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The Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery Presents: Thomas Buchs

Artist’s Statement

I attended Layton School of Art and became an Illustrator, creating artwork for advertising by many national and local companies during the last 46 years. During summers I exhibited at Art Fairs and also did Pastel Portraits.  Much of my current work is Plein Air Painting ( painting from life outdoors). I try to capture the light and atmosphere of a scene within a few hours. I believe that a painting is not just a two dimensional illusion, but also that of a moment in life, captured by an artist on canvas. I have found that while doing a painting outdoors I am immersed in the moment , what I mean is that later when I look at the painting I can remember all the things that went on as I painted, the weather, the birds singing, a small animal moving through the scene, people who have stopped to talk to me. The memories are all part of the painting.


My recent accomplishments in Plein Air Painting events include:

Best of Show and People’s Choice at Paint the Point Plein Air Event Mineral Point

1st place at 2014 New Berlin Plein Air Event Shorewood Historical Society Award

People’s Choice at 2014 Shorewood Plein Air Event

2nd place-2014-Theodore Robinson Plain Air Event- Evansville WI

3rd Place 2015 Paint the Point Winter Edition Plein Air Event – Mineral Point

Beloit College Patron of the Arts Award-2015 Beloit Friends of the Riverfront Plein Air Event

Honorable Mention – 2015-2016 Historic Third Ward Plein Air Event

2nd Place Nocturne at 2015 Paint the Point Plein Air Event – Mineral Point

Merit Award 2015 Between the Bluffs Plein Air Event- LaCrosse

1st Place Historical Evansville category at 2016 Theodore Robinson Plain Air Event

1st place 2016 Pewaukee Waterfront Art Fair Plein Air Event

People’s Choice at 2016 New Berlin Plein Air Event


Juried Art Exhibitions

Waukesha Art Fair – 2008 -2009-2011

Firefly Art Festival – 2008-2009-2012-2013-2014-2015

Milwaukee Domes Art Festival – 2010-2011-2012-2013

Hidden River Art Festival -2010-2011-2012-2013-2014

Plymouth Art Fair -2010-2011

The Little Show-Cedarburg -2011

Stevens Point Art Festival-2012-2013

Richfield Historical Society Art at the Mill- 2013 2014

National Oil and Acrylic Painters “Best of America” Show

Richeson 75 2013 Still Life and Floral Show 2 Finalist- 4 Meritorious

Richeson 75 2015 Small Works Show Finalist


Art Exhibitions and Awards:

Best of Show – 2013 Kenosha Art Fair

6 Time – Favorite 15% BoldBrush Online Competition

First Place -“Point of Color: The Wisconsin Plein Air Painters Association Juried Show,” at the Monroe Arts Center

2nd Place- 2015 “En Plein Air” Exhibit, The Lighthouse Art Center, Tequesta, FL

October 2015 Month long One Man Show at The Beloit Fine Arts Incubator

May -June 2016  One Man Show at The Schauer Center in Hartford, WI

Best of Show-Bauhaus Prairie Art Gallery January 2017 Online Show

Cramer’s Corner: We Are Marching Along With Another Great Month Of Entertainment!

Everyone marches to the beat of a different drummer but, lucky for you, we have something for everyone at WCT during the month of March.

We open our next Mainstage show, 33 Variations, next week.  This innovative and inspiring show focuses on a modern music scholar facing the end of her life as she studies the mysteries of Beethoven and the 33 variations of a simple melody he composed while facing the end of his.  The show runs March 10-26 with two Pay What You Can performances on March 11 at 7:30 pm and March 25 at 2:00 pm.  We will also have two talk backs with ALS specialists joining the cast and crew immediately after the performances on March 12 at 2:00 pm and March 19 at 2:00 pm.  And we will be selling raffle tickets for several amazing items including the always popular Discount Liquor Basket.


We have two auditions coming up this month.  Barefoot In The Park auditions will be held on Monday, March 13, and Tuesday, March 14, starting at 6:30 pm both nights. Kelly Goeller is directing. And Miscast auditions will be held on March 27 starting at 6:30 pm.  Meghan Hopper is directing.


Our next PIX Flix movie of the season will be Mr. Holland’s Opus on March 20 at 6:30 pm.  The cast of the movie includes Richard Dreyfuss, Glenne Headley, Jay Thomas, Olympia Dukakis, William H. Macy, Alicia Witt, and more.  All tickets are $5.00, and we have concessions available, including soda, water, beer, wine, cookies, beef sticks, and … wait for it … POPCORN!


Our spring fundraiser gala, Festival Of Fools, will be held at Westmoor Country Club on Saturday, April 1st.  We are thrilled to announce that our King And Queen of the festival will be Joel and Rebecca Kleefisch, and our emcee will be Vince Vitrano.  This will be an event you don’t want to miss, so get your tickets NOW!



Our current featured artist in the Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery in our lobby is a group of students from Waukesha South High School.  They were challenged to create art inspired by 33 Variations in only 33 days, and it is amazing!


Our 60th Season is on sale now.  Subscription packages for the Mainstage shows, and individual tickets for everything can be purchased now.  Please join us for the second half of our current great season of entertainment!


Registration is open for our A.C.T. spring and summer sessions, including our summer ACT production Disney’s The Lion King JR.


Just in case you missed it last month, our 61st season will include:

Sex Please We’re Sixty (directed by Peter Kao)

The Hunchback Of Notre Dame (an area premier directed by Mark E. Schuster!)

The House Without A Christmas Tree (an original adaptation by our own Doug Jarecki directed by moi)

The Complete Works Of William Shakespeare (abridged) (directed by Dustin J. Martin)

Clue: The Musical (directed by Ken Williams)

Wait Until Dark (directed by Kelly Goeller)

Father Knows Best (directed by Rhonda Schmidt)

Amazing, right?  Season Tickets will go on sale in May 2017.


Thank you to all of the generous donors that have supported us so far this season.  If you would like to donate, you can choose from any number of ways you could help us not only maintain, but thrive, as Waukesha’s Cultural Cornerstone.

Please Consider Giving …
* A gift to our Operating Fund

* A gift to our Spotlight On The Future Capital Campaign

* A matching gift through local sponsoring business employers

* A gift that will last a lifetime through your Will or Estate Planning

* A gift by donation to CARS

* A gift by shopping through Amazon Smile

* A gift by purchasing something on our Amazon Wish List

* Choose WCT as your Thrivent Choice charitable organization

* Become a Sponsor of outstanding performances and educational programs

On a personal note – my daughter, Elena Cramer, will be playing Annie Sullivan in The Miracle Worker at the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point March 3-5 and 9-11.  My son, Jude Cramer, will be playing Gomez Addams in The Addams Family at Waukesha South High School March 9-11.
I’ll see you at the theatre!

Cramer John 2006John Cramer

Managing Artistic Director

The Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery Presents: Kathleen Walter


Kathleen received her BA in Art Education at UW-Milwaukee and a Masters in Integrated Arts Education at Alverno College. She worked as an art teacher for 35 years in the West Bend public school system and then as an adjunct instructor in the Art Department at Alverno College for 8 years.

She has lived for the past 37 years with her husband on a 10 acre farm outside of Slinger, WI where she raises vegetables, sheep and chickens. This space affords her endless opportunities to continue exploring and discovering the marvels in nature and the intersections and collisions between nature and humankind.

Kathleen has created both individual and collaborative art installations.  Her work has been exhibited in numerous one-person shows as well as juried, group and invitational exhibitions around the state.

Artist’s Statement:

My work is reflective of my fascination with the natural world and the interconnectedness I see in all living things including the human race. Each piece tells a story reflecting my interpretation of events unfolding across continents and in my own space.  Through my story boxes I try to make sense of the incomprehensible things that are happening in this world. The maps that become a part of much of my collage work are, for me, a statement about the mistaken human belief that there is a way to divide, contain and control the earth and all it is composed of and record this with simple lines, symbols, charts and graphs.

My work incorporates natural materials and found elements to create a more direct link between the natural world and human interpretation.  I continue to explore these themes with an endless curiosity and desire to make sense of this world.

The Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery Presents: Jonathan Korotko



Art has been a vital part of Jonathan Korotko’s life from a very early age. He was always drawing, painting, or creating something throughout his youth which carried over into his college career. Jonathan is a recent graduate from Carroll University with a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts. After working in various medias he has found his niche in screen printing. His most recent body of work, Revival of Life, consisted of 11 prints in which Jonathan drew his inspiration from his journey to veganism. This journey was insightful for Jonathan and he experienced it as if it was his awakening. The natural world become his faith in a way. He strives to pay his respect to nature in his prints. They depict biblical stories that involve nature and the importance it plays in the bible. His goal is to submit his prints in Revival of Life to graduate schools to pursue his MFA in screen printing. Jonathan’s career goal is to eventual work in a higher educational setting, teaching his passion to enthusiastic individuals. Sharing his ideas and knowledge with others and having it reciprocated is what really drives him. He was always inspired by his professors who really pushed him to look deep inside himself to find his voice in art.

What inspires Jonathan is his experiences in life. He has been lucky enough to travel to many cultural Mecca’s throughout Europe, such as Paris, London, Florence, Munich, and Zurich. These opportunities allowed him to see many different facets of art from various periods. Jonathan references his travels in his art. He also pulls inspiration from places he wants to go but has not yet been. Africa is one of these places. In his current work Jonathan is inspired by Adinkra symbols of West Africa. These Adinkra symbols have emotional meanings behind them. In his newest work, Jonathan is referencing the emotions he finds in himself.


Artist’s Statement:

These past two years have pushed me to look deep inside myself to capture the essence of what drives me to create. A new lifestyle has inspired me to rethink my life personally and artistically. I am vegan and the journey to embracing veganism has opened my eyes to how truly important the natural world is to us, as humans. Plants are essential to our existence. They are critical to our health and overall well-being. They provide us with the air with breathe, the food we eat and are important for medicinal purposes. Their importance is timeless. We could not function without what plants give us. In this body of work, I want to pay homage and respect to the natural world.print-2

In doing my research on veganism I have developed, a great respect for what our plants provide us. I honor and respect nature. It has almost become my faith. The concept of faith and believing in something is inspiring for me. I currently do not practice a religion but my Catholic background has driven me to create this body of work. The images presented before you are my combination of paying honor to the natural world and relating the importance they play in Catholicism. I pulled much of my inspiration from Byzantine art focusing on Icons. I found it inspiring the way Byzantine art glorifies their Saints and figures of recognition. Halos frame their head showing their importance and holiness. I also looked at the way we honor our deceased. We praise them for who they were, what they gave to us, and our love for them. In my work, I focused on trees and plants at the end of their life. I want to honor the plants I have drawn or photographed for their importance and what they have given us. The natural world is our life giver and I want to give my thanks to nature with my art. Through veganism, I feel like I’ve been revived and this is just the beginning of a new chapter in my life.

The Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery Presents: Interfaith Lifetime Art Competition Winners

From November 11 through December 8, 2016, the Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery is proud to host the work of 25 winners of the Interfaith Lifetime Art Competition. There will be an Art Crawl from 4 pm to 10 pm on Saturday, December 3rd. The gallery is open during regular box office hours. Here is a little bit about each of the artists:


Bill Allen – Arches

After his retirement in 1999, Bill Allen had time to pursue his love of oil painting. He has taken class at the Peninsula School of Art and The Clearing in Door County, Barnsite Art Studio in Kewanee and with James Hemple in Milwaukee. All of these classes helped to develop his style. Many of his paintings were inspired by photos from his travels. Some of his paintings are exercises that inspired him because of their colors and compositions.


Carl Basco – Country Church

The influential quote by the famous Danish poet Piet Hein summarizes Carl’s passion for art:

“I am a humble artist

Moulding my earthly clod,

Adding my labour to nature’s,

Simply assisting God,

Not that my labour is needed,

Yet somehow I understand,

My Maker has deemed it that I too should have

Unmoulded clay in my hand.”


Kenneth R. Beierle – Timberline Bobcat

The Bobcat or Wildcat can lick his weight in wildcats. Looking like an oversized Tomcat, he gets the name Bobcat from his absurdly short tail, which twitches with excitement, hangs inert or sticks straight out. The adaptable Bobcat lives wherever there is enough forest or brush land to provide adequate cover and food. The Bobcat is an expert tree climber, but hunts mostly on the ground. He hunts rabbits, destructive rodents, game birds and anything else that crosses his path. He is 26-30 inches high and weighs 15-30 pounds. The Bobcat displays the sensory tools of a superbly equipped predator. Keen eyesight, sensitive whiskers and excellent sense of smell and hearing; aided by the antenna like tufts of hair atop the ears. Cats’ dislike of water can be overcome by a cat’s lust for prey. Cats specialize in the long stalk, followed by the sudden, deadly leap for the prey that can include fish. The Bobcat relaxes in a favorite tree and is a solitary creature, hunting and living alone except for the breeding season in the late winter and early spring.

Five year Art Program at Boys Technical Trade School. I have juried many art shows; been painting for 73 years and still learning. Painting is my way to express myself and is ever present in my thoughts.


P J Boylan – Dragon 1/10

PJ is a retired lawyer and award-winning photographer. She earned a certificate in Professional Photography from the New York Institute of Photography. Primarily interested in travel, her subject matter is eclectic. Her images are captured primarily during her world travels. “Dragon” however was created from an image she captured at the Milwaukee Art Museum.


William K. Davis – Cityscape Milwaukee

“Cityscape Milwaukee” was inspired by the city view from the Third Ward Riverwalk on a sunny summer afternoon. The watercolor painting captures a skyline made up of Milwaukee’s architecture of varying styles, masses, and heights reflected in the Milwaukee River below. A towering crane, busy on new construction, a city roadway with flanking bridge towers, and tall light standards provide horizontal and vertical accents to the urban scene.

After retiring from local architectural practice, I began watercolor painting in the fall of 2004, at the urging of my wife. My interest was sparked by introductory painting classes with watercolorist Alice Struck of Cedarburg and has grown through participation in a number of workshops including several springtime sessions on remote Washington Island with Bridget Austin of Green Bay. Watercolor and sketching have now become major interests. I am a member of the League of Milwaukee Artists, the Wisconsin Watercolor Society, the Cedarburg Artists Guild, and the Mequon Thiensville Senior Art League and have had the opportunity to participate in a number of one man and group exhibits.

I continue to be a student of the medium, hopefully growing in skill and understanding. I am always amazed at the simple beauty and free flowing potential of watercolor art.


Tom Halfmann – Bleu Jour

I have been doing this type of painting for a number of years. The idea for a painting might come from colors and shapes in architecture or nature, from moods created by a piece of music, or by the way summer-sunlight strikes a blank wall in late afternoon. I try to use line, color and angles to achieve a balance to my personal liking. I’ve always found a full-color palette to be a difficult juggling act, so I’ve drifted away from the reds and oranges, and use greens only occasionally. I find painting to be stress-reducing and stress-producing at the same time, uplifting and satisfying, and sometimes frustrating and demoralizing. I guess the same could be said about performing in a high school musical, learning to play guitar or in raising a family.


Michael Havice – Title: COME ON: Sandy – Big Bay – Lake Michigan

When I take a photograph I wish to prompt a viewer with feelings like, pleasure, pain, empathy, serenity, and perhaps desire. The image viewer creates a personal story derived from my image.

“COME ON: Sandy…” was taken in the morning of October 30, 2012. The winds were nearly howling and hurricane Sandy was pounding the Eastern Seaboard. Sandy’s torrents created a great deal of turbulence in Lake Michigan. I went to Big Bay Park in Whitefish Bay where I captured the 9am mood of the lake. I took many photographs of the turbulent lake that day.

I am a retired Associate Professor from Marquette University, Department of Broadcast and Electronic Communication. I served 6 years on the Board of Directors for the Coalition of Photographic Arts (CoPA), Milwaukee.



My painting, DOWNTOWN MILWAUKEE RIVER-1908 is a composite of scenes from numerous old photos. The view in the painting is northward from just south of the Michigan Avenue bridge. The skyline shows the towers of Milwaukee City Hall and the Pabst Building. The steamship depicted in the painting is the Christopher Columbus. It was the only passenger whaleback ship ever built. It could carry 4000 passengers. It was constructed in Superior, WI in 1823. After numerous mishaps it was scrapped in 1936. In the foreground are some local fishermen having a day on the river.

The medium is acrylic. Historical and nautical subjects feature in many of my paintings.


Judith Kaiser – Oak Leaf Trail III

As an artist and art educator, I have been involved in the arts throughout my life: curatorial assistant at the Milwaukee Art Museum; Art History lecturer at Mount Mary University; coordinator of art appreciation programs at local grade schools; juror or art critique presenter; and artist, exhibiting my work in area shows. My daughter Anne and I currently co-teach an art class for children.

My family and I walk the Oak Leaf Trail in every season, especially in autumn. This Pastel — Oak Leaf Trail III—reflects two major stylistic themes in my work — luminous color and dramatic light. Late afternoon is a favorite time — of strong cross-lighting and long shadows.


Vickie Kapellusch – Full Blossom

This is my first entrance to an art competition. I have been painting for four years under the guidance of Al Minzlaff, first with Oak Creek Park & Rec., now at the Wilson Senior Center.

Interfaith and the great group of fellow artists at Wilson have brought a wonderful adventure to my life. I wouldn’t have tried this without the encouragement of my fellow painter, my sister, Sue.


Charlotte Kovac – De-Vine

My painting is of the ubiquitous climbing vine some of us were given to care for and watch grow at the office, classroom, or home. I chose this painting for the show because it illustrates techniques taught in classes I have attended, such as glazing, watercolor, and working with pen and ink. Fortunately, the painted vine outlasted the real one.


Geri Laehn – Spence Farm/Milky Way

On dark clear starry nights I enjoy stargazing, searching the sky for the elusive Milky Way and the Aurora Borealis. Not often but on occasion I get lucky and have the opportunity to photograph both at the same time.

This image “Spencer Farm w/Milky Way” was captured on September 13th 2015. Spencer is located just north of Marshfield in Central Wisconsin.

About me….

I’ve been involved in Photography for the past 20 years.

Active member and past president of CoPA (Coalition of Photographic Arts) past board member and exhibitions chair for 5 years of CoPA, Current member of the Underwood Fine Art Photographers, Board member Wisconsin Area Camera Club Organization & Active member of the Wehr Nature Center Camera Club

Additional work can be seen at the PH Dye House in Milwaukee’s Third Ward, Boerner Botanical Gardens n Hales Corners, the Blue (the gallery at Reuss Federal Plaza) in downtown Milwaukee and the gallery at PDM (Prime Digital Media) in New Berlin, WI.


Susan M. Leopold – Puerto Rico Holiday

I’m a watercolor painter, \both studio and plein air. My favorite subjects are flowers and fruits. I’ve been painting seriously about 10 years and continue studies with two teachers in an open studio.

As a Father’s Day surprise present, I painted a portrait of my husband. I wanted to show him happy, relaxed and suntanned in an exotic location – the Rain Forest in Puerto Rico. As a reference, I used a photo taken on a hot, sunny day and sneaked peeks at him during a four month period. He kept changing his look: new glasses, a hair cut, trimmed his beard, lost the tan and lost weight! Each change created new problems for this painter – add the new grey hairs, keep the smile or not…

Eventually, I just painted my impressions of him, remembering a special happy day. He decided to share the painting and encouraged me to enter this show.


Judith D. Lesniewski – Surreal Forest

I entered the world of art through the world of Decorative Painting, which is a method painting program. I learned so many fine art principles from the many teachers I took classes from over the years. I progressed to wanting to paint my own creations and joined the AC Art Association many years ago and have benefitted greatly from their programs and critique meetings. The piece I entered into this competition is the result of the many years of classes, critiques and risk taking that I have experienced.


Terrance Nickasch – Skipping Church

This photograph is titled “Skipping Church” to add a little humor to show the fun they were having at the time. I was not able to record the sound, but they could easily be referred to as a “giggle” of nuns.


Thomas Pscheid – “Fresh Snowfall – Menomonee River”

“Fresh Snowfall – Menomonee River” is a digital photograph taken of the Menomonee River as it winds its way through Wauwatosa. The snow, clinging to the branches, contrast to the flowing river to make a spectacular yet soothing image.

Tom has exhibited his art throughout Wisconsin for over 20 years. He is a member of the League of Milwaukee Artists, Wisconsin Visual Artists, and the Wisconsin Designer Crafts Council.

Originally drawing in charcoal and painting in oils, he is a traditional landscape artist. Over many years, his photographs have been the inspiration for his paintings and drawings. Currently, he has been reexamining these photographs, and enhancing them on a computer. He has forged into photography as another means to express his view of the world we live in.


Carolyn Simpson – “By the Dawn’s Early Light”

“By the Dawn’s Early Light” is a watercolor panting developed from a picture I took on January 19, 2016 at the Lion’s Den Gorge Nature Preserve in Grafton, Wisconsin. The air temperature was below zero, and my camera froze shortly after the photo was taken.

I started taking watercolor painting classes under Chris Sommerfelt at the Wauwatosa Senior Center in 2008. I continue to read and study about every Milwaukee Public Library System book on watercolor. My work has appeared and won awards at group exhibits in the southeastern Wisconsin area through my associations with the Wauwatosa Artist Workshop, League of Milwaukee Artists, and Wisconsin watercolor Society. Four paintings have recently been part of the 20013-2015 Watercolor Wisconsin exhibits at the Wustum Museum in Racine.

I thank the Interfaith Older Adults Program and their sponsors for supporting the visual arts and encourage all ages to create!


Ralph Skudlarczyk – Temptation

This painting depicts the temptation that humanity faces on a daily basis. It is a battle of choice – either right or wrong, since the beginning of time. Nothing has changed.

I belong to Bay View Art Guild. Attended Layton School of Art- Milwaukee. Have been taking various art courses during my life. As a career I became an electrician and continued art as a hobby (stress relief hobby).Now, retired, I am able to have the time to express and create what I enjoy the most.


Robert A. Socher – Fallen Leaves

My name is Robert A. Socher, 78 years old, residing in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The inspiration for this piece was a casual walk through Jackson Park during the past fall season and attracted to the different leaf formations, the slight changes of color in each leaf from various tree species. So I tried to capture these shapes and colors with the use of colored pencils. The original art work is not for sale but I would consider copies at some future date.


John Sowinski – Girl by the Window

I have belonged to the Wauwatosa Artists Workshop (WAW) for five years and attend Thursday mornings at MATC – Oak Creek. I have been painting off and on for 12 years. I am amazed that with just paper and paint you can create anything that your mind can conceive – Just love it!


Betty A. Storey – “Color”

I have spent 30 years researching my family genealogy. After the publication of the lineage of my maiden name [ANDREWS] I decided to change direction in my life and use the other side of my brain!

Over the years, I have had interest in art. I had attended a Basic Drawing class at MATC in the early 1980s; a pastel figure drawing class in the mid 1990s. Through the years other responsibilities and interests seemed to get into the way of having a scheduled time to concentrate on art projects.

I signed up for the Drawing and Painting class at Wilson Senior Center two years ago. The instructor, Al Minzlaff, has guided me to keep trying, to pay attention to detail, watch ‘the lightest lights and darkest darks’ and to stay active and involved. This painting is a result of his encouragement.


Loni Theisen – “Our Lord and Savior”

The subject of this charcoal and pastel rendering entitled ‘Our Lord and Savior’, was initially drawn as a personal statement to visually depict, defend, and publically celebrate the Christian Faith in a time when Christian beliefs seem disrespected.

Initially it was executed purely in charcoal pencil. Red pastel was added afterwards to strengthen the message. The key word that’s repeatedly been expressed by its

audience is: ‘Powerful!’

Loni Theisen is a MIAD graduate. She has been freelancing as a graphic designer for 23 years and is now concentrating her abilities in fine art. She started this

transition donating charcoal portraits through her parish to families who had recently lost a loved one as a memorial gift from her church. She now renders portraits on commission and has her work displayed in the Underground Collaborative Art Gallery at the Grand Avenue Mall in downtown Milwaukee. Please come visit and see more of her work along with several other very talented and diverse artists that display there.


Patricia Wiedower – Glimpse of Door County

The title of my picture is “Glimpse of Door County”. The inspiration for my painting is a photograph I have of the Door County lakeshore. I used to go there often but I haven’t been there for quite a while. The picture reminds me of the many peaceful walks I took along that beach.


Richard Yerkey – “The Hunter”

  • Always interested in Art & Drawing
  • Started taking Art at M.A.T.C. shortly after retirement
  • Pen & Ink and Pastel are his favorites
  • Donates most of his work to schools and non profit organization fundraisers