New video!

In which we explore a few of Minnesota’s many fantastic art offerings. Let’s take a trip through the Twin Cities!

Featuring the Minneapolis Institute of Art, Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Soo Visual Art Center, Soap Factory, Law Warschaw Gallery at Macalester College, Burnet Gallery at Le Meridien Hotel, and Walker Art Center.


Kate Casanova, Untitled (with Hermit Crabs), 2011

New comic in progress, called “Houses of the Holy.”

As slow as it’s ever been, though. Convention/printing season is fucking frantic. Michael asks, “So what are you up to after this 9-hour shift?” And it’s always the same answer, so I say to him again, like a cow-going-down-the-slaughter-chute ritual, “Slogging on through a mountain of things to do.”
Opening: Mappelthorpe at Weinstein Gallery

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Artwork by Nate Burbeck


‘Located’: Nate Burbeck & Aaron Dysart

Landscapes are not typically associated with the contemporary art world. But in Soo Visual Arts Center’s newest exhibition, two Minneapolis-based artists offer modern takes on the genre, exploring the social undercurrents of today’s natural landscapes. Nate Burbeck’s panoramic paintings illustrate various expanses, from suburban back yards to middle-of-nowhere rural plateaus, each infused with a sense of isolation. Aaron Dysart’s sculptural works highlight natural formations — a cliff’s rocky outcrop, a branch’s delicate twists and turns — coating them in a luminous, hyper-realistic finish. The works are equally nostalgic and synthetic. “Located” opens in conjunction with “Tenantless Pause,” a dual show byTheresa Anderson and Jennifer Nevitt of abstract sculptural installations and mixed-media paintings. (Free opening reception 6-9 p.m. Sat. Ends July 19. Soo Visual Arts Center, 2638 Lyndale Av. S., Mpls. 612-871-2263. Jahna Peloquin
Art & Vision: More than “Enough”

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Joe Sinness’ newest work, a triumphant triptych titled “Shining Indiscretions,”  is more than “Enough” at Soo Visual Art Center.

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“Shining Indiscretions (1)” by Joe Sinness

Sometimes when writing I notice my opinions come from one of several distinct places. They can be merged and indistinguishable, but occasionally they come through directly as the voice of an art enthusiast, a curator, or an artist. When I first walked into Enough at SooVac, my immediate thought was solely the latter, thinking to myself, “Fuck…I would be sooo pissed if I was exhibiting next to THAT!”  The That in question is a trio of paintings centrally located in the gallery by Joe Sinness titled “Shining Indiscretions” (1,2 and 3). Why would I be upset to be showing next to them? Because although it doesn’t come up often, artist are as competitive as everyone else, and I imagined my work being completely ignored when displayed next to that of Sinness. His trio of paintings are the kind of work that immediately makes an artist jealous, then a whole mess of other mixed feelings — anxiety, a bit competitive (in a good way) and self-conscious, all the while entirely caught up in the joy of viewing such incredible drawings.

This is not to say that I was not intrigued by the other work in the show, and no disrespect is meant to the other two artists in Enough (Joseph Rizzo and Joel Starkey – looks like SooVAC is having a bit of a “J” phase), or to the other works by Joe Sinness. But there is very little doubt that “Shining Indiscretions” separate themselves from the other work in the show. There is something special about the series, a kind of understated pull that quickly becomes awe once the viewer investigates the technical ability displayed. Very few artists choose to focus on still-life painting, and even less have the ability to photorealistically render them, especially in the colored pencil medium. Realizing that these were the most recent of Joe Sinness’ works in the show and that they could very well be a new direction for him, I contacted the artist and learned the story behind some of the most powerful work by a Twin Cities artist this year.

The Work

Visually the three pieces are immediately vibrant and striking. They are quiet, but not modest, portraying three ambiguously amorphic shapes formed with some kind of reflective gold material. The eye follows not just the outline of the shapes, attempting to make meaning of them, but follows soft curves and foil folds over bits of sporadic color. When asked to explain what it is that is being portrayed in “Shining Indiscretions,” Sinness explains of his latest pieces, “During this period, I’d been thinking (I’ll admit a bit comically) about the idea of queer spirits and the forms that they would take.  I experimented with forms and materials that were both fabulous and mercurial — and the gold lamé was an obvious match.” This kind of transfiguration of a famous (often queer-culture based) source is not unusual in his work. His other works in Enough portray screen and stage stars, queer icons, and online erotica submitters, combining them with antique or thrift store items, flowers and jewels to create carefully constructed tableaus. There are several differences between these earlier works and his triptych, however, that are almost immediately visible.

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Some of the works shown in Fluctuating Capacity, a show by Adam Hamilton, one of MCAD’s MFA Candidates. Here be time machines, rubber duckies, and a love lost through the multiverse. Show Runs February 9 - March 23 in the Soo Visual Arts Center,  2638 Lyndale Ave. S Minneapolis. 

More about the show :

Adam Hamilton’s personal site :


This is a Bus Shelter Advertisement for my last exhibition, which was at SooVAC gallery in Minneapolis, MN last December/January.  In a couple of days I’ll be heading to Gyumri, Armenia to participate in their 2012 Biennale of Contemporary Art.  Stay tuned for exciting updates …

Toady’s Pick: A Tribute to Suzy Greenberg at the SooVAC

Artist and curator Suzy Greenberg, founder of the Soo Visual Arts Center, died suddenly of natural causes on August 16 at the age of 44. Mayor Rybak has declared September 10 Suzy Greenberg Day in the City of Minneapolis; the local arts community will be gathering at the SooVAC (and, later, the CC Club) to remember Greenberg and celebrate her life. A selection of Greenberg’s work will be on display.

 -Jay Gabler