By Livia Peterson
“That nothing here is promised, not one day. And love is love is love is love is love is love is love is love cannot be killed or swept aside. Now fill the world with music, love and pride.” ~Lin-Manuel Miranda
The Milwaukee Art Museum (700 North Art Museum Drive near the Milwaukee Lakefront) will celebrate Robert Indiana’s The American LOVE sculpture (1966–99) during the Grand Unveiling at the East End on Thursday, September 5, 2019. The sculpture was previously on display during Sculpture Milwaukee 2018 and donated to the museum’s collection, supported by the Greater Milwaukee Foundation and an anonymous donor.
The event will commence with the Albright-Knox Art Gallery deputy director Joe Martin Lin-Hill discussing Mr. Indiana’s career in the Lubar Auditorium at 5:30pm, followed by the unveiling of the installed sculpture on the East End at 6:45pm. The Meijer (Meijer Free First Thursday) sponsorship allows admission to both events and the museum free all day for everyone.
Milwaukee Art Museum’s interim chief curator and contemporary art curator Margaret Andera expressed in a press release, “The Milwaukee Art Museum is thrilled to receive this iconic sculpture for the collection. Robert Indiana’s work has always connected with Milwaukee; his design for the MECCA floor in the 1970s is a Milwaukee icon, and now the LOVE sculpture’s prominent location on the lakefront will allow both locals and Museum visitors to enjoy his work for years to come.”
Furthermore, Sculpture Milwaukee’s exhibitions and programs director Marilu Knode asserted, “Sculpture Milwaukee is honored to have community partners who are helping build a world-class legacy of sculpture in the city, which includes the donation of Robert Indiana’s LOVE to the Milwaukee Art Museum. Thanks to our donors, the Milwaukee Art Museum team and all the other supporters of Sculpture Milwaukee for bringing these amazing works to our robust arts community.”
Lastly, Friends of Art President Annette Melcher added, “Friends of Art is thrilled to support the official unveiling of the iconic LOVE sculpture by Robert Indiana. This highly recognizable piece is a welcomed addition to the Milwaukee Art Museum’s collection. We hope that members of our museum and community will join us in celebrating this milestone, and recognize how fortunate we are to have this amazing piece of art to enhance the Museum's reputation.”
Besides The American LOVE reveal, selected works by Mr. Indiana will be on display in the K108 Gallery, including Indiana’s study for the MECCA floor, a significant wood sculpture, and color screen prints.
If you did not see the LOVE sculpture at Sculpture Milwaukee last year, the Milwaukee Art Museum is providing an awesome opportunity to do so. Moreover, the Milwaukee Art Museum is an incredible family outing, as it allows adolescents appreciate art at a young age.
The Trump Administration may be dividing us more than ever, but we must remind ourselves the arts (film, theatre, visual art, and the like) allow us to examine our existence. Love is what we need most during our current moment. Support, hug, and bond with loved ones. Loves is one of the most vital assets and let’s utilize it to reunite.