New Miller Art Museum Exhibition Celebrates the Garden

From the decorative handcrafted floral containers by potter Renée Schwaller and vivid post-impressionist floral painting by Franne Dickinson to an exquisitely detailed wooden container by fine art sculptor Tom Rauschke, a new exhibition exploring the garden debuts in the main gallery of the Miller Art Museum in downtown Sturgeon Bay on March 4 with a free reception and light refreshments from 3 – 4:30 pm. The public is invited to attend and meet and greet with exhibiting artists.

The Garden: An Artists Interpretation brings together more than 40 regional artists working in a wide range of art media focused on the subjects of connections, new life, plants and the landscape, providing a welcome respite from the depths of winter. The exhibit theme of gardens and gardening provided artists with a wide latitude in their responses.

“Artists were given the challenge to think outside the boundaries of the flowerbed or clay pot, to ponder the idea of what is in the garden, what is heard and seen there, and to consider an expanded use of the word garden,” said Museum Assistant and Guest Curator R. Michael Nitsch. “They were invited to consider the consolation as well as the stimulation a garden can provide, the opportunities for self-renewal, and the sensory pleasures of food and flowers.”

Many of the artists were influenced by gardens they raise themselves or the memories of their grandmother’s gardens. Each artist’s work depicts their particular view or vision of a garden, whether they work in metal, pastel, oil, wood, or ceramics and invites the question from viewers: how do you view a garden?

“The exhibit was shaped in many ways by Museum Assistant Michael Nitsch,” Curator Deborah Rosenthal explains. “An avid gardener himself, and appreciator of the natural world in all its forms, Michael has great technical knowledge of botany that he combines with his understanding of the solace and richness the natural world offers to people. The unique combination of his life view and his knowledge of Wisconsin artists were a guide for the development of the entire exhibition.”

The Garden: An Artist’s Interpretation continues at the Miller Art Museum through April 17, 2017. For more information, call 920.746.0707 or go to


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