Corrigan’s Lookout (detail), by Ann Singsaas
Art doesn’t usually thrive when enslaved by political dogma. But it is downright heartening to see 20 artists team up to awaken our interest in Penokee Hills near Ashland. A mining initiative launched in 2011 would like to extract taconite from a 22-mile open pit in this wildlife-rich area. This traveling exhibition of Iron Hills-themed work celebrates the fishing, hiking, clear waters and nearby Ojibwe culture in industrious and diverse ways. Highlights include a weaving of a 19th-century mining photo and 1930s, WPA-styled prints highlighting scenic vistas and baskets woven from Black Ash trees. These artists gently and successfully share their love of these hills to spark our interest in this debate.
Penokee: Explore the Iron Hills (April 8-June 30). Urban Ecology Center. 1500 E. Park Pl., 414-964-8505, urbanecologycenter.org.