Thursday, August 18, 2–9 pm Free
Walker Open Field
Conversation in any way you can imagine: over ping-pong, on the dance floor, and at the drawing table.
Join spoken-word/theater artist Marc Bamuthi Joseph and collaborators for a day on Open Field. Come hang out and exchange ideas with artists exploring “what sustains life in your community?” while sharing some of their favorite activities.
Meet local and national artists, including Carolyn Anderson, Julie Buffalohead, Brett Cook-Dizney, Leah Cooper, Jim Denomie, Desdamona, Marlina Gonzalez, Allison Herrera, Bethany Hines, Wing Young Huie, Eli Jacobs-Fantauzzi, Rick Lowe, Leah Nelson, and Tish Jones. Marc Bamuthi Joseph will also present an excerpt of his work-in-progress performance red, black and GREEN: a blues. Collaborating with many members of the Twin Cities “ecosystem” of local organizations, Living Classroom is created in partnership with Citizens for a Loring Park Community, Conway+Schulte Architects, Cultural Wellness Center, Imagining America, Intermedia Arts, Juxtaposition Arts, Kulture Klub, Line Break Media, the Minneapolis Parks Foundation, and others.
Collective Collage, 2 – 7pm, Open Field
Spoken word artist and educator Desdamona facilitates a Collective Collage around the question “What sustains life in your community?” Using magazine cut-outs, written word, and drawing, the public creates a backdrop for the evening performance.
Drawing Club, 2 – 7pm, The Grove
Join Carolyn Anderson, Julie Buffalohead, and Jim Denomie for communal drawing and socializing, as they demonstrate their respective drawing skills and discuss community and history with expert strokes.
Ping and Sing with Wing: A Third Place Event, 2 – 7pm, Gallery 8
Join in ping pong, communal karaoke, and a slide show with photographer Wing Young Huie. He and fellow ping-pong enthusiasts/artists John Kim, Peter Haakon Thompson, Jenny Schmid, David Petersen, and others lead mini-tournaments throughout the day.
Dominos, 2 – 7pm, The Grove
Share stories and thoughts on healthy living and communities over dominos with artist/urban designer/activist Rick Lowe.
Instructions for Peace, 2 – 7pm, The Grove and Bazinet Lobby
Join curator Marlina Gonzalez for this project inviting instructions for peace in the 21st century. Use an iPad application or your own personal media to create a three-step Instruction For Peace.
Voices on Sustainability, 2 – 9pm; 5:30pm, Reception Orientation Rock
This video, by youth from various neighborhoods in Minneapolis, Line Break Media, and spoken word artist Tish Jones, investigates questions and themes on what sustains life in community.
Juxtaposition Arts S.T.E.M. Expo, 3:30 – 5pm, Grove
Juxtaposition’s S.T.E.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) students share their concepts and models around sustainable environmental design.
Community Walkabout, 3:00 pm and 6:00 pm, Meet at the Vineland Pl entrance to the Sculpture Garden
Local architect Marcy Schulte leads a walking tour of the neighborhood and conversation about animating public space in our (and your own) community. In partnership with Citizens for a Loring Park Community and Friends of Loring Park.
Story Circle, 4:30 – 5:30pm, Sky Pesher
Stretch your imagination with storytelling games for kids and adults, led by theater artists Leah Cooper & Anton Jones.
Messaging Your Community: Twin Cities in Frame, 6:15pm, FlatPak House
Map characters, conflicts and solutions while developing a narrative around community in the Twin Cities. A session lead by Line Break Media, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the storytelling of individuals and groups working for justice in their own communities.
Dance X/Masego, 6 – 7 pm, The Field
Leah Nelson/Nubia, OYIN – a Dance Collective, and special guests will perform throughout the space.
Community Renga; Sneak peek: red, black and GREEN: a Blues, 7 – 8pm, Belvedere
Spoken word artist Tish Jones and guests perform a Northside Renga Community Poem—a writing project compiling line submissions from Northsiders. Spoken word/theater artist Marc Bamuthi Joseph offers us a taste of his new multimedia work presented at the Walker in March 2012.
OSO presents Bomba, 8:15 pm, Vineland Plaza
Join OSO and Luis Ortega in traditional Puerto Rican rhythms, song, and dance known as Bomba.
Off-site event: “LC” After Party – Juxtaposition’s Open Block Summer Jam, 9 -11pm
Juxtaposition Arts (2007 Emerson Ave. No. -West Broadway and Emerson Ave No)
DJ’s, live music and dance performances, hip-hop karaoke, and more! Come bless the new Juxtaposition dance space with positivity for a successful fall 2011 Opening.
More about Marc Bamuthi Joseph
Marc Bamuthi Joseph, a veteran performing artist/activist dedicated to building creative ecosystems and spreading his belief in them, recently posed this question to 30 friends organizing a celebration for his 30th birthday: “If you were going to start a culture, who are the 30 people you’d want to be part of it? Bring three of them to my party.” Lately, he’s been raising a different question in communities across the country: “What sustains life in your city? What sustains life on your block?”
Some Walker visitors will recall Joseph from the break/s: a mixtape for the stage, his galvanizing 2008 piece co-commissioned by the Walker. He’s now developing a new Walker commission called red, black and GREEN: a blues (rbGb), a multimedia work premiering here in March 2012. This interdisciplinary collaboration with Chicago-based visual artist/activist Theaster Gates combines dance, text, and visuals in a new mode of kinetic performance.
Joseph—a National Poetry Slam champion, Broadway veteran, GOLDIE award winner, USA Fellow (an honor accorded annually to 50 of America’s finest artists), and 2011 Alpert Theater Award recipient—says the rbGb project grew out of his frustration with the lack of brown voices in the struggles over environmental justice, social ecology, sustainable energy, and climate change, and our collective responsibility for such issues. rbGb is meant to bring those voices into the dialogue; for raw material, Joseph is drawing on interviews, poems, films, and murals from Life Is Living, a series of eco and art festivals he launched in 2008 in urban parks nationwide, bringing together art, activism, and education. As he describes it, Life Is Living has evolved “from throwing a concert in the park to getting people to think about the environment as a model for organizing communities.”
This April, Bamuthi and his collaborator, artist and educator Brett Cook-Dizney, visited the Twin Cities to introduce the Life Is Living project and process. They met with a range of artists and community organizers including Bedlam Theatre, the Powderhorn/Phillips Cultural Wellness Center, Intermedia Arts, Imagining America, and the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC). Walker staff and artist Seitu Jones took them on a winding urban journey, from the Frogtown and Rondo neighborhoods in the shadow of the St. Paul’s State Capitol to the wetlands surrounding Bassett Creek in North Minneapolis, to learn more firsthand about the history and current struggles that communities of color face in the Twin Cities. Heading south, they stopped at All My Relations Gallery for a conversation with Justin Heunneman, president of the Native American Community Development Institute; talked shop with Roger Cummings, artistic director of Juxtaposition Arts; and ate with spoken-word artists Tish Jones and Desdamona in Uptown. Out of these and other meetings grew ideas for ways to build on the existing “ecosystem” of local organizations in order to raise that question—“What sustains life in our community?”—this summer, in a range of Twin Cities neighborhoods and at the Walker’s Open Field.