Jul. 11, 2018

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Some people doodle in meetings. Michelle Grabner, the inaugural artistic director of the Front International: Cleveland Triennial for Contemporary Art, makes art.

During an interview at the Madison, the renovated 1962 medical building in the Glenville neighborhood that’s hosting resident artists associated with Front, Grabner drew and colored parts of grid in black ink on white paper.

“It helps me listen to you,” Grabner, 55, a highly regarded Milwaukee-based artist, educator and curator, said of her drawing. “If I can move my hands, I can be more focused on what you’re saying and think through my reply.”