By Matt Mueller Culture Editor Published Mar 07, 2023 at 6:01 PM

April showers bring May flowers – but thanks to the Milwaukee Art Museum, you don't have to wait all the way until May for fabulous flowers with the return of its Art in Bloom spring celebration. 

Blossoming at the museum April 20-23, the annual event brings in more than two dozen floral designers to create special natural art installations inspired by pieces found in the MAM galleries – this year including Sam Gilliam's draped canvas painting "Carousel Merge 2," Alexander Calder's "Red, Black, Blue," Gaetano Cusati's "Still Life with Fish," Tara Donovan’s "Bluffs," and Pablo Picasso's "The Cock of Liberation (Le Coq de la Liberation)." The floral art interpretations aren't entirely just for show, as they will compete for judges awards – given out at 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 20 – as well as people's choice awards revealed throughout the festive weekend on the museum's website

In addition to the new botanic pieces, MAM's Windhover Hall will host an indoor garden with live music throughout the weekend, a spring-themed pop-up shop, the ability to make your own artwork at the Kohl's Art Studio and beverages at locations throughout the museum. Plus, new for this year's edition, Art in Bloom will host an after-hours floral fashion party on Friday, April 21 from 7-10 p.m., featuring even more (and even bigger) bonus blooming designs from local artisan and artists. 

Here's the list of florists participating in this year's Art in Bloom exhibitions:

  • Alfa Flower Shop
  • Alt's
  • Avenue Bloom
  • Bank of Flowers
  • Bayside Floral Design / Bayside Garden Center
  • Belle Fiori, Ltd.
  • Bonnie White Flower Design
  • Flora Elements
  • Flowers for Dreams
  • Ikebana International Milwaukee Chapter #22
  • Jaimer's Floral
  • Kathy's 2nd Chance Plants
  • KT Rush Floral Design
  • La Terre
  • Locker's Florist
  • Roundys 
  • Sendik's Food Market / Sendik's Home 
  • Shady Lane Greenhouse
  • Sweetpea Enterprises LLC
  • The Botanical Collective
  • The Flower Garden
  • Two Mikes Art Factory
  • Unordinary Omen Floristry 
  • Waukesha Floral & Greenhouse
  • Whitefish Bay Garden Club
  • Zinndahlia Designs

"We're thrilled to welcome some of the best floral designers in the Milwaukee area to the Museum to design exceptional floral installations inspired by major artworks on view in the galleries," said Courtney Kihslinger, Milwaukee Art Museum Director of Stewardship and Events, in a release.

"We look forward to welcoming visitors to Art in Bloom at the Milwaukee Art Museum, when the galleries come alive with vibrant floral creations inspired by beloved works from our collection," said Marcelle Polednik, Donna and Donald Baumgartner Director, Milwaukee Art Museum, in the release. "We enjoy celebrating the beginning of spring every year with this delightful event."

Art in Bloom will be open at the Milwaukee Art Museum from 9 a.m. until 8 p.m. on Thursday and from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Friday through Sunday. (On Thursday, the full floral art pieces will not be finished until after noon – but those attending before 12 p.m. can watch the designers assemble and perfect their works firsthand.) The Kohl's Art Studio will also be available from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. 

Timed entry tickets for both Art in Bloom and Friday's floral fashion party will go on sale to the public beginning Thursday, March 9, with museum members getting early access to admission through Wednesday, March 8. Tickets cost $31 for adults; $25 for students, seniors aged 65 and older, military members and Wisconsin K-12 teachers; and $10 for MAM members. Kids ages 12 and younger are free.

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit the Milwaukee Art Museum's website

Matt Mueller Culture Editor

As much as it is a gigantic cliché to say that one has always had a passion for film, Matt Mueller has always had a passion for film. Whether it was bringing in the latest movie reviews for his first grade show-and-tell or writing film reviews for the St. Norbert College Times as a high school student, Matt is way too obsessed with movies for his own good.

When he's not writing about the latest blockbuster or talking much too glowingly about "Piranha 3D," Matt can probably be found watching literally any sport (minus cricket) or working at - get this - a local movie theater. Or watching a movie. Yeah, he's probably watching a movie.