Sturgeon Bay, Wis. (July 17, 2023) — The Miller Art Museum, located in downtown Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, is pleased to debut Suzanne Rose: Blind Spot — to pass among them, organized by the Museum of Wisconsin Art, and Séjour: Impressions of Giverny by Brigitte Kozma on the second floor Ruth Morton Miller Mezzanine. Both exhibitions will be on view from July 22 – September 9, 2023. An opening reception with the exhibiting artists will be held on Friday, July 21 from 5:30 – 7pm. The reception is free and open to the public; light refreshments will be served and music will be provided by Craig Schultz and Mike Miller.
The solo artist exhibition featuring the work of Wisconsin artist Suzanne Rose in the museum’s main galleries encompasses a collection of 27 large-scale photographs that explore the understated study of human folly and nature’s resilience through an aesthetic influenced by pioneer photographers of the nineteenth century. The photographs resist timestamping. The lush black-and-white images are toned with a custom gradient that Rose developed by studying vintage prints. Their rounded corners, emerald-cut rectangles, and elongated oval formats are directly derived from the 1860s. Despite the influence of yesteryear, Blind Spot is resolutely of the present, gently nudging viewers toward a more thoughtful relationship with their environment.
Whereas her predecessors captured the majesty of mountains and grand vistas, Rose photographs the gentle presence of the Anthropocene in the Midwest. Blind Spot presents the subtle violence that humans commit to their environment and the quiet strength of nature. To Rose’s eye, trees suggest the human condition. Pruned to make way for telephone wires, saddled with hunting blinds, or set shoulder to shoulder with sheds, her trees exhibit the scars and imperfections associated with anthropomorphic personality. Abandoned buildings overgrown with wild vegetation demonstrate a resilient nature’s push back.
“The collection is woven together by clear and delineated layers that the viewer can give consideration to individually or as a whole and it is laced with a poetic sense of accountability,” says Miller Art Museum Curator of Exhibitions Helen del Guidice.
Suzanne Rose entered into her education at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago as a painter, studying multimedia, leaving to create a design partnership, and ultimately transitioning into a solo pursuit of fine art photography.
A nationally recognized artist and educator who practices and teaches fine art photography as a “mindful minimalist,” Rose remains close to her Midwestern roots by photographing thematic bodies of works of family, community, and the environs thereof that explore memory and metaphor, purpose, and place.
Séjour: Impressions of Giverny by Brigitte Kozma featured on the museum’s Ruth Morton Miller Mezzanine, debuts a collection of 23 works in oil inspired by a period of time that Brigitte Kozma, a Door County painter, spent in Giverny, France, in 2019. Claude Monet’s gardens at Giverny and the 2,500 works he created in his lifetime have been inspiring generations of artists for centuries and continue to be as powerful as ever. This collection by Kozma, who is notable for her painterly blending and fine detail, embodies the essence of Giverny with an emotive color palette and represents her mastery as a painter.
“It was a special privilege to roam freely early in the morning and in the evening when the landscape was void of tourists, offering dramatic views and spectacular variance in lighting,” says Kozma. “When not in the gardens, I had the pleasure of walking the streets of Giverny, making note of local buildings and residences, giving context to the experience and surrounding atmosphere,” she continued.
Kozma attended the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree, with a major in painting. She has been exhibited professionally since 1968 and her work is included in many private and corporate collections in the United States as well as in Europe.
Suzanne Rose: Blind Spot — to pass among them, organized by the Museum of Wisconsin Art, and Séjour: Impressions of Giverny by Brigitte Kozma will be on view to the public through September 9, 2023. The exhibits have been supported by the following exhibition sponsors: The Boldt Company, Cappaert Contemporary Gallery, Dennis and Bonnie Connolly, and The Townsend Foundation with additional grant and in-kind support from Third Avenue Playhouse and the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts.
The Miller Art Museum is located within the Door County Library at 107 S. 4th Avenue in downtown Sturgeon Bay. Hours are Monday 10am – 7pm and Tuesday through Saturday 10am – 5pm. Closed Sunday. Admission is free of charge but freewill donations are encouraged; an elevator is available to access galleries on the Ruth Morton Miller Mezzanine. To learn more, please call (920) 746-0707, visit www.millerartmuseum.org or follow @millerartmuseum on Instagram or on Facebook at Miller Art Museum.