Home / A&E / Visual Arts / A Modern Medievalist, Plein Air Enthusiast and Legend of Milwaukee Art Meet at the Cedarburg Art Museum

A Modern Medievalist, Plein Air Enthusiast and Legend of Milwaukee Art Meet at the Cedarburg Art Museum

Aug. 29, 2017
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A trinity of new exhibitions opens at the Cedarburg Art Museum on Thursday, Aug. 31.

“Michael Santini: Allegorical Journey” collects drawings, paintings and sculptures by the Mequon-based artist. Santini has embraced the label used by late Milwaukee Journal art critic James Auer to describe his style: “modern medievalist.” The artist’s canvasses are indeed touched by the fantastic and the frightening in a manner that recalls Hieronymus Bosch’s The Garden of Earthly Delights. But the 21st century has also left its indelible mark on his style. Santini’s mises-en-scène show the influence of Surrealism: His Boschian inventions are situated in the sort of placeless landscapes favored by Salvador Dali. The effect, as Auer would have it, is at once charmingly antiquated and surprisingly contemporary. 

“Joseph Friebert: Through the Years, 1945-2000” is a brief yet potent exhibition of nine paintings and two lithographs by the departed Milwaukee artist (1908-2002), which were gifted to the museum by the Joseph and Betsy Ritz Friebert Family Partnership and Kohler Foundation, Inc. The paintings find Friebert in different modes, from his representational and social realist paintings of the 1940s to his 1950s abstractions and through his landscapes and figurative works of the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.

Kathie Wheeler’s studio on a small farm in southwestern Wisconsin is the perfect spot for a plein air enthusiast. “Down a Country Road” exhibits nature paintings of the sort that won Wheeler the 2014 Cedarburg Plein Air Event best-of-show award.

The Cedarburg Art Museum will celebrate the three exhibitions with a party on Thursday, Aug. 31 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. (the summer beer garden will remain open until 8:30 p.m.). Santini and Wheeler will offer remarks about their respective exhibitions. The three exhibitions are on display through Nov. 5.

2017 Annual Members Show

Walker’s Point Center for the Arts

839 S. Fifth St.

The Walker’s Point Center for the Arts takes community engagement and creativity fostering seriously. The organization is exceptionally egalitarian in the curation of its annual members show, favoring a “submit it and we’ll show it” ethos to the more exclusionary, juried approach. With more than 150 works representing a wide range of media and installed salon-style throughout the galleries, the 2017 Annual Members Show is an opportunity to assess the state of the arts in Walker’s Point. The exhibition opens with a reception on Friday, Sept. 1, from 5-9 p.m. and is on display through Oct. 7.


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