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Installation view, Todd Mrozinski, Log series, 2003-2008. 

RECOMPOSE: Todd Mrozinski and Angela Piehl

August 13 Through September 10, 2022

Reception: 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday, August 13, 2022

 

This two person exhibition begins with a tree. A stately tree in South Shore Park, a European Copper Beech, was estimated to be about 160 years old when it started to succumb to disease and needed to be cut down. For Milwaukee-based artist Todd Mrozinski, the tree was an old friend that he visited repeatedly throughout his life. In homage to this majestic giant, Mrozinski created a series of large scale paintings and etchings eulogizing the tree and stump. 

 

Angela Piehl, an art professor at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, pillages magazine images to make colorful collages that share a similar emotional duality with Mrozinski’s work, being both celebratory and remorseful. She transforms the world of fashion, beauty products, and the commercial packaging of gender roles into bouquet-like compositions that blend the synthetic and organic. She says, “Perceptions of gender are addressed in my work, as are notions of queer ecology. Queer ecology considers distinctions such as natural/unnatural, as well as connections between material and cultural aspects of environmental issues.”

 

Todd Mrozinski earned his BFA from the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design in 1997 where he was the recipient of a Fredrick Layton Scholarship and attended The New York Studio Program. Mrozinski was the 2015-16 Pfister Artist-in-Residence. He was a contributing art writer for Urban Milwaukee and Artdose Magazine, as well as a MARN Mentor. He currently teaches etching, drawing and painting at MIAD. He and his wife, Renee Bebeau, have a studio in The Nut Factory in Milwaukee, WI. 

 

Born in Houston, Texas, Angela Piehl earned her MFA in painting and drawing from the University of Arizona, Tuscon in 1998 and her BFA from the University of Texas, Austin. She moved to Milwaukee in 2019 as Associate Professor of Painting and Drawing at the Univeristy of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she is now Area Head.  Piehl has exhibited in national, international, juried and invitational exhibitions. Her work is part of Kala Art Institute's Print Collection, the Los Angeles Center for Digital Art’s Collection, the New Mexico State University Art Gallery’s Permanent Collection, and the John Michael Kohler Art Center Collection. Piehl has participated in many public lectures addressing her work and research, and issues of contemporary queer art and art practice at various regional and national conferences. In 2019, Piehl completed a John Michael Kohler Arts Center Arts/Industry residency.

 

Additional information: portraitsocietygallery@gmail.com

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Angela Piehl, Proboscis, 2022. Archival Pigment Print, 38 x 32 inches

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Todd Mrozinski, Blue Log, 2006. Oil on board, 18 x 17 inches. 

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Todd Mrozinski, The Saplings 2 (South Shore Beech), 2022. Oil on canvas, 48 x 72 inches.