Monday, December 31, 2007

Sublime Spaces and Visionary Worlds

Went to the John Michael Kohler Arts Center in Sheboygan on Friday.

It was my first visit to this art center and the center is beautiful. The gallery spaces are great.

Saw the show Sublime Spaces and Visionary Worlds which focused on outsider art and people who filled their worlds with their own art. Some of the artists had training in art, but many did not. The exhibit was awesome.

Loy Allen Bowlin's Beautiful Holy Jewel Home

Loy Allen Bowlin from Mississippi called himself the "Original Rhinestone Cowboy" and filled his house and world with glitter and ornaments. His house was reassembled in the gallery and the walls were covered with glitter paintings. The ceilings were also loaded with glitter and suspended from them were hundreds of Christmas ornaments.

Mary Nohl's sculpture garden on the shores of Lake Michigan in a northern suburb of Milwaukee.

Mary Nohl's home sits right on Lake Michigan. We used to go see her sculpture garden as a family. Lots of people misunderstood her and her home and yard became known to many Milwaukee teenagers as the "Witch Lady's House".

Eugene Von Bruenchenhein's photograph of his wife Marie.

Von Bruenchenhein lived in a house in Milwaukee and with his wife Marie, transformed the house into a piece of artwork. Tiny chairs were made out of chicken bones and painted. Clay from a hole in the ground at State Fair Park was used to make ceramic crowns. He painted with oils and his anthropomorphic image of the atomic bomb has stuck with me. He was prolific and my favorite artist at the show.

I might have to take another trip to soak it all in before the show closes. Just wait until you see the artist made restrooms at the Center (Kohler makes bathroom fixtures)... That'll come in the future. Cool.

Today's quote comes from Goethe: Whatever you can do or dream, you can begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.

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