The last full weekend in April, the get bEHIND the aRTS Studio Tour offers three days filled with art––inviting guests to explore an entire weekend of creativity in Southeastern Wisconsin. Now in its ninth year, the self-guided tour allows access to 70 artists’ studios featuring over 100 creatives at 35 locations throughout Racine and Kenosha. Visual and performing artists will open their private workspaces for a rare, behind-the-scenes glimpse of their innovative and productive worlds.
The weekend kicks off with the art party of the year, the GBTA Preview Party on Friday, April 26 from 6:00 to 10:00pm in the Uptown neighborhood of Racine at 1601 Washington Ave. On Saturday, April 27, Racine artists’ studios are open to the public, and on Sunday, April 29, Kenosha studios welcome visitors. Artists’ workplaces are open on both days from 11:00am to 5:00pm.
OS Projects, a new contemporary art gallery located in downtown Racine, will open to the public on Saturday for the first time ever, during the Studio Tour. The gallery’s focus is on artists who reside in the Chicago-Kenosha-Racine-Milwaukee corridor. Their inaugural exhibit, Seams Apparent, features the work of Racine artist Maureen Fritchen and Chicago artist Gina Lee Robbins. At 16th Street Studios––where over 30 artists will share their workspaces with visitors––author and self-publisher Mboya Sharif of Doses of Reality, Inc. will open her doors. New to the area, Sharif’s first book “Heartfelt Doses of Reality” was published in 2003 in Huntsville, Alabama. As a now-local book publishing consultant, Sharif and Doses of Reality works with upcoming artists
and aspiring independent publishers––especially those interested in children’s books.
New to the tour in Kenosha, Lakefront Studios at Kemper Center recently opened workspaces for local artists. There, Jill Frederickson of Little Puppet Company will be making puppets in their studio on Sunday. In her space, Frederickson also hosts puppet shows for kids and adults, and offers workshops. Also at Lakefront Studios, quilter Bethany Wise spent most of her career working in the skilled trades. In her studio, she’s been happy to lay down her wrenches, and pick up her rulers, rotary cutter and thread to create handmade, modern
quilts. A little further south, contemporary artist Amy Misurelli Sorensen’s home studio will be open for the first time. Awarded a RAM Artist Fellowship for her series of large-scale print portraits that explores themes of female
empowerment and Women’s Suffrage, this stop on the Tour offers a look into Missurelli-Sorensen’s process and a preview of her solo exhibition, which will open at RAM’s Wustum Museum in Racine in August 2019.
The Preview Party on Friday is a one-night only art exhibition offering an exciting overview of what to expect during the Tour. It is an opportunity to meet the artists and plan a tour route, marking maps for must-see studio
visits. This year, the Party offers a diverse line up of local music and performances, a potters’ wheel demo, live painting, local beer, and food provided by Racine restaurants, and a variety of enticing raffle items. A highlight of the night will be Modular on the Rescue (MOTR), a pop-up experimental music performance that emerges from an adapted ambulance, a work-in-progress by Racine artists Nick Dye and Christine Ingaldson.
The Preview Party and Studio Tour offer three days of art with a donation of $5. Kids are free. A souvenir button––created by popular area artist Diane Levesque––allows open access to all stops on the tour. Visitors
may begin at any studio location. Maps and buttons will be available at the Preview Party and on the day of the tour at all participating studios. A list of all featured artists and a map of studio locations is also available online.
All donations support this and future Studio Tours.
get bEHIND the aRTS Studio Tours are organized by a collective of Racine and Kenosha artists and supporters of the arts.
Formed in 2010 through the efforts of the Wisconsin Arts Board, the organization strives to promote local talent, broaden art audiences and educate the public about our region’s creative sector.
get bEHIND the aRTS 2019 thanks our major sponsors for their support: Real Racine, Osborne and Scekic Family Foundation, Visit Kenosha, Racine Art Museum, and ANS Creative Behavioral Solutions, LLC.