March 3 – April 1, 2017
Opening reception: Friday, March 10, 5:00–9:00 pm
WPCA is proud to host the first Midwest Artist Studios™ Group Show, opening on Friday, March 3. The Midwest Artist Studios™ (MAS) project is the brainchild of artist, gallerist and art educator Frank Juarez. Marking its third year in 2016, Juarez traveled throughout the Midwest, over 5800 miles and 18 cities/towns, visiting artists at their studios to document and learn about their art and process.
The project creates a dynamic resource for K-12 students and art educators, using current art practices from artists and using those practices to develop curriculum that is relevant, concurrent and innovative. The project answers the criticism in art education of relying on decades-old curriculum, teaching the historic masters of art, e.g. dead artists, and not providing students context on contemporary artists who are breaking new ground.
During Juarez’s studio visits, he and his team document each of the artists’ studio environment, their process, and discuss what it is to be a working artist, including work schedule, work ethic, creative stimulation, what drives them, and much more. The content is published in a yearly volume along with a workbook with curriculum created based on each artist’s practice.
“This project began with a need within my art curriculum. I never imagined the impact that it has on secondary art education, regional artists, and the Midwest,” said Juarez. “What started as an idea developed into a resource that archives talented artists living in our region as well as working along these artists who embrace art
education, inspiring the artists of tomorrow, and demonstrating that one can be successful living and working in their own community.”
The MAS Group Show will feature artwork by 15 MAS participating artists between 2014-16. The artists are Jason Ackman, Jessica Anderson, Emmy Lingscheit from Illinois; Joshua Wilichowski from Minnesota; Lori Elliot-Bartle, Jody Boyer, Rachel Mindrup from Nebraska; Karri Dieken from North Dakota, Jenniffer Omaitz from Ohio, Jane Ryder from Iowa, Larry Thomas from Kansas, Suzanne Torres from Madison, Wisconsin; and Todd Mrozinski, Josie Osborne, Paula Schulze from Milwaukee.
The exhibition is curated and coordinated by Juarez, with assistance from Josie Osborne and WPCA’s Howard Leu.