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"Safe Streets, Healthy Kids": Artworks for Milwaukee's Poetry Apprentices


Listen: I’ve had an interesting personal history with an old and quirky building in Walker’s Point on South 5th Street. A couple years back, I worked in the building for a few months. Then, this January, I attended  a Web414 meeting there  after Bucketworksmoved in. And last week, I found myself back in familiar confines when I dropped by to check out the summer program at  Artworks for Milwaukee. Can’t shake that place.

Artworks for Milwaukee takes teens facing barriers to employment and connects them with arts-based apprenticeships. Pretty cool. The youth simultaneously familiarize themselves with a work environment, while at the same time exercising their imaginations. An awesome marriage of the structured and creative.

This summer, Artworks is running two concurrent programs — Creating & Marketing Poetry/Spoken Word and Mosaic Window to Your Community. Under the guidance of their lead artist Dan Vaughn, the poetry apprentices are in the process conceptualizing, writing, editing, and producing their own book of poetry and an accompanying audio CD. I had a chance to speak with some of these wonderful teens, and they shared a bit of their summer with me: see podcast below.


Going to work and writing poetry? Sounds like a pretty decent summer job. Also, check back later this week to hear from Nicole Lesser and the students working on the Mosaic Window to Your Community project!

To learn more about Artworks,  check out their website. You can also  follow the poetry apprentices all summer on their blog, or  by following their Flickr account. Finally, you can see these talented young poets in action at their unveiling event, The Upside of Art: A Community Event!, which will be held at Artworks (706 S. 5th Street) on August 21st from 1-4pm.

Produced by: Adam Carr