Mn Artists, the Walker’s platform for local artists, brings its online network live and into the museum. Connect with local artists of all disciplines, and engage with the questions driving the Minnesota arts community. The series returns for a third year, with multi-faceted events designed by guest curators Anat Shinar & Amal Rogers, CarryOn Homes, and Jonathan Herrera Soto.
Does the institutional museum, as both a physical and conceptual space, contain inherent violence?
Jonathan Herrera Soto proposes that the gallery serves as a magnification of the body and simultaneously a miniaturization of society. The artworks presented in this program will examine parallels between the four white walls of the gallery—where art exists to be consumed—and the four-walled torture chambers—where physical pain is inflicted on politicized bodies (referred as the "production room" in the Philippines, the "blue lit stage" in Chile, and the "cinema room" in South Vietnam). The participating artists, performers, and writers will be asked to respond to Elaine Scarry’s The Body In Pain, and create projects in conversation with a museum in which art objects are detained in galleries as spectacle—or as artifacts held in captivity.
Jonathan Herrera Soto is a print-based studio artist originally from Chicago, IL and currently maintains a studio practice in Minneapolis and Chicago. He graduated with a BFA from the Minneapolis College in Art and Design in 2017. Recent solo exhibitions of Herrera Soto’s work include Querida Presencia at the Duluth Art Institute in Duluth, MN and Entre Rios y Montañas at Annex Gallery in Chicago, IL. He has participated in numerous artist residencies including Yaddo, Saratoga Springs, NY; The Studios at MASS MoCA, North Adams, MA; 33 Officia Creativia, Toffia, Italy; Spudnik Press Cooperative, Chicago, IL; High Point Center for Printmaking, Minneapolis, MN; Vermont Studio Center, Johnson, VT; and Epicenter, Green River, Utah. In 2018, Herrera Soto was the recipient of a Santo Foundation Individual Artist Award and a Minnesota State Arts Board Artist Initiative Grant. Herrera Soto explores various relationships between collective memory and historical instances of state-sponsored violence and trauma inflicted on politicized bodies. He constructs print-based objects, installations, and environments that echo lived experiences of those who are no longer with us. Print-based processes translate the content through symbolically revealing the act of remembering in producing tracings and impressions. Slicing open wounds into wood, burning the surface of lithostone with acid, and the crushing of ink on paper under immense pressure, re-animates acts of violence that carries through an art-object’s final presentation.