Blogs Centerpoints Kristina Fong

I joined the Walker as some sort of intern in 2007 and worked in Education & Community Programs and Public Relations until I ended up in as the Walker's social media manager, delivering you e-mails, Twitter updates, Facebook statuses, answers to your questions, and occasional blogs about things I like. Then I left to go make art in Utah and drive around the country. Now I'm back and producing a little event called the Internet Cat Video Film Festival. #cats

Walker Channel Madness: Vote on Games 2 and 3

Welcome to Day 2 of Walker Channel Madness! We’re opening up two games today, as I realized just how many polls I’d have to make and keep track of over the next week. The match-ups come from the LECTURES and TRAILERS pods. As always, you can check out all the details over at the introductory […]

Welcome to Day 2 of Walker Channel Madness! We’re opening up two games today, as I realized just how many polls I’d have to make and keep track of over the next week. The match-ups come from the LECTURES and TRAILERS pods. As always, you can check out all the details over at the introductory blog post.

And without further ado…

Game 2
ARTIST TALK: LORNA SIMPSON vs FOUR VISIONS OF THE MINNEAPOLIS RIVERFRONT

We have two very different types of lectures going head-to-head today: In one, internationally renowned artist Lorna Simpson talks about collecting amazing things and finding meaningful ways to do something with them, including her recent practice of appropriating and restaging 20th century photos she finds on Ebay and flea markets. In the other, the Final Four teams (see what I did there?) in the Minneapolis Riverfront Design Competition (the winner has since been announced) share their visions (and computer generated visualizations). Which one gets your vote?

Lorna Simpson:

Four Visions of the Minneapolis Riverfront:

Game 3
ROCK THE GARDEN TIME LAPSE VS CHRIS LARSON: ONE OF THE 27 ARTISTS IN THE SPECTACULAR OF VERNACULAR

Well, these are short videos so you have no reason not to watch both. Do the changing shadows and crowd patterns of the 2010 Rock the Garden time-lapse video move you? Or do you delight in seeing the behind-the-scenes construction of Chris Larson’s site-specific installation?

Rock the Garden time-lapse:

Chris Larson:

Walker Channel Madness: Day 1, Game 1

Welcome to Day 1 of Walker Channel Madness! Our first exciting match-ups come from the DIALOGUE & PERFORMANCES and LECTURES pods. Remember, these games were chosen carefully by program/video type, and then seeded by the number of views so far. You can check out all the details over at the introductory blog post. And without […]

Welcome to Day 1 of Walker Channel Madness! Our first exciting match-ups come from the DIALOGUE & PERFORMANCES and LECTURES pods. Remember, these games were chosen carefully by program/video type, and then seeded by the number of views so far. You can check out all the details over at the introductory blog post.

And without further ado…

Game 1
OPENING-DAY ARTIST TALK: ALEC SOTH WITH GEORGE SLADE vs MAKING MUSIC: DAVE KING

We’ve got two Minnesota favorites here. In one corner, Alec Soth discusses the world of contemporary photography with George Slade, a curator at the Photographic Resource Center at Boston University. In the other corner, Dave King opens up his conversation with a non sequitur, discussing the chicness and appeal of mixing checks and stripes in men’s fashion.

Alec Soth:

Dave King:

Walker Channel Madness!

Guess what? We’re joining the ranks of other events and organizations that have nothing to do with basketball and jumping on the March Madness bandwagon! This is what’s happening: we’re pitting our Walker Channel videos against each other in fierce competition to find THE VERY BEST ONE. Using the strict guideline of videos uploaded in […]

Guess what? We’re joining the ranks of other events and organizations that have nothing to do with basketball and jumping on the March Madness bandwagon!

This is what’s happening: we’re pitting our Walker Channel videos against each other in fierce competition to find THE VERY BEST ONE. Using the strict guideline of videos uploaded in the last year, we’re seeding them based on type of video and ranking (total views). Over the next week, viewers will vote for their preferred video and as the polls close, we will be closer to finding out which video will emerge victorious.

Scientific? Indubitably.
Competitive? Oh, you bet.
Exciting? YEAH!
Meaningful? The most meaningful competition in the world!

What is the Walker Channel, you say? It provides live webcasts of Walker programming and is home to an archive of nearly 300 video and audio recordings featuring a wide range of public programs, including lectures, readings, and presentations involving artists, scholars, and critics of contemporary art and culture. It’s been around for eight years, when live video streaming was still a rare, sketchy technology. You can find the HD videos online at channel.walkerart.org, on the Walker’s YouTube channel, or from iTunes U.

Now I present to you: THE BRACKET.
(Click for full size.)

(Download PDF)

THE PODS:
Dialogue/Performance: artist interviews and performances
Lecture: lectures by artists, designers, thinkers, and other special guests
Trailer: videos made and produced especially for the Channel, like exhibition previews and performing arts trailers
Up Close: behind-the-scenes videos, like short curator talks and artist interviews and insights

The tournament will run from March 16 thru April 1, with the first round of 16 taking the majority of the time (because you will have to watch the videos.) The week of March 28 will be a whirlwind of competitive activity, with the Round of 8, the Final 4, and finally, the Final on April 1.

Polls and videos will be embedded in a blog post for every day of competition. You will also be able to find them on the Walker’s Facebook page and linked from our Twitter feed, but voting is strictly on the blog poll.

So go ahead and start an office pool and come back on March 16, when the madness kicks off with Alec Soth’s Opening Day Dialogue vs. Making Music with Dave King, and Four Visions of the Minneapolis Riverfront vs. Lorna Simpson’s Artist Talk.

Live match-ups:
Game 1: Alec Soth vs Dave King
Games 2 & 3

Questions? Concerns? Confused? This may be possible. Holler below.

P.S. I hope you like the tournament logo I made, based on a quick Google image search.

Summer Music & Movies Returns this August

And…we’re back! We’re pleased to announce that Summer Music & Movies in Loring Park will return this summer, co-presented by the Walker and 89.3 The Current. The event will follow the classic format (a performance by a local band followed by a film screening) and take place the first four Mondays in August. In a […]

And…we’re back! We’re pleased to announce that Summer Music & Movies in Loring Park will return this summer, co-presented by the Walker and 89.3 The Current.

The event will follow the classic format (a performance by a local band followed by a film screening) and take place the first four Mondays in August. In a nod to the first Summer Music & Movies in 1973, the August 22 event will move from Loring Park to the Walker’s green space for a special one-night event featuring a silent film with a live band providing the soundtrack. The Walker is grateful for the support of the Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board again this year.

Information about specific bands and films will be announced in May.

How to Win a “Most Minnesotan” Sweater Contest

On Friday, January 28, we are hosting an After Hours unlike any other After Hours. (It’s indoor AND outdoor…in January!) In celebration of the new exhibition of The Spectacular of Vernacular, our theme is, well, vernacular, and specifically, Minnesota vernacular. So along with hot dish appetizers, an ice bar, and a hot cocoa station, we’re […]

On Friday, January 28, we are hosting an After Hours unlike any other After Hours. (It’s indoor AND outdoor…in January!) In celebration of the new exhibition of The Spectacular of Vernacular, our theme is, well, vernacular, and specifically, Minnesota vernacular. So along with hot dish appetizers, an ice bar, and a hot cocoa station, we’re encouraging you all to get your Minnesotan garb on and take a picture at the Party People photo booth (back in the Bazinet Lobby this time). It will be added to our Flickr pool of Party People collection and the next day, we’ll pick the “Most Minnesotan” for a grand prize! (Prize TBD)

Here are some guidelines I just made up that should help you win that great big TBD prize. Here we go:

How to Win a “Most Minnesotan” Sweater Contest

1) Classic Norwegian

You might be able to find these beauties at Ingebretsen’s Gift Shop or Iverson’s Scandinavian Imports in St. Louis Park. They are high quality and very warm (which is why my mom loves them, she says) and there’s nothing like the sight of a church hall full of proud Scandinavians wearing these sweaters and eating lots of Scandinavian food.

2) Woodland Creature

Any homage to any species of Minnesota fauna is very welcome, be it common birdseed stealing pests or majestic creatures of the North Woods.

(Fun fact: The top two are from H&M and Anthropologie, respectively.)

3) Church Dinner

Obviously, your best Norwegian sweater is a good place to start, but if you want to show how much you love Swedish meatballs, lefse, or lutefisk, you will have to go the extra mile. This sweatshirt is available from the Uffda Shop in Red Wing AND online!

4) Paul Bunyan

Well, I’m sure several people will come dressed like Paul Bunyan, but I challenge you to find a sweater that depicts him. Like this one. (Maybe? I always pictured Paul Bunyan to have less billowy pants and a darker beard and less like a jolly Scottish man on his day off. I also didn’t know Babe had spots like a cow, but I’m still pretty sure this is a helpful image for you.)

5) Fishing & Hunting

I’m getting really tired of doing Google image searches, but you know there’s a lot of these out there. Sweatshirts, t-shirts, sweaters, you name it. I’m a really big fan of this pheasant sweater, because I have never known a man to love pheasant more than my Minnesotan grandpa.

Bonus Points: Managing to incorporate the phrase ‘Uff Da’ anywhere on your person.

Something to Note: Remember that fashion is not just about the clothes on your back, but your state of mind while wearing said clothes. For example, while this fine young man clearly understands guidelines 1 and 2 (Classic Norwegian and Woodland Creature), I am not sure how he would react if you dropped him off in the middle of a frozen lake or put a plate of lutefisk in front of him.

This guy, however, knows exactly how to be a Minnesotan.

Dwell: A Photo Caption Contest

To our wonderful, funny, and sarcastic readers and visitors– This month, Dwell features the Julie Snow-designed home of the Walker’s very own Andrew Blauvelt and Scott Winter. The first thing I did after I viewed the slideshow (or maybe even before) was pop over to the blog Unhappy Hipsters, whose sole purpose is to write […]

"Best to keep the gingers behind bars."--Unhappy Hipsters blog

To our wonderful, funny, and sarcastic readers and visitors–

This month, Dwell features the Julie Snow-designed home of the Walker’s very own Andrew Blauvelt and Scott Winter. The first thing I did after I viewed the slideshow (or maybe even before) was pop over to the blog Unhappy Hipsters, whose sole purpose is to write tongue-in-cheek melancholy narratives for the photos in modern home design publications. I was rewarded with the picture and caption above.

Now it is your turn to show off your caption-writing prowess. Take a look through the entire Blauvelt/Winter residence slideshow (shot by Dean Kaufman), pick an image, and write a caption. Leave a comment with your contact information, a link to which photo you are captioning, and your caption.

The winner receives two tickets to the Yves Klein After Hours Preview Party on October 22.

I think this one has some possibilities:

Play nice and happy writing!

Paul the Psychic Octopus Predicts Your “50/50″ Votes!

The World Cup may be over, but Paul the Psychic Octopus still has some work cut out for him before he retires. He’s been busy predicting which artworks will be chosen for the upcoming exhibition, 50/50: Audience and Experts Curate the Paper Collection. Since there are 180 works to vote on, and 5,000 possible match-ups […]

The World Cup may be over, but Paul the Psychic Octopus still has some work cut out for him before he retires. He’s been busy predicting which artworks will be chosen for the upcoming exhibition, 50/50: Audience and Experts Curate the Paper Collection. Since there are 180 works to vote on, and 5,000 possible match-ups to predict (*), he’s going to be pretty busy until the polls close on September 15.

You have your work cut out for you too: VOTE NOW!

* (We were trying to figure out the formula for this, but our math is a little rusty. If anybody knows it, please share.)

Rock the Garden Reviews and Photos: Everybody loves confetti

I’ve been keeping tabs on what people have been saying about this year’s Rock the Garden via Twitter, facebook, and my eyes and ears. There are three things I’m sure of: 1. People love confetti. (And yes, ours was biodegradable.) 2. Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings were amazing and stole the show. 3. MGMT was […]

Confetti! Photo: Cameron Wittig

I’ve been keeping tabs on what people have been saying about this year’s Rock the Garden via Twitter, facebook, and my eyes and ears. There are three things I’m sure of:

1. People love confetti. (And yes, ours was biodegradable.)

2. Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings were amazing and stole the show.

3. MGMT was the low after the sugar rush high that was Sharon Jones, but at least they played “Kids.”

I also did a little trend-watching. I counted 500 rompers, 200 straw hats, and 100 bouts of  “grandma’s couch” floral prints. There were only 20 maxi dresses (last year’s romper) so next year, don’t wear a romper. What do you think next year’s big trend will be? Shortalls? Harem pants (will they reach the midwest?) Tie-dye?

Review round-up:

The Onion’s A.V. Club does a quick recap with a short slideshow (including another great confetti shot.)

Twin Cities Daily Planet does a play-by-play of the day with great pictures of the bands and the crowd.

The artcetera blog on Star Tribune offers a quick review of the day, while the full article on the Strib website talks to people from the crowd.

The blog Sandwiches I Have Loved gives a thumbs up to the ratatouille with goat cheese sandwich from Joe’s Garage.

This one on Not Shallow includes a lengthy “romper digression.”

Twin Cities Concert Blog picks the highs and lows of each band. Includes a video of OK Go and their handbell song.

Photo round-up:

I’ve been waiting for this: the City Pages Freestyle Fashion Rock the Garden slideshow!

City Pages‘ well-rounded slideshow of the bands, food vendors, and “10,000 hipsters.”

Star Tribune gallery

50 photos from Twin Cities Metromix (including a strange photo of OK Go’s drummer framed by the lead singer’s outstretched legs)

The Current’s flickr pool (including a photo that captures a pretty fantastic Alan Sparhawk face)

Vita.mn’s photo gallery: lots of band shots.

L’etoile magazine’s photo round-up spends most of the time in the crowd.

Great flickr pool from user choplogicj.

Some nice dusk/city shots from user Dan_H.

Favorite tweet:

MayorRTRybak: Sharon Jones,former prison guard, has Rock the Garden crowd in custody. Love her sound!

More to come as they hit my Google alerts. Also, feel free to let me know if I’ve missed anything.

Be sure to add your best photos to the Rock the Garden photo album on the Rock the Garden facebook page.

Politics affecting art – a little differently this time.

Elizabeth Peyton originally painted this portrait, Michelle and Sasha Obama Listening to Barack Obama at the Democratic National Convention August 2008, for the art issue of W magazine. It was added to Peyton’s Live Forever retrospective at the New Museum on the day after the election, when the show had already been up since early […]

Elizabeth Peyton originally painted this portrait, Michelle and Sasha Obama Listening to Barack Obama at the Democratic National Convention August 2008, for the art issue of W magazine. It was added to Peyton’s Live Forever retrospective at the New Museum on the day after the election, when the show had already been up since early October. Why? Senior curator Laura Hoptman deemed it “appropriate.”

The release from the New Museum is as follows: “The New Museum joins Elizabeth Peyton in paying tribute to incoming First Lady Michelle Obama, whose portrait with her daughter Sasha will be unveiled today on the 4th floor as a new component of the exhibition Live Forever: Elizabeth Peyton. This is the first time this newly created painting is on public view. Please join us in celebrating as we look forward to rousing changes both large and small.”

Now that she’s been added to the show, is the First Lady coming here when Live Forever packs it up to the Walker in February?

Your moment of zen.

This article from the New York Times by Nicolai Ourousoff about the new California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, designed by Renzo Piano and across the park from Herzog & de Meuron’s deYoung, was just too beautiful not to share, particularly the opening and closing paragraphs. Ahh, I remember those African Hall dioramas well: […]

This article from the New York Times by Nicolai Ourousoff about the new California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, designed by Renzo Piano and across the park from Herzog & de Meuron’s deYoung, was just too beautiful not to share, particularly the opening and closing paragraphs. Ahh, I remember those African Hall dioramas well:

Not all architects embrace the idea of evolution. Some, fixated on the 20th-century notion of the avant-garde, view their work as a divine revelation, as if history began with them. Others pine for the Middle Ages.

But if you want reaffirmation that human history is an upward spiral rather than a descent into darkness, head to the new California Academy of Sciences, in Golden Gate Park, which opens on Saturday.

and

The museum has also preserved its African Hall, with its gorgeous vaulted ceiling and dioramas of somnolent lions and grazing antelopes, integrating it into the new design. Built in the 1930s, this neo-Classical hall is a specimen of sorts. Its massive stone structure reflects colonial attitudes about the civilized world as a barrier against barbarism. It was intended as a symbol of Western superiority and a triumph over nature.

By contrast, Mr. Piano’s vision avoids arrogance. The ethereality of the academy’s structure suggests a form of reparations for the great harm humans have done to the natural world. It is best to tread lightly in moving forward, he seems to say. This is not a way of avoiding hard truths; he means to shake us out of our indolence.

Images, of course, from the New York Times.

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