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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Monday, Sept. 1, 2014

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In Arts & Entertainment

Eriks Johnson's wall painting on 39th and North Avenue. The painting is sponsored by The Last Word.

Public art dresses up Sherman Park area


IN:SITE, an organization that works with local artists to create public art in Milwaukee, has three upcoming installations, all in the Sherman Park area, as part of a year-long collaboration called VibranC.

Artists Stephanie Davidson and Georg Rafailidis will travel from Germany to install a piece called "Public Heat."

Davidson and Rafailidis collaborated with GreenHeat Technologies in Utah to create "powerblankets," primarily used at construction sites to help "cure concrete." Soon, they will mount these "powerblankets" outside the Sherman Park Community Association to keep people warm in the winter.

"Public art can be a public service. People can snuggle up to the façade during the chilly Milwaukee fall and winter," says Davidson.

Milwaukee County Parks and the Mary Ryan Boys & Girls Club partner with IN:SITE and artist Kamryn K. Boelk. Boelk's project features 200 feet of chain link fence in Sherman Park adorned with hundreds of plastic bags.

Teens from the Boys & Girls Club will help sort, prepare and then wrap recycled plastic bags into the fence. The plastic bags will be used to depict a panoramic horizon line dotted with natural symbols.

This will be oelk's first piece of public art.

Bridget Frances Quinn, a Texas-based artist, will mount "I've Just Seen a Face" at Sherman Perk Coffee Shop. Quinn will change the wording every month on two changeable letter signs, and IN:SITE associate Yesh Pavlik will coordinate gatherings where people will respond to the words.

"I will be using text to create brief glimpses of people who live in the neighborhood," says Quinn.

Also, IN:SITE curated temporary public art in the gateway of West North Avenue since May 2006. This fall, local artist Eriks Johnson will recreate a large-scale, wraparound wall painting. Johnson's goal is to blend diverse linear elements to create a visual moment.

"When our surroundings are radically changed and for an instant we can imagine ourselves existing in a world refreshed, vibrant and un-oppressed," he says.

The opening for the fall IN:SITE art projects takes place Saturday, Sept. 27, from 1:30 to 4 p.m.

Events include:

1:30-2:30 p.m. -- Reception at Sherman Park Community Association, 3526 W. Fond du Lac Ave., with all the artists discussing their work. In addition, Claire Odishoo, Director of the Northwestern Mutual Art Gallery at Cardinal Stitch University, will talk about Eriks Johnson's wall painting.

3-4 p.m. -- Artists will be at their installations to answer questions. Eriks Johnson at 3901 W. North Ave., Bridget Frances Quinn at Sherman Perk Coffee Shop, 4924 W. Roosevelt, Kamryn K. Boelk near the northwest corner of Burleigh and Sherman Boulevard in Sherman Park and Stephanie Davidson and Georg Rafailidis at Sherman Park Community Association.

Maps will be available on the IN:SITE Web site, at Sherman Park Community Association and Sherman Perk Coffee Shop.

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