Robert Indiana The American Love sculpture

The Best and Worst of Cream City Culture in January

This month’s forecast called for some highs, and lows, on the A&E front.

The Good

1) Trapper Schoepp Calls Out Rape Culture

Rising Milwaukee folk rock star Trapper Schoepp released a new song and music video this month, in advance of his Jan. 25 tour kickoff. Schoepp says that the song, called “What You Do To Her,” grapples with the after-effects of sexual assault.

“The verses tell the all-too-frequent story of a man who gets away with his actions, while the chorus reminds us how we’re all affected – survivors, their families, their friends, and the community as a whole,” he says. “For too long, men have stood on the sidelines on this issue.”

The song itself is undeniably catchy, and through it Schoepp seems to channel a young Bob Dylan – he’s a gifted, and politically active, singer-songwriter with a knack for killer harmonica riffs.

You can catch Schoepp live at The Back Room on Feb. 2.

2) Comedian Shane Mauss Has Found a Way to Make Science Funny

One of Wisconsin’s most successful comedians, Shane Mauss, is bringing his “Stand Up Science” show to The Cooperage on Wednesday, Jan 30. Mauss (whom you might have seen on Comedy Central, Conan or Jimmy Kimmel Live) has invited a local comic to open for him. Then he’ll be taking the stage with two local academics to talk, and joke, about their careers.

According to the Austin Chronicle, “Mauss has clearly found a popular niche in his natural fascination with the human mind. However, attendees should be forewarned: The show is still going to kill you with laughter.”

3) A Massive Robert Indiana Sculpture is Going to be Installed at the Milwaukee Art Museum

Hot on the heels of its participation in Milwaukee Museum Week (Jan. 21-27), the MAM announced that an anonymous donor had gifted the museum “The American LOVE,” a sculpture by artist Robert Indiana that had been installed in front of the Northwestern Mutual Building during the 2018 iteration of Sculpture Milwaukee.

“This piece by Robert Indiana was one of the most popular stops by locals and visitors alike over the summer,” says the director of exhibitions and programs for Sculpture Milwaukee, Marilu Knode. “Being able to add this work to our community demonstrates the impact that Sculpture Milwaukee can have on the artistic and cultural landscape of the city.”

Soon the massive sculpture will be permanently installed near the MAM’s eastern patio, facing Lake Michigan.

4) Women Helping Women, at NEWaukee Speaker Series

The “social architecture” engineers over at NEWaukee announced that they’ll be introducing a free, female-focused speaker series next month. The series, called The Shift, will launch on Feb. 21 at the healthcare company Diversatek. Cultural heavy hitters like Kennita Hickman (Chief Culture Curator at Catera OmniVision Group) and Erin Levzow (VP of Marketing at Marcus Hotels and Resorts), will share stories about their careers in the spirit of helping other women blaze career trails of their own.

The Bad

1) It Won’t Be Miller Time at Miller Park Much Longer

We learned this month that Miller Park will be leaving us. Not the park itself, but the name – The Brewers sold naming rights to the Madison-based company American Family Insurance, which will be renaming the park for its 2021 season.

Our own executive editor, Chris Drosner, had some thoughts on this development, and they weren’t particularly positive.

2) Neil Young May Have a Heart of Gold, But His Fans Don’t

Neil Young’s Jan. 23 performance at the Riverside, according to Journal Sentinel music reporter Piet Levy, was nearly ruined. Young had promised audiences an intimate, solo show at the Riverside that night. But the rowdy crowd occasionally threatened to drown out Young’s songs.

From Levy: “’You’re screwing up my tuning, making all that noise,’ Young said at one point, one of the few things he actually did say Wednesday, but people in the audience still didn’t get the hint.”



Lindsey Anderson covers culture for Milwaukee Magazine. Before joining the MilMag team she worked as an editor at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and wrote freelance articles for ArtSlant and Eater.