Walker Art Center

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Press Releases Open Field is What We Make Together! Join us June 2-September 1

Minneapolis, April 27, 2012—The Walker Art Center’s summer-long experiment, Open Field, is coming back for its third season, June 2-September 1. The community has helped shape Open Field into the ultimate mix of public spaces: a patio, a recreational field, a playground, a stage, a beer garden, a hangout, and every once in a while, a zoo. It’s a different type of park, where town square meets community green meets cultural commons. Open Field is a place for social and creative exchange—everyone is encouraged to share their talents and interests by organizing a public event on the Field. Visitors can check out the Open Field calendar to see what’s going on, or simply show up and join in.

Open Field evolved from a desire to invite people to engage with the Walker and their community in a tangible way. Director of Education and Curator of Public Practice, Sarah Schultz, explains, “What form of public park could emerge from the context of a contemporary arts center? There aren’t a lot of public places left in our lives where we can comfortably encounter people who, while they may not share our precise interests, hold in common an inclination toward engaged curiosity. In many respects, museums already serve this community, but an empty field provided us a rare opportunity to test something new.”

Open Field features a shady courtyard and the Open Field Tool Shed, where visitors can check out picnic blankets, books, games, sports equipment, art materials, and other supplies. Garden Grill by D’Amico offers freshly grilled barbeque favorites and summer beverages including a selection of local beers.

Be a Creator/Participate

In 2011, more than 100 individuals and groups contributed to this festival of community-sourced activities. Offerings included everything from poetry readings, art-making, music, and yoga on the lawn to skill-share lessons with a twist. Throughout the season, The Walker also commissions invites artists-in-residence to create and host activities involving hundreds of people of all ages. Open Field is a chance to make your mark, so add to the mix this year with a program of your own.

Hangout: Meet friends at the Garden Grill by D’Amico, surf on our lawn—the green has free Wi-Fi; borrow fun stuff from our Tool Shed; or sprawl out on a picnic blanket with friends or a book. Join in on what the community creates or check out programs on Target Free Thursday Night like Drawing Club and Acoustic Campfire.

Organize your own activity to share with others and add it to the Open Field calendar. For more information about how to organize and schedule your activity this summer, visit the Propose Your Activity page:



Tuesday–Sunday, 11 am–5pm

Open late Thursday, 11 am–9 pm

Closed Mondays

Tool Shed

Open during gallery hours

Games, hula hoops, art supplies, sports equipment, books, radios, and more—all free for check out and use on the field. #toolshed

Garden Grill by D’Amico

Tuesday–Sunday, 11 am–5 pm

Thursday Happy Hour, 5–10 pm

Serving up summer classics from the grill, plus a variety of local beers, wines, soda, and lemonade.



entrances. Nice Ride has a station near the Hennepin entrance.


Paid parking is available at the underground ramp on Vineland Place at Bryant Avenue or in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden pay lot.

Public Transportation

Metro Transit bus lines 4, 6, 12, and 25 will bring you to the Walker and Open Field.


The Walker is accessible to all visitors. For more information, contact us at 612.375.7564 or access@walkerart.org.


Tool Kits

Local residents are creating custom-made Tool Kits for Open Field designed to inspire the tinkerer in all of us. Keep your eyes peeled for a string figures kit by Mike Haeg and a personal postal service kit by Jenni Undis of Lunalux.


Exalt in the fleeting and investigate the earth underfoot with phenology fanatic Abbie Anderson. As an amateur naturalist, she will share her explorations of the field and Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, cultivating a curiosity for city-dwelling wildlife.

Little Free Library

Take a Book, Return a Book. Enjoy some literary alone time, or read aloud to a friend with our Open Field Little Free Library. www.littlefreelibrary.org

Analog Tweets

You Write it, We Tweet it. Analog Tweets mixes the tactile intimacy of the handwritten note with the immediacy of social media. @analogtweet

Pop-Up Days

Keep your ear to the ground for spontaneous theme days throughout the season. Check the website or just show up and be game for anything.


All Open Field events are free!

Target Free Thursday Nights

Drawing Club, 4–8 pm

Free Gallery Admission, 5–9 pm

Happy Hour at the Garden Grill, 5–10 pm

Acoustic Campfire, 8–10 pm

Target Free Thursday Nights features an eclectic mash-up of events, both inside the Walker and outdoors at Open Field. www.walkerart.org

Drawing Club

Thursday, 4-8 pm

The first rule of Drawing Club: What’s made at Drawing Club stays at Drawing Club. Drawing Club is about the social experience of art making, collaboration and play. Come add your creative touch during weekly sessions open to local artists and the public alike. Here is how it works: Art supplies are provided on large tables in shaded areas of the outdoor Open Lounge. Start a new drawing or select one in progress from the table. Slide it back into the pool, pass it around, and alter, edit or amend it until the group declares it complete. All ages, abilities, and aesthetics welcome. The finished works are collected and displayed throughout the summer at future sessions. There are no assignments, structured projects or formal processes for drawing club. This idea is to make collaborative works…however that manifests itself and what can beat making art under a grove of trees with a cold drink! View past art work at www.tumblr.com/blog/openfielddrawingclub

All ages and skill levels are welcome to work along with local artists and add to a pool of collectively created artworks. #drawingclub

June 7: Farida Hughes, David Rathman

June 14: Chris Pennington, Jamie Solberg, Todd Balthazor

June 21: ART SQUAD: Michon Weeks, Carolyn Swiszcz, Elaine Rutherford, Laura Stack, Mary Berg, Monica Reede

June 28: Josh Norton, Andy Ducett, Jamie Solberg, Todd Balthazor

July 5: Clea Felien, Joe Sinness, Hannah Frink, Josh Stulen, Vanesa Windschitl

July 12: John Fleischer, Ruben Nusz, Pam Valfer, Allen Brewer

July 19: Andy Sturdevant, Todd Balthazor, Margaret Pezalla

July 26: David Hamlow, Lauren Herzak-Bauman, Margaret Pezalla

August 2: Pete Dreissen, Alyssa Beguss, Natasha Pestich, Robyn Awend, Erik Ullanderson

August 9: Adam Erickson, Lisa Bergh, Andy Nordin, Noah Harmon

August 16: Dead or Alive with Silverwood Park

August 23: Hannah Frick, Vanesa Windschitl

August 30: Death Metal Drawing Club Finale with surprise hosts

Acoustic Campfire

Thursdays, 8–10 pm

Local musicians perform acoustic sets as the sun set on the Field. Twitter: #acousticcampfire

June 7: Hummingbirds (sweet, folksy harmonies)

June 14: Cruel Haiku (roots folk rock)

June 21: Aria Sing-along with Music:Baroque (sounds like it is)

June 28: Mixed Precipitation, Picnic Operetta (food and horticulture meet operatic theater)

July 5: Prairie Fire Lady Choir (harmony meets democracy)

July 12: Dear Data (soulful melodies with electronic beats)

July 19: Hill Tribe (hip-hop trio), Jonathan Zorn (sound-bounce performance)

July 26: Cardboard Dreams (chamber pop)

August 2: Adrian Freeman (costume karaoke)

August 9: Jim Walsh with the Mad Ripple Hootenanny (80s revival rock)

August 16: Lynn O’Brien (solo Hummingbird), HOLLY (cheerful indie-pop)

August 23: Tango Pohjan Tähden (Finnish tango)

August 30: Brian Laidlaw and the Family Trade (sweet, sweet bluegrass)

Free First Saturdays

Family fun on the first Saturday of each month, 10am-3pm

June 2: Citizen Science

July 7: Kids’ Democracy Day

August 4: Garden Quest

September 1: Get Up and Read with Nancy Carlson

Artists-in-Residence at Open Field

June 2: Citizen Science

July 7: Kids’ Democracy Day August 4: Garden Quest September 1: Get Up and Read with Nancy Carlson

Over the centuries, the kitchen has evolved from a fire pit and a flat stone into an elaborate place for storing, making, and eating food. But in recent years, not-withstanding the rise of “the foodie,” it has devolved for many to little more than a microwave and a sink. We eat out or on the run, and when we do use kitch¬ens, prep work has been outsourced to backroom workers making convenience foods, as science and technology streamline food production from field to table. But go to any gathering or party, and you’ll know exactly where guests and hosts will be hanging out.

This June, Carl and Betsy DiSalvo (designers and researchers from the Georgia Institute of Technology) focus on reconceiving the kitchen: its ingredi¬ents, structure, and functions. Teaming up with local experts and students, they will consider that space from an array of vantage points: studio art, landscape architecture, food systems, urban planning, design, ceramics, public health, cul-tural studies, theater, engineering, and more. Participants will design and build a new kind of kitchen—a modular, multifaceted public “lab” with tools for use on Open Field and in the city—that welcomes people for experiences with food, and in the process sparks new kinds of social interaction and civic engagement.

Thursday, June 21, 5-10pm

Bring your favorite locally produced beverage, produce, meat, or cheese, which the DiSalvos will incorporate into a playful presentation and discussion about serving and eating, participatory design, and informal learning.

Thursday, June 28, 5-10 pm

Join the Kitchen Lab team for a food event in their new modular kitchen. What they’ll serve is bound to go beyond your average tuna surprise!


July 17-29

Join members of Minneapolis-based design studio ROLU to create an open-air version of a Walker gallery on the field, complete with artworks from the collection. The undertaking is part of their residency exploring a series of what they call “living ideas,” such as “when does something become something else?” It’s also a vivid reminder of the fact that most art objects, so carefully situated and protected inside a museum, were at some point made by a person—often by hand, and from relatively commonplace materials. A host of other activities rounds out their residency.


Members Night at Open Field

Saturday, June 2, 5-7pm

Come for Free First Saturday; stay for a festive, members-only BBQ with food, drink, and activities. RSVP to 612.375.7655 or membership@walkerart.org.

Northern Spark: A Dusk-to-Dawn Festival of Art

Saturday–Sunday, June 9–10, 9 pm–6 am

By anyone’s measure, last year’s inaugural Northern Spark festival was a wild success as thousands of people discovered the Twin Cities in a new (night) light. Making the rounds throughout the night at outdoor art sites around St. Paul and Minneapolis—including the Walker—they paid some 50,000 visits to 100 proj-ects by more than 200 artists.

The Walker’s keeping the lights on again for this year’s dusk-to-dawn festival with a gathering inspired by the convivial, collaborative, and ephemeral atmo¬sphere of Open Field. Gather around the campfire for concerts and storytelling performances by The Prairie Fire Lady Singers, Dear Data, the White Whales, Brian Laidlaw and the Family Trade, and other local writers and musicians. Grab a glow stick and join in a NIGHTclub edition of Drawing Club, or take a stroll around the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden and Walker campus, where you’ll come upon artist interventions and other surprises. Inside the museum, galleries are open and feature one-night-only displays of artworks from the collection, while whiteonwhite:algorithmicnoir, an ever-changing film noir from artist Eve Sussman, screens in the Lecture Room. Fuel up for the night with the Garden Grill’s food and beverages, including a s’more bar, before crashing on the hill to watch the sun rise over the city skyline.

The Big String Thing

Thursdays, June 14, July 12, and August 30, 6–8 pm

“Nothing binds the modern American family together so absolutely as a short length of rope.”

Working together as a team, fingers and thumbs can make a lot with string—the Hawk’s Foot, Two Boys Fighting for an Arrow, Pygmy Diamonds, and of course, a Cat’s Cradle. Be ye a finger or be ye a thumb, play the part of a digit to help make massive string figures on the field.

‘80s Night

Thursday, August 9, 7-10pm

Thursday, August 9, 7–10 pm Come together to relive the best of the Reagan years through art and fashion and check out the exhibition This Will Have Been: Art, Love, and Politics in the 1980s ; attend a series of picnic-table conversations with local artists looking back on the Twin Cities scene during the’80s. Drawing Club includes artists Adam Erickson, Lisa Bergh, Andy Nordin, Noah Harmon. Acoustic Campfire features Jim Walsh with the Mad Ripple Hootenanny —the former City Pages music editor and St. Paul Pioneer Press pop music columnist spins songs and stories about the Twin Cities, circa 1980-89. Expect special guests and other surprises.

Silverwood Park at Open Field

Thursday, August 16, Noon-9pm

Join an afternoon and evening of creative park programs. Go on a cell phone photography hike with a naturalist, compete in the Clay Olympics, and try your hand at Drawing Club. Hang out with some special guests from the animal kingdom.

Summer Music & Movies: In Dream

Monday, August 20, duck

Movie: _The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari_with live score by Brute Heart Tweet your buds, grab a blanket, and join us on the hill at dusk for another silent film + live score commission. Known for their primal rhythms and darkly mysterious songs, beloved locals Brute Heart will present a new live score for Robert Wiene’s 1920 German Expressionist classic.

Harvest Party

Thursday, August 30, 5–9 pm

Celebrate the last outdoor Target Free Thursday Night of the season with a cake-cutting ceremony, Death Metal Drawing Club, Viral Cat Video Festival and the Acoustic Campfire finale. walkerart.org/openfield

Garden Grill by D’Amico

All grill items include kettle-fried potato chips

Certified angus beef burger $7.50

Turkey Burger $7.50

Black bean burger with pico do gallo (vegetarian) $7.00

All beef quarter-pound hot dog $6.00

Veggie Dog-soy pup soy dog (vegetarian) $6.00

Bratwurst-by Kramarczuk’s $6.00

BBQ Pork Sandwich $7.00

Kids all beef hot dog $3.00

Picnic Lunch; any above item w/ whole fruit and cookie Add $2.00


Toppings cheddar cheese $ .75

swiss cheese $ .75

cheeses from Cady Creek Farm

and Widner Dairy, Wisconsin

pepper and onions $1.00

smoked bacon $1.00


Coleslaw $2.50

classic potato salad $2.50

mixed fruit $2.50

kettle fried chips $1.00

house-made cookie $1.50


iced tea $2.50

lemonade $2.50

soda $3.00

bottled water $3.00

Tap Beers

12 oz summit extra pale ale $5.00

red/white Wine $6.00

bottled beer (varies)

local craft brew

Happy Hour at the Garden Grill Thursdays, 5-10 pm

Enjoy drink specials on the outdoor patio at the Garden Grill every Thursday night.

Open Field