All Union Art Gallery exhibitions are FREE and open to the public



Here To Stay: Braving Barriers Through Performance

Sept 11 – Oct 9, 2020

Visit the exhibition online here!

We don’t have a guest book since we are virtual, but you can send us your comments on Here to Stay anonymously here!

Please join the UWM Union Art Gallery for this timely virtual exhibition challenging preconceived notions of who we are as a nation and expanding our understanding of our community. Positioned immediately preceding our presidential election, in the middle of a world-wide pandemic and amidst a modern day civil rights movement, Here to Stay highlights the work of three artists working in the realm of social justice, activism and immigration.

The UWM Union Art Gallery is honored to present the work of Chicago-based performance artist Sami Hussain Ismat, Chicago-based installation artist Aram Hans Sifuentes and Milwaukee-based artist and activist Jeanette Arellano. Alongside these artists, we are excited to present the work of six UWM Peck School of the Arts students working within these same themes; co-organized by UWM Peck student Austin Piszczek.

Artist Credit: Aram Han Sifuentes, Sami Hussain Ismat and Jeanette Arellano

Additional Programming:

Performance, Protest and Censorship: A Conversation with Aruna D’Souza and Artist Panel: Tues, Oct 6, 7-8:15pm

Home, Belonging and Democracy Story Slam w/ Ex Fabula: Thur, Oct 8, 6-7pm




Crossing Over

Oct 23 – Dec 4, 2020

Opening Reception: TBD

The Crossing Over exhibition showcases work created by undergraduate students of the UWM Peck School of Arts department of Art and Design who have received a scholarship and/or fellowship award in 2019. This exciting annual event highlights the exceptional artwork produced by these promising emerging artists in a wide range of mediums and unpredictable themes. Please join the Union Art Gallery in celebrating these outstanding UWM artists!

Additional Programming:

Crossing Over Artist Talks: TBD




First Year Experience

Open Virtually!

Visit exhibition online here!

Opening Reception: Watch the recording here!

The First Year Program in Art and Design at UWM’s Peck School of the Arts prepares students to be creative, engaged and ready to advance in their chosen areas of study. The first year is a time of artistic and personal development during which students choose their areas of concentration and begin to see themselves becoming practitioners in their field. The Union Art Gallery’s First Year Exhibition is an opportunity for these students to showcase the work they have created during this process. Join us in celebrating the work of these talented artists.

MKE GENERATIONS: New Work by Willie G. and Michael Davidson

 Aug 26 – Sept 13, 2019

Opening Reception: Saturday, Aug 31, 5-7pm, Artist Talk at 7pm.

For the first time ever, University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee alum Michael Davidson and his father Willie G. are presenting artworks in a side-by-side gallery exhibition, showcasing their mutual lifelong devotion to painting. Willie G. helped shape 50 years of legendary and iconic designs as Vice President of Styling at Harley-Davidson, but it was his watercolor practice that inspired Michael’s childhood interest in painting. This fascination eventually led Michael to study at UWM before venturing into the art world of New York City. Although these two artists have explored a variety of styles and subjects independently throughout the decades, the elegant directness of paper, paint, and brush has guided their continued commitment to the expressive possibilities of their first love: abstract watercolors.

Please join the UWM Union Art Gallery as we present this pioneering exhibition of recent work by father and son, Willie G. and Michael Davidson.

Additional Programming:

Fall Welcome Trip to the Harley Davidson Museum:  Wednesday, Aug 28 | 12:30 – 2:30pm

Join us on a FREE trip to the Harley Davidson Museum, a Milwaukee icon! During the trip you can explore the museum. Free for UWM students w/ ID. Meet in the Union Concourse at 12:00pm on 8/28. Busses leave at 12:30pm and return at 2:30pm. Sponsored by Student Involvement.

Screening of “Willie G. Davidson: Artist, Designer, Leader, Legend”: Thursday, Sept 12 | 6pm

Union Art Gallery

Join the Union Art Gallery as we celebrate the Milwaukee icon, Willie G. Davidson, and the many depths that make the man the legend.

G • 2015 • 60 min • Biography/Documentary

10 Wisconsin Sculptors: Not Just a Boy’s Club

 Sept 20 – Oct 11, 2019

Opening Reception: Friday, Sept 20, 5-8pm, Artist Panel 5-6pm.

Creating sculptural works, especially those larger in scale, has historically been viewed as a male-dominated field within the arts. The reality however is that many significant women artists have influenced and shaped the sculptural conversation in Wisconsin. This exhibition, presenting ten Wisconsin artists, highlights some of the impactful work being done by women sculptors in Wisconsin. It is by no means a complete survey.

EXHIBITING ARTISTS: Emily Belknap, Prithika Deivasigamani, Yevgeniya Kaganovich, Katie Martin Meurer, Nirmal Raja, Lisa Beth Robinson, Mary Roley, Jill Sebastian, Valaria Tatera and Kristin Thielking

Additional Programming:

Wisconsin Avenue Sculpture Walk: Friday, Oct 4 | Buses leave UWM Student Union at 1pm

Public art is a fascinating topic with many different facets – motivations, intended audience, budget, location and many others. Join the Union Art Gallery for a FREE trip downtown to walk along Wisconsin Avenue and tour Sculpture Milwaukee, a temporary installation of large-scale public sculptures. The tour will include discussion led by a docent from the Milwaukee Art Museum.

Leah Schretenthaler Artist Talk: Thursday, Oct 10 | 6pm

Union Art Gallery

UWM MFA candidate Leah Schretenthaler will talk about her dual practices as an exhibiting photographer and sculptor and detail the process of designing and installing her new large scale sculpture, The Current Will Guide You. Commissioned by the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Student Union, Leah’s sculpture is a new and public addition to the Union Art Gallery Student Art Collection.

Photographic Reflections: Documenting Community

 Oct 17 – Nov 8, 2019

Panel Discussion: Thursday, Oct 17, 6pm
Opening Reception: Saturday, Oct 26, 5-8pm, Artist Talk by Darcy Padilla at 7pm.

The UWM Union Art Gallery is honored to present the work of internationally-renowned photographers Alejandro Cartagena, Justine Kurland and Darcy Padilla. This exhibition is presented in conjunction with the Society for Photographic Education (SPE) Midwest Conference, being held at Saint Kate – The Arts Hotel from October 24-27. Photographic Reflections explores representations of diverse communities throughout the United States and Mexico.

While photography has a unique way of capturing small glimpses into reality, it is the recontextualization of these unrelated moments that offers new narratives. Because these photographs present images both familiar and unfamiliar, the analysis of the dichotomies grants the viewer opportunities to see the world in new ways, expanding an understanding of human existence.

This exhibition is cosponsored by the Union Art Gallery, the SPE Midwest 2019 Conference “Communities, Collaborations and Collectives”, the UWM Student Photography Club-FOCUS and Peck School of the Arts.

SPE Conference Events:

UWM Artist Now Lecture Series / SPE Midwest 2019: Wednesday, October 23 | 7:30pm

Alejandro Cartagena at UWM Art Center Lecture Hall 120 (ACL 120)

SPE Midwest 2019 Featured Speaker: Thursday, October 24 | 7:30pm

Justine Kurland at Saint Kate Hotel Ballroom

MIAD Creativity Series / SPE Midwest 2019: Friday, October 25 | 6-8pm

Strange Fire Collective at MIAD’s 4th Floor Raw Space

Union Art Gallery / SPE Midwest 2019 SPE: Saturday, October 26 | 7:00pm

Darcy Padilla at UWM Union Ballroom

Peck Arts Center Gallery Exhibition:

Boundaries and Borders Opening Reception at the Arts Center Gallery: Saturday, October 26 | 5:00pm – 6:30pm

Open concurrently with the reception for Photographic Reflections: Documenting Community, exhibition featuring the work of Alejandro Cartagena, Larry Chatman, Dave Jordano, Barbara Minor and Johanna Warwick.

Crossing Over

 Nov 15 – Dec 12, 2019

Opening Reception: Friday, Nov 15, 5-7pm, Remarks at 6pm.

The Crossing Over exhibition showcases work created by undergraduate students of the UWM Peck School of Arts department of Art and Design who have received a scholarship and/or fellowship award in 2019. This exciting annual event highlights the exceptional artwork produced by these promising emerging artists in a wide range of mediums and unpredictable themes. Please join the Union Art Gallery in celebrating these outstanding UWM artists!

Additional Programming:

Crossing Over Artist Talks: Thursday, Dec 5th | 5:00-7:00pm

Union Art Gallery

Select undergraduate students exhibiting in this year’s Crossing Over exhibition will come speak about their works, their processes and their aspirations as emerging artists.

Manufacturing Creativity

Manufacturing Creativity: Reginald Baylor Studio

 Jan 21-Feb 14

Thursday, Jan 23 5-8pm: Opening Reception

Thursday, Jan 23, 6-7pm: Talk by Milwaukee-based artist and RBS Studio Owner, Reginald Baylor and RBS Creative Director, Melissa Courtney

Thursday, Jan 30, 6-7pm: “The Business of Art” talk by Milwaukee-based artist and Gallery Director, Pamela Anderson.

Friday, Feb 7, 1-3:30pm: Tour of Reginald Baylor Studio and Material Studios + Gallery. Free and open to UWM students with ID – transportation provided (meet in the Union Concourse).

Thursday, Feb 13, 6-7pm: “The Business of Art” talk by Milwaukee-based artist and educator, Mutope Johnson

Venturing out of painting, Milwaukee-based artist Reginald Baylor has shifted his focus to building brands. After realizing the time it took him to finish a painting that most people couldn’t afford, Baylor turned to the examples of past business-minded artists like Takashi Murakami, Kehinde Wiley, and Andy Warhol for the inspiration to imagine manufacturing creativity.

In 2018, in order to advance the creative industry, he relocated Reginald Baylor Studio to Walker’s Point where it now targets its energies on the design and development of brands. The diverse brands produced at Reginald Baylor Studio sell products and produce short films, while co-branding and offering specialized design services.

Please join the Union Art Gallery for this innovative exhibition, focusing on new models of creative output and the business of design, and showing what creativity can do for the community.


47th Annual Juried Show

 Feb 21-Mar 13

Opening Reception: Friday, Feb 21, 5-7pm, Awards at 6pm.

The 47th Annual Juried Show Feb 21 – Mar 13 Opening Reception: Fri, Feb 21, 5-7pm Awards at 6pm Juried Show Artist Talks: Thu, March 5, 5-7pm The Union Art Gallery presents its 47th Annual Juried Exhibition showcasing student artists from around the Greater Milwaukee area working in a variety of mediums. Juried by a panel of three Milwaukee arts professionals, the top three exhibiting artists will be announced and awarded cash prizes during the opening reception. This year’s jurors will be: Michael Davidson: Milwaukee-based painter and educator. Fatima Laster: Milwaukee-based visual artist and interior designer and owner of 5 Points Art Gallery and Studios. Rosy Petri: Milwaukee-based multi-disciplinary artist and 11th Pfister Artist-in-Residence.

47th Juried Show Artist Talks: Thursday, Mar 5th | 5:00-7:00pm

Collaborative Lens-CANCELED

 Apr 9-May 7

This dual exhibition explores collaborative approaches to photography through the presentation of process, research and pedagogy alongside striking original works by two Midwest-based photographers. Collaboration: A Potential History of Photography is an educational project by a group of artists, scholars and teachers – including Ariella Azoulay, Wendy Ewald, Susan Meiselas, Leigh Raiford and Laura Wexler – that hopes to initiate conversations around the idea of photography as a means of collaboration. As an extension, Explorative Collaborations of Barbara Ciurej & Lindsay Lochman showcases the results of their particular collaborative process.

We are happy to present Collaborative Lens in partnership with the Milwaukee Art Museum’s exhibition Susan Meiselas: Through a Woman’s Lens on view at the Milwaukee Art Museum April 17 – August 2, 2020.

Associated Programming at MAM:

April 16 Conversation event with Susan Meiselas and Lisa Sutcliffe (curator) at 6:15pm

April 17 Collaboration discussion and symposium with Susan Meiselas and Wendy Ewald 1-2pm