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Milwaukee Arts Board Announces 2023 Artists of the Year, Friends of the Arts Award Honorees


The City of Milwaukee Arts Board (MAB) is announcing the 2023 Mildred L. Harpole Artists of the Year and 2023 Friends of the Arts award recipients. These honorees recognize and celebrate excellence and exceptional service in Milwaukee’s arts community.

Artists Ben Tyjeski and Paul Druecke were named the 2023 Artists of the Year, while Jenelle Elder-Green and Carl Bogner were named the 2023 Friends of the Arts.

Read more HERE.

Milwaukee Arts Board Announces 2023 Application Cycles for Sustaining Grant Program, Public Art Conservation Fund


The Milwaukee Arts Board (MAB) has announced that application cycles are open for the Sustaining Grant Program and the Public Art Conservation Fund.

“Milwaukee’s arts organizations, public art installations, and creative spaces add value to our neighborhoods and help residents and families engage with their community,” said Mayor Cavalier Johnson. “The Milwaukee Arts Board and its partner organizations carry out invaluable work, ensuring the city’s arts organizations are supported and our public art assets are sustained for years to come.”

“We have a responsibility to lift up our local arts-based organizations and preserve Milwaukee’s public art amenities for residents to enjoy and communities to benefit from,” said Alderwoman Milele Coggs, Chair of the Milwaukee Arts Board. “I am encouraging local non-profits and organizations throughout the city to apply for these funds and join our efforts to preserve and enhance Milwaukee’s creative community.”

Sustaining Grant Program
The Sustaining Grant Program provides funding to arts-based organizations for programming, administrative, and/or facilities costs. The grant program is open to eligible nonprofit, tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organizations located in the City of Milwaukee. 

This MAB grant program is funded by the City of Milwaukee with additional support from the Wisconsin Arts Board and the National Endowment for the Arts. Applications will be accepted through March 13, 2023. Apply and learn more about the MAB Sustaining Grant Program HERE.

Public Art Conservation Fund
The Public Art Conservation Fund provides funding for non-profit organizations to administer public art conservation efforts throughout Milwaukee in strengthening neighborhoods and preserving the city’s rich cultural history. MAB will make $10,000 in total available for public art conservation projects in the City of Milwaukee. Individual awards up to $5,000 must be matched by the applicant. To qualify, projects must be fully accessible to the public. 

The Public Art Conservation Fund has supported vibrant projects throughout Milwaukee, including the ongoing restoration and conservation of The Magic Grove sculpture by Nancy Metz-White located in Enderis Park and the completed restoration of the Beerline Trail train mural by Rozalia Singh. 

The guidelines and application are available HERE. Applications are considered on a rolling basis as long as funds remain. At its scheduled February meeting, the Board’s Public Art Subcommittee will begin reviewing applications. Qualifying applications will be accepted until all available funds are allocated. 

For more information about the Public Art Conservation Fund, please contact [email protected]

About Milwaukee Arts Board
The Milwaukee Arts Board (MAB) promotes the development, support, and enjoyment of the arts in the city, advances cultural diversity in the artistic life of the city, and supports the formation and growth of artistic projects and/or programs that are administered by and responsive to the needs of the community. MAB was established in 1990. Its members are appointed by the Mayor and approved by the Milwaukee Common Council. Funding is provided through the Department of City Development and the Common Council, with additional support from the Wisconsin Arts Board. MAB meetings are scheduled for the second Tuesday of each month and all meetings are open to the public.

Sustaining Grants

The Milwaukee Arts Board (MAB) Grant Program serves to bring accessibility and enjoyment of the arts to the citizens of our culturally diverse city. We do this by essentially “purchasing” arts programming and arts education from Milwaukee’s eligible arts organizations. By doing so, we provide a measure of financial support to our vibrant and exciting arts community. The MAB promotes the formation and growth of artistic projects or programs that are administered by and responsive to the needs of Milwaukee’s communities that have been historically underrepresented or underserved based on race, ethnicity, age, religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, socioeconomic status, geography, or citizenship status. Grant guidelines and applications are released annually in January.


Public Artist in Residence Program

The Milwaukee Arts Board is piloting the Public Artist in Residence (PAIR) program to invest in the city’s cultural creators by leveraging the knowledge and practices of local artists to build a stronger Milwaukee. Under the PAIR program, a local artist will be hired by a City of Milwaukee agency or department to develop, strategize, promote, and implement artist-driven solutions to complex civic challenges. The intended outcome is for the artist and City representatives to assess community needs, as well as develop and improve programs and initiatives through creative problem-solving.

PAIR Details

Public Art Conservation Fund

The Milwaukee Arts Board Public Art Conservation Fund preserves that part of the city’s culture and civic heritage embodied in its public art. In 2023, applications will continue to be considered on a rolling basis as long as funds remain. Works of art must be located in the City of Milwaukee and must be fully accessible to the public. Priority will be given to art works of particular historical, cultural or aesthetic importance. Priority will also be given to projects with a well-formulated fundraising plan and evidence of fundraising success.

Public Art Conservation Fund Guidelines and Application

Public Art Fund Final Report

Recent Projects

Mildred L. Harpole Artists of the Year and Friends of the Arts

A memorial bequest in honor of local artist and MAB member Jim Chism launched the first Artist of the Year Award in 1995.  Additional funding comes from donations.  Artists are nominated for the award by members of the Arts Board. In 2019 The Arts Board voted to rename the Artists of the Year Award in honor of the late, beloved member Mildred L. Harpole.

In 2012 the MAB created a new award, "Friends of the Arts," to recognize those who, often behind the scenes, have demonstrated exemplary support to the arts community.

Mildred L. Harpole Artists of the Year - past recipients

Friends of Art - past recipients

About Us

The Milwaukee Arts Board (MAB) was created to enhance the development, cultural diversity, accessibility and enjoyment of the arts for Milwaukee's citizens. All regular meetings of the Milwaukee Arts Board are scheduled for the 2nd Tuesday of the month at 4:00 p.m. and are held in Room 301-A or 303 of City Hall, 200 E. Wells St. Dates and location are subject to change.

The Arts Board provides a range of support to arts and community organizations that produce innovative projects or programs. Additionally, the MAB is committed to supporting public art projects that provide a sense of place, celebrating our community in city neighborhoods, parks and public spaces. For specific information about the MAB please contact Sally Svetic at 414-286-0739 or [email protected].

Arts Board Members

Milwaukee Public Library - East Branch

The Milwaukee Arts Board partially funded works by two local artists at the new East Library Branch, which officially opened on November 22, 2014. Read more about the project on the Library website.

Kathryn E. Martin

Santiago Cucullu

Contact Us

City of Milwaukee Arts Board

City of Milwaukee Arts Board
809 N. Broadway, 2nd Floor
Milwaukee, WI 53202

(414) 286-0739
[email protected]

Learn more about meetings, members and agendas of the Milwaukee Arts Board and Public Art Subcommittee on Legistar.

E-Notify Email Eotifications
View City Art Collection Inventory

2023 MAB Sustaining Grant Guidelines and Application

Acknowledgment requirements

Download Logos

MKE Arts Board Logo (eps)
MKE Arts Board logo (jpg)
MKE Arts Board logo (black/whitejpg)
WI Arts Board logo

Wisconsin Arts Board. Creativity, Culture, Community, Commerce

This program is supported in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin.


Mural Guidelines: Historic Preservation Commission

(For locally designated historic properties)

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