Call goes out for Creative City Challenge, moving in ’17 to The Commons

Courtesy of Meet Minneapolis
MIMMI, the first Creative City Challenge winner

For four years starting in 2013, a new work of public art has appeared each summer on the Convention Center plaza, thanks to the Creative City Challenge. The winning artists in the annual competition open to Minnesota residents have received a $75,000 commission to create a temporary, interactive installation. Sponsors have been the Minneapolis Convention Center, which funded the project; the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy of the City of Minneapolis; and Meet Minneapolis, Convention & Visitors Association in collaboration with Northern and the Northern Spark festival. The winning installation was officially unveiled during Northern Spark.

Previous winners of the Challenge were “MIMMI” (2013), a pink, cloud-like air-pressurized sculpture that changed its behavior in response to the city’s moods; “Balancing Ground” (2014), a skeletal wooden sculpture that served as a gathering space and spoke to visitors; “mini_polis” (2015), a large-scale model of downtown Minneapolis where buildings lit up and visitors heard recordings of residents telling their stories and dreams; and “Wolf and Moose” (2016), a pair of giant-sized, interactive, animated sculptures made from found and recycled materials.

The first three are memories, but “Wolf and Moose” will return for this year’s Holidazzle in Loring Park (Thursdays-Sundays, Nov. 25-Dec. 23).

Creative City Challenge will continue in 2017, but in a new location with a smaller commission, fewer partners and a theme. The installation will move to The Commons, the new 4.2-acre public green space across from the U.S. Bank Stadium, where it will serve as a sociable and participatory platform for two months of onsite programming, The commission will drop from $75,000 to $50,000. The collaborators are the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy, The Commons, Northern and Northern Spark; the Minneapolis Convention Center and Meet Minneapolis are no longer involved. The challenge will share the theme of this year’s Northern Spark: Climate Chaos | Climate Rising.

The first four years were funded by the Convention Center. Year 5 will be funded by the City of Minneapolis.

Here’s the open call for Minnesota artists, architects and designers, with all the information you need. Entries are being accepted now through Monday, Dec. 5, at 4:30 p.m. CST. (The link to the online submissions form will go live on Northern Spark’s website by the end of this week.) Finalists will be chosen by Dec. 16, and the winner will be announced in late January following juried in-person presentations by the finalists.

Holding good thoughts for Stanislaw Skrowaczewski

The Minnesota Orchestra posted this on its Facebook page Tuesday afternoon:

“We recently learned that Maestro Stanislaw Skrowaczewski suffered a stroke on Sunday evening. His family reports that he successfully underwent surgery and is now in stable condition. We will continue to share updates here.

“For now, we ask that you keep the Skrowaczewski family your thoughts and prayers, and perhaps listen to a Bruckner Symphony to channel positive energy for Maestro Skrowaczewski.”

Photo by Greg Helgeson/Courtesy of the Minnesota Orchestra
Stanislaw Skrowaczewski

Not that long ago – in mid-October – thousands of Stan and orchestra fans saw him lead Bruckner’s colossal Eighth Symphony. He walked slowly onto the stage, stood upright at the podium for 90 minutes, conducted without a score and enjoyed our thunderous applause at the end, which brought him back for bow after bow. At one point, he tried to raise the orchestra to its feet, they refused, and he gave them an “Oh, whatever!” wave.

We’ll refresh this column with any news we learn today.

Joe Horse Capture is named a new director at MNHS

Joe Horse Capture will return to Minnesota as the new director of the Minnesota Historical Society’s American Indian Initiatives. Since 2013, he has been a curator for the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C. Before then, he was a curator of Native American arts at Mia for 15 years.

In his new position, Horse Capture will collaborate with American Indian communities throughout Minnesota and beyond to develop and implement a vision and strategy for American Indian programs and services. In a statement, he said, “This type of collaborative work is what I enjoy the most, and I have come to believe collaborative efforts should be paramount among the priorities of cultural institutions.” MNHS Director Stephen Elliott said, “We welcome the leadership Joe Horse Capture will provide in developing existing relationships and building new ones between MNHS and American Indian communities.”

Horse Capture is an enrolled member of the A’aninin tribe of Montana. He starts at MNHS on Dec. 5.

The picks

Tonight (Wednesday, Nov. 16) at Common Good Books: Mark Speltz discusses “North of Dixie: Civil Rights Photography Beyond the South.” Most images we’ve seen of the civil rights movement were taken in the American South: Birmingham, Montgomery, Selma. Speltz, a historian, shows us the activism that was taking place in the North and West during this period. And he reminds us that the camera also served those who were against the movement. 7 p.m. Free.

Also tonight at Mill City MuseumOpening reception for the “Heyday: 35 Years of Music in Minneapolis” photo exhibit. Daniel Corrigan has been photographing concerts and musicians in Minneapolis since the early 1980s, as a freelancer and as the official house photographer for First Avenue, capturing local luminaries and stars including Bruce Springsteen, Michael Jackson and David Byrne. And Prince, of course. Drawn from his personal archives of tens of thousands of photos, introduced by Danny Sigelman, the show’s companion book is the one you’ll want to give everyone for Christmas. The Current’s Andrea Swensson will host; Corrigan and Sigelman will speak and sign; a cash bar and food will be available; and you’ll be able to view nearly 50 framed Corrigan photos and a slideshow with thousands of additional unpublished photographs. 6-8:30 p.m. Free (does not include museum admission). Exhibition closes April 30. 

Photo by Dan Corrigan/Courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society Press
Doomtree performing at First Ave

Thursday at Westminster Town Hall ForumTimothy Naftali: “We Have a New President: Now What?” An award-winning author on national security, intelligence policy, international history and presidential history, associate professor at NYU and founding director of the Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum, Naftali will do his best to answer the big “Now What?” question on all of our minds. 12 p.m. at Westminster Presbyterian Church. Free. Can’t be there? Listen live on MPR News Presents, 91.1 FM in the Twin Cities.

Thursday-Saturday at the James J. Hill House: “Tartuffe.” A site-specific performance of Moliere’s classic play about a pious fraud and hypocrite. The play takes place in the great hall, dining room and art gallery of the historic Hill House. Michael Kelley directs a cast of 14, with Leif Jurgensen as gullible Orgon and Tim McVean as wily Tartuffe. Presented by the Wayward Theatre Company, who brought us “Ray Bradbury’s Kaleidoscope” at this year’s Fringe Festival. 7:30 p.m. FMI and tickets ($15-30 sliding scale, $10 MNHS members).

Photo by Lauren B. Photography
Ellen DeYoung, Leif Jurgensen, Gillian Randall, Lucas Gerstner, Amanda Chial and Samantha V. Papke in “Tartuffe”

Friday at the Nativity of Mary Catholic Church: 25th Anniversary Organ Recital with Stephen Hamilton. The Twin Cities-based organist who performed at Notre Dame de Paris in May plays an evening of music by Bach (arranged by Ginastera), Pasquini, Valente, Alain, Franck, Langlais and Dupré on a pipe organ designed by Jan van Daalen, which, Hamilton assures us, “is one of Jan’s best instruments and is housed in a vibrant acoustic.” 7 p.m. Free.

Friday at Public Functionary: Opening celebration for “The Feminist.” What does it mean to be a feminist as a black man in American culture? Through paintings, an installation and a performance, Washington, D.C.-based Haitian-American artist Charles Philippe Jean Pierre examines contemporary literature, feminism, privilege and power, asking questions about race, gender and equality. 7 p.m. – midnight. Free. On the following afternoon (Saturday, Nov. 19), the gallery will host a discussion called “Disrobing Masculinity” moderated by PF director Tricia Heuring and featuring the artist, exhibition curator Jovan C. Speller, writer/anthropologist Nicole Nfonoyim-Hara and poet/author Malanda. 1 p.m., also free. FMI. Ends Dec. 4.

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