McCaw and Budsberg: The Cleft and Shimmering Hour AND Ideal State
â€śThe Cleft and Shimmering Hour,â€ť is an exhibition of photographs, sculptural photographs, and video work by Shana McCaw and Brent Budsberg, in collaboration with filmmaker Tate Bunker.
The artistsâ€™ ongoing projects investigate subjective perceptions of the past, and the disparities between genealogy, archaeology, â€śofficialâ€ť history and the influence of Hollywood and popular culture. As in previous bodies of work, McCaw and Budsberg assume the roles of pioneering settlers, dressing in character to photograph or film themselves in various staged scenarios. Historical fact, they remind us, is never as substantial and authentic as it might seem.
A separate exhibition, â€śIdeal State,â€ť in the front gallery, features watercolor paintings of the Wisconsin landscape from the estate of Robert Lahmann (1923-2014). Like many post World War II vets, Lahmann returned from the war and attended college on the GI bill, graduating from the Layton School of Art, Milwaukee, in 1949 where he studied with Gerrit V Sinclair (1890-1955). While living on a hobby farm in Monches, Wi and raising a family, Lahmann worked at a variety of jobs including as a sculptor at the Milwaukee County Zoo. He eventually became a machinist at Milwaukee Electric Tool Corporation, retiring after 20 years.
Even while working full-time, Lahmann executed oil paintings as well as a series of about 400 plein-air watercolor studies done between 1970 and 1995. Before Lahmann headed to his second-shift job at Milwaukee Electric, he would hop in his Chevy Nova and drive into the country where he would park the car and paint the surroundings, often focusing on pastoral scenes, farm land, cows, country homes and the landscape.