by Mark Lawson One characteristic of our neighborhood that keeps us moving forward is our strong sense of community. Over time, this has proven to be an enduring trait that has fostered a neighborhood character that is truly unique. This is all the more remarkable because of the fact that our neighborhood is actually comprised of many communities. Some are based on racial and ethnic backgrounds, others on age, value systems, and even professions. In future issues of the Riverwest Currents, I will be writing a column on the news and issues of one such community within our neighborhood, the community of artists who have long made Riverwest their home. I will be applying broad definitions to the terms “artists” and “the arts,” as is appropriate to a neighborhood that embodies diversity on so many different levels. In stories that range from individual portraits to discussions of broad economic and social issues, this column will portray the arts community from the perspective of one longtime Riverwest resident and visual artist. I would value any comments or suggestions from you, our readers, regarding this column. Please address them to me at Riverwest Currents, 604 E. Center Street. Mark Lawson is a Riverwest resident and a long time board member of the Riverwest Artists Association. He is also an instructor and gallery director at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design.
by Mark Lawson