“Art is concentrated play, and I hope to include all who wish to join me in this transformative and life enhancing activity.” Todd Mrozinski ’97 (Painting), Pfister Artist in Residence 2015
Alum Todd Mrozinski was recently named the Pfister Hotel’s seventh Artist in Residence, a program that allows for one exceptional artist to be at the forefront of Milwaukee’s art community in one of the country’s most revered and historic hotels.
Mrozinski’s winning proposal called “Light from the Pfister,” features the shadow portraits that have dominated his artistic work for the past three years. Mrozinski will paint eight large-scale shadow portraits of the guests who stay at the Pfister Hotel to complete the series.
“After frequenting the Pfister, I was inspired by the beautiful light,” recalled Mrozinski. “The golden glow that illuminates the Pfister fascinates me. It is a very different light than any other building I have been in.”
Mrozinski intends to use this light to shape his series, and capture the sitter’s soul as well as the energy of their interaction in his paintings. “I hope to allow the natural flow of the work to be spontaneous and surprising.”
Mrozinski’s studio space will provide a Victorian feel and reflect the impressive Victorian art collection that hangs on the Pfister’s walls. According to Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Marcus Corporation Stephen H. Marcus, the Pfister possesses the “largest collection of Victorian art of any hotel in the world.”
Mrozinski’s series also embraces the Victorian pastime of creating simple silhouette cuts or shadow portraits. The studio will be equipped with a silhouette tracing station for visitors and staff to participate.
Throughout the residency process, Mrozinski gained many friends and met wonderful artists. He also drew inspiration from past artists in residence, stating that Shelby Keefe’s sense of light, Timothy Westbrook’s flowing lines and Niki Johnson’s drawings have influenced his own work.
During his one-year residency, Mrozinski also intends to create a video tour of the Pfister’s internationally esteemed art collection, monthly features of art from the collection, curate exhibitions, open studio art nights to invite additional artists to work at the Pfister, and offer traveling art tours between the Pfister and the Milwaukee Art Museum or the Museum of Wisconsin Art.
Read about the Pfister Artist in Residence Announcement in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.