Society tea report, Saturday, May 23

It was a sunny day in Milwaukee and five people came for tea. I made Lavender English Earl. I also baked rhubarb scones for the first time. I will try again next week. They weren’t bad, but a tad underdone. The UWM painting professor Kay Knight came in and gobbled up a few scones while waiting for the tea to steep. Kay’s work will be featured in the next Portrait Society exhibition, “Interior/Exterior: Home as Portrait.” It was actually rhubard from her Kay Knight, Stairs, gouache on wallpaper, 2009. $300.husband, Richard Knight’s garden that went into the scones. Kay’s work was featured in New American Painting quarterly this year and she also was in a group show in New York recently. The writer and artist and art patron Judith Moriarty came by and sipped some tea. She apparently does not like rhubarb. She said that during WWII, with the sugar shortage, there was no way to make it palatable so they fed it to the hogs. We need about 50 more Judith Moriarty’s in this town to create a vital art scene. She has supported all the galleries for many years in her collecting and has also contributed intellectually through her writing AND has also continued to make art. Next, the painter Dave Niec dropped in. It was a treat to see Dave’s up-north hands clutching an English tea cup. We love Dave Niec’s work at the Portrait Society. He is represented by Dean Jensen Gallery and you can see his paintings dave Niec, Moon Over Channel, 2005, 12 x 12 inches, Dean Jensen Gallerythere. He paints outdoors at night — moon scenes, dark woods, starry skies in resplendent shades of blues. He winters in a wood-heated cabin North of Green Bay and said that recently a local trapper up there showed him the places where wolves had made their dens. Dave Niec has river blue eyes and long blond hair and that certain sense of calm that only people who spend a lot of time alone in nature can propagate. Next, Julie Tarney and her friend Katie Heil came in. Katie was at the gallery to pick up a Rudy Rotter she had purchased a while ago, but had time to sit around for tea. Julie and Katie are also great supporters of the art community and I always feel honored by their visits. I also admired their hair cuts. Julie will be moving to NYC soon and I am already feeling sad about that. I should mention that two MIAD students also were in today: Gallery intern Anastacia Stevens, a drawing major,  and Emily Marshall, who is a stitching artist. Emily has actually been going to life drawing sessions and stitching the models. Bravo Emily.

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