Sunday, August 4, 2013

Temporary art: Restoring my faith in humanity

Buffalo Street between Water Street and Broadway, Milwaukee
Earlier this year, Milwaukee's Third Ward was chosen as one of America's top art places in the country.  How exciting!  The Third Ward is arguably my favorite place in the city, and I am glad it is getting deserved recognition.  In fact, I love some of the things that are popping up all over the city that remind me about some of the people that are working for good in the brew city.

I was walking through the Third Ward this week with all of the time in the world (Ref: The Week of Katie) and looked up to see, for the first time, the picture above painted on the side of a building.  I wasn't sure if I had missed it all this time by watching for traffic, but after a brief bit of research, I found out it was just finished in the last two weeks.  It became a reality by the ideas and support of Hanson Dodge Creative and Lululemon.  See the scoop here.

I love this type of pop-up art, conceptualized by the people that live and work right in that community.  This shows a commitment to where they spend their time, and sharing the same positive energy with the world.  Just think how many moments of impact a simple mural like this will have over time.

An impactful example of more temporary art in the city can be seen while driving down Fond du Lac Avenue where 16 locations of temporary art can be found.  Some are paintings on boarded up buildings, some are messages tied from bright streamers on chain link fences.  In one of the parts of the city that can most benefit from the positive message, I hope non-denizens make the trip down Fond du Lac Avenue as well to see what impact a small visual effort can make.  Click here to see more of the story.  Below is a map of the art stops.

Who are the ringleaders behind the temporary art beautifying these areas of the city with temporary art? In:Site Milwaukee. This is the same organization that brought us art on boarded up buildings in the Century City neighborhood off Capital Drive in 2011.  Artist Christopher Willey painted brightly colored animals with messages to address environmental issues in the neighborhood, and it was AWESOME.  I am proud to be in the city that is one of the best kept secrets in the Midwest for art and culture, if you know where to find it.

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