Originally from Toledo Ohio, Tom Smith has lived in the Milwaukee area since 1981.
His art training consisted of lessons at the Toledo Museum of Art in 3rd through 5th Grades and then in High School. After one class in college in 1977, he essentially stopped painting.
He went on to earn a Master of Music Degree after moving to Wisconsin and became a professional cellist. He plays in the Milwaukee Ballet Orchestra and has been Principal Cellist of the Festival City Symphony since 1985. He also taught 1st Grade for 15 years in Wauwatosa.
In 2012, Tom began oil painting again after he left his teaching career. Three years later he began painting “En Plein Air”, which is painting outdoors, “on site”. He has since participated in many plein air events in Wisconsin, won awards, and was instrumental in planning the League of Milwaukee Artists first “West Bend Plein Air and Paint the Market” competition which was held in August of 2018.
He is a member of many art organizations, including: The League of Milwaukee Artists, The Wauwatosa Artists Workshop, Fine Art Montage, The Rogues Artist Group, WIPAPA (Wisconsin Plein Air Painters Association), and The American Impressionist Society
He has exhibited his oil paintings in many local venues and had several solo shows including at the Wauwatosa, WI Public Library, North Shore Presbyterian Church (Shorewood, WI) Bridgetowne Gallery (Wauwatosa, WI), and Art and Soul Gallery (Milwaukee, WI).
Awards have included:
2015 WAW Fall Show Honorable Mention
2017 LMA Winter Show Honorable Mention
2017 WAW Winter Show Award of Merit
2017 Cedarburg Plein Air Competition 2nd Place Award
2017 LMA Fall Show Honorable Mention
2017 Plymouth, WI “Paint the Towns Plein Air” Honorable Mention
2018 Arbor Place (Menomonie, WI) Plein Air Competition 2nd Place Award
2018 Jerry Goldstein Foundation Artist Merit and Achievement Award
2018 New Berlin (WI) Plein Air Honorable Mention
Fusion.art 2nd Season Quarterly Art Exhibition 4th Place Award
Juried Exhibitions and Plein Air Competitions have included:
“GALEX 52 National Exhibition and Competition”, Galesburg. Ill 2018
“The Modern Landscape” at Redline Gallery, Milwaukee, 2018
Taliesin Plein Air 2018 (Invitational)
“Water Works” 24th Annual Juried Exhibition, Plymouth (WI) Arts Center
In my childhood, there were dreams. I would paint. I would make beauty. Always present though: a shadow. Even my name was hateful to me.
Then, childhood passed. There would be no beauty. There would be other things, though. Wonderful things: love, children, a career. Yet hiding in that shadow would be the art, the beauty.
There was a crash. I was unmoving. I was lost in the darkness. Until slowly, emergent, it finally came: the art.
You see, I have suffered from severe anxiety and depression for much of my adult life. The shadow blocking out the beauty. Then the finding: Asperger’s. Mild but present-and that knowing brought light.
One of my favorite quotes is by writer James Agee: “…and who shall ever tell the sorrow of being on this earth, lying on quilts, on the grass, in a summer evening, among the sounds of the night.”
Life was for a time, for me, full of sorrow. A sorrow I wanted to end; tried to end. Painting brought me out of this darkness. When I was in the hospital, the one book I brought along was about oil painting. When I returned home, I began to paint. Therapy, one could say, but also a renewal of my childhood dreams.
I began to realize that I love “being on this earth” and knowing that I am a part of its wonder. Yet I also know, like James Agee, that time is fleeting, and so I try to capture the beauty of this world in paint.
I hadn’t painted much since I was young, but now I began to see it as a way to a new life. I wanted to be an artist, and so I painted, painted landscapes, painted our Earth.
I found other artists, I joined art groups. I painted.
Being a painter has brought me into the light in so many ways. Sometimes being in it can be hard for me. I still struggle, I don’t know how or what to say. But painting has saved my life. I can look and say here, that’s me. My name is Tom Smith, and I am an artist.
Susi Schuele is a self-taught abstract artist. Raised in the Northwest suburbs of Chicago, she now lives in the Town of Lisbon, Wisconsin with her husband, Chuck and their two very spoiled dogs and studio mates, Stardust and Hanna.
Susi has been creating in some way since she was a child. She is self-taught, beginning with acrylic paint and drawing. She has been creating abstract art with colorful stains on wood since approximately 2015.
Susi has attained her technical abilities from studying the works of artists she admires, such as O’Keeffe, Van Gogh and Monet. She is always experimenting with tools and mediums to achieve her desired effect.
“Creating colorful art on wood has refocused my perspective toward the lighter, happier, positive side of each new day. And…I have seen the same effect on people when they view my art work! Their wide smiles reach their eyes. Their expressions as they realize that each of my signature pieces are stain on wood and not paint is always a powerful, joyful reaction, both to them and to me.”
Schuele was nominated for the “People’s Choice” award in the ArtisTTable 2017 Women’s Exhibition online. She a member of many art communities and associations, including the League of Milwaukee Artists among others. She has been represented by the Gallery of Wisconsin Art (GOWA) in West Bend, Wisconsin since 2017 and Woodland Studios in Stoughton, Wisconsin since 2018. She has exhibited at prestigious exhibitions for abstract and contemporary art at GOWA and was featured in the One of a Kind Spring Art Show Fine Art Gallery in Chicago, IL in 2018 and 2019.
Words cannot describe my art. Emotions tell a bigger story. I tell my stories through vivid color inspired by all forms of nature, my imagination and music. My “Second Touch” from God has arrived and my lifetime desire to create and “be myself” is fulfilled.
I like to create art with a magnetic appeal. Art that draws you in. It says “Come closer. Tell me what you see. Tell me how you feel. I want to be what you need me to be.” Visual inspiration is a beautiful garden bursting in Spring, breathtaking sunsets glowing with orange, the subtle but sublime metallic golds and coppers in Raku pottery, the magnificent Rainbow Eucalyptus tree or the beaming contrast and glitter of colorful elements of nature such as geodes. When creating on various wood panels, the grain of the wood is oftentimes perfect inspiration alone.
Abstract brings my world and your world together by allowing each individual to see and feel their own story. From a primary emotion of a color-infused visual to secondary emotions evoked by “hearing” the music or remembering the lyrics from the piece’s carefully researched song title, this art will connect you to the experience of a memory in another time in your head and heart each time you view it. I achieve incredible depth in my work and bring a little more of my soul into each painting by titling them with song. My love of music is only surpassed by my love of art. As a result, my paintings evoke a powerful emotional effect on viewers from every sense. Joy, curiosity, maybe even dark.
My art is unique because I am currently the only artist in the country creating fine art on wood with colored stains. Most always, I use only my hands, but on occasion I work with a brush for detail and include other mediums such as alcohol ink in my work.
Francis Annan Affotey was born and raised in Accra, Ghana. After graduating from Ghanatta College of Art and Design winning Best Student of Still Life, Best Imagination and Composition, and Best Abstract Drawing awards, Annan joined the Revolution Art Organization and displayed his work in several group and solo exhibitions in Accra. In 2013, Annan helped found the African Young Artist Organization (AYAO), an organization dedicated to supporting African youth in the arts through programs and exhibitions. Since coming to the United States, Annan has displayed his work around Wisconsin, New York, and Miami, was a Pfister Artist-in-Residence finalist, and has worked in Milwaukee Public Schools with Arts@Large.
As a child in Accra, “poses” were part of daily life. I was surrounded by women peeling oranges, carrying head pans, and braiding hair. Children played in the dirt, invented games, took care of siblings, and cooked with their mothers. I did not realize at the time how much these images or poses had a lasting impression in my mind; little did I know how important they were in revealing the “secret” joys of which millions of Africans are familiar yet to which much of the world remains blind.
I use poses to expose the paradox of everyday African life. By depicting a pose as semiabstract, my paintings highlight both the mundane and the joy in everyday African life. Images that seem pitiful or sad to the outside world have much deeper implications. A woman feeding her family suggests pride, not inferiority. A child playing in a slum suggests friendship and imagination, not hopelessness. My artwork is meant to challenge those who only see Africa through the lenses of conflict, poverty, and corruption.
Since coming to Milwaukee, my work has explored stories with more universal themes, as I connect my past with my present. Milwaukee introduced me to many new cultures with surprising differences and even more surprising similarities to those back home. The similarities and differences have led me to use new media, new techniques, and new concepts.
Francis Annan Affotey
125 E. Wells St #403
Milwaukee, WI 53202
For this exhibition, students created a photo story based on their interpretations of The Giver, representing the story either conceptually or through characters and plot using a variety of physical and dark room alterations.
The Springs originally was the site of three springs in the era, hence the name and three colors in the logo. The Springs’ location at 521 Wisconsin Ave., was formerly the Spring City Pattern Works (wood pattern factory) in early 1900’s. This founding company was later paired with Leitner’s Auto Body Shop on the 519 side. Most Waukesha residents today recall the Springs as a cooperative Antique Store for 25 years until 2008 when purchased by the current owners and transitioned into The Springs: Gallery, Studio, and Creativity Pumphouse.
The true origin of my artistic journey was a visually rich childhood spent in a small town on a high farming plateau in Washington State. I was especially drawn to the animals on those picturesque farms. To me, they all had very distinct personalities and a quiet dignity. And, though my adult life took me into big cities, my heart has always been happiest roaming the pasturelands and barnyards.
In midlife, I was drawn to oil painting and sought out classes and workshops. I have been very fortunate to train with several excellent painters. My artistic education began with classical training in oil painting and portraiture finally settling into Russian Impressionism. The hallmark of this Russian Impressionistic style is the impact of the rich, glowing light found in the early morning and late evening hours – that luscious low-slung light that electrifies the edges of everything it touches. This is what moves me and this is what I love to paint.
Rose Lange is a professional artist and educator living and working in Waukesha, Wisconsin.
Rose enjoys the challenge, and loves surprising viewers, by up-cycling found materials like old jewelry, beads, small toys and chip bags in creating mixed-media mosaics and small, whimsical figurative sculptures.
Rose creates in her private studio at The Springs Gallery and Studios, and also exhibits and sells her work at The Almont Gallery in downtown Waukesha.
Rose has been the Art Specialist for Waukesha Catholic School System since 2001.
Cyndy had a near death encounter with a city bus soon after relocating to Nashville for her business career, which brought home the message, ”If you want to make art…you’d better get to making it!” Soon after, she quit her day job, enrolled in Art School and she’s been making art ever since.
She has worked in a variety of mediums and genres including figure, landscape, and most recently abstraction. Her work has been juried into competitions both regionally and nationally
“Bold colors and composition draw me into the creative process. The body intuitively knows what it needs, and if you listen to that voice, it will guide you to the place you need to be at that moment. By creating calm among the chaos of life, I am able to hear my own voice, and thus, better hear the voices of those around me.”
Thomas Buchs – Oil Painting
I attended Layton School of Art and became an Illustrator, creating artwork for advertising, and children’s books for many local and national companies during the last 46 years. 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 received many awards from local advertising associations, and nationally from The Society of Illustrators, as well as dozens of awards in Plein Air painting competitions around the country. My studio can now be found at Atelier/Plein Air at The Springs Gallery and Studios.
I am a landscape architect who has a passion for fiber arts. I learned to weave and hand spin yarn 32 years ago at a community art center in Stillwater, Oklahoma. I enjoy sharing my love of fiber arts with the people who visit the markets and fairs I attend through spinning and weaving demonstration. In 2016, I realized my dream of having a studio. Lost Art Fiber and Textile Studio at The Springs Gallery and Studios is open for workshops. In addition to teaching adults, I’ve enjoyed working with schools and students in discovering the creative possibilities in fiber arts. I am inspired by color and texture, especially those found in nature. In addition to the thrill of working with the elements of color and texture, I have found that fiber art activities can provide a meditative experience. I am currently a member of the Wisconsin Handweavers Guild and Madison Weaving Guild. In 2014, I started Common Threads Fiber Group that meets at the Waukesha Public Library. I do volunteer work at Donna Lexa Art Center in Waukesha and Angel’s Grace Hospice program where we create a commemorative weaving during their annual remembrance ceremony.
The Casa de Esperanza Charter School is pleased to present to you this beautiful display of Christmas art projects made by our students with my collaboration as an art teacher at our school. Our students are children between grades K4 to third grade. In addition, they participate in our arts class every day for a period of 45 minutes where, using a variety of manipulative materials, they are exposed to experiment and develop their skills, creative abilities, and imagination in the composition of different projects.
For this exhibition, we decided to select various Christmas cultural elements that represent the nationalities of our students. For example: our K4 students make ornaments using wooden sticks to create elves, reindeer, snowmen, and Santa Claus. The students of K5 made paintings with fingerprints, hands, and feet. The students of first grade made sculptures of wool yearn creating snowmen. The second grade students painted flags representing the nationalities of our students, embodying Christmas elements such as: Puerto Rico (The Three Kings); USA (Santa Claus); Mexico (La Flor the Noche Buena); Venezuela (El Nacimiento); and Nicaragua (El Arbol de Navidad). To finish, the third grade students made mosaics representing The Three Kings, Christmas Wreaths, the Flower of Christmas Eve, The Bells, and The Candlestick.
We greatly appreciate the Waukesha Civic Theatre for the opportunity they have given us to present our Christmas artwork in this fabulous exhibition for the enjoyment of all families.
La Casa de Esperanza Charter School
Carolyn enjoys painting out of doors throughout the year in Wisconsin. She grew up in Virginia and spent much of her time in the coastal area of Virginia and the mountains of West Virginia. She started painting when she moved to this area thirty years ago at the Milwaukee Museum of Art. Before moving here, she studied design, drawing and printmaking at the University of Texas Austin. She has continued to study with various local artists. Artists such as Joaquin Sorolla, John Singer Sargent as well as the French and Russian impressionists inspire her sense of color and brushwork.
First Brush with Spring, New Harmony Indiana
“Botanicals”, Gallery of Wisconsin Art, West Bend Wisconsin
ESI Environmental Systems Inc, Brookfield Wisconsin
Cedarburg Plein Air, Cedarburg Wisconsin
Jefferson Plein Air, Jefferson Wisconsin
Elm Grove Garden Tour Elm Grove, Wisconsin
Door County Plein Air Quick Paint, Fish Creek Wisconsin
Wisconsin State Fair, West Allis Wisconsin
Paint the Point, Mineral Point Wisconsin
Pewaukee Plein Air, Pewaukee Wisconsin
Taliesin Plein Air, Spring Green Wisconsin September 16-22, 2018
Paint the Town, Northbrook Illinois September 26-30, 2018
Bluff Strokes, Dubuque Iowa Ocotober 9 – 15, 2018
Cedarburg Plein Air second place Quick Paint 2017
B.S. Nursing, University Virginia
University Texas Austin, art and architecture
Vanessa “Kiki” Johanning is an international full time Mixed Media Artist with more than 20 years’ experience in the creative world. She loves to find the sparkle in your eye while embellishing every surface of life!
With her own company as a Landscape Designer, she was creating with bright flowered gardens all across the country. She then moved on to Painting, sewing… creating… and re-making everything she could get her hands on…and doing it all with a giggle…!
Being a passionate collector of embroidered doilies, antique Journals, and experiences, she creates daily at her wonderful three Art studios in Wisconsin. She has been Represented by several galleries in the Midwest. A published Designer, Art Event Teacher, and a licensed products maker, you will love her happy style. Kiki loves to help you learn the understanding and feeling the Freedom of Expression in Creating.