these out on your next trip:
14:13 Cedarburg Artists Guild & Cedarburg Art Museum. Every June, painters flock to the Paint Cedarburg event from around the world to capture the historic beauty preserved there. Founder, Sandra McCutcheon-Pape, shares her role and efforts to preserve and restore the town’s historic charm. Cedarburg is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, as many of main street buildings have been around since the mid-1800s. The community has been able to buy and restore some of the local hidden gems, including the Woolen Mill in 1972 and the Washington House Inn which was built in 1884, now is now restored as an inn again. With its historical architecture, creek and several dams, no wonder Cedarburg is sometimes referred to as the most charming town in Wisconsin. Want to test your artistic abilities? Find out how here: https://www.facebook.com/cedarburg.guild
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