Connecting Communities



New York artist William Powhida, the John Michael Kohler Arts Center, and community members collaborated on a collective portrait installed at the Arts Center. Hundreds of area residents drew people and characters who lived in their memory but whom they had never actually met.

Participants were able to draw anyone—movie stars, cartoon characters, historical figures, or fictional personalities—but they could not have met them. Powhida’s own drawings in the HIDING PLACES exhibition on display from June through December 2011 served as inspiration. In total, 418 drawings were made of individuals ranging from historical figures to family ancestors to pop culture icons. Powhida worked with a group of twelve community members to categorize and order the individual drawings for the final installation.

HIDING PLACES: MEMORY IN THE ARTS was made possible by major funding from: Ruth St. John and John Dunham West Foundation, Inc.; Helen Bader Foundation, Inc.; Sargento Foods Inc.;
National Endowment for the Arts; Anonymous Foundation (1); Anonymous Individual (1); Natalie Black Kohler and Herbert V. Kohler, Jr.; Rachel Kohler and Mark Hoplamazian; Wisconsin Department of Tourism; Elizabeth Ellrodt and Scott Schweighauser; Bert L. and Patricia S. Steigleder Charitable Trust; Herzfeld Foundation; Bank First National; Katherine and Robert Chesebro; Karen and Jeffrey Overly; K.C. Nemschoff; Wisconsin Arts Board; Diane and David Buck; Kathryn and John Burke; Laura Kohler and Steve Proudman; and Mark Nemschof.