The Artist as Disruptor
A cohort of Twin Cities-based comic artists gathered this spring at the print shop Beyond Repair to illustrate a leaked transcript of a 1996 police interrogation by then-Sgt. Bob Kroll (now president of the Mpls police union), who was questioning a 14-year-old African-American boy accused of stealing a car. Sam Gould (of Beyond Repair and Red76), a principal behind the comic's recent publication, weighs in on the provocative project's still timely context, intentions, and repercussions.
This spring and summer, a collaborative team of artists published a scathing illustrated zine, “Sgt.…
A frame from "Sgt. Kroll Goes to the Office," published by Beyond Repair and Uncivilized Books in the fall of 2016.
NEMAA Artist Series: Aesthetics of Thrift
Susannah Schouweiler profiles Richard Simonsen, whose paintings and assemblages of found wood and metal use the mediums of rust, time, and weather to make handmade treasure from the detritus of industry.
This is the sixth in a sponsored series of articles featuring member artists of Northeast Minneapolis Arts Association, a non-profit arts organization that works to build a more vibrant, diverse and economically healthy community through the arts.…
Richard Simonsen, Cheyenne. Photo courtesy of the artist.
Painting the Present
Amanda Hamilton's new series of small works grapple with the transcendence and despair of our present moment, with thick swaths of gold-flecked gray paint offset by live plants, to remind us we, too, are rooted here and now.
"Even if one no longer speaks of painting as a window opened onto the world, the modernist picture is still conceived as a vertical section that presupposes the viewer's having forgotten that his or her feet are in the dirt."…
Amanda Hamilton, like this, installation detail. Courtesy of Bethel Art Galleries.
NEMAA Artist Series: Animating the City
Susannah Schouweiler profiles John Akre, whose quirky stop-motion films and street-animation ventures give voice to the unsung songs of the neighborhoods and people who make the city vibrant.
This is the fifth in a sponsored series of articles featuring member artists of Northeast Minneapolis Arts Association, a non-profit arts organization that works to build a more vibrant, diverse and economically healthy community through the arts.…
Still from Demolition Dreaming, John Akre's latest animated feature, accompanied by live performance soundtrack by Dreamland Faces.
Botanical Facts and Fictions
Artists blend, twist, and re-envision elements of "nature that transfixes" in a sprawling indoor/outdoor exhibition at Banfill Locke Center for the Arts.
When considering art and nature, invariably the large-scale land art or earth works of American sculptors such as Robert Smithson (Spiral Jetty) and Michael Heizer (Double Negative and City) com…
Presley Martin, Above the Clouds, installation view at Banfill Locke Center for the Arts. Photo: Camille LeFevre
Envisioning an Art Ecology
Writer and landscape architect Diane Hellekson outlines a dynamic model for thinking about cultivation of the arts in Minnesota -- specifically, she makes the case for seeing the health of state's arts and artists in ecological rather than economic terms.
START PONDERING THE CONNECTIONS BETWEEN ART AND ECOLOGY, and you find yourself confronting a complex web, which, depending on your point of view, could look like a stairway to heaven (where art and the rest of life seamlessly connect) or a deathtrap, where good work goes unreward…
The Escape Artist
Consider Samantha French's bright, Impressionistic paintings of a summer idyll: When so much contemporary art seeks to shock and surprise, to push boundaries, is such an unabashedly pleasant, familiar style of work still relevant to the conversation?
LAST SUMMER I WENT TO SOO VISUAL ARTS CENTER to see a show by Samantha French, a Minnesota painter living in New York. The paintings were bright and lively, mostl…
Photo courtesy of the author