The buzz about the guitar exhibition at the Woodson Art Museum is reverberating statewide and beyond, prompting road trips and repeat visits. Medieval to Metal: The Art & Evolution of the Guitar, complemented by an array of programs and performances, remains on view through May 31.
Are you curious about visitors’ impressions and what to expect? Following the Museum’s Facebook page will keep you updated with images and upcoming highlights. Others reached by exhibition-specific Facebook ads are sharing and posting comments appearing on streams that the Museum’s faithful followers might not automatically see.
Here’s a delightful sampling:
- Chicago resident, Tom Sedor, wrote on March 9: “The event was worth every penny that I spent on gas to get there from Chicago – I was amazed that there was no cover charge. I would highly recommend it to anyone who appreciates the guitar. The 5 hour presentation by luthier John Currier (& Catie the museum host) was educational, entertaining and thought-provoking.
- Sedor wrote again on April 20: “A very cool guitar exhibition. They even had a luthier who spent all afternoon building a guitar. Highly recommended if you are ever up in Wisconsin.”
- Wausau resident, Kara Burclaw, posted a photo of her guitar-playing son and wrote on March 13: “We were just there with our 4-year-old. It is a great exhibit! I love that the kids can get involved, too! Here’s my peanut striking a chord!”
- A Beloit man, Steve Luberda, wrote on April 21: “Now I have to say this was probably one of the coolest exhibitions I’ve ever been to. I would highly recommend – a must see for music lovers.”
- An Aurora, Illinois man, Tony Kubicek, wrote on April 3: “Visited the museum for the first time with my wife and son last month. Great exhibit and a great, themed kids’ area.”
- Baraboo resident, Mike Tully, wrote on March 31: “I saw this exhibit last weekend. It was very well curated and is a must-see for any guitar player!”
- A Madison man, John Ludholz, wrote on April 5: “We went Saturday! It was spectacular. Beautiful workmanship and finishes.”
- Monroe resident, Billy Lang, commented in a shared post to a friend on March 19: “You up for a road trip? Looks like 4 ½ hours for you, a little over 3 for me. Not too far from my sister’s house. We plan to visit her this year; maybe we’ll plan a trip around this exhibit.”
- Appleton resident, Len Nelson, wrote on March 28: “I’m in Wausau for a weekend doing Symphony on the Rocks. I think I’ll gather up a couple of blokes and check this out. The museum has free admission . . . a price I like.”
- A Wausau man, Timothy Boyle, wrote on March 10: “Been twice, be back for more! Awesome idea, like the workshops and interactive stuff. Don’t forget to drop a donation in the box. This is well worth the trip just to hear people’s comments about the exhibits alone.”
- Wausau resident Garry Sack, wrote on March 16: “This is a great show, with a lot of entertaining and educational programs through the duration of the time it is here. Thanks to the folks at LYWAM.”
- A Rhinelander woman, Joan Lagowski Schotanus, wrote on March 11: “We went today; it was great.”
- A Fond du Lac man, Eric Hendrickson, wrote on March 11: “There’s a trip in my near future!”
A TripAdvisor review from an April 26 visit offers additional details:
“My husband and I took a day trip to Wausau, WI to see the exhibit Medieval to Metal: The Art & Evolution of the Guitar at the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum. Wausau is a beautiful area and this lovely museum fits right in. . . . I cannot say enough about the staff! It was obvious the two women with whom we interfaced loved this museum. They were enthusiastic, knowledgeable and helpful. The “Guitar” exhibition was excellent. My husband is a musician so he knows quite a bit about guitars. I have learned something about guitars through him, but both of us learned so much more from this exhibit. Listening devices are available so you can listen to small snippets of music made by the instruments and find out more about their history. The instruments span centuries and are in beautiful condition. The cases are clear on 3 sides so you can see the sides and some of the backs of most of the instruments. That may not seem like a big deal, but it is since some of the evolution of the guitar and its sound is affected by its shape. The written descriptions accompanying the displays are informative and well done. At the lower level of the museum, an acoustic and electric guitar are set out for people to noodle on if they so desire. The museum has and will feature artists playing various types of guitar music throughout the duration of the exhibit. . . . This museum is charming and is worth the visit should you be in Wausau. My husband and I loved it and I wanted to share it with those of you who like discovering small gems as you travel.”
Saint Paul guitarist Brian Miller who, with Randy Gosa of Milwaukee, played Irish and regional folk music on March 19 wrote in an email message: “Randy and I had a FANTASTIC experience at the museum. You all took such good care of us, the space was perfect, and the room was full of wonderful, attentive listeners. One of our nicest gigs of the past year! Thanks for everything.”
The Musical Thursday Performance Series, held weekly in March and April on the Museum’s Sound Lab stage, concludes tomorrow, April 30, 5:30-6:30 pm, with Community Contemporary Open Mic Night. Guitar historian and musician Michael Kudirka returns next week for his artist residency, May 7-9; check the events calendar for details. Kudirka provides insightful narration on the Museum’s audio tour app, available free on Museum iPods or downloaded to your smartphone or tablet.
Visit often throughout May to experience and share the good vibrations sure to inspire and amplify creativity.