Artists Led Professional Development Day
Professional mural artist Fred Kaems, teamed up with AWE and other community artists to learn more about large-scale public art projects. The group then completed a mural on a blighted property on 35th and State Street – in 6 hours
Near West Side Partners asked AWE if they could find artists to construct a mural on a city-owned blighted property on the heavily-trafficked corner of West 35th and State Streets. AWE agreed, but wanted to do more than a mural. “We wanted to have a larger impact in the larger arts community in Milwaukee but we had a two-week start to finish timeline to work with,” said Beth Haskovec, AWE executive director who was a part of the initial NWSP meeting.
ist-In-Residence program director, John Kowalczyk, who is also a well-known and respected community artist. John contacted his friend, and fellow artist Fred Kaems to see if he’d be interested in leading an artist-to-artist professional development day which w
ould culminate in a public art mural. Fred was on board immediately and plans went into action. AWE spread the word on Facebook, and soon enough more than 10 community artists signed up to participate! During the day-long workshop, artists learned the ins-and-outs of working with community partners like AWE, NWSP and navigating city government, BIDs, and responding to RFPs by organizations. The building, located at 964 N. 35th is currently owned by the city of Milwaukee, but up for sale, all involved are hoping the mural attracts buyers to see the potential inside.