Albin Erhart 2013 Waukesha GuitarTown ArtistAlbin Erhart

Hartland, WI

Albin Erhart is a self-taught artist with a sense for the unique and expressive.

Personal Work:
His use of media combined with out-of-the box creativity, transfer to the canvas in a playful splash of color. The humorous and challenging experiences in his own life have earned their place in many of his works.

Born in south Germany, and a resident of Wisconsin since 1999, Erhart feels his work has been inspired by both his life in Germany and the United States.

Erhart’s work has been exhibited in a number of international and local exhibits and has recently gained the interest of private collectors.
Visit his website for more information.

Displayed exhibits:
Solo -Kuchler & Cotton Law Offices, Waukesha, WI
Spontaneous Gallery, Waukesha, WI
Sharon Wilson Center with Pfister Finalist Collection, Brookfield, WI

Solo – Kuchler & Cotton Law Offices, Waukesha, WI
Solo – Mercy Hill Church, Delafield, WI
Raven Gallery, Pewaukee, WI
Delafield Art Center, WI
Spontaneous Gallery, Waukesha, WI
Solo – St. Marks, Milwaukee, WI
Italian Community Center, MKE, WI
Oconomowoc Art Center, WI

Creative Expressions Gallery, Mequon
Featured – Raven Gallery, Pewaukee, WI
Schauer Arts Center, Hartford, WI
Villa Terrace, Milwaukee, WI
Solo – Alfons Gallery, Milwaukee, WI
Solo – Mercy Hill Gallery, Bay View, WI

Spring Creek Church, Pewaukee, WI
Uilein Gallery, Milwaukee, WI
The Flying Pig, Algoma, WI

Almont Gallery, Waukesha, WI
Milwaukee Public Market, WVA Association
Anderson Art Center, Kenosha, WI

Fountain Square Art Festival, Evanston, IL
Cantingy Art Fest, Cantingy Park, IL
Gold Coast Art Fair, Chicago, IL
Wells Street Art Festival, Chicago, IL

Art St. Louis “The Exhibit XIV”, St. Louis, MO

Solo – Prisma Privatfinanz, Frankfurt

GuitarTown guitar – “By the Little Foxes”

By the Little Foxes by Hartland artist Elbin ErhartI used this guitar to talk about the history of Waukesha as I see it artistically and in particular about the time before the settlers came here which includes the time of the mound builders and the Native American tribes represented by the Little Foxes and also the times of Les Paul, art and music. I stumbled into this because of the weird names all around here that were real tong breakers for me and sometimes still are. I dug into the origin of these names and into the past of the Waukesha area.


My theme, “By the Little Foxes”,  is translated for Waukesha or Wagosh, also Wakuska. That is the name of a Pottawatomie Chief who lived in Tchee Gas Coutak, a village with 1500 to 2500 inhabitants near the Fox River about where downtown Waukesha is today.

My intent is also the de-segregation of Waukesha’s past in a playful way. The nice mural at the liquor store that I always admire and love to look at when I drive by stands for a narrative that I don’t like – an abrogated history book, a white settler only past. But there was a past before Cutler came here! Most of the Native American tribes left Wisconsin after the Chicago treaty when they sold the lands in the mid 1800s; I bring them back to Waukesha on this guitar sort of. I thought wouldn’t it be nice if they were back here, not to build a casino, but maybe share their knowledge on how to live off the land, how to use and sell natural herbs and things of that nature? A few years ago I met an anthropologist that worked for the Forest County Pottawatomie Nation (who was from Hamburg, Germany) and who was surprised when he greeted the audience in German with “Guten Tag” someone answered him in German “Gruess Gott”! His project was to collect information about the Pottawatomies that stayed (ILLEGALLY!) in Wisconsin after the Treaty’s grace period of 3 years. In today’s setting just the idea of “Illegal Native Americans” sounds real odd, but on the other hand it was what it was, a land sale.

The era before had mound builders and the purpose of the mounds is not completely clear either; it was an age well before the known tribes, Pottawatomie, Winnebago, Menominee. Some of the mounds were used as burial places, others not, some suggest that they served ritual or spiritual purposes like protection of a village;  groups of mounds look like huge paintings in the landscape. They have something magic to it if you look at those from above on old maps.