Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts
Press Release

For Immediate Release: Five Finalists Compete for Wilson Center’s Inaugural ArtsPark Sculpture

From the 40 artists who submitted sculpture designs, finalists Ray Chi, Joshua Hunt, Don Rambadt, Andrew Redington, and Nizar Schaller were selected.

By - Mar 26th, 2015 09:38 am

Brookfield, WI (March 26, 2015) Five Wisconsin-based artists have been selected as finalists in the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts (Wilson Center) Circle Drive Sculpture Competition. Each artist will create maquettes of their proposed sculpture design for the inaugural piece that will be commissioned as part of Lynn Chappy ArtsPark (ArtsPark) – a free, interactive sculpture garden in Brookfield’s Mitchell Park that will unite nature and art in inspiring ways for visitors.

From the 40 artists who submitted sculpture designs, finalists Ray Chi, Joshua Hunt, Don Rambadt, Andrew Redington, and Nizar Schaller were selected by a jury that included independent curator, art historian, and author and former Associate Curator of the Haggerty Museum of Art Dr. Annemarie Sawkins; Assistant Director of the Tory Folliard Gallery Christine Anderson; and professional artist and Professor of Sculpture at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee John Balsley. The designs were critiqued based on a number of factors that included the artistic excellence of the design, fit with the natural landscape surrounding the Wilson Center, and the character of the Wilson Center and City of Brookfield.

The five finalists will be provided with an honorarium to create table-top models – called “maquettes” – of their sculptural designs. The community will be invited to share their input on the maquettes this summer; their input will be considered as part of the selection process, and the winner will be announced at the Wilson Center’s 10th anniversary Hidden River Arts Festival taking place September 19-20, 2015. The selected sculpture will be placed in the Circle Drive outside of the Wilson Center’s main entrance, with an anticipated installation date of June, 2016.

“The Wilson Center’s Circle Drive Sculpture Contest is the beginning of a remarkable project to expand sculpture works throughout Brookfield’s Mitchell Park, which will make it a destination for visual art experiences,” said Wilson Center Executive Director Jonathan Winkle. “Including the Circle Drive piece, there will be an addition of six locations added to the four current outdoor sculptural sites within the next two years.”

A prestigious $50,000 Our Town grant from the National Endowment for the Arts served as the catalyst for ArtsPark. This multi-phase, strategic initiative to extend the arts beyond the walls of the Wilson Center will feature numerous non-traditional works of art with educational activities including art classes, field trip opportunities, and artist talks. Also in 2014, Caerulean Collaborative Design was contracted to complete the master landscaping plan that will guide and direct ArtsPark planning and its multiple phases of development over the next ten years; this design concept was created and supported by a significant gift from Lynn Chappy.

About the Finalists

Ray Chi is a multi-disciplinary artist based in Milwaukee. Architect, cellist, award-winning filmmaker and designer of FURNICHI, Chi was named “Artist of the Year” in 2005 by the Milwaukee Arts Board. He has exhibited at INOVA, the Milwaukee Art Museum, the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design, and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, among others. His work has been featured in such publications as Milwaukee Magazine, The New York Times, Art in America, and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. He received his master’s degree in architecture from Southern California Institute of Architecture and currently teaches sculpture courses at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Recently, he was awarded a public art commission for the East Milwaukee Public Library and is currently focused on researching and rethinking playscape design as a viable site for abstract and interactive sculpture.

Joshua Hunt is a Wisconsin-based artist who regularly participates in exhibitions and gallery showings both regionally and nationally. Hunt is interested in themes involving color theory, contemporary culture, and the history of abstraction. Hunt earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Arts Education from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and currently serves as a visual art instructor for the Mequon-Thiensville School District. He is represented by the Comb Gallery and serves as the curator of the National Order of the Arrow Museum.

Milwaukee-based artist Don Rambadt uses birds as a point of departure, exploring the relationship between positive and negative space in mixed metals to give the impression of life and movement. Before focusing full time on his sculpture, he specialized in casting monumental bronze sculpture for Vanguard Sculpture Services, a full service sculpture foundry, and taught courses in welding at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design. His work can be found in numerous museum and private collections across the United States. He has also completed several commissioned public art pieces in Arkansas, California, Colorado, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. He received his Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and is a member of the National Sculpture Society and National Sculptors Guild.

Artist Andrew Redington is an assistant professor of art metals and functional design at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh and serves as the director of the Allen Priebe Gallery on its campus. Born and raised in Wisconsin, he received a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Wisconsin where he studied metalsmithing, woodworking, and sculpture. He has served as a juror for several art competitions in the Milwaukee area and exhibits widely across the United States, including exhibitions at the Carnegie Science Center in Pennsylvania and the Bilbro Gallery in New York. He most recently completed a public work project for the newly built Thelma Sadofff Center for the Arts in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin.

Nizar Schaller is an artist and architect whose work explores the relationship between natural and built environments. He is a master of architectural studies candidate at the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture sharing migratory locations in Spring Green, Wisconsin; and Scottsdale, Arizona. Through his studies in the United Kingdom and South Africa, he has worked as a designer and architect contributing to both residential and commercial projects including the conceptual development and design of a masque, memorial, township clinic and private residence. Schaller is an active member of the American Institute of Architecture Students.

About Lynn Chappy ArtsPark

Lynn Chappy ArtsPark is a central component of the Wilson Center’s multiphase, strategic initiative to extend the arts beyond the walls of the Center, uniting nature and art in inspiring ways for its visitors. ArtsPark is a free, interactive sculpture garden, located in the City of Brookfield’s Mitchell Park-a 405-acre community space with wetlands, woodlands, and outdoor recreation facilities along the Fox River. Made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts’ Our Town grant awarded to the Wilson Center in 2014, as well as support from the City of Brookfield and Lynn Chappy, ArtsPark will feature numerous non-traditional works of art with educational activities including docent-led tours, field trip opportunities, and artist talks. Planning is already underway and sculpture installation will begin in the summer of 2016.

About the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts

Now in its 13th season, the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts is a non-profit, multi-disciplinary cultural arts center that presents performances by world-renowned artists and ensembles, offers myriad arts education opportunities, and curates an ever-changing art gallery featuring nationally renowned artists. The Wilson Center for the Arts is just minutes west of Milwaukee, nestled in Brookfield’s Mitchell Park, south of Capitol Drive, just west of Brookfield Road. For additional information about the Wilson Center and its programming, visit or call (262) 781-9470.

NOTE: This press release was submitted to Urban Milwaukee and was not written by an Urban Milwaukee writer. It has not been verified for its accuracy or completeness.

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