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Lynden Blog

May 15, 2017 | Willy

In the first half of its fourteenth cycle, the Fund made eight awards, providing assistance with shipping and travel to nine individual artists, two of whom were participating in the same group show. These artists--three of them Nohl Fellows—work in a range of media and their exhibitions took them to Flagstaff, Arizona; Denver and Grand Junction, Colorado; Park City, Utah; and Austin, Texas. Destinations abroad include Scheifling, Austria; Toronto, Canada; and Jeonju, South Korea.

Ben Balcom received funds to travel to the Hotel Pupik Artist Residency in Scheifling, Austria, where he will create a site-specific video installation for the Pupik group exhibition. This work of expanded cinema will deploy video projection, objects, and still images in architectural arrangements, and will be similar to the work he exhibited as a 2016 Nohl Fellow.

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Mark Borchardt screened The Dundee Project, his first film in 20 years, at the Slamdance Festival in Park City, Utah; the festival runs concurrently with Sundance. He made many professional contacts, and noted that “it definitely reminds one that there is an enthusiastic audience out there with interest in my work.”

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Marna Brauner and Rina Yoon are among a group of six Milwaukee-based artists invited to participate in an exhibition in Jeonju, Korea, during the Jeonju Hanji Festival. Jeonju is known for its long handmade paper tradition, and during this ten-day festival there will be many exhibitions, papermaking demonstrations, public events, and activities related to hanji. This is the group's second exhibition in Korea; they also exhibited at the Villa Terrace Museum in 2015, and this exhibition brings together new work with work from the Milwaukee show.

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Two of Daniel Fleming’s paintings were selected for Contemporary 2017: Retellings, a national juried biennial at the Western Colorado Center for the Arts in Grand Junction that focuses on artists who use traditional materials or narratives in new and innovative ways.

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kathryn e. martin flew to Flagstaff for the labor-intensive installation of her solo show at Northern Arizona University Art Museum. She filled three large galleries with 15,000 paper airplanes, 15,000 cast rocks, wall drawings, and piles of discarded objects.

Co-cinematographer Dan Peters, one of the core members of the production team for The Blood is at the Doorstep, 2014 Nohl Fellow Erik Ljung’s film about the police killing of Dontre Hamilton, traveled to Austin, Texas for the SXSW (South by Southwest) Documentary Feature Competition, where the film received its world premiere.

Dan Peters

2014 Nohl Fellow Kyle Seis contributed several photographic works to What Are the Wild Waves Saying, a two-person exhibition at Dateline, a gallery for emerging artists in Denver, Colorado. The exhibition was part of Denver’s annual photography festival, “Month of Photography.”

Andrew Swant’s (Nohl Fellow 2008, 2013) new short film, Silently Steal Away, was selected for the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival, and he traveled to Toronto for the screenings.

November 29, 2016 | Willy

In the second half of its thirteenth cycle, the Fund made 11 awards, providing assistance with shipping and travel to nine individual artists, one duo, and one collective. These artists--two of them Nohl Fellows—work in a range of media and their exhibitions took them to Denver, Colorado; New Brighton, Minnesota; Millerton and New York, New York; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and Austin, Texas. Destinations abroad include Austria; Nikko and Tokyo, Japan; and Romania.

After School Special is heading to Philadelphia with two cars full of artists and work. Each of the nine members of the collective (including 2015 Nohl Fellow Zach Hill) is making something for an exhibition at Little Berlin curated by Brett Suemnicht.

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Sara Caron is transplanting her nomadic bar, the Bermuda Triangle, to Misako & Rosen in Tokyo. There, the project will be reshaped by new ingredients, new practices, new experiences, and a new audience. The Bermuda Triangle is an experiment in just what is needed to make a space, and to create, build, and contribute to a community around that space.

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Sheila Held (Nohl Fellow 2013) shipped several tapestries to the Center for Art, Faith and Culture at the United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities in New Brighton, Minnesota, for a solo exhibition. The gallery noted that Held's work was "a constant topic of conversation" among the students, and that public events were well-attended.

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Alexander Herzog exhibited a new body of work--eight paintings, some of them large--in a solo show at Geary Contemporary in New York. Because of the Suitcase support for shipping, the gallery was able to print a catalogue, and they also decided to represent Herzog.

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Kyle Jablonski participated in a two-person exhibition, Jabroni, Jabroni, Jabroni, at the Shipman Gallery in Brooklyn. He spent four days in New York installing, meeting artists and seeing lots of work, and attending the opening. Back in Milwaukee, the exhibition "freed me up to install another show" at a local restaurant. Jablonski has discovered that "putting challenging art in familiar places" enables people to unpack its meaning far from the restrictions of the gallery space.

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Kayle Karbowski used her month-long residency at MASS Gallery in Austin to "get back into a rhythm with her work and ideas" and to give her personal practice her undivided attention--for the first time since completing her BFA--as she prepared for her solo exhibition. She also spent time with other artist-organizers who share her interest in finding a balance between studio and community, and who are also navigating smaller “art cities" that operate outside the national spotlight. Upon her return, Karbowski was able to show her new work in Chicago.

Greg Klassen created a site-specific "Nature Table"--a self-generating sculpture of plants growing in studio debris--on site at the Re Institute gallery in Millerton, New York. Located in upstate New York, the Re Institute is a working farm that hosts small group shows in its hayloft; their goal is to allow artists to observe their work in a new context.

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Matthew Warren Lee had a painting selected for the First Street Gallery's 2016 National Juried Exhibition. It was his first opportunity to exhibit outside the Midwest, and he met curators, gallery directors, and other artists at the opening in New York. While in the city, he visited museums and learned more about the gallery ecosystem in Manhattan.

Longtime collaborators Lindsay Lochman and Barbara Ciurej mounted a solo exhibition of work that addresses sustainable food policy at the Colorado Photographic Arts Center in Denver. While in Colorado they met fellow photographers, worked with high school students, participated in a panel discussion with other artists and members of the Denver Sustainable Food Policy Network, undertook museum research, scouted sites for future projects, and met with the director of a gallery in Fort Collins who promptly offered them a show. They also made connections in Colorado Springs, and agreed to host the Mobile Garden of a local Denver food justice organization when it travels to the Midwest in 2017.

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When Madeline Power screened Across the Line at the Astra Film Festival in Romania in October, she was the first virtual reality filmmaker to show VR work in Eastern Europe. As the resident expert, she was much in demand for panels and received invitations to speak at future events.

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John Riepenhoff (Nohl Fellow 2009, 2014) will spend a month at the Troedsson Villa residency in the UNESCO World Heritage site of Nikko, Japan, making plein air paintings and working with local potters to develop a set of usable ceramic ware. At the end of the month, Tokyo's XYZ Collective will host a public event featuring the paintings and a shared meal served on the new ceramic ware. Riepenhoff looks forward to bringing his production experience back to Milwaukee, where he is designing a collaborative ceramics studio.

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May 23, 2016 | Willy

In the first half of its thirteenth cycle, the Fund made 12 awards, providing assistance with shipping and travel to eleven individual artists and one duo. These artists--two of them Nohl Fellows—work in a range of media and their exhibitions took them to Sonoma, California; New York, New York; Minot, North Dakota; Ashland and Portland, Oregon; and Park City, Utah. Destinations abroad include Scheifling, Austria; North Vancouver, Canada; Kolkata, India; Monte Castello di Vibio, Italy; and London, United Kingdom.

Cynthia Hayes travelled to Kolkata, India, for a solo exhibition of her paintings--which focus on Southeast Asian art history--at the government-run Academy of Fine Arts Central Gallery. She spoke at the opening, met many Indian artists, appeared on national television, and was able to use some of her time in India to do museum research.

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Joshua Hunt sent two paintings that "represent misogyny as a historically systemic issue" to STOPJECTIFY, an invitational group exhibition at Gallery Different in London. The show was organized by artist and freelance curator Jess de Wahls to coincide with International Women's Day.

Hunt_Nude Ascending an Escalator

Maeve Jackson and Keith Nelson will both spend time at Hotel Pupik in Scheifling, Austria, participating in residencies that culminate in public exhibitions. Hotel Pupik hosts up to thirty artists each year from around the world; they live and work on the grounds.

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(Maeve Jackson)

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(Keith Nelson)

Recent MIAD graduate Nicholas Kinsella was invited by a fellow alum to exhibit at Pacific Northwest College of the Arts in Portland, Oregon, as part of a series promoting exchange between PNCA students and emerging artists from around the country. The solo exhibition included film recorded on VHS, sculptures that function as props in the videos, and clothing designed for the characters.

Kinsella_'96 Econoline Installation

Matthew Konkel (screenwriter/co-producer) and Erin Maddox (producer) attended the Slamdance Film Festival in Park City, Utah where their feature-length narrative film, Neptune, was accepted for competition. They were on hand to support the film and seek distribution.

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Erik Ljung was invited to screen Mothers for Justice, a short film he completed while a Nohl Fellow, at the Sonoma International Film Festival in Sonoma, California. Ljung, who is making a feature-length film on the same subject, met with distributors, investors, and fellow filmmakers.

Photo: Vallen Gillett
Photo: Vallen Gillett

Shane McAdams was the sole Wisconsin participant in an exhibition of mostly Oregonian artists at the Schneider Museum of Art at Southern Oregon University in Ashland. He co-curated Exploring Reality with Scott Malbaurn, the director of the museum, wrote the catalogue essay, and delivered a talk.

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Jessica Meuninck-Ganger is headed to Italy for a solo exhibition at the International Center for the Arts Monte Castello di Vibio. The exhibition is part of a program promoting contemporary applications of traditional intaglio printmaking and handmade papermaking in the region known as the cradle of modern papermaking. The artist will share her research on sourcing native plant materials and fibers for papermaking and pigments and provide a lecture in the local theatre.

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Kim Miller took part in Life/Death, a program of experimental documentaries curated by Lana Lin and Cauleen Smith on the Flaherty NYC series at Anthology Film Archives in New York. She was on hand for the screening of her video, Madame Mae Nang Nak, and the Q&A that followed.

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Greg Schoeneck will bring work to the one-day Art World Expo in North Vancouver, Canada, and make a live painting at the charity auction. Two works will remain on exhibit at MAB Studios through the end of June.

Tori Tasch exhibited "Tokyo"--an accordion-fold sculptural book made following a Suitcase Fund-supported trip to that city in 2013--in Paperworks 2016, a national exhibition at the Northwest Art Center in Minot, North Dakota. Attending the exhibition helped Tasch to plan the 2017 Wisconsin Visual Artists exhibition, which is devoted to paper.

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May 9, 2016 | Willy

by Andy Yencha, Senior Land Manager

LSG Prairie Burn - 4/23/16
Land Manager Weston Wagner tending the burn

Lynden’s grounds include several natural areas we manage as prairies. This means that within these habitats that range in size from 1-3 acres, we are trying to grow the native flowering plants and grasses that were once common in this part of Wisconsin before logging and farming transformed our landscape in the 1800’s. Once you get them growing, native plants require remarkably little care because, after living here for thousands of years, they are well adapted to our local soil and climate conditions. But getting them growing takes some work because existing “weedy” plants like Canada Thistle, Kentucky Bluegrass, European Buckthorn and Honeysuckle, don’t willingly vacate their space to newcomers, even when the new plants claim original title to the landscape. To discourage weeds and encourage native plants we use methods like manual weeding, mechanical mowing, and the judicious application of herbicides. In late April we tried another tool, a controlled fire, to achieve this same goal.

Fire creeps along consuming years of plant litter
Fire creeps along consuming years of plant litter

Why Fire Helps
Under the supervision and guidance of an experienced contractor we burned portions of our Northwest and Southeast prairies. Conditions for the fire were nearly perfect, including light but steady winds around 10 miles per hour, low relative humidity, and sunny skies. The fire moved slowly, converting years of accumulated plant litter into nutritious ash. After 6 hours we burned 3 acres and were happy with the results. By exposing large patches of soil and covering them with sunlight absorbing black cinders, the burn helps the ground warm up more quickly. This in turn will help desirable “warm-season” prairie plants get a head start over less desirable “cool-season” weeds.


Black earth will warm quickly benefiting prairie plants

Kill the KGB
One cool-season weed we especially hope to set back is Kentucky blue grass or KGB. Although desirable in our formal lawns, KGB is much too abundant in our prairies where it outcompetes native species for food and sunlight. Judging by the fire’s immediate aftermath, we successfully burned away a significant amount of newly greening KGB. Unfortunately, just burning away its leaves won’t kill it. The roots likely survived the fire and we suspect they contain enough food reserves to fuel new grass shoots. But hopefully, in the window of time it takes the KGB to recover, new prairie plants will gain a foothold. Over the 2016 growing season we’ll keep a close eye on the burn areas and provide updates on how the land recovers.


Charred blue grass

November 24, 2015 | Willy

In the second half of its twelfth cycle, funding assistance with shipping and travel was recommended for fifteen artists. These artists--five of them past Nohl Fellows—work in a range of media and their exhibitions will take them to Los Angeles and San Francisco, California; Denver, Colorado; Des Moines, Iowa; East Lansing, Michigan; Minneapolis, Minnesota; Columbus, Ohio; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Gatlinburg, Tennessee; Richmond, Virginia; and Kenosha, Wisconsin. Destinations abroad include Vancouver, Canada.

Bass Structures (Emmanuel Fritz & Collin Schipper) participated in an exhibition at the CREATE Art and Technology Festival in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the country's largest festival focusing on the intersection of visual art and technology and part of the Three Rivers Arts Festival.

Jim Brozek opened a solo exhibition, "Iron Hulls and Turbulent Waters: Ore Boats, Workers and Great Lakes Shipping," at the Michigan State University Museum in East Lansing. The exhibition includes 24 photographs and a slide show made while working on the iron hulls. In conjunction with the exhibition, Brozek gave a public lecture, "Capturing the Iron Hulls from the Inside: Worker/photographer, Photographer/worker."

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Katy Cowan opens a solo exhibition at Cherry and Martin in November. She will be shipping large ceramic sculptures, wooden pallet-inspired sculptures, and paintings to the Los Angeles gallery.

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Maura Kelly Doyle traveled to Richmond, Virginia for Friends, a group exhibition at Mulberry Gallery. In addition to showing a photograph and two sculptures, Doyle gave a presentation about Present Works, the space she co-ran in Milwaukee, and explored ways to connect the two cities.

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Grant Gill and fellow Milwaukee-based artists Kyle Seis (2014 Nohl Fellow) and Zach Hill (2015 Nohl Fellow) are taking a group exhibition to Skylab Gallery in Columbus, Ohio. The exhibition is a multimedia installation containing works by each individual as well as collaborative works. The work responds to places visited on their way to Four Corners Monument.

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Michael J. Havice shipped two photographs to CORE New Art Space, a cooperative members gallery in Denver, Colorado, for Water, a juried into the exhibition.

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Yevgeniya Kaganovich attended the Midlife Metals Retreat at the Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts in Gatlinburg, Tennessee and participated in the accompanying exhibition. The retreat for academic metalsmiths focuses on collaborative materials research.

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Kelly Kirsthner presented her live audiovisual work, "Falling in Terms of Silent" at The Third Work: Sound/Image/Interaction, a research symposium on sound in non-fiction media at Hunter College in New York City. In addition to performing, Kirshtner discussed the work's audiovisual design and development.

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Angela Laughingheart participated, with Dot Spransy, in a hat-themed, two-person exhibition at the Anderson Arts Center in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Laughingheart exhibited crafted fiber hats, drawings and paintings of hats, and a sketchbook of designs.

Laughingheart

Kendall Polster participated in a two-person exhibition at the Lindsay Gallery in Columbus, Ohio. Polster's work included 10 welded, repurposed scrap metal sculptures.

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Nirmal Raja & Nina Ghanbarzadeh exhibited together for the first time in a two-person show at the Hinterland Art Space in Denver, Colorado. Work included site-specific installations, prints, and mixed media pieces utilizing writing, text, and language.

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Nathaniel Stern and collaborator Erin Manning created a site-specific version of Weather Patterns: the smell of red at the Vancouver Art Gallery as part of the annual International Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA) in Vancouver, Canada. The walk-through installation includes tornado machines, spices, fans and fabric. There will be an accompanying publication.

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Sonja Thomsen will participate in a group exhibition at the Rayko Photo Center in San Francisco curated by gallery director Ann Jastrab. Thomsen, who attended graduate school in San Francisco and has not exhibited in that city since 2004, will attend the opening.

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Melissa Wagner-Lawler was invited to show an artist book and a new etching in Parts of a Whole 3 at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts in Minneapolis. The group exhibition features artists recently associated with MCBA.

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Shane Walsh will travel to New York City to execute an installation painting as part of a group exhibition at Asya Geisberg Gallery. The exhibition will include three additional paintings of his.

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Jason S. Yi spent several days in the downtown Capital Square Atrium making "Terraform," a large site-specific sculpture, for Art Week Des Moines in Iowa. He was sponsored by Transient Gallery, a new noncommercial space.

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October 7, 2015 | Willy

This is the tenth in a series of blog posts by Pegi Christiansen, who was a Lynden artist in residence through October 2015. Learn more about her residency here.

On July 31 and August 1, Theresa Columbus flew in from Maryland, Jennifer Holmes from California, and John Loscuito from Florida so the four of us could work on the Distance exhibit (September 28-October 11) and accompanying performance (October 10 and 11 at 4:00). I invited these three artists--who had never met each other before--to participate in Distance. Jennifer was the only one of us who had never been to Lynden.

Theresa was the first to arrive, on Friday night, and pointed out there was a blue moon. This means it was the second full moon in the month, something that only occurs every two to three years. Both of us thought this perfectly characterized our year of art making.

On Saturday morning, I picked up Jennifer at the airport and the four of us went out for breakfast to map out what we would be doing until everyone left town on Wednesday.

We returned to Lynden and, for the first time, got to see the exquisite corpses we had been making separately for eleven months on 11” by 15” pieces of paper. If you come to the October performances, you will see them too and learn more about how these happened. It was a wonder to point to some of the ways, though hundreds of miles apart, we were aware of each other’s intentions. For instance in July, without anyone knowing what the other three were doing, there were circles in everyone’s images. We decided how we wanted the visual exquisite corpses arranged in the gallery, as well as our monthly dawn photos and, with Polly’s help, the text corpses.

For the remainder of Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, our time and energy was devoted to working on the Distance performance. Since February we had been writing the script for the forty-minute performance, but we needed to block it and, in some cases, to revise the script based on our actions. Every night Jennifer, John, and Theresa stayed up late at Lynden reviewing the day’s revisions.

Polly encouraged us to go out for dinner one night. Monday I drove everyone over to the River Lane Inn. We sat outside while the sun set on a gorgeous evening. I asked everyone if they would mind sharing something important personally and professionally (outside of the Distance project) that had happened during our year of collaborating. This ended up sparking incredible conversation. I described how the “Failure Round Robin” I organized at Lynden in April had liberated me. John gave examples of how he is making new opportunities available for artists in his new position. Theresa explained her “kidult” concept with adults and kids creating theater together. I have always viewed Jennifer as a total Amazon, and realized she was more vulnerable than I had imagined.

August was the final month for making visual and text exquisite corpses and our dawn photos. As another way to take advantage of our time together at Lynden, we completed the August text corpse by dinnertime on Tuesday, and that morning I arrived early so we could take our dawn photos with each other. We had selected inside and outside the bathhouse by the pond as our location. John and Jennifer took selfies, and Jennifer helped to take pictures of Theresa and me. Afterwards, we took this picture of the four of us.

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Left to right, John Loscuito, Theresa Columbus, Pegi Christiansen, Jennifer Holmes

Just as Polly needed to close the gallery on Tuesday, we finished blocking. We figured out all the next steps, and by Wednesday Jennifer, John, and Theresa were back in their own corners of the United States.

August 24, 2015 | Willy

This is the ninth in a series of blog posts by Pegi Christiansen, who is a Lynden artist in residence through October 2015. As part of her project, Distance, Pegi will accompany people, in groups of up to three, on their first trip to Lynden. She will pick them up, drive them out, take a walk with them, and bring them back. As part of the excursion, she will ask some questions about distance. If you are interested in participating in this aspect of Pegi's project, please call 414-446-8794 or email info@lyndensculpturegarden.org and mention you are interested in a “distance visit.”

Sura Faraj and I have known each other long enough that even though we can’t remember when we met and when we last saw each other, there wasn’t a moment of hesitation during our three hours together on June 24. When we connected via email in March to do a “Distance” visit, she was recovering from a herniated disk that had kept her flat on her back for months. Thanks to acupuncture, Sura was able to stroll through the grounds and sit on the grass to share a picnic lunch.

Sura’s mother died in May of 2012. In response to her grief, Sura started to learn about medicinal herbs and plants, which her mother had an interest in as well. Sura told me stories about her mother’s capacity for healing, and how her mother overcame shingles while Sura’s uncle, a doctor, didn’t.

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Jewelweed at Lynden

Sura takes her dog for walks along the Milwaukee River and also identifies and studies the plants. She pointed out Jewelweed for me at Lynden and explained it is excellent for poison ivy and soothing insect bites. I admire Sura because when she sees something that needs to be done, she figures out a way to make it happen. When she started to get angry with the mountain bikers who cut their own trails along the river, disrupting sensitive ecosystems like a beech grove, she founded the Milwaukee River Advocates. Its goal is “to protect the natural habitat” of the river from many threats, including “intense and irresponsible recreational use.” (I learned a new term from Sura: greenwashing. It applies to the bikers who would tell her they were creating “sustainable trails,” which sounds environmentally friendly.)

Sura’s study of plants led to her developing tinctures and infused oils, now primarily from plants she grows in her own yard, like Solomon’s seal. You can find her Root Flower Remedies tins of ointment and lip balm at Fischberger’s Variety and the Riverwest Co-op.

Our roving conversation swung around specifically to the topic of distance. Sura believes our current capacity for long distance travel has disrupted our connection to the land and habitat. “Travel has allowed the human species to dissect the earth and disassociate from it,” she said. It pleased her to see how the Lynden Sculpture Garden has been a careful shepherd “rewilding” the grounds. She adored the removal of the fence that used to stand around the formal garden, with only the wooden gate remaining.

June 24, 2015 | Willy

This is the eighth in a series of blog posts by Pegi Christiansen, who is a Lynden artist in residence through October 2015. As part of her project, Distance, Pegi will accompany people, in groups of up to three, on their first trip to Lynden. She will pick them up, drive them out, take a walk with them, and bring them back. As part of the excursion, she will ask some questions about distance. If you are interested in participating in this aspect of Pegi's project, please call 414-446-8794 or email info@lyndensculpturegarden.org and mention you are interested in a “distance visit.”

Last year Lynn Bartkus contacted Lynden about having a visit exchange. She is a docent at Ten Chimneys in Genesee Depot, the estate of Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne, widely regarded as the greatest husband-and-wife acting team in the history of American theater.


Lynn Bartkus leading a tour at Ten Chimneys

On May 19 I drove to Ten Chimneys for the first time, about the same distance as my home is to Lynden. On my way out, I wondered whether there would be any similarities between Ten Chimneys and Lynden. It turns out there are plenty!
--The Lunts (1922) and the Bradleys (1926) married around the same time.
--They both sought country retreats near Milwaukee in what were then rural areas.
--Both tamed and transformed the land they bought. For the Bradleys, it was turning a farm into a pastoral landscape. For the Lunts, Lynne explained they “created a retreat for friends and family.” Lynn told me the Lunts let guests pick the breakfast tray they wanted, plus what, where, and when the meal would be served so they would feel pampered.
--Both developed well-tended gardens.
--The Bradleys put in a pond and built a bathhouse for swimming (Mrs. Bradley was an avid swimmer). Lunt and Fontanne installed an L-shaped swimming pool with a dramatic pool house. (Every building and room on the property has the appearance and feeling of a stage set.)

As you can tell from the top picture, Lynn, whose mother thought Fontanne personified glamour and named Lynn after her, gave an animated two-hour tour of the sixty acres at Ten Chimneys. Lynn trained to be a docent five years ago. I told her how much I enjoyed her tour, and Lynn said she learned that people wanted to hear fun stories by shadowing other docents.

A week later, on May 26, Lynn met me at Lynden in the morning. Rain was predicted, but it held off until the moment we said goodbye.

Early on in our walk around Lynden, we stood by the birch stand near the east end of the pond. Lynn brought up the birches at Ten Chimneys. She said they are a Scandinavian good luck symbol and are often given as wedding presents. Lynn suggested both the Lunts and Bradleys “loved life and nature.”


Lynn Bartkus at Lynden

It takes Lynn an hour to drive from her home to Ten Chimneys, but she does not mind the distance. She uses the time to see Wisconsin and often takes back roads.

She likes that you can wander at Lynden and votes for not introducing paths. Once you have paths, she finds people tend to assume they should “Keep Off the Grass,” whether there are signs or not.

Lynn has a very active Facebook presence and uses it primarily to post pictures of grandchildren for family members who don’t live nearby. Even though it sometimes seems intrusive, Lynn thinks social media invasions of privacy are here to stay.

Her eight grandchildren live in Southeastern Wisconsin. She wants to bring them to Lynden. I showed her one of the sculptures children like best, George Sugarman’s Trio. “It’s like the spine of a whale,” she said. After the visit she emailed to tell me how she delighted in “the lushness, the sculptures, the pond—to relax and breathe the fresh air.” I’m so glad Lynn contacted Lynden last year. Since visiting Ten Chimneys, I find myself asking everybody if they’ve ever been there. Whether you are a theater fan or not, it’s definitely worth signing up for a tour.

May 29, 2015 | Willy

In the first half of its twelfth cycle, funding assistance with shipping and travel was recommended for fifteen artists. These artists--five of them past Nohl Fellows—work in a range of media and their exhibitions will take them to Fairfield, Iowa; New York, New York; Lock Haven, Pennsylvania; Austin and Dallas, Texas; Park City, Utah; Farmville, Virginia; Fish Creek and Madison, Wisconsin; and Clearmont, Wyoming. Destinations abroad include São Paulo, Brazil; Vence, France; Apples, Switzerland; and Istanbul, Turkey.

Cynthia A. Brinich-Langlois is bringing work she made during previous residencies at the Ucross Foundation in Clearmont, Wyoming--a collection of handmade artist books that address the history of various cultures, settlements, and range management techniques that converge in this place--to a group exhibition at the Ucross Foundation Art Gallery.

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For his first solo exhibition, Jamal L. Currie will be showing video and video installation at the Clinton County Arts Council's Station Gallery in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania. The show will include television sculptures, and single-channel and interactive video works.

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2011 Nohl Fellow Richard Galling is taking part in Curbit, a three-day festival in Apples, Switzerland. Galling is designing a project as part of Lifetime Achievement, an alternative pedagogical platform based in Milwaukee.

Richard Galling 01

Jon Horvath joined a former Nohl Fellow in a two-person exhibition, On the Road: Hans Gindlesberger and Jon Horvath, at the Longwood Center for the Visual Arts at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia. The exhibition featured independent and collaborative works, including excerpts from Horvath's "Passages" series: GPS drawings of Jack Kerouac text being “driven” on Wisconsin’s alphabetically labeled county highway system. Horvath was also able to give a guest lecture at Virginia Tech and to offer critiques.

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Julie Briede Ibar will have work in six group shows at the Edgewood Orchard Galleries in Fish Creek, Wisconsin, this summer.

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Robin Jebavy is renting a truck to transport her large-scale paintings to the ICON Gallery in Fairfield, Iowa, where she has a solo exhibition this summer.

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Marsha McDonald was one of three Wisconsin artists invited to participate in a Wisconsin Waterways exhibition at the James Watrous Gallery in Madison, Wisconsin. She showed a video, 100 origami canoes, moon viewing boxes and paintings.

Marsha McDonald 01

Alec Regan of American Fantasy Classics (Nohl Fellow 2011) collaborated with Homeland Security, an artist-run, non-commercial, domestic exhibition space in Dallas, Texas on an exhibition of 2- and 3-dimensional collaborative works during the Dallas Art Fair. The exhibition included the planting and dedication of a garden plot. AFC and Homeland Security see this as the beginning of a long-term collaboration between two artist-run organizations.

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Chris J. Robleski drove to Texas to participate in Art City Austin, a juried outdoor art fair run by Art Alliance Austin. Robleski exhibited the night-time photographs he makes with "just a camera, flashlights, and no computers."

Robleski 2 - Painted Desert Trading Post

Albulena Shabani is traveling to Istanbul, Turkey, to screen Trebled Times, a collection of interviews with Kosovan musicians who discuss life and music in Kosovo's recent past. Shabani will be an artist-in-residence at Halka Art Project, a non-profit independent arts organization, and in addition to screening the film, will perform original Albanian songs written while working on Trebled Times in Kosovo.

Albulena Shabani 01

Cristina Siqueira (Nohl Fellow 2013) brought a version of the video installation she made for her Nohl exhibition, and the original artwork produced for the Monga / Ape Girl documentary poster, to Las Magrelas Bar e Bicicletaria in São Paulo, Brazil. Siquiera gave a talk as part of a “meet-the-filmmaker” night.

Cristina Siqueria 02

Roy Staab will make a site-specific sculpture installation from materials collected on the land for Vence-Art-Nature 2015, an outdoor festival curated by Yves Rousguisto in Vence, France.

Roy Staab 02

Christopher Thompson (Nohl Fellow 2010) and Michael Vollman screened The 414s at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. The short film was purchased by CNN Films.

Christopher Thompson 02

2005 Nohl Fellow Steve Wetzel traveled to New York to screen his video, From the Archives of an Inventor, as part of the Flaherty NYC series at Anthology Film Archives.

Stephen Wetzel 02

May 22, 2015 | Willy

This is a blog post by Pegi Christiansen, who is a Lynden artist in residence through October 2015. To learn more about her residency, Distance, click here.

On April 15, eleven people sat in a circle in the upstairs Lynden studio for a Failure Round Robin. Eight of us took five to ten minutes to describe a failure and its implications. I let people know it could be any kind of failure, so I had no idea what to expect.

We experienced a heartfelt ninety minutes. It was not a therapy session, though we did comfort each other. We all laughed quite a bit.

At a number of points, I asked people to explain more about the failure aspect of their stories. Some didn’t sound like failures to me. This ended up as one of the themes. As Jeanie put it, “failure is about self-judgment.”

Robin talked about the self-doubt, confusion, isolation, and fear she has felt getting turned down for tenure-track teaching positions. Jeanie commented, “All adjunct instructors feel like failures and second-class citizens.” Robin’s failure has led her to work even harder and drives her to be more adventurous in her studio.

Chuck declared cheerfully, “I rehearse for failure on a daily basis.” Chuck is very involved in bird watching and migratory counts. Although he loves dogs, it is upsetting to him when owners, against rules posted on signs, let their dogs run off-leash in parks and preserves. He wants to be an ambassador for the bird community when he speaks with dog owners about their misbehavior. He gave examples of how he has failed in these interactions. I learned that Milwaukee is on an important migratory path that 300 bird species pass through.

Sarah responded that signs always fail because no one reads them. She also finds public spaces interesting because people’s codes for them don’t line up.

“My naivety is my failure, but it pushes me to the next project,” said Sarah. After a failure she thinks, “I am not naïve now,” and this leads her to try something else and the cycle continues. She summarized: “Failure is a drive to meet your own expectations and assumptions. Nothing plays out the way you think.”

Sarah and Brad have discussed how artists often take the path of most resistance. “Artists want to expand a field,” said Brad. “It is experimental and you are not going to be 100% successful.” For Sarah there is also a percentages aspect to failure. Nothing is ever a total waste.

LyndenWindow
View out the second floor studio window during the Failure Round Robin

Brad joked that he was “failing at being a grownup.” He confessed to wearing the same shorts every day from 2010-2012, is just now figuring out the right antiperspirant to use, and has a history of storming off job sites in a fit of childish rage. “I have professional skills, but I am not really a person yet,” he said.

Chuck immediately commented that in his interactions with Brad, “I didn’t have this impression at all.” Jeanie claimed that spiritual teacher Ram Dass, at the age of 75, said he was still dealing with the same issues he had when he was 25. At sixty, Jeanie said, “I am returning to the core of my youth.”

Colleen told Brad, “I didn’t grow up until I was fifty.” Colleen was let go from two management positions in situations where, as Brad noted, “You were designated to be a boss.” Colleen now sees these failures as steppingstones. Colleen tells art students, “In this room failure is expected and you can learn how to go forward.”

Adam brought up that in Western culture everything is binary: success/failure. He thinks we need to “embrace the duality spectrum.” Colleen added, “Failure is inevitable. If you haven’t failed you haven’t evolved.”

Anja graduated from college in 2009. It was during the recession and her friends were all unemployed, but she got her “dream job” in a puppet show. She didn’t realize, “I was expected to train for three years without any opportunity for creative expression.” She had to put on a puppet show with nursery rhymes for children every weekend. After memorizing what she was given to say and rehearsing for weeks, the head puppeteer would nitpick everything she was doing. “I felt like a pathetic idiot,” she said. Then Anja had an epiphany. She started to see the other people in training were broken and wanted someone to control them. “They were puppets!” Anja shouted with glee.

Adam’s was the closing failure story. He had a best friend from third grade through high school. Adam’s senior year, his father passed away and his friend was there when he found out and knew just what to do (stay with him) and was also perfect at the funeral. When Adam was in college studying abroad in Europe, he found out this friend’s mother had died. Adam did not reach out. “He was so generous to me,” said Adam. “I had a barrier and couldn’t respond in kind.”

Anja brought up the Western notion of reciprocity. She reminded Adam that this is another binary.

Chelsea, who came to listen, wrote in graduate school about binaries and ambiguity. She said, “It is all grey with success as failure and failure as success.” She brought up Brené Brown who wrote, “There is no innovation and creativity without failure. Period.”

Although it wasn’t therapy, I had a catharsis. I spoke about a street intersection painting project I organized. The painting was supposed to last for at least three months and wore away in four days, despite careful preparation. This occurred almost two years ago, and I still wasn’t over it. I am now.


©2010 Lynden Sculpture Garden