Mural Art at Roberts Street Studio

January 1, 1970 - to
Mural Art at Roberts Street Studio

This image was taken at Roberts Street Studio earlier this week. The mural was painted a few weeks ago by JAWSH and AWON, two aerosol artists who were part of the Hip Hop Don’t Stop mural projects the last two summers. Roberts Street Studio is an artist collective based in downtown Fargo – stop by and see the mural in person if you get the chance. It’s near the corner of 7th Avenue North on Roberts Street, just a couple buildings south of The Empire.

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Mural Art at Roberts Street Studio

January 1, 1970 - to
Mural Art at Roberts Street Studio

This image was taken at Roberts Street Studio earlier this week. The mural was painted a few weeks ago by JAWSH and AWON, two aerosol artists who were part of the Hip Hop Don’t Stop mural projects the last two summers. Roberts Street Studio is an artist collective based in downtown Fargo – stop by and see the mural in person if you get the chance. It’s near the corner of 7th Avenue North on Roberts Street, just a couple buildings south of The Empire.

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Q & A: Andrea Carlson on ‘VORE’

January 1, 1970 - to
Q & A: Andrea Carlson on ‘VORE’

Andrea Carlson’s new series of mixed-media works, VORE, is on display through January 16, 2011, in the William and Anna Jane Schlossman Gallery on the Museum’s third floor. She was gracious enough to engage in a little Q&A with us about her exhibition and her responses are below.

If you’d like to hear more about the exhibition from Carlson herself, she will join us Thursday, October 28, at 7 p.m. for a discussion.

Andrea Carlson, "Cut & Run," 2009, mixed media on paper

Describe the development of the idea behind the VORE series (in a nutshell). Also, tell us a bit about your media and your process.

I’m very drawn to narrative. The paintings of VORE float symbols and narrative atop imagery from the collections of museums and zoos. I’ve been interested in the histories of collections, and the series combines that imagery with tag lines and film titles. Subverting the storytelling of museums with storytelling of cannibal exploitation films was a more direct way to use the cannibal metaphor that I have been using to describe prior works.

The works are drawn and painted with many different mediums on multiple sheets of heavy paper. I would suggest looking at the work closely to see how the different media is layered.

You mentioned that one of your main interests with this series was to establish narrative. Describe a few of your images and motifs for the readers to set the narrative. Also, does each piece act as a scene or did you intend a collage effect?

I’m more interested in commenting on existing narratives and the grand narrative/metanarrative than establishing my own. The work may seem like a scenes or collage-like to some viewers and I would only encourage those visual analogies.

How did you stumble onto the 70s-era cannibal exploitation movies that became a central influence for these works? Can you give us a list of your top choices to represent the genre?

I’ve been a fan of movies for a long time. The genre was always seem too disturbing to really study, but I decided to put my prejudices and sensitivities aside and take in these films some years ago. I’ve been working with cannibalism metaphorically and story-wise, so this genre lends itself generously to what I am thinking about. My top ten list is in the different titles of the work.

Although visually dense, these pieces pull in the viewer like a magnet. What aspects of VORE do you feel best account for that pull?

Animal magnetism maybe. I don’t really know. Some people may be pulled close to analyze the details.

VORE achieves sharp commentaries on cultural appropriation while also using artifacts of culture to its own ends. How does VORE participate in this process and how does it resist it?

The question reminds me of another question I often get and that is, “How can you critique museums harshly, yet display your work in collections and museums?” This is a very fair question. The best place to have a conversation on museums and collections is in Museums and collections. The conversation is relevant to the space. Similarly, I talk about assimilation and appropriation while appropriating. I couldn’t have that conversation if I wasn’t appropriating. I don’t know what appropriation-free art looks like.

Briefly describe your earlier work and how these pieces reflect and depart from your career.

The earlier works (which aren’t very old) addressed objects and story. My work has gotten larger and more confident, but is collecting symbols like barnacles.

To you, what role does the artist play in society? How does your work reflect that?

Roles, artists and society are all such abstract ideas. I don’t even think I could define the terms let alone relate them to each other.

While its images conjure a dark reality of exploitation, there are also notes of humor, irony, and optimism in this series. Overall, how do you judge its tone?

I want the work to give a one-two punch. If any or all of those elements and emotions are conjured I would be thrilled. I tend to think they are light and good humored, but they also have teeth.

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James Rosenquist Visits the Museum

January 1, 1970 - to
James Rosenquist Visits the Museum

Back on October 7, we debuted The North Dakota Mural amid much fanfare at the Museum. Though it was a festive atmosphere with hundreds in attendance, there was still an unfortunate piece missing: the artist who painted the mural, James Rosenquist, who was sidelined thanks to a nasty bout of pneumonia.

Luckily, Jim was able to make it to Fargo and to the Museum for a public event on Wednesday evening. He was witty, colorful and engaging, telling numerous stories about his long career, reminiscing about his childhood spent in North Dakota and Minnesota, and having a great time visiting both the public and members of his family who live nearby. The mural, which had already been formally introduced to our community, got a proper kickoff from the man responsible for painting it and it was a memorable evening all around.

Below are a few photos from the evening courtesy of our friend Dave Arntson at Milestones Photography.

Rosenquist had a brief discussion with Museum Director and CEO Colleen Sheehy.

James Rosenquist autographs a copy of his autobiography, "Painting Under Zero: Note on a Life in Art" for Museum Collections Director Mark Ryan.

James and Colleen under "The North Dakota Mural."

View Event

James Rosenquist Visits the Museum

January 1, 1970 - to
James Rosenquist Visits the Museum

Back on October 7, we debuted The North Dakota Mural amid much fanfare at the Museum. Though it was a festive atmosphere with hundreds in attendance, there was still an unfortunate piece missing: the artist who painted the mural, James Rosenquist, who was sidelined thanks to a nasty bout of pneumonia.

Luckily, Jim was able to make it to Fargo and to the Museum for a public event on Wednesday evening. He was witty, colorful and engaging, telling numerous stories about his long career, reminiscing about his childhood spent in North Dakota and Minnesota, and having a great time visiting both the public and members of his family who live nearby. The mural, which had already been formally introduced to our community, got a proper kickoff from the man responsible for painting it and it was a memorable evening all around.

Below are a few photos from the evening courtesy of our friend Dave Arntson at Milestones Photography.

Rosenquist had a brief discussion with Museum Director and CEO Colleen Sheehy.

James Rosenquist autographs a copy of his autobiography, "Painting Under Zero: Note on a Life in Art" for Museum Collections Director Mark Ryan.

James and Colleen under "The North Dakota Mural."

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Significant Boxes: Su Legatt

January 1, 1970 - to
Significant Boxes: Su Legatt

Last week, we installed a series called Significant Boxes by artist Su Legatt. The series is comprised of 12 small sculptural installations that utilize photography and narrative in a peculiar way. Each box (left) is identical on the outside, but by peering through the lens on the front and pressing a small button to light the inside (right), the viewer is able to see a photograph of a particular location. A small “drawer” pulled out from the front of each box presents the story of that place.

“Our memories and emotions will always be tied to certain locations,” Legatt said. “When we first peer through the lens and trigger the internal light, we see a seemingly insignificant warped landscape. After reading the text on the exterior, the viewer learns that it is actually a sanctuary  from the stressful days of life. These associations, although specific, lead each of us to our own relations and memories.”

Signficant Boxes is now on display in the Xcel and Serkland Law Galleries on the second floor of the Museum. Legatt received a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Art from MSUM and a Masters in Fine Art from Utah State University. She has taught classes at MSUM and USU as well as community workshops around the country. She currently teaches photography at Lake Superior College in Duluth, Minn., and leads workshops for all ages in the tri-state area.

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Significant Boxes: Su Legatt

January 1, 1970 - to
Significant Boxes: Su Legatt

Last week, we installed a series called Significant Boxes by artist Su Legatt. The series is comprised of 12 small sculptural installations that utilize photography and narrative in a peculiar way. Each box (left) is identical on the outside, but by peering through the lens on the front and pressing a small button to light the inside (right), the viewer is able to see a photograph of a particular location. A small “drawer” pulled out from the front of each box presents the story of that place.

“Our memories and emotions will always be tied to certain locations,” Legatt said. “When we first peer through the lens and trigger the internal light, we see a seemingly insignificant warped landscape. After reading the text on the exterior, the viewer learns that it is actually a sanctuary  from the stressful days of life. These associations, although specific, lead each of us to our own relations and memories.”

Signficant Boxes is now on display in the Xcel and Serkland Law Galleries on the second floor of the Museum. Legatt received a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Art from MSUM and a Masters in Fine Art from Utah State University. She has taught classes at MSUM and USU as well as community workshops around the country. She currently teaches photography at Lake Superior College in Duluth, Minn., and leads workshops for all ages in the tri-state area.

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The Mural is Unveiled!

January 1, 1970 - to
The Mural is Unveiled!

(This is the third in a series on the installation of The North Dakota Mural. You can view part 1 here and part 2 here.)

Last Thursday, after a long journey, we held the unveiling of the The North Dakota Mural by James Rosenquist. It was a spectacular morning; there was a wonderful turnout and a buzz filled the museum all day long.

Our friends Britta and Dave at Milestones Photography shot the event for us and provided the following images; you can view plenty more here.

We thank everyone who came to the museum to help us introduce this landmark work of art. The reactions we received from those in attendance were overwhelmingly positive and we’re thrilled to house this important addition to our community. If you haven’t seen it yet, be sure to stop by soon and tell us what you think!

The NDSU Gold Star Marching Band provided plenty of pomp.

PAM Board Chair Salley McCravey welcomed everyone to the festivities.

Fargo Mayor Dennis Walaker proclaimed October 7, 2010, James Rosenquist Day in Fargo.

PAM Director and CEO Colleen Sheehy shared the story of the mural's arrival at the museum.

"The North Dakota Mural" in its first public moments.

View Event

The Mural is Unveiled!

January 1, 1970 - to
The Mural is Unveiled!

(This is the third in a series on the installation of The North Dakota Mural. You can view part 1 here and part 2 here.)

Last Thursday, after a long journey, we held the unveiling of the The North Dakota Mural by James Rosenquist. It was a spectacular morning; there was a wonderful turnout and a buzz filled the museum all day long.

Our friends Britta and Dave at Milestones Photography shot the event for us and provided the following images; you can view plenty more here.

We thank everyone who came to the museum to help us introduce this landmark work of art. The reactions we received from those in attendance were overwhelmingly positive and we’re thrilled to house this important addition to our community. If you haven’t seen it yet, be sure to stop by soon and tell us what you think!

The NDSU Gold Star Marching Band provided plenty of pomp.

PAM Board Chair Salley McCravey welcomed everyone to the festivities.

Fargo Mayor Dennis Walaker proclaimed October 7, 2010, James Rosenquist Day in Fargo.

PAM Director and CEO Colleen Sheehy shared the story of the mural's arrival at the museum.

"The North Dakota Mural" in its first public moments.

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The North Dakota Mural.

January 1, 1970 - to
The North Dakota Mural.

Plains Art Museum is proud to present The North Dakota Mural by James Rosenquist:

Be sure to see it in person when you can; a photo doesn’t do it justice.

James Rosenquist, The North Dakota Mural, 2010, oil on canvas, 13 x 24 ft., Gift of an Anonymous Donor in honor of Dr. Jovan Brkić, a world-renowned scholar of philosophy, gentleman, and friend; and made possible by an in-kind creative gift by James Rosenquist, © James Rosenquist.

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