Home / A&E / Visual Arts / MWA's Inspired Lichtner, Grotenrath Retrospective

MWA's Inspired Lichtner, Grotenrath Retrospective

Art Preview

Apr. 17, 2011
Google plus Linkedin Pinterest
Pursuing a life in the arts requires passion and support—elements prominently on display in an exhibition featuring artworks rarely or never before seen by two beloved Wisconsin artists. On April 27, the Museum of Wisconsin Art (MWA) presents "The Yin and the Yang: Schomer Lichtner and Ruth Grotenrath, A Retrospective."

MWA Assistant Director Graeme Reid curated the show to "display the best art from each period through eight decades of work." This translates to approximately 25 pieces from each artist. Reid describes the process of selecting 50 paintings and a dozen Lichtner sculptures as "distilling these careers to their essence."

Grotenrath and Lichtner met during art class at what would become UW-Milwaukee. Friends described it as love at first sight. They married in 1934; in a rare occurrence for the time period, Grotenrath retained her maiden name, demonstrating a determination to maintain her individual artistic identity. The pair steadfastly created art together until Grotenrath's death in 1988.

Lichtner, whose works of jubilant ballerinas and bovines have become instantly recognizable, continued to produce art until his death in 2006. This exhibition highlights Lichtner's images from 1924-2000, and Grotenrath's from 1935-1981. This is a true retrospective that readdresses Lichtner's earlier work while also illustrating comparative paintings in each decade from both artists.

The museum's exhibition, which draws from private and public collections, inspired two recent publications: In Celebration: The Life and Art of Ruth Grotenrath and In the Moment: The Life and Art of Schomer Lichtner. The books will be available at Sneak Peek Friday, April 29, 10:30 a.m. and the exhibition's official opening reception on Sunday, May 1, 1:30-4 p.m.

As Reid so eloquently puts it, "Here were two artists blessed with natural talent and lucky enough to be able to continue doing what they loved with each other."

Art Happenings

"American Fantasy Classics: Brenna Murphy"

Green Gallery @ The MDW Fair: Visual Arts Landing in Chicago

The GeoLofts: 3636 S. Iron St., Chicago

Milwaukee's Green Gallery participates in the MDW Fair, a gathering of more than 50 independent, innovative artists, collectives and galleries. MDW takes place 1-10 p.m. Saturday, April 23, and 1-5 p.m. Sunday, April 24. For more information, visit mdwfair.org.

Bronze Clay Workshop/Spring Break Art Camp: Destination Station!

Racine Art Museum's Wustum Museum Campus

2519 Northwestern Ave., Racine

The "Bronze Clay Workshop" allows adults to create jewelry noon-4:30 p.m. Saturday, April 23. For kids 7-13, art camps run 9 a.m.-4 p.m. April 26-28. For more information, call 262-636-9177.


Would white supremacists, neo-Nazis and the Ku Klux Klan pose the same threat they do now if a mainstream Republican were president instead of Donald Trump?

Getting poll results. Please wait...