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Outdoor Art Festivals: A Wisconsin Tradition

Milwaukee's Lakefront Festival of Arts kicks off summer season

Jun. 13, 2011
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Outdoor art festivals have become a Wisconsin tradition. June typically signals the beginning of the summer art season, a time when artists from across the country attend events all over the state. Many of the festivals are nationally renowned, including Milwaukee's prestigious Lakefront Festival of Arts (LFOA), which celebrates its 49th year June 17-19.

The Milwaukee Art Museum's outstanding “Summer of China” exhibits provide the backdrop for the MAM's 2011 Lakefront Festival. Five Chinese artists will be among the 180 juried artists participating in the show.

South Korean-born artist Seung Lee designed LFOA's collectible poster, titled Watertown. The three-day festival takes place under tents and inside the MAM, so the fun continues rain or shine. The festival begins at noon on Friday, June, 17, with entrance fees of $8 for members and $14 for non-members (or $20 for a three-day pass).

Premier art festivals continue in and around southeastern Wisconsin all summer. Here is a small sampling of what's in store:

  • June 19: Outdoor Watertown Art Festival, Riverside Park, Watertown
  • June 25-26: Cedarburg Strawberry Festival & Fine Art Fair, Historic Downtown Cedarburg
  • July 9: Wisconsin Lutheran College Art & Craft Fair, Milwaukee
  • July 9-10: Art Fair on the Square, Capitol Concourse, Madison
  • July 16-17: Midsummer Festival of the Arts, John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Sheboygan
  • July 17: South Shore Frolics Festival of Arts, South Shore Park, Milwaukee
  • July 31: Art in the Park, City Park, Appleton
  • Aug. 6-7: Firefly Art Fair, Kneeland-Walker House, Wauwatosa
  • Aug. 13-14: Morning Glory Fine Craft Fair, Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, Milwaukee
  • Aug. 20-21: Oconomowoc Festival of the Arts, Fowler Park, Oconomowoc

Art Happenings

“Art Venture in Downtown Racine”

Racine Art Museum

This 5-9 p.m. June 18 event includes gallery openings, artist demonstrations and a 6:30 p.m. RAM gallery talk by art historian Patricia Briggs on the new exhibition “Field of Vision: Artists Explore Place.”


RiverEdge Gallery

184 Main St., Thiensville

RiverEdge Gallery presents the paintings of Madison artist Tom Berenz. An opening reception takes place 5-8 p.m. Friday, June 17.


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