All posts tagged: Kirsten Leenaars

Happiness, the Elusive American Dream and Lots of Cardboard

Artist-in-residence Kirsten Leenaars engages children in the search for home and happiness on Milwaukee’s Near West Side. By Megan Knowles Students display protest signs exploring the American ideal of happiness and proposals for a new Constitution. On a vibrant and sunny June afternoon, an enthusiastic bunch of middle school students chatted on an empty lot near 27th street. Holding onto white balloons and gathering around the remnants of a large structure made of decorated cardboard and brightly colored tape, they brought a DIY-scrapbook vibe to a street where underused spaces are giving way to development plans and relatively new arrivals such as Daddy’s Soul Food & Grille. Overcoming the feelings of awkwardness and skepticism young teens can bring to group projects, the students formed a line, balloons in hand, amidst conversations about TV shows and summer plans. Each balloon carried a piece of the cardboard construction waiting to be sent to the sky, many scribbled with personalized messages ranging from smiling cartoon faces to pointed political messages. What appeared to be an activity for a day …

Oct 6: Artists Kirsten Leenaars and Fo Wilson in conversation + catalog presentation at Haggerty Museum

  Image from Kirsten Leenaars: (Re)Housing the American Dream  Photo Credit: Clare Britt House/Home: Artists Kirsten Leenaars and Fo Wilson in Conversation Moderated by Dr. Jasmine Alinder Thursday, October 6, 3 p.m. Haggerty Museum of Art Join us for a public conversation with artists Kirsten Leenaars and Fo Wilson, moderated by Director of UWM’s Urban Studies Programs Dr. Jasmine Alinder. This program is presented in collaboration with Imagining America’s 16th Annual National Conference, themed At the Crossroads. Kirsten Leenaars: (Re)Housing the American Dream, is a three-channel video installation on view at the Haggerty Museum of Art, and is the result of Leenaars’ year-long exploration of the notions of home, belonging and happiness in context of the American Dream in Milwaukee’s Near West Side. Leenaars created this piece in collaboration with students from two neighborhood schools—Highland Community School and the International Newcomer Center at the Milwaukee Academy of Chinese Language. Personal stories from the students serve as metaphors to explore the real and imagined reality of this Dream. Delving into the complex notions of place, person, community, family, country, origin, land, or a moment of time …

(Re)Housing the American Dream Exhibition Catalog

   VIEW: Exhibiton Catalog (Re)Housing the American Dream Design: Sonia Yoon Essay by Steven L. Bridges Release Date: October 6, 2016 This catalog was published on the occasion of the exhibition Kirsten Leenaars: (Re)Housing the American Dream. Chicago-based performance and video artist Kirsten Leenaars has created participatory works of art that explore a quintessential American ideal: the pursuit of happiness. (Re)Housing the American Dream is an extension of Leenaars’ earlier investigations. Commissioned by the Haggerty Museum of Art (Milwaukee, WI), this latest work is the result of Leenaars’ year-long exploration of the relationship between home and happiness in Milwaukee’s Near West Side. Haggerty Museum of Art, Marquette University Learn more »

Boulvard Dreamers at the Poetry Foundation

  Pegasus & Mermaids Opening: Boulevard Dreamers Friday, September 23rd, 6:00 PM Poetry Foundation 61 West Superior Street Free admission The Poetry Foundation presents Boulevard Dreamers, a performance and opening event for Pegasus & Mermaids, a group exhibition featuring work by Poetry magazine cover artists depicting Pegasus and mermaids from poetry immemorial. The exhibit will be displayed in the Poetry Foundation Gallery through December 16, 2016. Boulevard Dreamers is a traveling installation and variety show responding to the specific narratives and communities of the sites and venues it visits. This collaborative project by artists Lise Haller Baggesen and Kirsten Leenaars consists of three parts: a site-specific stage set, a series of performances, and an installation of the growing collection of portraits of Boulevard Dreamers. Boulevard Dreamers questions and celebrates the production of self in a society dominated by one spectacle alone: desire. Through a little glamour, a little glitter, and with a little help from their friends, Baggesen and Leenaars explore how we are moved by the agency of desire and the magical allure of …