Last year we visited Villa Terrace on a sunny day like this and it is definitely worth a visit. This year we visited three nearby locations:
St Johns on the Lake, The Charles Allis Museum, and the Milwaukee Jewish Museum.
Of three, the Jewish Museum was the best "discovery" as it featured art and historical documentation on Jewish life and culture in Wisconsin, including a section focusing on their diaspora, particularly over the past century.
St John's on the Lake This is an upscale retirement community overlooking Lake Michigan. Upon entry you walk into a long hall gallery. The featured Wisconsin artist works in acrylic on canvas. His high level of craftsmanship is exceptionally consistent.
Click to view.
The Charles Allis Museum is a mansion once owned by a very successful Milwaukee-area businessman and his family. Visitors can tour the mansion rooms at leisure.
This mansion is "sparce" in original decoration compared to other homesteads- like the Pabst Mansion in Milwaukee and elsewhere. Nonetheless, you do get a feel for the way Milwaukee's elite lived and early 20th century tastes.
You'll be able to view several small collections which belonged to the former owners, as well as temporary exhibits like the French World War I lithograph poster collection; the war began shortly after the Allis mansion was completed. Featured are sketches of families awaiting the return of their loved ones, some are touching and others are sad.
Next stop was the Jewish Museum
The Suffering of European Jews
The suffering of the Jewish people during World War II is well documented at this museum.
The personal stories recorded here reminded me of the ones featured at the St Pope John Paul II (JPII) museum in Poland (above). The brutal deaths of so many Jewish friends and acquaintances left a lasting impression on the future pope and helped to form his papacy.
"As a child, Karol Wojtyła (Pope John Paul II) had played sports with his many Jewish neighbors. He was one of the few popes to have grown up in a climate of flourishing Jewish culture, one of the key components of pre-war Kraków, his interest in Jewish life dated from early youth. He wrote and delivered a number of speeches on the subject of the Church's relationship with Jews, and often paid homage to the victims of the Holocaust in many nations." more here.
The Milwaukee Jewish Museum
Find a large Marc Chagall tapestry in the main gathering room then continue into a recently completed and impressive museum of photographs, documents and other artifacts.
The Jewish immigrants have a long standing and proud history in Milwaukee. Golda Meir is the most famous personality with ties to the Milwaukee Jewish Community.
There's a lot to read and see. I focused primarily the World War II tragedy and the post-war Jewish artists like Chagall and his message of hope and love.
Contemporary Milwaukee Jewish artists
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“It is with the smallest brushes that the artist paints the most exquisitely beautiful pictures.” (St. André Bessette)