Urban Wood Encounter

November 9, 2014 - February 21, 2015

Works by Joseph Murphy & Lisa Brobst
Works by Joseph Murphy, Lisa Probst

November 9, 2014-February 21, 2015
Opening reception: Sunday, November 9, 2014, 3-5 pm
Managing Trees: A Walk Around Lynden with Bob Retko and Todd Johnson: Sunday, November 16, 2014, 2:30-3:30 pm
Urban Wood Encounters: From Tree To Table, Saturday, January 24, 2015, 1 pm-3:15 pm

The landscape at Lynden is dotted with more than 600 trees. There were, at one time, many more: the majority of the elms on the grounds were lost to Dutch elm disease. Now, with the emerald ash borer making its way into southeastern Wisconsin, we think a lot about how to turn our ash trees into a sustainable resource. These trees have shown up in everything from the temporary art installations on the grounds to the lintels in our parking lot.

Urban Wood Encounter, now in its fourth year, is designed to introduce the public to the environmental value of urban wood within the context of an exhibition of fine furniture. Urban wood comes from the trees that line our streets, shade our homes, and define our parks--trees that are not harvested for their timber value but instead often find their way into landfills when they succumb to age, injury or disease. According to the US Forest Service, the wood "waste" generated in this country's urban areas, if processed, could produce approximately 3.8 billion board feet of lumber annually.

In an effort to advance the sustainable recovery and the best use of the products of urban forests, Urban Wood Encounter challenges furniture makers and designers to create inspiring, thoughtful, and beautiful furniture from this regionally abundant and underutilized natural resource.

Participants in the exhibition include Dan Barsch, Andrew Black, Lisa Ehrmantraut Brobst, Greta de Parry & Mike Jarvi, Michael Doerr, Fabian Fischer, Aris Georgiades, Kevin Giese, Joseph La Macchia, Aaron Malinowski, Joseph Murphy, Charles Radtke, Dwayne Sperber, and Andrew Yencha. Recent MIAD alumnus Miguel Ramirez is organizing a functional project room in the enclosed porch. He is working with fellow alumnus Erich Moderow and current MIAD student Linh Hoang. Urban Wood Encounter is organized by Dwayne Sperber and Polly Morris.

The exhibition will be accompanied by "tree to table" educational programs that follow the life cycle of an urban tree and that explore possibilities for the use of urban wood. Urban Wood Encounter is supported, in part, by a 2014 Urban Forestry Grant from the State of Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Forestry Program.

Read more about Dwayne Sperber's urban wood project via the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel here.

Read Urban Milwaukee's review of the exhibition here.

For WUWM's segment on Urban Wood featuring Dwayne Sperber, click here.

Rafael Salas reviews the exhibition at Art City here.

Kat Murrel reviews the exhibition in the Wisconsin Gazette and the Shepherd Express.

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