West Allis - The mixed media, abstract art of Rosie Hartmann's “Sweet Emotion” exhibit will be featured at Inspiration Studios, 1500 S. 73rd St., through Oct. 1.

Hartmann, an accomplished photographer, began taking pictures as a child. She would tag along with her father during his photo walks. Rebellious teen years did not keep her away from the graphic arts or from becoming her school’s newspaper photographer. However, she always felt it wasn’t enough to simply develop prints in the dark room.

In 2011, Hartmann began her quest to manipulate photos to bring out her own vision of singular moments. She challenged herself to create at a higher level by adding acrylic paints and watercolors.

“My challenge to myself is to be fearless in creating,” said Hartmann. “Fear holds people back. It holds artists back when creating. To gain this freedom, I face every fear I encounter head-on.

"This has led me to a greater self-awareness than I had thought possible. It has also led me on more than a few hilarious adventures.”

Viewers of Hartmann’s “Sweet Emotion” exhibit will delve into the stories behind the art as the artist shares all of them for the first time. The mixed media exhibition of emotion-inspired abstracts will be open to the public during Doors Open MKE from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 17, and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 18.

Art in moment

"Each work of art comes from a specific moment in time that we can all relate to," Hartmann said. "Each piece fosters understanding among people. All of our experiences and emotions shape the person we have become.

"In this work, I have found we are all more alike than we are different.”

Today, Hartmann is a speaker, contributor, and advocate in the field of creating art. She has given presentations to photographers on going beyond the camera. She also volunteers as a Memories in the Making artist with the Alzheimer’s Association.

“Shortly after my dad passed away, I wanted to escape. I thought I would go to Vietnam to somehow be closer to him," she says.

In six months, she was there.

Vietnam visit

"I learned about my dad and family, the Vietnam War and my country,” she said.

Her book "Cheese Curls in Vietnam" describes what she learned traveling to a communist war-torn country. It will be available for purchase during her exhibition.

Hartmann will also lead an abstract painting party at 6 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 17, at Inspiration Studios, providing an opportunity to “visualize and paint an emotion. More information is available at

A closing reception with the artist is scheduled for 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1.

Contributed by Erico Ortiz, founder of Inspiration Studios

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