Blogs Centerpoints Garden

“Spoonbridge and Cherry” artist Coosje van Bruggen, 1942 – 2009

Here at the Walker, as associate registrar Joe King is preparing to restore the brilliant red paint on Spoonbridge’s crowning touch, we received the sad news that one of its co-creators has died. In addition to writing scholarly pieces on artists like John Baldessari and Gerhard Richter, Coosje van Bruggen worked with her husband Claes […]

Here at the Walker, as associate registrar Joe King is preparing to restore the brilliant red paint on Spoonbridge’s crowning touch, we received the sad news that one of its co-creators has died. In addition to writing scholarly pieces on artists like John Baldessari and Gerhard Richter, Coosje van Bruggen worked with her husband Claes Oldenburg on a number of sculptures that basically monumentalized Pop art, a body of work she dubbed “The Large-Scale Projects.”

The outsized objects, which date back to the late 70s, range from a baseball bat in Chicago to binoculars in Venice, California, to a broom and dustpan in Denver; Spoonbridge and Cherry (1985-88), a highlight of the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, is special in that it was the duo’s first fountain sculpture. Van Bruggen, who succumbed to breast cancer at her home in Los Angeles over the weekend, is being memorialized by dozens of obituaries online, including Time and the L.A. Times, which has a fine slideshow as well, featuring the work that has become a Minneapolis landmark.

Eavesdrop 06.16.08

Former Walker director (and now director emeritus) Martin Friedman and his wife, Mickey, were at a reception in their honor Friday afternoon at the Gallery 8 Cafe. Just before the mass of staff poured in for free wine and crackers, Martin Friedman discussed his interactions 20 years ago with artists placing their works in the […]

Former Walker director (and now director emeritus) Martin Friedman and his wife, Mickey, were at a reception in their honor Friday afternoon at the Gallery 8 Cafe. Just before the mass of staff poured in for free wine and crackers, Martin Friedman discussed his interactions 20 years ago with artists placing their works in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. Friedman also talks here with Deborah Butterfield, who was also at the reception, about her work in the garden, Woodrow (1988).

Don’t let anyone see your armpits

MinnPost has an interesting piece today from Ron Way, who mixes an assessment of Walker on the Green with a short history lesson on miniature golf. Among other “hmm … you don’t say?” nuggets, Way drops this factoid: (The) first miniature golf course was the Ladies’ Putting Club in St. Andrews, Scotland, formed in 1867. […]

MinnPost has an interesting piece today from Ron Way, who mixes an assessment of Walker on the Green with a short history lesson on miniature golf. Among other “hmm … you don’t say?” nuggets, Way drops this factoid:

(The) first miniature golf course was the Ladies’ Putting Club in St. Andrews, Scotland, formed in 1867. Back then, it was taboo for women to swing a golf club more than shoulder high.

Some taboos are more meritorious than others. At least the Walker doesn’t discriminate with its taboos — anyone playing Walker on the Green will get a finger-wagging for swinging a club more than shoulder high.

eavesdrop 05.27.08

[youtube]http://youtube.com/watch?v=qPce12kb0Fk[/youtube] Swing into the opening party for Walker on the Green: Artist-Designed Mini Golf. The course is open through Labor Day.

Cover Up: More Than Meets the Eye

There are a couple notable distinctions to the May/June issue of Walker magazine. The first is the cover — or, more accurately, two covers. Open the front, which bows to the 20th anniversary of the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, and you’ll find a second cover, featuring an untitled photo from Richard Prince’s cowboy series — a […]

May June Cover WrapThere are a couple notable distinctions to the May/June issue of Walker magazine. The first is the cover — or, more accurately, two covers. Open the front, which bows to the 20th anniversary of the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, and you’ll find a second cover, featuring an untitled photo from Richard Prince’s cowboy series — a nod to the Walker’s Prince exhibition. Why two covers? The short of it: Twice the happiness. The medium of it: We recognize two programs worthy of the cover’s spotlight.

By the way, in house, we don’t call the first cover a cover (not if you want to preserve your kneecaps). It’s a wrap — the first in the short history of the magazine in its current format. It’s printed on rough paper stock and, if one were so inclined, easily pulled away from the glossy magazine proper. Hypothetically, one could carefully pull the wrap away and present the May/June issue with a Prince cover. Nobody would be the wiser (indeed, the issue date and magazine logo are reserved for the inner cover).

Who would do such a thing? And why? You could pin the entire summer slate of Garden-related events (they appear on the back of the wrap) on your refrigerator or on your bedroom wall, alongside your black-light posters. Perhaps you’d like a Prince keepsake on the cheap. The Walker doesn’t recommend engineering this cover separation at home — or at your own museum — nor is the Walker responsible for any ensuing injury.

The second distinction is the illustration adorning the wrap. Again, this is new to the magazine, which traditionally devotes the cover to artwork drawn from a current/upcoming exhibition or publicity still from a performance group or film. This tableau is drenched in PMS 802 — the official color of the summer-long Garden anniversary celebration. Dare to imagine your summer day in the sculpture garden bathed in day-glo green.

eavesdrop 04.23.08

To commemorate National Dance Week, Walker Art Center performing arts program manager Michele Steinwald sent out a call to 300 people in the Twin Cities dance community to gravitate to the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden Tuesday afternoon for a group photo in front of Spoonbridge and Cherry. Only two dozen showed up, not counting two dogs […]

To commemorate National Dance Week, Walker Art Center performing arts program manager Michele Steinwald sent out a call to 300 people in the Twin Cities dance community to gravitate to the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden Tuesday afternoon for a group photo in front of Spoonbridge and Cherry. Only two dozen showed up, not counting two dogs in tow, but Steinwald sees it as the launching pad to an annual photo shoot to mark this otherwise under-the-radar week.

Sky Bouncer

IMAGES: (left) James Turrell’s Sky Pesher and (right) Mongo Thomson’s Skyspace Bouncehouse. The contemporary arts quarterly X-Tra calls Mungo Thomson’s Skyspace Bouncehouse “a nod” to James Turrell’s Skyspace pavilions. Other words come to mind — “knockoff,” “ripoff” or the more charitable “tribute.” Turrell’s Sky Pesher, commissioned by the Walker and unveiled in 2005 to mark […]

IMAGES: (left) James Turrell’s Sky Pesher and (right) Mongo Thomson’s Skyspace Bouncehouse.

The contemporary arts quarterly X-Tra calls Mungo Thomson’s Skyspace Bouncehouse “a nod” to James Turrell’s Skyspace pavilions. Other words come to mind — “knockoff,” “ripoff” or the more charitable “tribute.” Turrell’s Sky Pesher, commissioned by the Walker and unveiled in 2005 to mark the Walker’s reopening, could have served as Thomson’s blueprint. But if Richard Prince can reframe others’ creations and cast them as his own art, Turrell might as well save on the attorneys’ fees — he doesn’t have a case. And as a colleague here was quick to point out, Thomson’s version seems “more fun.”

X-Tra points out that Turrell’s work draws on his experiences as a Quaker, adding that, “by adding the opportunity to bounce and jump in the Skyspace, Thomson provides a way to exorcise the demons within us–and if you bring your iPod with a downloaded Black Flag track, you can rock your world, in deep contrast to the pious quiet and pacifist underpinnings of the Turrell Quaker pavilions.”

Happy holidays from the Walker

[youtube]http://youtube.com/watch?v=TzXCFT95wAU[/youtube] A fellow Walkerite pointed this video out to me, and as YouTube poster maryhobrien puts it, it’s “kinda kitchy” [sic]. Most of the filming takes place in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, and looks to have been shot on a beautiful morning a week or two ago when the trees were frosted white. Mary sums […]

[youtube]http://youtube.com/watch?v=TzXCFT95wAU[/youtube]

A fellow Walkerite pointed this video out to me, and as YouTube poster maryhobrien puts it, it’s “kinda kitchy” [sic]. Most of the filming takes place in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, and looks to have been shot on a beautiful morning a week or two ago when the trees were frosted white. Mary sums it up right:

Though all the photos contain nativity scenes, Jesus, Allah, Buddha, etc., it’s all the same to me. Stay groovy in the New Year and Happy Holidays. Peace.

There are a couple of Walker related things to keep in mind over the holiday week:

Gary White tours the web

The Walker’s most-wanted, most-requested tour guide, Gary White, has hit the World Wide Web by storm. Gary has been touring at the Walker for 25 years, has done an estimated 175 garden tours, and has toured over 400 exhibitions. Apparently once word got to the folks at Cool Hunting about the popularity of Gary’s tours, […]

The Walker’s most-wanted, most-requested tour guide, Gary White, has hit the World Wide Web by storm. Gary has been touring at the Walker for 25 years, has done an estimated 175 garden tours, and has toured over 400 exhibitions. Apparently once word got to the folks at Cool Hunting about the popularity of Gary’s tours, they wanted to follow one of their own.

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