Director's Note 6/1/15

June 1, 2015

We know summer is almost here because everything is green, green, green. The lilacs have passed, and spring flowers are no more than a memory. It was occasionally difficult to remember this last Saturday, when many of you braved the cold, rain, and wind to share our 5th anniversary and a truly remarkable amount of cake. Special thanks to the Milwaukee Bonsai Society for putting in days of wet work to build those architectural pedestals for the trees that filled the patio, and then providing personal tours for everyone who wanted to know more about the trees--who doesn't?--all the wet day long. Sara Caron made the most of the less than auspicious day, filling her welcome center and gift shop in Brian Nigus's Sightseer with the T-shirts she designed (Lynden's first ever--get yours before they disappear), Sarah Luther's notecards, and an array of interpretive hiking guides, tree guides and bird guides made by Sara, Sarah, and Chuck Stebelton. We felt that building her a bonfire was the least we could do. Eddee Daniel intrepidly walked the grounds, camera in hand, to document the occasion, and the Falafel Guys acceded to our pleading and drove up to Lynden to fry falafel for the cold and grateful people. Yevgeniya Kaganovich and her crew from UWM put in a full day of kitemaking in the studio, having prepared stacks of kite material from fused plastic bags in advance. And although the kites were waterproof, the winds were so strong that it appeared that the kites were flying the kids whenever they ventured out. Pat Hidson and Tori Tasch launched their residency up in the studio (instead of in the birch grove) with a botanical printmaking workshop, which fit right in with the kitemaking. The weather didn't deter the intrepid pond explorers, and though we didn't attempt much in the way of planting, some butterfly feeders were made to take home. John Riepenhoff livened up the afternoon hours with a tasting of his Green Gallery Pale Ale, part of his beer endowment project, guaranteeing that we all went home tired, wet, but content.

Tonight we bring our annual writing workshop with Woodland Pattern Book Center to a close. Participants have been working with poet Andrew Schelling this week, and their public reading will begin at 8 pm. Tai Chi in the Garden embarks on its four-week run on Sunday, so consider starting the day with Angela Laughingheart on the lawn (or in the gallery if the weather is inclement). Laughingheart will offer an extra session--Tai Chi for Daddy and Me--on June 21. We have a family workshop (origami boxes) in the studio this Sunday afternoon if you need to duck inside during a rain shower, and a patio tour on June 21 if you've always been curious about Lynden but the walk is too daunting. Those who saw the one-day bonsai exhibition and were intrigued by examples of kusamono, the shallow trays of small plants that accompany bonsai trees, can attend a Kusamono Workshop on June 13--you'll take home your own planting at the end of the day. There is also a teen bonsai workshop on June 28 for those who want to start their own trees. Linda Wervey Vitamvas will be back to make porcelain vases on June 27, and Wes Tank will help you Get to Know Your GoPro on June 28. We launch Story Time in the Garden that day, a monthly opportunity for adults and small children (we know it's summer because outdoor story time seems like a good idea).

We have two big events in June: the opening of a new exhibition and the Danceworks Performance Company/Milwaukee Opera Theatre production of Fairy Queen Fantasy. Dan Torop: Frozen Period opens June 14 with a reception from 3 to 5 pm, and the artist will host a picnic on Wednesday, June 17 (we know it's summer because we are open late on Wednesday evenings). DPC and MOT will wind up a two-week rehearsal period at Lynden with two performances of an outdoor adaptation of Purcell's 1692 masterpiece, right on the cusp of midsummer's night. As one would expect, the performance will wind among the trees and sculptures as we encounter Titania, Oberon, and a drunken poet in their new home at Lynden.

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