Concordia's Art Gallery will open its 2020-2021 season part visitor-based and part virtual on Monday with four exhibits during regular gallery hours.

An attendant will be on hand to help visitors follow QR codes to interact with the artwork in the main gallery, as well as comply with university protocol regarding physical distancing, face mask requirements, and maximum numbers inside the gallery.

There is no customary Opening Reception for these first shows. Regular gallery hours are Monday-Thursday from 4-8 pm and Fridays and Sundays from 12-4 pm. All four exhibits, three of which are located in hallways adjacent to the main gallery, run through October 20:

  • “Witness: Myths of Creativity,” by fabric portraiture artist Rosy Petri will be featured in the main gallery.
  • “Art Just Because,” by Peggy McDowell, will hang in the 14 Frames Gallery that opened two years ago.
  • Graphic design majors from Concordia and The Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design will team up for an exhibit in the Student Gallery.
  • Ebony Whitson, a Concordia accelerated learning student, will have nearly 20 teapots on display in her show entitled, “For the Love of Teapots.”

“The arts are an integral part of our communities, and given the heavy burden we’ve all been facing I am so proud that Concordia is sponsoring these diverse and exciting exhibits representing Wisconsin artists that celebrate life and art, and coming together,” said Gallery Director Dr. Theresa Kenney, PhD, MFA, who’s been teaching at Concordia since 1997.

“My creations are designed to facilitate multimedia storytelling that invite participants into conversations about collective liberation,” said Petri, who was awarded the 11th Artist-In-Residence at Milwaukee’s Pfister Hotel in 2019, a nationally recognized collaboration that allows emerging artists to sell art as they learn. “I want people to have a personal immersion experience with my work, so sometimes it even comes with a soundtrack,” added Petri, a self-taught artist inspired by the art and architecture of churches and cathedrals.

Last Friday, the City of Milwaukee Arts Board named Petri one of two recipients of the Mildred L. Harpole Artist of the Year Award. Her work has been featured in shows at the Walker’s Point Center for the Arts in Milwaukee, the Racine Art Museum, the Zhou B. Gallery in Chicago, and the Trout Museum of Art in Appleton. Petri’s “MKE WI” series is currently being installed in the Milwaukee County Courthouse.

“A growing number of people are getting even more creative with their coping methods during the pandemic and they’re making art,” said McDowell. “Photography, music, painting and drawing are keeping people busy and distracted from the stresses of Covid. Studies show that spending just 45 minutes on an art project can relieve stress, strengthen critical thinking skills, and improve and sustain memory,” she added.

“I have teapots in my collection that range from beautiful, designer antiques with little or no value, to rare pieces from antique shops and estate sales,” said Whitson, who will graduate next May with a double major in Theology and Theological Studies. Owner and creative designer of Whitson Wonder Productions in Milwaukee, her display includes teapots given to her by friends, in addition to those purchased during trips to Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee. Each teapot is prominently displayed in her kitchen, reminding her of a day trip in 2014 with her then 12-year-old daughter that sparked the collection.

Whitson serves as publications editor of the Quaestus Journal, a student-led journal of CUW’s Batterman School of Business and CUAA’s Haab School of Business.

Concordia’s Fine Arts Gallery was founded in the mid 1980’s to educate, challenge and inspire the campus community as well as the public about the value of art. The free gallery is closed on Saturdays.



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