The MAS Project featured at ArtsECO Teacher Meet Up

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Lindsey Ballo, UWM School of Education wins the MAS Bundle.

Last night the MAS Project’s founder, Frank Juarez, presented on this project with a room full of art educators and pre-service students. He talked about how the project started, the intent behind it, the preliminary work, the selection process, studio visits, curriculum development, and  the dedicated people that helped make this project possible. It is hard to believe that this 3-year project is now finished. Over 5800+ miles were driven, 24 Midwest artists were interviewed, and 18 towns/cities were explored. 

A big shout out to the MAS team (Erika Block, Pat Ryan, and Jonathan Fritsch) for their commitment and hard work, Howard Leu (Walker’s Point Center for the Arts) and Josie Osborne (UW-Milwaukee/MAS artist) for their support, Joelle Worm (ArtsECO Program) for having this project featured in their teacher meet up, the Kohler Foundation, Inc for supporting this project financially, and Kris Bakke (NASCO) for her support for Year 2 & 3 MAS Publications printing. 

Photos by Cate Elsbernd


Courtesy of ArtsECO.

Check them out!


The MAS Publications is now being offered as a bundle package (Year 1 – 3) or each publication can be purchased separately. 

Click here to get your copy. 

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A MAS Update: Lori Elliott-Bartle

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The Midwest Artist Studios Project has spent the past three years traveling the Midwest interviewing 24 artists from 18 cities/towns. This project has been such a joy to create and to see how these artists have touched the lives of art students through online interactions, emails, and social media.

One of the areas we pride ourselves in is staying in touch with these artists and hearing what they are up to these days? For the next two-months the MAS Project will be spotlighting one of our 24 artists by sharing with you what they are doing in their studio as well as in their communities. 

All three of our MAS publications are now available online.

Click here to buy your copy today!

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LORI ELLIOTT-BARTLE

2016 MAS artist from Nebraska

MAS: In what ways have you benefitted from your participation in MAS?

LEB: By participating in MAS, I’ve felt more comfortable saying ‘yes’ to teaching opportunities, including leading fast-paced workshops at the local art museum to introduce K-12 teachers to new materials and approaches, having 6-11th grade Girl Scouts come to my studio to make paintings for a fundraising auction, and expanding an occasional Saturday-afternoon adult painting workshop to allow for more interaction and feedback. It’s also been wonderful to see all the artists who are already part of the project and to learn from their perspectives on their art and careers. I’m looking forward to meeting some of them in Milwaukee next month and to see what possibilities emerge from the conversations. 

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MAS: In what ways has your work and/or working environment changed since your MAS interview?

LEB: I continue to work in my third-floor studio, where I have big east-facing windows that let me see a good piece of sky above brick warehouses. I never tire of seeing ways the light changes that view. Right now I have a brand-new supply of birch panels ranging in size  from 30×30” to 8×8” that need attention. Ideas that percolate in the back of my mind during the quiet winter are about to emerge into reality. 

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MAS: What is one thing you wish you’d said in your original interview, or what is the one thing that you hope the MAS audience remembers about your and your work?

LEB: If you have a judging, fearful voice in your head, figure out ways to quiet it. I do this by taking walks, riding my bike, laughing with friends, experimenting without attachment to an outcome. For me, the quieter that voice is, the happier and more productive I am. 

Visit Lori’s website to see more of her work.

All images copyright of the artist and used with permission.

A MAS Update: Josie Osborne

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The Midwest Artist Studios Project has spent the past three years traveling the Midwest interviewing 24 artists from 18 cities/towns. This project has been such a joy to create and to see how these artists have touched the lives of art students through online interactions, emails, and social media.

One of the areas we pride ourselves in is staying in touch with these artists and hearing what they are up to these days? For the next two-months the MAS Project will be spotlighting one of our 24 artists by sharing with you what they are doing in their studio as well as in their communities. 

All three of our MAS publications are now available online.

Click here to buy your copy today!

_________________________________________________________________

JOSIE OSBORNE

2014 MAS artist from Wisconsin

MAS: In what ways have you benefitted from your participation in MAS?

JO: I went up for Indefinite status (a tenure-like review process for Teaching Academic Staff) in my job at the University this past year and having the involvement in MAS and the publication exposure was good for me in that regard.

I have also gotten to know some new artists being a part of a cohort of artists who are committed to supporting art education.

I was a nice little shot in the arm for me in terms of my studio work, documenting my process, stepping back to think about what I do (step by step) and how I do it, was opportunity for reflection.

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MAS: In what ways has your work and/or working environment changed since your MAS interview?

JO: My work has grown and my working environment has contracted (due to state budget cuts to higher ed) while the work load has increased intensely. So carving out time to do the work has been more difficult. But MAS involvement has helped me to make that more of a priority.

MAS: What is one thing you wish you’d said in your original interview, or what is the one thing that you hope the MAS audience remembers about your and your work?

JO: I think that the MAS interview and project focused more on assemblage and box structures, because of the piece that I was working on at the time. But my work is also really informed and driven by a very basic human collage impulse that is connected to/the visual equivalent to poetry making. I also use printmaking processes as a way to make marks along with other approaches to mark-making.

I believe that poem writing or visual poetic object making will have an increasing relevance in these wild times of confusion, disbelief, change and upheaval.

Visit Josie’s website to see more of her work.

All images copyright of the artist and used with permission.

A MAS Update: Jane Ryder

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The Midwest Artist Studios Project has spent the past three years traveling the Midwest interviewing 24 artists from 18 cities/towns. This project has been such a joy to create and to see how these artists have touched the lives of art students through online interactions, emails, and social media.

One of the areas we pride ourselves in is staying in touch with these artists and hearing what they are up to these days? For the next two-months the MAS Project will be spotlighting one of our 24 artists by sharing with you what they are doing in their studio as well as in their communities. 

All three of our MAS publications are now available online.

Click here to buy your copy today!

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JANE RYDER

2014 MAS artist from Iowa

MAS: In what ways have you benefitted from your participation in MAS?:  

JR: It’s been nice keeping in touch with the MAS crew. I’ve benefitted most from the Skype conversations and critiques I’ve had with Frank’s students. It’s a pretty amazing thing to see how students interpret your work with their own voices. And equally wonderful to see the art they create based off of your project.

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MAS: In what ways has your work and/or working environment changed since your MAS interview?

JR: The art center where I had my studio had to move for financial reasons. So, I haven’t had a studio outside of my home in a while. We haven’t opened up the new place yet (although it is in the works and should happen within the next few months!).
My work has changed quite a bit. I decided I was getting too tight with my approach and decided to loosen up a bit. The new stuff has a more flowy and gestural feel (although it’s not gestural by any means, just less rigid). I’ve been drawing a lot, pen and ink stuff. Designing t-shirts. Trying to have fun. I’d like to start a new body of paintings soon.

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MAS: What is one thing you wish you’d said in your original interview, or what is the one thing that you hope the MAS audience remembers about your and your work?  

JR: I wouldn’t change much about my interview. One exception, I said how important it is to have a studio outside your home. Having a studio outside your home is great but sometimes out of your control (as I learned with the relocation of our art center). I’ve been doing just fine creating works in my home. So, the studio is where the heart is and that can be anywhere.

As for the MAS audience. I want them to know how important it is to constantly be on the search for inspiration. Carry a sketchbook, take notes, savor those tiny moments of beauty and then make some art about it. We worry about artist blocks, we worry about our next body of work, we worry no one will like our stuff, we worry too much. We need to remember to enjoy what we’re doing because that’s what it’s all about. Enjoyment and making a statement.

Visit Jane’s website to see more of her work.

All images copyright of the artist and used with permission.

Walker’s Point Center for the Arts hosts Midwest Artist Studios Group Show

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

February 6, 2017

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Exhibition Announcement

Walker’s Point Center for the Arts hosts 

Midwest Artist Studios Group Show

March 3 – April 1, 2017

Opening reception: Friday, March 10, 5:00–9:00 pm

 

Milwaukee, WI – Walker’s Point Center for the Arts (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 and a team of professionals including a writer, photographer, and videographer 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. This research provided the basis for the three volumes of rich curriculum resources and three catalogues.

Emmy Lingscheit (IL), Cover the Earth

Emmy Lingscheit (IL), Cover the Earth

The project creates a dynamic resource for K-12 students and art educators, drawing from current art practices of participating artists and using those practices to develop curriculum that is relevant, current 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 or direct access to contemporary artists who are breaking new ground.

During Juarez’s studio visits, he and his team documented each of the artists’ studio environments, their process, and discussed 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.”

Jenniffer Omaitz (OH), Shaping Space

Jenniffer Omaitz (OH), Shaping Space

The MAS Group Show will feature artwork by 15 M.A.S. 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 Frank Juarez, with assistance from Josie Osborne and WPCA’s Howard Leu.

For more information, visit: midwestartiststudios.com and wpca-milwaukee.org

Walker’s Point Center for the Arts is a nonprofit organization in support of visual and performing arts and youth arts education. The center fosters creativity in children through innovative, hands-on education and encourages audience development and artistic talent with a diverse blend of programming. Our exhibitions, which features both regional and national talent, encourages thoughtful social dialog and community engagement.

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A MAS Update: Jason Ackman

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The Midwest Artist Studios Project has spent the past three years traveling the Midwest interviewing 24 artists from 18 cities/towns. This project has been such a joy to create and to see how these artists have touched the lives of art students through online interactions, emails, and social media.

One of the areas we pride ourselves in is staying in touch with these artists and hearing what they are up to these days? For the next two-months the MAS Project will be spotlighting one of our 24 artists by sharing with you what they are doing in their studio as well as in their communities. 

All three of our MAS publications are now available online.

Click here to buy your copy today!

_________________________________________________________________

Jason Ackman

2015 MAS artist from Illinois

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MAS: In what ways have you benefitted from your participation in MAS?

JA: I have personally benefited from my involvement with MAS in a variety of ways.  The project has introduced and connected me with a bunch of artists in my region of the US.  Artists that I would most likely not known about had I not been involved with the work of MAS (Thank you!).  

It has given me more opportunities to not only talk and share info about the work I do but the work of other outstanding and fascinating artists in the Midwest.  This is a welcomed change since often times it seems that “real artists” are located in the major cities in the US, specifically out west and east.  

I also believe it has given me a boost of confidence and encouragement knowing that a project like MAS is interested in telling some of my story as an artist.  Not only as an artist, but an artist from the part of our nation that is often times overlooked when it comes artists making meaningful, significant work. 

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MAS: In what ways has your work and/or working environment changed since your MAS interview?

JA: My studio work has drastically changed over the past year.  Shortly after the MAS team visited my studio I held my first solo exhibit.  Once that exhibit closed my studio practice took a major shift.  My practice has now become more about the social and community interaction with the arts.  I have spent very little time making work or objects that would be seen in an exhibit.  Instead, I have been focusing my energies on developing a local arts and cultural center as well as renovating a historic brick mansion (in a rural town of 150 people) into a future artist residency program. Although I have not been making work in the traditional sense, this new “work” has evolved into a practice of sorts.  The communal aspect of creating has become more of a focus for me. 

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MAS: What is one thing you wish you’d said in your original interview, or what is the one thing that you hope the MAS audience remembers about your and your work?

JA: There are so many things I would have liked to have said 🙂  I don’t even know where to begin. 

Visit Jason’s website to see more of his work. 

All images copyright of the artist and used with permission.

ARTSPEAK RADIO live with Midwest Artist Studios Project founder, Frank Juarez, MAS artists Joe Bussell and Larry Thomas

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Text and audio courtesy of Artspeak Radio. 

This interview was aired on August 17 at noon. 

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MAS artists, Larry Thomas and Joe Bussell — Photo courtesy of Maria Vasquez Boyd

Founder of Midwest Artist Studio (MAS) Frank Juarez joins Maria by phone with artsts/educators Joe Bussell, and Larry Thomas. 

Frank Juarez-Art Educator + Founder Midwest Artist Studios-MAS, “The project I designed is called the Midwest Artist Studios (MAS) Project. This project connects two areas-contemporary art and art education. The thought of traveling the Midwest and the idea of visiting studios was overwhelming. I knew I would not be able to do it alone so I was able to put together a team of art enthusiasts, Erika Block, writer, photographer Pat Ryan, and Jonathan Fritsch assistant.”

The Midwest Artist Studios™ Project is a three summer project established by a Wisconsin high school art educator, Frank Juarez. A team consisting of a photographer, writer, and assistant will travel the Midwest visiting contemporary visual artists who embrace the importance of Art Education, believe that their art experience was influenced or shaped by their K-12 Art Education and are following their artistic dream of art making. These visits will encompass a close and personal approach into the studio life of an artist. Artists will not only talk about their engagement in their art processes, but also discuss their rigorous work schedule, daily commitments, work ethic, artistic vision; to name a few.

After each summer the MAS Team will be creating a catalog and a curriculum workbook, which will contain lesson plans that compliment and reinforce the artists’ contemporary art practices. These lesson plans can be used to reinforce, supplement, or become an art curriculum for grades 6-12. A blog will house the MAS Team’s journey, behind the scenes footage, reflections, and photographs.

Our audience is very diverse just like this project. The Midwest Artist Studios™ Project will benefit anyone interested in Contemporary Art, Art Education, technology, social media, National Visual Arts Standards, and Literacy. We envision public, private art educators, home schools, core educators, IMC specialists, administration, districts, artists, professors and students utilizing this resource.

Artsts/educators from Kansas Joe Bussell and Larry Thomas, Karrie Dieken (North Dakota), Sharon Grey (South Dakota), Judy Boyer, Rachel Mindrup and Lori Elliott-Bartle (Nebraska), participated in the current MAS project.

Click the image to access interview

Click the image to access interview

Click here to hear the interview with Frank, Joe, and Larry.