Milwaukee Studio Visit: Author and Illustrator Lois Ehlert

Stack of books. Photo by Megan Yanz Photography

Stack of books. Photo by Megan Yanz Photography

Our senses were first enticed by the lovely scent of fresh, natural flowers as we approached Lois Ehlert’s apartment in a beautiful old downtown building on an otherwise blustery day.

Ehlert welcomed me and Megan Yanz so Megan could photograph her remarkable collection of folk art while I learned more about Ehlert’s newest publication for children, The Scraps Book: Notes from a Colorful Life (a limited quantity of copies signed by the author are available to buy online). With the feature exhibition Uncommon Folk: Traditions in American Art now on view at the Art Museum, the timing was perfect to visit Ehlert’s cozy, artful and welcoming home.

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Milwaukee Studio Visit: Beth Eaton Pottery

Chatting in the studio. Photo by Megan Yanz Photography

Chatting in the studio. Photo by Megan Yanz Photography

Visiting the Bay View studio of Beth Eaton Pottery, I had the enviable sense of the elements of work and family, business and creativity in harmonious balance. Beth Eaton’s work is featured in the Uncommon Folk: Traditions in American Art exhibition store, and is full of warmth and laughter and radiates a go-with-the-flow attitude as well as a clear vision. She is someone who both creates and responds to possibilities. An early example: When Beth and her husband bought their home in Milwaukee’s Bay View neighborhood, the property needed a garage. Even though their family was just starting out at the time, she thought, why not take the opportunity to create a studio space in this new structure, full of possibility? Although when her children were very young Beth had less time to dedicate to her craft, now that they are older (Hedy just celebrated her seventh birthday and Charlie is twelve), the space is now the base of operations for a growing professional pottery studio. Read on to learn more about Beth and see pictures of her beautiful studio (and for a giveaway!). Continue reading

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German Tankards and Steins: Part 1—The Erb Tankard

Kornelius Erb (German, Augsburg, ca. 1560-1618). The Erb Tankard, 1580/85. Silver. Milwaukee Art Museum, Gift of Richard and Erna Flagg, M1991.85. Photo credit John Nienhuis

Kornelius Erb (German, Augsburg, ca. 1560-1618). The Erb Tankard, 1580/85. Silver. Milwaukee Art Museum, Gift of Richard and Erna Flagg, M1991.85. Photo credit John Nienhuis

For the past few months, I’ve been lucky enough to be able to research the Milwaukee Art Museum’s collection of German drinking vessels. With over 200 steins, tankards, and jugs, we have examples that range in date from the mid-16th century to the early 20th century. So, over the next few months, I’ll be doing a series of blog posts to highlight this important—and interesting—area of the collection. Continue reading

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From the Collection–Winter in Color

View of "Winter in Color" Mezzanine Installation. Photo by Chelsea Kelly

View of “Winter in Color” Mezzanine Installation. Photo by Chelsea Kelly

Tired of winter yet? Wait, it’s February in Wisconsin–that’s probably a silly question. Even if you’ve had enough, the Milwaukee Art Museum’s current display of works on paper from the Collection, Winter in Color, might make you take another look at the season.

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Help Us Prototype Your Museum Experience

View of the Prototyping Pedestal. Photo by the author

View of the Prototyping Pedestal. Photo by the author

At the entrance to the permanent collection galleries at the Milwaukee Art Museum, you’ll find something new as of December 2013: what we affectionately call in-house our “Prototyping Pedestal.”

So what exactly is it?

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