Explore the history and future of rural arts in Wisconsin with two of its greatest leaders. Maryo Gard Ewell, arts administrator and daughter of arts advocate Robert E. Gard, will tell the story of how the Wisconsin Idea fostered the development of Wisconsin’s rural artists. In the 1940’s, the Wisconsin Rural Art Program (WRAP) at the University of Wisconsin began to enroll adult noncredit students, gathering a group of largely self-taught artists—teachers, mail carriers, blacksmiths, farmers, and homemakers. From its foundation in the College of Agriculture to its present day home in the Division of Continuing Studies, the Rural Arts Program continues to encourage and cultivate art in all corners of our state. Helen Klebesadel, current director of WRAP, will open this celebration of the Wisconsin Regional Art Program’s 75th Anniversary with a brief description of WRAP’s current and planned future contributions to Wisconsin’s art culture.
Recorded on September 24, 2015, in the Wisconsin Studio of Overture Center for the Arts, this Academy Talk is presented by the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters in partnership with the Wisconsin Regional Art Program.