I left on Wednesday after school to go to the WAEA convention in Sheboygan! I love going to the art ed conventions, as it is such a great way to recharge the art teacher batteries, get new ideas and great free art supplies. Heaven knows we love a free art supply! :)
I had never been to Sheboygan before, but had heard it is quiet lovely and man that was so true. What a great little town it is. The downtown is gorgeous, and the lakeside parks are wonderful. I didn't get to shop much, but there appeared to be plenty of that as well. I'll get to the photo ops in a second. The only drawback is that was one heck of a long drive and don't even get me started on the road construction in Green Bay!! ugh!!! I have learned the joys of using GPS, I am sometimes not a very quick study. HA!
I got the wonderful opportunity to go and tour the James Tellen Woodland Sculpture Garden on a very lovely Thursday morning, before a big ole front came in and dropped us into wintery type temperatures. It is an outsider artist environment- a place where a self-taught artist created and displayed his sculptures. This particular one has its sculptures in basically the same places that they were originally made, which isn't always the case. The Garden is maintained by the John Michael Kohler Foundation, which has a great museum in the city of Sheboygan. These first pictures are from the Tellen Sculpture Garden. I love the way that the artist was able to sculpt very realistic faces and bodies out of the concrete. He probably cast them in the dirt like many of these craftsmen did. He was far more skillful in that regard, much less primitive than other examples, such as Fred Smith's work.
Outsider art is something that I have sort of unwillingly (at first) obtained a fairly large body of knowledge! When I first moved up to Park Falls back in the day, I was mildly amused and totally offended by the Concrete Park art work. I knew nothing about outsider art and only saw the naivety of the form, not the story behind it. I hold much appreciation for it now that I have studied it, read about it, wrote extensively about it, and now am trying to expand my exposure to the different art environment sites around the state. I try to get my students to the Park in Phillips every year, as they really need to know the importance of this local landmark that is known all over the United States. Incredible, but true. It is good for all of us to see art in unexpected places and in unexpected form.
|Fence at the entrance of the Tellen|
|Native American woman and child|
|Bears on a trunk- gate|
|Part of a functioning mill house that is set up a few times per year|
|small vignette of people|
|Part of the log cabin that was built by Tellen|
|Tellen made metal light fixtures for the house|
|Walk in the woods to discover the statues|
|Last of the leaves|
|Beauty in russets|
|statuary that inspired Tellen to begin|
|One of the sinks|
|Tiles in the ladies bathroom|
|Part of one of the exhibitions|
|Late morning color and waves|
|Later in the day color and waves|
|beautiful fence and steps|
|curls on the lake|
This was definitely a joyful trip!
Even got to hear Yoda on a friend's GPS! You just never know what will happen some days!
Until next time..... be a joy giver!