Arts and Culture

The Great Lakes mobile, by Melanie Ariens

Melanie Ariens has become known for her water-themed art, a focus of her combined loves of art and environmental activism. She uses mostly recycled materials to make art that makes people think about the Great Lakes, the rivers, and the water we drink.More

Kim Blaeser on stage at "Making Waves" at Turner Hall.

Wisconsin’s former Poet Laureate Kim Blaeser leaves us with a benediction, calling out the sacred dimension of water.More

(Left to Right) Charles talks with Good City Brewing cofounder David Dupee and Lakefront cofounder and president Russ Klisch.

Beer has gone back from macro to micro. Russ Klisch (Lakefront Brewery) and David Dupee (Good City Brewing) talk with Charles Monroe-Kane about how returning to smaller scale has opened up new creative and business possibilities for beer makers.More

Acclaimed novelist Colson Whitehead got the magazine assignment of a lifetime: a week in Vegas, playing in the World Series of Poker.  He tells Doug Gordon about high stakes poker and his own "anhedonia," his difficulty experiencing pleasure.More

What if Karl Marx were alive today and came back for a visit?  That's the premise of the one-man show "Marx in Soho," starring Brian Jones and written by the late historian Howard Zinn.More

For all that's been written about Karl Marx, there's been no book about his marriage to Jenny Marx - until now. Biographer Mary Gabriel explains why Marx's family life had a profound influence on his thinking.More

Tree

Richard Powers’ “The Overstory” is overturning a lot of conventional thinking. It’s been called “visionary” and “monumental.” And though human characters shape the plot of this 500-page epic, the real heroes are trees.More

hands

Humans are the only creatures on the planet with hands that can knit, draw, throw pots and build houses. More

Typewriter

A few years ago, Tyler Knott Gregson challenged himself to write a poem a day on a vintage typewriter. Today, he's a daily Instagram poet.More

Betsan Corkhill founded Britain's therapeutic knitting movement — the clinical application of knitting to treat a variety of mental and physical ailments. More

The celebrated cartoonist Lynda Barry has a deep theory of creativity that she's explored through books and popular workshops.  More

First it was vinyl; now, it's the typewriter. Vintage Smith-Coronas and Olivettis are hot items on Ebay and making a comeback in the age of computers. As cities around country are hosting "type ins" one can't help but wonder: are we seeing a hipster fad or the analog rebellion?  Philosopher Richard Polt assesses the typewriter revolution.More

Kerepunu women at the marketplace of Kalo, British New Guinea, 1885

A conversation with renowned biologist Jared Diamond, best known for his Pulitzer Prize-winning book “Guns, Germs and Steel.” His new book is “The World Until Yesterday: What Can We Learn from Traditional Societies?”More

Africa needs to reclaim its history and its technology, says Clapperton Mavhunga, a native of Zimbabwe who's a professor in MIT's Program in Science, Technology and Society. He says the traditional hunt is a great example of how Africans have passed on generations of knowledge.More

Traditional knowledge can surface in the most unlikely places. Take La Crosse, Wisconsin, where many Hmong people settled after the Vietnam War. Master blacksmith Tong Khai Vang and his apprentice and translator Kong Mong Yang show us the art of turning hot metal into Hmong knives.More

"The Wayfinders" by Wade Davis

Composer Philip Glass says he was transported by "The Wayfinders" - Wade Davis' celebration of indigenous cultures.More

Wade Davis has been called the Indiana Jones of anthropology. He's traveled deep into the Amazon rain forest to meet shamans; he's investigated Haitian zombies; he's climbed high into the Tibetan mountains to photograph snow leopards. He says indigenous people have a fundamentally different way of seeing the world than we do in modern society.More

You'd never think a book about chopping and burning wood would turn into a runaway bestseller, but Lars Mytting's "Norwegian Wood" is a publishing sensation in Scandinavia. Lars gathers the collected wisdom on everything from how to build a smokeless fire to the art of choosing a husband based on his wood pile.More

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