Students create ‘pop
up’ gallery to display artwork
Six art students at the
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point are gaining experiences as professional
artists by creating their own show at a “pop up” gallery in Stevens Point.
“Pop up” galleries, popular in
big cities like Chicago, are temporary spaces for art exhibits. The Ignition
Gallery at 2425 Main Street, Stevens Point, is the site of the former Music
Quest store. It now features the printmaking, mixed media sculpture,
photography, ceramics and metal work of Tarin Baldauf, Allyssa Burch, Heather
Carey, Codey Stange, Stacey Strupp and Jeff Tomlinson.
From writing a grant to fund the
project to renting, painting and lighting the space and curating their work, the
students gained valuable professional experience.
“This was the real life
experience I wanted,” said Baldauf. “We all want to know what it will be like
as artists when we graduate, so this is just a preview of what we can do.”
Baldauf and Carey first began
talking about the project last fall. With a large number of graduating art
students, less exhibit space is available in the Edna Carlsten Art Gallery on
campus for larger print pieces and mixed media projects. That helped draw in
The students worked with Lisa
Theo, head of the UW-Stevens Point Student Research Fund, to write and win an
Undergraduate Research, Scholarship and Creative Activity Grant. With
additional help from the Department of Art and Design, the students had a
$3,500 budget to pay for rent, utilities, construction items, paint, lighting
and marketing materials.
“This experience helped me learn
a lot about the business side of being an artist,” Strupp said. “Working with
different people to find and manage the space is something you can’t learn in
class.” The support of their adviser, Art Professor Bob Erickson, was
essential, she added. “He was always there to answer questions and offer moral
Burch took advantage of the large
space to create two rooms to display her wet-plate photography and glass work
in a mixed media installation.
“This was a chance to be my own
curator and try something risky,” Burch said. “The Art and Design Department
has been so willing to help us go that extra mile.”
The students’ real-life
experiences included the challenges of dealing with electrical issues and flooding
after a pipe burst, in addition to balancing the project with work and school.
“We all work when we can to make
it happen,” said Baldauf. “We work, we go to class and we work on our art as
well. We don’t sleep very much. But the end is in sight, and that keeps us
going. We are all very excited to have the senior show we all wanted. That
makes it all worth it.”
The free exhibit in the Ignition Gallery continues through
May 5. The gallery is open to the public Tuesday-Friday, 3-6 p.m. and
Saturday-Sunday, 12-4 p.m.