Since 1979, Muneer Bahauddeen has been working in the field of art. As a student at the Art Institute of Chicago he focused on ceramic art and lithography. Since leaving school, he has worked on many large scale pieces of public design sculptures. After marriage Bahauddeen decided to move to Milwaukee where he continued to work on large scale public sculptures. In 1986 he lived on 86th and Good Hope Road. One fateful day, when an art teacher at his wife's school was absent, Bahauddeen got called to fill in. Thereafter, the school administration offered him the job on the spot.
Even while he taught art, Bahauddeen always kept designing his own art. He describes his work to be influenced by symbolism, an abstract art that is based on culture, politics, and religion. Since working with large pieces was not always possible, he got involved in smaller projects through local arts organizations such as Arts @ Large and Express Yourself Milwaukee.
Bahauddeen's life changed when he discovered Amaranth Bakery & Cafe at the crossing of Lisbon Avenue and 34th Street in Milwaukee. At that time, he was having a few problems with his landlord on 29th Street. So the idea of moving to an apartment available above Amaranth Cafe seemed perfect. He stayed in this new space for the next two years, until his landlord purchased the property across the street and offered to rent it out to him. This space was perfect for his needs and allowed him to use the ground level as his studio and the upper floor as his apartment.
Bahaudeen has lived in the Washington Park neighborhood for eight years and has found his own place in the city. His impact can be seen throughout the city. His art installation right by his home has received recognition from the mayor as a great example of how to activate a space. Bahauddeen has been a central figure in the planning of a Friday farmers market that takes place at Amaranth Bakery every week.
See profile at the Museum of Wisconsin Art online archives here.
Muneer Bahauddeen, Interviewed by Maisa Bastos, Mitchell Pignotti, June 2016
Name: Muneer Bahauddeen
Born: Chicago, IL, 1949 (age 67)
Lives in: Milwaukee, WI (1986 - present)
Years active: 1979 - present
Family: Parents and 3 siblings
Education: Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL.