Press Releases

Date of Release: 
Friday, June 6, 2008
Contact Info: 

Katie Kazan, Director of Public Information or 608.257.0158 x 237

Katie Hunter, Art Fair on the Square Coordinator or 608.257.0158 x 230

Photographs available upon request

Art Fair's 50th Anniversary Looks Ahead with a Green Focus

Art Fair's 50th Anniversary
Looks Ahead with a Green Focus
MADISON, WI -- Art Fair on the Square will celebrate its golden anniversary with a number of green initiatives intended to lessen the fair's environmental impact, while also shinning a light on sound environmental practices. The Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, with generous support from Madison Gas and Electric, has collaborated with local and regional organizations, as well as participating artists and vendors, to create an “Art Fair on the Greener Square” campaign for the fair's 50th anniversary. 
The “Greener Square” campaign includes these components:
Rain Barrel Exhibit & Auction
MPowering Madison, an initiative of Sustain Dane, has issued a call for entries for a Rain Barrel Exhibit & Auction centered around Art Fair on the Square. Artists have been invited to decorate a 55-gallon “RainReserve” rain barrel, made of recycled food-grade plastic. Decorated barrels will be displayed at the fair and on the Sustain Dane website. After the fair, the barrels will be auctioned online to raise funds in support of Sustain Dane's efforts. 
“Working Bikes” Bicycle Drive and Demonstration
Another “Greener Square” partner is Working Bikes Cooperative (, a Chicago-based nonprofit which diverts bicycles from the waste stream and repairs them for sale and charity. At Art Fair on the Square, Working Bikes will be accepting donations of used bikes, to be refurbished and shipped to developing and Third World countries as a power source. Working Bikes will demonstrate this capacity during the fair by showcasing a 16-foot-tall water fountain powered entirely by “pedal power.”
Isthmus Bike Corral
Approximately 200,000 people attend Art Fair on the Square each summer. In an effort to minimize energy used in transportation to and from the Square, the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art and Isthmus| urge visitors to hike, bike, or bus to the fair. Those who arrive by bike are invited to use the Isthmus Bike Corral, located at the intersection of King Street and the Capitol Square. Bikes in the corral will be monitored for safekeeping, and everyone using the corral will receive a free bicycle water bottle.

Go Green Challenge
Artists exhibiting at Art Fair on the Square have been invited to participate in a Go Green Challenge. Participating artists will display one or more artworks constructed entirely of recycled materials. Art Fair jurors will evaluate the works and choose a winning artist, who will be invited to participate in next year's fair free-of-charge. Approximately 40 art fair exhibitors plan to participate in the challenge, with artworks ranging from a jacket made with recycled vintage tablecloths to mixed-media works framed with wood once used in older buildings. 

The Madison Museum of Contemporary Art has taken a number of additional steps to reduce the fair's environmental impact. A new online jurying system and increased electronic communication have reduced the amount of paper used by fair organizers compared to previous years. In addition, the museum will use biodegradable and compostable products in its concession stands around the Capitol Square. 
Hours for this year's Art Fair on the Square are: Saturday, July 12 (9 am-6 pm) and Sunday, July 13 (10 am-5 pm).
Generous support for Art Fair on the Square has been provided by Pizza Hut of Southern Wisconsin; The Evjue Foundation, Inc., the charitable arm of The Capital Times; Madison Gas and Electric; Covance; Pepsi; Wildwood Productions; Reinhart Boerner Van Duren, S.C.; Bluegreen; Saturn of Madison; Wisconsin Lottery; Atkinson|Dines, Inc. Downtown Real Estate; WKOW-Channel 27; Madison Magazine; 105.5-Triple M; Stoddard's Meat Market; Whole Foods; and Isthmus|

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