May 2012

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play in your free time Art Throb Raising the bar By Pete Lundberg Happy May! Now that we Wisconsinites will be spending every waking moment outdoors, our neighborhood bars may seem a bit empty, unless of course they have outdoor patios or decks. The corner bar, whether a high-society establish- ment or a grungy dive, has been a popular subject for painters for several centuries in Europe and the United States. The French Impressionists often por- Book Club Famed bloggers-turned- authors offer touching works in print trayed celebratory life inside nightclubs, most famously captured in Edouard Manet's 1882 painting, "Follies Bergere." American artists got on the bandwagon in the early 20th century. Ashcan School artist John Sloan did a series of paint- ings inside McSorley's Old Ale House, an Irish pub in New York City's Greenwich Village while Edward Hopper's "Nighthawks" stands in stark contrast to the gaiety of many European scenes as a sobering study of loneliness and despera- tion. Purchased in 1942 for only $3,000 by the Art Institute of Chicago, this priceless masterpiece remains a cornerstone of the museum's collection. famous sonal favorite is artist Onelio Marrero, a master at portraying light and shadow in interior scenes. His attention to detail is renowned—one of my clients counted 136 individually painted bottles depicted in one canvas, including those reflected in the steel bar rail! Enjoy your local watering hole responsibly, and be sure to drink in all that summer weather! The tradition lives on today. My per- Pete Lundberg is not only an art lover but owner of Janus Galleries in Madison. Above: Onelio Marrero, a regular exhibitor at Janus Galleries, is known for his masterful portrayals of bars and eateries in New York City and New Jersey. His scenes are so realistic that one can almost walk into them! Bottom: Painted by Edouard Manet in 1882, "Follies Bergere" shows a plaintive barmaid who seems jaded by the wild activity reflected behind her, including signs of a trapeze act in the upper left corner. The French knew how to party! Dear Daughter: The Best of the Dear Leta Letters By Heather Armstrong In her third book, the author behind the blog "Dooce" takes the monthly letters she penned to her first daughter online—a series of touching memories and laugh-out-loud anecdotes of a mother learning who her child really is—to the page. Published by Gallery Books, $14 Rockabye: From Wild to Child By Rebecca Wolf An honest, humorous memoir by the author of "Girls Gone Child" tells how this rock 'n' roll 20-something embraced an unexpected pregnancy in her own way, allowing herself to step into a new phase of life without step- ping away from her dreams. Published by Seal Press, $16 The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels By Ree Drummond Known for her delightful cookbooks and storytelling, "The Pioneer Woman" shares a personal memoir of transition- ing from city living to life on a ranch, and how she fell in love with the man she would marry. Published by William Morrow, $15 Bloom: Finding Beauty in the Unexpected By Kelle Hampton A tender memoir by the author of the blog "Enjoying the Small Things" tells the story of the birth of her second child, who was born with Down syndrome. Hampton's candid, honest emotions will have you shedding tears, while her transformation will have you facing life with a new attitude. Published by Harper Collins, $17 Artsy happening this month: Spring Gallery Night: Across the city, art galleries, coffeehouses and shops throw their doors open for Gallery Night. Stop by one—or 10—and take in all that the local arts scene has to offer. Friday, 5-9 p.m. Locations vary, Madison; 72 BRAVA Magazine May 2012

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