Community Conversations



Come together in recognizing and celebrating the diversity that makes our community strong and vital. Upcoming programs offer opportunities for honest conversations about how racial identities develop and influence our cultural norms, helping participants understand the differences between commonly held perceptions, unspoken norms, and the realities of contemporary experiences.


Heather Hart (NY) works in a variety of media including interactive and participatory installation art, drawing, collage, and painting. One of her installations is currently on view at the John Michael Kohler Arts Center. The work is a response to Dr. Charles Smith’s artist-built environment titled the African American Heritage Museum and Black Veterans Archives.

Workshops begin with a brief discussion about Hart’s installation, followed by either a roundtable or an edit-a-thon engagement activity. Roundtable intergenerational conversations and “Wikipedia edit-a-thons” will bring people together to consider contemporary issues of race, how history is recorded, and the under representation of minority artists in the art historical canon.

Workshop participants will explore the intersection between historical narratives provided by Hart and their personal experiences.

Free Public Workshop Dates
Black Lunch Table Community Roundtable, September 17, 1:30 p.m.
Black Lunch Table Artists' Roundtable, September 19, 5:30 p.m.
Black Lunch Table Community Roundtable, September 21, 5:30 p.m.
Wikipedia edit-a-thon, September 24, 1:30 p.m.
Wikipedia edit-a-thon, September 26, 5:30 p.m.

RSVP as seating is limited.

Thurs., Oct. 5, 7:00 p.m.

Author, artist, performer, creative change agent, Dasha Kelly uses words as her tools for fostering inspiration and building community. Join us for a performance and introduction with Dasha.

Age 14+

$5  ($4 member)

Register >


Thursday, Nov. 16, 7:00 p.m.

Join us for an exciting made from scratch event featuring community stories blended, mixed, and baked by writer and poet Dasha Kelly with ingredients from the people of Sheboygan.

Dasha uses her words as tools for building inspiration and community. She has performed on HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, been named Milwaukee Artist of the Year in 2016, was a writer-in-residence for the prestigious Pfister Hotel, and has been included on's list of "Top 100 Coolest Milwaukeeans."

Age 14+

$15 ($10 member), cake reception to follow

Register >

4:00–8:00 p.m.

Join us for a barbershop experience in the gallery featuring WE ARE WHAT WE ENCOUNTER. Share stories and get a cut with Dan Greer of Elite Barbershop. Takes place in the gallery featuring WE ARE WHAT WE ENCOUNTER. Call Elite at 920-453-0080 to schedule a free cut or hot towel shave during one of these talks.


Register for a date below
Tuesday, October 10
Tuesday, November 7
Tuesday, December 5


Conversations on Race and Empowerment (CoRE) is presented as a facilitated community dialogue within the Arts Center’s exhibition, THINGS ARE WHAT WE ENCOUNTER: DR. CHARLES SMITH + Heather Hart.  CoRE will discuss the impact of race, power, and identity in our country and community. Reverend Lex Cade-White and Alexandra Nugent, both experienced facilitators, will use data-driven resources to engage participants in approachable and inclusive discussions on race through creative expression, self-reflection, and interactions with Arts Center artists-in-residence and their work. This series will equip participants with the vocabulary and knowledge needed to further their understanding of historical and current race relations and privilege.

Tuesday, September 19, 6:00­–7:30 p.m.
We will examine terms that are familiar and some that are new in order to create a common framework to discuss racial experiences. A look at the ways people are exposed to racial identity and socialized to make conclusions surrounding their own racial identities will be explored.

Tuesday, October 3, 6:00­–7:30 p.m.
Race, power, and oppression manifest individually, culturally, and institutionally. We will explore language around privilege, power, and the ways in which we reinforce those dynamics intentionally and accidentally.

Tuesday, November 14, 6:00­–7:30 p.m.
In what ways do families positively and negatively impact our perception of race? We will discuss ways to address conversations in the family around race, power, and privilege across generations in an age-appropriate fashion.

Tuesday, December 12, 6:00­–7:30 p.m.
We will delve into the ways in which our community can address, engage, and be proactive, not reactive, to the realities of race that exist locally.

Age 18+


Regiser here for all four classes >



About this exhibition:

Artist Heather Hart (NY) uses architectural forms mixed with family and oral histories, multiple narratives, and participatory engagements as integral components in much of her creative work. For this exhibition, she continues her exploration of community spaces to consider and challenge the evolving socio-political landscape. She has created site-specific architecture to house and interact with twenty of Smith’s sculptures.

On View Now