FISH CREEK, WI -
In three short years Mara Stenback has had a major impact on the Door County art scene working as Executive Director
of Peninsula Art School (PAS).
||Three Years to the Day...
July 11, 2002
by Steve Kastner
She is rightfully proud of recent accomplishments. "New studio space for watercolor and photography is under
construction, class attendance is growing and we have doubled our membership in the past year," says Stenback.
"We still have $80 thousand left to raise this year based on a $600 thousand dollar annual budget, but the
Art School is doing very well."
The Guenzel Gallery, under her direction, has become a hot spot… serving as: an umbrella for emerging young artists,
a focusing agent bringing together a diverse series of spectacular exhibits and one hell of a great gathering spot
to celebrate the arts in Door County. She transforms sedate social events into memorable "happenings".
Mara Stenback is also capable of finding and surrounding herself with other very competent players. She has expanded
the PAS staff to include an unusually talented crew: Sheri Kuehl, Development Director; Sam Perlman, Program Director;
Kati Thomas, Registrar; and Jodi Brey, Outreach Director, among a spectrum of other new instructors and staff members.
Stenback has agreed to become the managing director of the new Minnesota
Center for Photography (MCP), a joint effort by the University of Minnesota, pARTs Photographic arts
gallery and Film
in the Cities.
|In spite of this continuous wave of success Mara Stenback announces, "After three years, to the day, on September 1st, I am leaving my position at Peninsula
Art School to return to Minneapolis."
While she claims that she will miss Door County's green space, the opportunity to direct this new venture has been
Mara explains, "The Center draws on the strengths of these three organizations and will eventually occupy
a space at Lyn Lake. There it will provide extensive professional and student darkroom facilities, workshops and
a large photo gallery that will feature national and international photography exhibitions."
One of her first duties when she arrives in Minneapolis will be the launch of a $2 million dollar MCP fund-raising
In Door County she has demonstrated an unusual talent for raising money for the arts… a talent that will be missed.
But not before a few more exciting events come to pass:
|Mara Stenback likes to be challenged, practices Zen meditation and runs
to relax, competing in her first 26-mile marathon event last fall.
In August the upcoming Sculpture Ball,
will unexpectedly serve double duty. A farewell to Mara Stenback and a fund-raising dinner dance set to celebrate
the Regional Sculpture Exhibit
at the Guenzel Gallery. Exhibit curator Tom Maher and his wife Virginia will host a very special evening of sumptuous
dining and starlight dancing at their home and sculpture garden on the shore of Lake Michigan on Friday, August 9 following the
free public opening party at the Guenzel from 4 - 6 PM. Tickets for the Sculpture Ball are $100 per person.
The show itself is another unique exhibit featuring work by a collection of master Midwestern sculptors. The works
range in all sizes and will be presented both inside the Guenzel Gallery
and outdoors throughout the PAS gardens and campus from July 26
- September 8.
Tickets for any of the upcoming events may be obtained
at the PAS offices in Fish Creek or by calling 920.868.3455.