I love Milwaukee. I’m proud to be from here. I’m an avid boaster of pretty much everything that Milwaukee has to offer, and Wisconsin, generally (except that douchey governor douche – whom I did not vote for, by the way). I like to think that there is always something to do, and I can usually find something, thanks to various local websites and publications.
One of my favorite things to do is MAM After Dark. We are lucky to have one of the world’s most renowned pieces of newer architecture, the Calatrava, which houses a carousel of really rad artwork. Making the experience of visiting Milwaukee’s great museum even greater is being able to do it in the dark. You feel like a little kid sneaking out into your neighbor’s garden at night to pilfer raspberries (that was me, and he was okay with it, but it still felt dangerous).
There have been all different themes, including cupcakes and burlesque, Frank Lloyd Wright and salsa (dancing, not the dish). There is food, though, and booze (which you have to pay for… really puts the “boo” in it, right?!), access to the primary exhibit and the general ones, entertainment and music. I love it. It’s perfect for dates, since nothing spells romance like shoveling bite-sized sugary cake balls into each other’s mouths (at least not in my dude’s mind anyway, how lucky for me), sneaking pics with the creepy, ass checker-outer janitor statue thing or perusing the museum’s trinkets in the gift shop (would you like a pair of Calatrava-inspired earrings, dear? Would I?! About as much as you’d enjoy a pair of MAM cufflinks… you betcha!).
But it is fun. What a great opportunity to get out of your comfort zone and get arty, introspective and entertained. Aaaaand, apparently you don’t have to wait for the once-a-month After Dark event, though. I literally just learned that every first Thursday of the month you can get into the museum for free… AND it’s open till 8. Score.
I lured my bbff (blonde best friend forever – even though she’s now a redhead and my nether mane is naturally brown), Katie, away from that new Wii Michael Jackson dancing game (and her new husband) to join me at the art museum to check out the FLW exhibit (it was actually her idea, but sometimes she needs some extra coaxing).
We took turns acting intrigued and feigning interest at all the bullshit that passes for “modern art.” Seriously, my three-year-old niece could paint a square of canvas ONE COLOR, put some garbage cans on a shelf or write a “meaningful” word down (okay, maybe my nine-year-old nephew would have to take those reins), all in the hopes of shifting the energy of the world and opening our third eyes to better ourselves and each other and negate the pressures of imperialistic consumerism bullshit bullshit…
Some of the stuff was really great, though. Frank Lloyd Wright’s exhibit was filled with sketches of buildings that never saw the light of day, stories, pictures and videos of his best known works. Etchings are intricate, mirrors plus light equal infinity, purposefully broken glass is beautiful and sad. I always leave the museum feeling purposeful and refined, whether or not the inspiration intended by the artists really transcends their work in the right way or not. Katie and I will be back, maybe with some artwork of our own. Dancing in front of a television screen counts as interpretive or live action or whatever form of art, right?