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DAC ponders beauty in backyard

Nov. 7, 2012

Wisconsin-born conservationist Aldo Leopold once wrote that our ability to perceive quality in nature begins, as in art, with the pretty. It expands through successive stages of the beautiful to values as yet uncaptured by language.

The Delafield Arts Center (DAC) is close to capturing these values at its Nov. 10 event, Wisconsin Beauty in our Backyard.

The all-day event is free for the public. From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Katie Musolff will lead a river walk, for both children and adults, to collect bits of nature for a sketchbook project. Early registration is appreciated so DAC can plan for the supplies it will need. Call (262) 303-4865.

Musolff describes herself as someone who is always working from life - part artist, part naturalist - and avid student of the river.

"I think inspiration comes from not knowing something and getting the chance to delve in further. … To me, half of the fun is just looking and finding. That fun comes from not knowing it but learning something new," Musolff said.

After the art project, Milton Bates will talk about his book "The Bark River Chronicles" at 1 p.m.

His book recounts one couple's journey by canoe from the river's headwaters to its confluence with the Rock River and downstream to Lake Koshkonong. It ties the couple's own river experience with the human and natural history in the region. While we all know that the Bark River flows into our backyard, Bates will also show you the history and culture that flow here, too. In "The Bark River Chronicles," he writes:

After Bates' talk, at about 2 p.m., the public is invited to participate in a conversation with Musolff and Andy Fletcher. The two are engaged and both create works of art that have been inspired by Wisconsin - the collection is themed "323 N. Pearl Street" after their cottage.

"I think there will be a lot of storytelling. If you can imagine, two artists living and working together out of a cottage with no Internet or TV," Musolff said.

A reception will follow, and the audience will have a chance to tour the gallery and purchase a copy of "The Bark River Chronicles" or an original piece of art that's on display.

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Weekend Happenings

Featured this week:  

North Shore Bank-Taste of Lake Country: 5 p.m. July 29, 4 p.m. July 30, Pewaukee Beach Front, 120 W. Wisconsin Ave., Pewaukee. Headline Friday night is The Toys and Saturday night The Love Monkeys. Free.

Kids from Wisconsin: 7:30 p.m. July 29, Oconomowoc Arts Center, 641 E. Forest St., Oconomowoc. Celebrating its 48th show season with a talented group of 33 young performers representing 29 different hometowns across Wisconsin, this year’s tour theme is Sing! Free.

Wisconsin State Frog Jump Championship: 1 p.m. July 30-31, Cory Park, Downtown Dousman, Dousman. Visit  

Catelyn Picco: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. July 31, Mama D’s Coffee, 104 W Main St., Wales. Free.

All weekend happenings