MARN’s Gallery, located within the MARN ART + CULTURE HUB, strives to build a cultural space that supports both its members and the overarching community through projects, exhibitions, and events that push the boundaries of a ‘traditional white box gallery’. The mission of the gallery is to serve as a platform for amplifying artists who are bold, collaborative, and representative of the robust Southeast Wisconsin art community. 

Run by Gallery Director Riley Niemack in collaboration with the Curatorial Advisory Committee.



February 4 – April 3, 2023

MARN is pleased to present “HOOPS”, a solo exhibition by local multidisciplinary artist Nicole Acosta running February 4 to April 3, 2023 in the MARN ART + CULTURE HUB. 

A showcase of Acosta’s ‘HOOPS Portrait Project’, the exhibition features portraits, visual interviews, and personal anecdotes of over 60 individuals from Milwaukee, Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles who have a deep and sacred connection to hoop earrings. They are teachers, artists, doulas, creators, healers, healthcare workers, musicians, poets, advocates, mothers, DJs, hair stylists, dancers, and much more.

Hoop earrings are more than a piece of jewelry. Dating back nearly 5,000 years, the earrings have signified visibility, liberation, and a way of claiming space, particularly for Black, Brown, Indigenous, Asian, and other communities in the global majority.

The HOOPS Project documents and archives the voices and stories of these powerful groups, exhibiting the evolving culture of hoop earrings. These stories mark the intersection of where culture, art, hair, identity, politics, history, power, home, belonging, love, and liberation meet.

“When I began the HOOPS Project, it had no name, and it had no actual goal, except to share personal stories and to document what HOOP earrings mean to so many. During this process, I realized that adorning oneself with HOOP earrings is something deeply personal, ritualistic, and revolutionary. And when we wear HOOPS, we return home to ourselves. We’re reminded that we don’t have to reduce or change who we are in any space we occupy.”

Nicole Acosta

Read more about Acosta and the ‘HOOPS Portrait Project’ here.

Nicole Acosta extends special thanks to exhibition sponsors MiVoz, Kelly McBain, Your Move MKE, SapSap, Shary Tran, Jenny Lee (Perilla Kitchen), Lucky Ginger, and Rodolfo and Martha Acosta.

The HOOPS exhibition at MARN coincides with the Milwaukee Chamber Theatre’s (MCT’s) production by the same name. “HOOPS”, adapted from Acosta’s portrait project by playwright Eliana Pipes with original music by B~Free, runs at MCT’s Studio Theatre March 10 to April 2, 2023. For more info or to purchase tickets visit MCT’s website here.

Join us for exhibition related programming: 

HERE2PLAY: HOOPS: Wednesday, February 8, 2023 (5:30-8PM) The evening will include a sneak peek into the “HOOPS” play with live scene readings from MCT HOOPS actors and a special panel discussion with HOOPS Director Patrice Amon, HOOPS Playwright Eliana Pipes, and HOOPS Project Originator Nicole Acosta. Enjoy free food by Trouble Makers Cocina and live music provided by DJ Quilla. Learn more and RSVP here.

MARN hosted an Opening Reception on Saturday, February 4, 2023 (5:30-8PM)
The event program included live music by DJ Quilla and poetry readings by Melissa Mursch-Rodriguez, and Brit Nicole.

Visit our Calendar for more details & upcoming events!

Past Exhibitions: 

MARN is humbled to support and host exhibitions in our state-of-the-art Gallery and Exhibition Hall within the MARN ART + CULTURE HUB. Browse the ARCHIVE to learn more about past exhibitions and programs.


“Practice in Progress”

2022-2023 MARNmentorship Exhibition

April 14 – June 4, 2023

“Real conversations, new ways of thinking, artistic relationships.” – Meghan McGrath (MARNmentee) and Amy Cannestra (MARNmentor)

MARN is excited to present “Practice in Progress”, an exhibition showcasing the work of the 2022-2023 MARNmentorship Program cohort. The 16 mentors and 16 mentees will display works in a variety of mediums, including sculpture, printmaking, fiber, painting, video, installation, photo, and more!

Alongside the exhibition is the release of the “Practice in Progress” MARNmentorship artist book, an archive celebrating each mentor and mentees’ work and ideas and the program as a whole.

Join us for exhibition programming:

Opening Reception: Friday, April 14

Gallery Night: Friday, April 21 5-9PM

Gallery Day: Saturday, April 22 10-4PM

Stay tuned for more details and events on our Calendar!

The MARN Gallery and Exhibition Hall currently has 6 exhibitions per year. All open calls for art and requests for proposals can be found on our Opportunities for Artists Page. Follow our social media, MARN News, and MARNforum for exhibition and call announcements.

2023 Exhibitions List: 

For more Upcoming Events and Exhibitions visit our Calendar.

Past Exhibitions: 

MARN is humbled to support and host exhibitions in our state-of-the-art Gallery within the MARN ART + CULTURE HUB. Browse the ARCHIVE to learn more about past exhibitions and programs.

Ways to Engage

Frequently Asked Questions

Does MARN accept unsolicited exhibition proposals?

No, MARN currently only accepts exhibition proposals through Open Calls and Request for Proposals. For a full list of current artist opportunities at MARN, visit our Opportunities for Artists.

What are the dimensions of MARN’s Gallery?

MARN’s designated gallery space is approximately 1,000 square feet with 10’ high modular walls, which can be re-configured for each exhibition and / or event. Download a floor plan with Gallery dimensions here.

What type of special installation and/or exhibition presentation amenities does MARN have?

MARN has three 50 inch monitors on TV carts, three 4K resolution media players, six pedestals, 10’ high modular, reconfigurable walls, cable and rail hanging systems covering the brick walls, a 135” projection screen, and dimmable / spot to flood lighting. We are always open to new and innovative ideas for the presentation of your work!

Further inquiries?

Email with any of your MARN Gallery questions.