The Year of the Arts

Illuminate: Year of the Arts shone a spotlight on the breadth, depth, power, and purpose of artistic exploration and expression at UW–Madison. From September 2010 through August 2011, more than 300 performances, exhibits, symposia, public events, publications, distinguished visiting speakers, and on-line resources celebrated the many ways the arts help us see differently, and see more.


Previous Events

Rocco Landesman with Chancellor Martin
Year of the Arts Launch Event

Rocco Landesman, Chairman, National Endowment for the Arts, Broadway producer, and UW–Madison alumni joined Chancellor Biddy Martin on September 16, 2010 to open the Year of the Arts on the Memorial Union Terrace. Mr. Landesman spoke to the value, impact, and relevance of the arts to campus and community, and explored the Federal role in connecting the arts to larger civic goals.

Corridor to the Arts

An hour of repeating performances by UW Arts students
Prior to the Year of the Arts launch event, the public enjoyed the Corridor to the Arts. On East Campus Mall and Vilas Hall’s many terraces, across the bridge to Humanities’ outdoor spaces, on the steps of Lathrop Hall, and around Library Mall, musicians, dancers, actors, and visual artists performed and showed work for the public to enjoy. Performances repeated throughout the hour.

Year of the Arts Parade & All-Campus Arts Fair

A parade and fair to celebrate the launch of UW–Madison’s Year of the Arts
UW Arts students and faculty assembled on East Campus Mall along with other members of the campus community and the public-at-large, and to “give a face to the arts” in a masquerade-style parade across campus to the Memorial Union Terrace for the official launch event of ILLUMINATE: Year of the Arts. An All-Campus Arts Fair – featuring performances and demonstrations by student arts groups – followed Chancellor Martin’s and Mr. Landesman’s remarks. It was quite a celebration!

October 21-22, 2010

Elusive Truths: The Cinema of Errol Morris

Errol Morris, Academy-award winning documentarian, historian, and ’69 UW-Madison graduate, visited campus to participate in lectures and talks surrounding a viewing of his work. The public enjoyed a full retrospective of his films from September 4 – October 16, which included screenings of The Thin Blue Line, A Brief History of Time, and The Fog of War, among many others. Check the Elusive Truths website for the full schedule and event details.

March 24-26, 2011

Sunlight Project and Symposium

“The Arts, the Humanities, and Local Participants Remember and Refigure the Vietnam War in the Present.” THREE DAYS. TEN EVENTS. Dance, art, story, film, panel discussions, and a lecture by Pulitzer Prize-winning author David Maraniss. Veterans, alumni, faculty, and administration joined the conversation. Presented by the Dance Department with support from Anonymous Fund, School of Education, Academic Technology (DoIT), Art Department, Hilldale Fund, MERIT (SoE), Office of the Secretary of the Faculty, and the Arts Institute.

March 28-29, 2011

Carl Djerassi

Carl Djerassi, award winning chemist, novelist, playwright, art collector, and ’45 UW–Madison Ph.D. graduate as well as ’95 honorary degree recipient, visited campus to speak surrounding a staged reading of his latest theatre work, FOREPLAY, dealing with Hannah Arendt, Theodore and Gretel Adorno, and Walter Benjamin. The reading, remarks, and a book signing took place on March 29 at the Town Center in the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery building. Dr. Djerassi’s visit to campus was a combined effort from Theatre and Drama, Creative Writing, Chemistry, UW Press, and the Arts Institute.

April 27 – May 1, 2010

Campus Arts Homecoming and Open House

Year of the Arts Closing Event
ILLUMINATE: UW–Madison Year of the Arts 2010-11 ended the academic year by highlighting the campus arts scene in an extended celebration April 27 – May 1, 2011.

The Campus Arts Homecoming and Open House offered the opportunity to enjoy talks, exhibits, kids’ activities, and performances all over campus. The public was invited to meet faculty and students who make up the campus arts community and explore the arts on campus.

Wisconsin Alumni Association and UW Arts Institute teamed up as Year of the Arts intersects with Alumni Weekend 2011 on April 29 and April 30.

The Alumni Weekend Lectures on Friday explored the arts with campus experts at the brand-new Union South. Exploring Campus events at the Art Lofts, the newly renovated Education Building and the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery took place Saturday.

During the weekend, participants enjoyed dance and musical performances; observed glass blowing, printmaking, and ceramics demos at the Arts Lofts Demo Extravaganza; and watched Kabuki theatre and fashion designers create. They also viewed “art in motion” as students from Interdisciplinary Artist in Residence Tad Gloeckler’s “Drag Space” course presented a mobile installation mounted on a cargo bicycle on the UW–Madison campus and in Madison’s downtown area.

Experience UW’s vibrant arts scene. Celebrate ILLUMINATE: Year of the Arts.


The Arts at Wisconsin (PDF)

From his humble beginnings as an undergraduate to his administrative ascent and eventual course instruction, Arthur Hove established a long-standing legacy with the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Because of his longevity (nearly seven decades) and love of the university, Hove gained recognition as a chronicler of university history. He continued to share his knowledge well after his retirement in 1996. He edited and contributed to a book commemorating the Year of the Arts (2010-2011), celebrating the history of the arts on the UW–Madison campus, which was published in 2012.