Reginald Baylor’s Inspired Residency at the Pfister
Baylor, who began the yearlong residency in April, works in the studio about four days a week. Within this space filled with brushes, acrylic colors and huge canvases, Baylor interacts with the bustling lobby clientele, corporate staff and international guests enjoying the Pfister’s amenities. The open studio invites hotel guests and the community at large to visit Baylor’s workstation, watch him create a canvas from start to finish, discuss the process one on one, or even purchase a painting.
The Pfister’s impressive architecture and extensive Victorian art collection have influenced Baylor’s creative process. In addition to the Old World marble surrounding his studio, specific paintings from the hotel’s collection have inspired him. In one example, elements from the painting titled A Captive led Baylor to incorporate putti, or winged angels, and Corinthian columns into new compositions. October signals the halfway point of this artistic experiment, but Baylor says he will continue to produce a series of paintings based on the hotel after finishing the program.
The Pfister’s artist-in-residence program also fostered a collaborative endeavor with the InterContinental Hotel. Baylor and future participants will curate several exhibitions in conjunction with the InterContinental, including a premiere show scheduled for November, titled “How Many Flowers Does It Take to Make a Bouquet?” This exhibition features seven Midwest artists to highlight the application process for next year’s residency and presents painters, photographers and printmakers in a variety of mediums.
Baylor says that artists applying to the program need to be confident, in that they must clearly articulate their ideas and work in an environment in which interruptions are common. Dedication, discipline and creativity will also factor into the final decision.
The Pfister’s artist-in-residence program aims to expand community outreach in Milwaukee and beyond. As Baylor says, “This program has the ability to bring worldwide attention to the city as an art center.”