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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Miniature Drawings, Monumental Impact at JMKAC

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As the saying goes, good things come in small packages. At the John Michael Kohler Arts Center (JMKAC), miniature drawings arrive April 8 for the exhibition “Paul Chiappe and Peggy Preheim: Quiet Accord.” Two artists explore drawing on a minute scale, with some images merely the size of a postage stamp.

Paul Chiappe, an artist in Edinburgh, Scotland, says it is a great tribute to be named one of “100 Artists to Watch” in Modern Painters Magazine. He also boasts the tiniest drawing in the National Galleries of Scotland, with 46 figures on a 3-by-5-centimeter paper. Chiappe sometimes uses a microscope to complete his hyper-realistic pieces. Indeed, these humorous, surrealistic images may be best appreciated through a magnifying lens.

New York artist Peggy Preheim draws miniature images on paper, including the obsolete French franc, and then surrounds them in white paper. She also uses old photographs, suspending the images in a white abyss in which the blank space conjures metaphysical distance. Preheim's unique works, partially centered on children, families and gender roles, are informed by her Mennonite upbringing.

Chiappe and Preheim's works contrast the grand-scale installations in the JMKAC's exhibition in the main gallery, “The Line Unleashed.” Both exhibitions expound on the center's theme of “The Drawing Season.” Toward this end, “Quiet Accord” provides a serene take on society's past through the works of these contemporary artists. “Quiet Accord” continues through July 8.

Art Happenings

“A Chair to Remember”

Charles Allis & Villa Terrace Art Museums

2220 N. Terrace Ave. (for submissions)

Create and donate a decorative chair—functional or sculptural—to a fundraising auction for two Milwaukee art institutions. Entries are due by June 1. For submission guidelines and an application, visit www.villaterracemuseum.org and click “A Chair to Remember.”

“Not Just for the Office”

Katie Gingrass Gallery

241 N. Broadway

For this exhibition, artists create works in a variety of mediums that are suitable for the home or business environment. An opening reception takes place 5-9 p.m. Friday, April 20.