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Monday, Nov. 15, 2010

Boris and Doris On the Town

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Settling Down: After 12 years of homelessness, Milwaukee Artists’ Resource Network (MARN) has found a home at the former Luckystar Studio on Vliet Street. The cheery facility opened with a show by Milwaukee photographers, including canine clicker Stephanie Bartz, wearing a fab necklace made from recycled bike tires by Becky Tesch. Bartz’s fellow artist, Roxane Mayeur, dropped in and boyfriend Joe Couture arrived from Bloomington.

Also displayed were the works of Bill Zuback, including his amusing Dinner Table Conversation between a banana and a potato, and Coree Coppinger’s raw Fight Club series taken at the Duke Roufus Martial Arts Academy, plus works by Adam Horwitz, Susan Lukas, Ellen Pizer and Jon Horvath.

MARN’s executive director, Melissa Musante, was joined by her 17-month-old daughter Petra and husband Steven White. Board President Melissa Dorn Richards and her husband, John,paused on their rounds, as did MARN Treasurer Michele Braze, VP Pamela Anderson, who owns Underwood Gallery, and Sally Witte, Artists Working in Education executive director, with her husband, Scott, a photographer.

Many in the crowd then migrated down the street for the opening of James Steeno’s gallery, where Steeno’s beautiful watercolors adorned the walls. The crowd squeezed into the art space owned by appraiser Dan Schley, who stopped by with his wife, Barb Haig, after cooking at the St. Sebastian fish fry. Circulating were Steeno’s wife, Heidi, Alderman Michael Murphy, teacher Vicki Samolyk and Joan Janus, and Maggie Blaha, board member at St. Coletta Day School, excited about an upcoming auction of the children’s artwork.

B&D also popped next door to Art & Soul, where owner Sue Heeley was preparing for the upcoming Westside Holiday Heights fest. Heeley is celebrating nine years of selling art and using her gracious space for everything from yoga to painting to tango lessons.

The evening ended on a delicious note perched at the cozy Meritage Restaurant bar. Doris had a perfect scallop cake, Boris a skirt steak, plus a few imbibements with the help of bustling bartender Dave Ahlf.

Debt Free: After raising its final $50,000, the Turner Ballroom Preservation Trust celebrated with a “burning of the note” blowout. Emceed by Gary Grunau, the program included John Gurda’s history of the building followed by comments from David Uihlein, who then received the Turners’ coveted Discobolus trophy, presented by Gene Gilbert. Gary Witt, the mastermind behind the programming at the Pabst, Turner and Riverside, and hall manager Marc Solheim also spoke. Present Music and Wild Space offered avant-garde mini-performances.

The crowd then ascended to the balcony, where La Merenda and the Ale House catered. Among the guests were Julilly Kohler, a force behind the Turner restoration; foodie Kyle Cherek, who had orchestrated the evening’s events, which included a “Made in Milwaukee” style show and music; Deidre Martin, 4th Street Forum’s director; Marianne and Sheldon Lubar; Anne and Charles Trainer, whose brothers Brownie and Steve were in town for Trainer’s forthcoming 65th birthday; triathlon coaches Jill Sommers and Tina Desing; and Toby and Carrie Babb, Shorewood Library’s circulation services supervisor. Marsha Sehler, celebrating her birthday at Sanford with her son Bradley and his girlfriend, dentist Angela Lueck, swung by.

Party Galore: Nina Sarenac
purchased a stunning vintage dress at Vintageous on Kinnickinnic Avenue and needed a party to go with it. So she and Andy Nunemaker co-hosted an over-the-top “Mad Men” party at his art-adorned party crib. The Jerry Grillo Trio played, Manhattans flowed and prop candy cigarettes were abundant.

Guests were serious about their attire. Mary Unkel, who previously owned Nunemaker’s house with her husband, Bob, wore a hat from Saukville’s E-Collectique, plus a mink stole and a stylish self-made dress. Ann Keiper had a perfect ’50s hairdo, created by “Mad Men” fan Michael Kruczynski, owner of New Options on Silver Spring. Baird’s Billy Flynn sported a nicely geeky set of retro eyewear. Sheila Taphorn headed to Walker’s Point to round up her classic look. And Don Draper-clone Greg Babicky carried both a fake Manhattan made with gelatin and a real sipper. Partiers soireed until the wee hours.

For Men Only:
Jess Stern’s Stag Barbershop opened with much hoopla, featuring delicious goodies from Mo’s Irish Pub, Hector’s and Soup’s On, along with refreshing local beverages from Rehorst, Sprecher and Hinterland. It was a family affair, with help from mom Sandy Stern and brothers Jared, Justin and Jack, plus grandmother Anna Schwacher, aunt Debbie Killdoo and her husband, Mike, and carpenter friend Curt Brester. Building owner Dan Marty donated the barber chairs.

Stern’s pals and clients poured in: photographer Jessica Kaminski; Violetville Vintage owner Tina Poppy; UW-Milwaukee art history professor Jennifer Johung, wearing a stunning faux fur from Poppy’s store; Moda Salon owner Cheryl Aguinaga; Cutting Edge stylist Lynn Mueller; plus clients Leo Ries, Ken Hanson, Ron White, and Brewer blogger Adam McCalvy. Kaleigh Gamache was among the photographers capturing the evening.

If you have any tips for Boris and Doris, contact them at borisanddorisott@aol.com. Their next column will appear in the Dec. 2 issue of the
Shepherd.