Talented Isle Royale artists showcase their work


Image courtesy of Pure Michigan

Having grown up here my entire life, I, strangely, have yet to go to Isle Royale. I have been to pretty much any place in the Western U.P. that is outdoors except for Isle Royale.

Isle Royale is a national park that is possibly one of the most secluded, private and untouched places in the United States. Isle Royale is one of the least visited national parks in the United States with access to the park only from Houghton, Copper Harbor, or Grand Portage, Minnesota. I have heard so many stories about its seclusion and lack of technology as well as its gorgeous beauties that surround the entire park. Moose, wolves among other wildlife surround the park with incredible views that are unbeatable.

When my grandma from Florida came up here for my graduation party in the spring, she was downright amazed that people could handle being in such a place with so little communication to the outside world for any period of time. It is no wonder, then, why so many people are curious about this even more untouched and secluded beauty of the north.

The National Park Service hosts an annual competition where artists can refine their skills by immersing themselves in Isle Royale for a two to three week period. Artists work tirelessly to create their best piece of artwork for submission to the program beforehand, and, if accepted, go on an inspiring journey to one of the most beautiful national parks in the United States.

The artists create artwork from their perspective of “life on the island,” which then creates tourism and inspiration for the public to visit the island. The artists must be in extremely good health due to Isle Royale’s remoteness and lack of communication.

The artists stay in a rustic cabin where they live remotely with no access to electricity or running water. The artists mostly fend for themselves, cooking with what food they have and using the outside world as their entertainment for the time they’re there. This resilience and solitude adds to their sense of inspiration and creativity for their artwork.

After their stay, the artists are required to present a public program from their stay with regards to their overall experience. The artists are also required to donate one piece of their artwork for the public to use for inspiration and as publicity to bring in more tourists and business to the area.

Michigan Tech will soon be hosting a public art exhibition for anyone who is interested in viewing a portion of these talented artists’ work. The exhibition will feature an opening reception for the artwork in the A-Space of the Rozsa where the artwork will be shown off for the first time on March 20 from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

The exhibition will then go from March 20 until April 25 where the public is free to walk around and observe the art. The exhibition will be held all month in the Rozsa Gallery’s A-Space. The exhibition is free of charge to all MTU students and the public.