Jay Rath

The James Watrous Gallery displays a collection of works by Gaylord Shanilec, an internationally known color engraver and creator of fine art books. Read more

Visual Arts

This year’s Wisconsin Film Festival looks to the future — with a doc starring superstar freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — and the past. Restorations include a 3-D screening of “The Creature from the Black Lagoon.” Read more

Movies 1 Comments

Rick Gloe has created for himself an unlikely career in the restoration of antique stoves as owner of Madison Stove Works. He has 50 of these beauties for sale and more ready to be restored. Read more


The Capitol Theater’s Grand Barton Organ is one of few surviving the silent film era. Overture Center has secured funds for a long-overdue restoration of the gem. Read more


“Stan & Ollie” introduces new audiences to the groundbreaking comedy of Laurel and Hardy. Read more


Not much is known about the artist Paul Seifert, but the elusive artist’s magnificent paintings are getting their due in a new book by Joe Kapler, lead curator of the Wisconsin Historical Society. Read more



Jeff Klawes

For those tired of sentimental holiday fare, it might be time to check out something completely different: Mercury Players’ “STAR WARS: The Panto Strikes Back.” Read more



Darren Lee

Madison Ballet moves into the “Nutcracker” season with high hopes for a new director, a new headquarters and a million-dollar capital campaign. Read more


The Chazen Museum of Art displays 16 prints from the late great printmaker Warrington Colescott, who died in September. Read more

Visual Arts 2 Comments


Nicki Fietzer

“He’s a ripe target for satire,” Onion co-founder Scott Dikkers says of Tesla creator Elon Musk. Dikkers’ new book, “Welcome to the Future Which Is Mine,” is a collaborative work, written in the voice of Musk. Read more



Bryant Moroder

Isthmus Gift Guide 2018: Focus on gifts that are locally sourced or good for the environment. They do double duty and create twice the joy. Read more

Isthmus Giving

Mildred Harnack, a UW-Madison alum who married a German, was the only American woman executed on Adolph Hitler’s direct orders. On Oct. 31, Madison Arts Commission placed a memorial in Marshall Park. Read more

A & E 2 Comments


Charlie Powell

Intrepid Isthmus explorer Jay Rath beams into the L.A. office of William Shatner in advance of his Sept. 21 visit to the Orpheum, which will screen “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.” Read more

Stage 1 Comments

The first Art Fair on the Square was held in 1959. There was no food, no entertainment, no tents. Just art. Read more

Isthmus Cover Stories


Wisconsin Historical Society

It was originally a marsh. Later, it was a city unto itself, with two movie theaters, a clinic, hospital, dentists, recreation rooms, a library, 20 warehouses, an obstacle course, firing range, and chapels “at convenient points on the field.” Read more

Isthmus Cover Stories


Eric Tadsen

Truax Field has been in Madison since World War II, but many local residents don’t know what goes on there or what Guard members do there. Jay Rath took a tour. Read more

Isthmus Cover Stories 2 Comments


Tommy Washbush

With workshops in graphic medicine and courses in comics, UW-Madison is becoming a hotbed for an art form that is growing in popularity. Jay Rath looks at the long history of cartooning in the city and state, and promising developments on campus. Read more

Isthmus Cover Stories

One of Madison’s most successful original productions is back for a new generation. Mercury Players Theatre is staging a revival of "Temps! The Musical!" Read more


UW-Madison boasts several murals by the late James Watrous, one of the university’s most well-known artists. While doing inventory in the lower level of Grainger Hall, Angela Richardson discovered a study the artist created for a major mural. Read more

Visual Arts

No one does opera quite like Fresco Opera Theatre. The troupe’s latest invention is a world premiere of “Queen of the Night,” a prequel to Mozart’s “The Magic Flute.” Read more


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    Jay Rath

    Back away from the Bic and opt for a more personalized pen.

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    Jay Rath

    Dan Ouimet makes ballpoints, rollerballs and fountain pens.

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    My beautiful picture

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    Jay Rath

    Nina’s packs a lot of merchandise into a modest space. Need marshmallow peanut candy? Check. House on the Rock postcard? Check.

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    Jay Rath

    Joel and Judy Marcus in front of the beloved store.