Last autumn, MOWA asked the members of the Milwaukee-based Coalition of Photographic Arts (CoPA) to turn their lenses inward and focus on getting to know their neighbors. This exhibition showcases 19 photographers and 25 artworks that focus on the uniqueness of personal environments, the intimacy of close relationships, and the interaction we have with our communities. For some, like Kelly Crandall, this means family in her photograph Uncle and Niece, With Tuba. Bruce Ambuel’s Ruth and Butterfly reveals the connection between a young girl and her barnyard pet as well as the pride and tradition of Wisconsin’s farming community. Christina DeSpears in Dia de los Muertos captures a moment during a traditional Mexican festival in Walker’s Point. The American yellow school bus in the background underscores the struggle of maintaining cultural values and traditions in what is essentially a foreign land. Whether depicting special events, intimate portraits, or folks simply going about their daily lives, these photographs help us better know the people in our neighborhood.
Founded in 2004 by a group of Milwaukee area photographers, CoPA’s mission is to develop appreciation, promote growth and support the creation of photographic arts in the Greater Milwaukee Region. With 200 current members, including artists, students, professionals, amateurs, enthusiasts, and collectors, CoPA carries out its mission through educational programs, lectures, panel discussions, and exhibitions.
Michael J. Havice
John O' Hara
Barry W. Szymanski