Tuesday, July 3, 2018

14th Annual Juried Exhibit at the Edge Center Gallery in Bigfork

This will be the fourteenth time that the Edge Center Gallery in Bigfork has invited visual artists to submit their work for judging by a juror. Peter Spooner, this year's juror, is an independent educator, art appraiser, and curator. Living in Duluth, he teaches studio art, art history, and first-year seminar courses at The College of St. Scholastica, Lake Superior College, and the University of Minnesota-Duluth. This year’s juried show will be on display in the Edge Gallery from July 5th to July 28th. The awards reception will take place on July 6th from 5 to 7 pm and will allow visitors to meet some of the artists and to vote on the People's Choice Award, which will be awarded later on during the reception. Admission to the gallery and reception is free. The Edge Center Gallery is next to the Bigfork School and is open from 10 am to 4 pm on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays.


Spooner has served as a grant review panelist for numerous institutions, lectured at universities and museums in the U.S.Japan and Canada, and has juried many exhibitions locally and regionally. His current and past community involvement includes volunteer service for the Duluth Public Arts Commission, Duluth Public Library, Duluth DFL, The Artists Fund, Chester Bowl Improvement Club, and Arrowhead Regional Arts Council.

Samples of Exhibits

This year’s show includes a wonderful selection of artistic offerings in many different media and styles from 19 artists. This blog will not provide a photo of each artwork but will show a selection of them to give an overall sense of the exhibit. The artists selected this year are: Sarita Alami (photo), Thomas Anderson (colored pencil),  Rein Boyd (collage), Susan Clandon (acrylic), Doug DeWitt (multimedia), David Dobbs (oil on canvas),  Will Dinski (book), Reid Harer (photo),  Ashley Hise (ceramic), Mary Jasper (photo), Jon Offutt (blown glass), Cathryn Peters (fiber/basketry), David Richter (colored pencil), Scott Rollenhagen (photo), Stephanie Stevens (watercolor), Christine Tierney (pastel), Yuta Uchida (oil on canvas),  Michael Weatherly (multi-plate linoleum cut), and Coralyn Worth (charcoal).

Reception Details and Award Sponsors

The awards ceremony on the evening of the opening reception starts at 6:15 pm. A special thanks to the sponsors of the awards: Kocian's Family Market has sponsored the Best of Show award, Arvig Communications and First State Bank of Bigfork have sponsored two Awards of Excellence, and Bigfork Valley Hospital has sponsored the audience-selected People’s Choice Award. This is always a treat for the visitors. It gives them a chance to see how their opinions compare to the juror's opinion. And a general thank you to all who have supported and continue to support The Edge Center here in Bigfork without which we would simply not exist.

    Kocians Family Market

   arvig Communications

   First State Bank of Bigfork

   Bigfork Valley Hospital

Friday, June 29, 2018

“Madagascar” Comes to Bigfork

“DreamWorks Madagascar—A Musical Adventure” is coming to Bigfork's Edge Center for the Arts this July. Join us to follow the adventures of Alex the Lion, Marty the Zebra, Melman the Giraffe, and Gloria the Hippo as they make their escape from New York’s Central Park Zoo to explore the world. With an imaginative set and colorful costumes, “Madagascar: A Musical Adventure” is a high-energy, dance-filled musical celebration perfect for a family outing. Performances will be on stage at the Edge Center on Friday through Sunday, July 13 through 15Friday and Saturday at 7:00 p.m., and Sunday at 2:00 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for children.

                                             Photo by Steve Fischer for Stages Theatre Company

The musical presented in Bigfork is produced by the Stages Theatre Company of Hopkins and is aimed at the hearts and minds of audiences of all ages. “Move it, Move it with us this summer as Alex the Lion, Marty the Zebra, Melman the Giraffe, Gloria the Hippo and, of course, uproariously plotting penguins enter our stage in the musical adventure of Madagascar. Not content to live in blissful captivity, Marty lets his curiosity take over as he escapes to explore the world. His friends and some unusual penguins will not be left behind as they embark on an unforgettable voyage.”

                                                 Photo By Sandy Boren-Barrett for Stages Theatre Company

Every summer Stages Theatre Company brings a production with their special brand of fun and laughter to Bigfork.  They not only bring the cast and supporting staff, they also bring much of the sets they use on-stage at their theatre in Hopkins. The effort is extraordinary. The result is that Bigfork area audiences get to see a world-class creation and the young cast and crew get to experience what is like to be “on the road” for a few days. It is a great experience for both sides and always leaves a lasting impression on everyone involved.
Photo by Steve Fischer for Stages Theatre Company

Stages Theatre Company’s Artistic Director Sandy Boren-Barrett, who is also the Director of this play, says, “Everybody has a friend, that one best friend that makes you do things (good or bad), or try things that you might not be brave enough to try without them convincing you that you can do it.  That is Alex and Marty – they are there for each other, they laugh with each other, take risks for each other, and save each other when they need to be saved.  This is a story about wanting more, and finding that you actually had all you needed or wanted all along, you just needed a ‘best friend’ to remind you of that.  Madagascar is truly a musical ADVENTURE, it has fun, lively musical numbers that will keep your toes tapping and you dancing out the door.  We can’t wait to share it with you.” 
Photo by Steve Fischer for Stages Theatre Company

“I am grateful for the amazing opportunity that our summer tour to Bigfork provides, for our young actors, their families, and for the community that we at Stages Theatre Company have come to value and love.  We can’t wait to ‘Move It Move it’ with you all in this once in a lifetime production.

                                                   Photo by Steve Fischer for Stages Theatre Company

This play is based on the DreamWorks Animation motion picture.  Book by Kevin Del Aguila. Original music and lyrics are by George Noriega and Joel Someillan.

                                                Photo By Sandy Boren-Barrett for Stages Theatre Company

Stages Theatre Company (STC) was founded in 1984 and since then has grown to become one of the largest professional theatres for young audiences in the country. STC engages young artists with themes relevant to their lives and produces work which features young people in significant and meaningful roles. It annually serves more than 130,000 young people and their families. STC has been producing these young people’s productions in Bigfork for a number of years and the productions have become part of a summer entertainment tradition at the Edge Theatre.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui at the Edge Center in Bigfork

The EdgeWild Players in Bigfork open the stage season with a comedy that includes gangsters joking, dancing, and singing. Fake wooden Tommy guns, scared white faces, and the witty, savage satire heighten the entertainment of this period comedy by German playwright Bertolt Brecht titled “The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui.” It is a satirical look at the rise of a mythical, small-time thug in 1930s Chicago who is trying to take over the cauliflower racket by selling "protection" to small groceries. Sound interesting? That’s the magic of a great satirist like Brecht. His characters are so ridiculous that they can transport laughing audiences to a funny new reality. Place: The Edge Center Theatre, Bigfork. Date and time: June 21 through 23 at 7 p.m. and June 24 at 2 p.m. Price: $15 for adults, $5 for children.

The play was written in 1941 by the great modern playwright Bertolt Brecht. Director Patricia Feld is infusing it with the lively music that Brecht and Kurt Weill wrote for many of their classic plays. Among the songs is the familiar “Mack the Knife.”

This play is also an allegory Hitler’s rise to power and the characters and events have direct parallels in history to Adolf Hitler’s henchmen. Brecht turns der F├╝hrer into vulgar American thug Arturo Ui, a small-time New York hoodlum who comes to Chicago with his gang to “sell protection” using intimidation, threats, arson, and murder. But, unlike the gangster movies of the 1920s and 1930s, this show is done for maximum laughs. The broad, vaudeville acting style, the between-the-scenes musical numbers, and the elaborate sets, costumes, and stage antics keeps things lively and funny.

Patricia Feld, the Artistic Director for the Edge and director of this play says, “Our large cast has a ball with the mugging and the overly physical acting style.  The complex sets and 1930’s costumes will help to create an impressive and entertaining performance.”

The Edgewild Players have received a grant from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council to rent lovely, historically accurate costumes, and the students of Bigfork School are creating props and helping to build the sets.

This activity is made possible in part by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council, thanks to appropriations from the Minnesota State Legislature's general and arts and cultural heritage funds.

The Fun starts Thursday June 21 and runs through Sunday June 24. The times and prices are June 21 through 23 at 7 p.m. and June 24 at 2 p.m. Price: $15 for adults, $5 for children. Some come and see something you really might not expect...but then that's what the Edge is all about; seeing the unexpected. It will be a great escape and you'll get lots of laughs, music and entertaining.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

You Never Were Alone Gallery Art Exhibit in Bigfork

The June exhibit at the Edge Center in Bigfork brings a view of the world through the eyes and life’s experiences of Adam Swanson. With many visits to Antarctica, this artist can relate to environments unfamiliar to the average person, and gives us a different perspective on the world we share. As Adam describes this unique style “…my work addresses the future, fragility of the human presence, perseverance of nature and underlying threads of danger woven through societies". We hope that this exhibit titled, “You Never Were Alone” will leave a lasting impression that viewers can take with them. Come and see for yourself by visiting the  Bigfork Art Gallery that is attached to the Bigfork School from May 31 through June 30 during the regular hours of the gallery which are
Thursdays through Saturdays 10AM to 4PM each day.  There is no charge to see the exhibits.

The opening for Adam's exhibit (see photos at the end of this blog) was on June first with a nice turnout and we got a chance to visit with the artist. He shared a lot of time with the guests and talked about many of his projects including the "chalking" of Elephant Rock near Duluth, which he did one year that was a considerably larger effort than what was at the Edge. Adam says of that project, "The Elephant Rock project was an art happening in the Lincoln Park neighborhood in west Duluth.  I drew with sidewalk chalk and charcoal...the day after I made the drawing the Lincoln Park community had a small festival and community gathering around the rock. Folks came around and climbed on the rock, took photos and shared stories about the park's influence in their lives.  One thing I remember about the day was when a women, 96 years old shared her memories as a child climbing around on the same rock." Above photo by Don King."  

 “You Never Were Alone” gives the visitor a chance to view a style of art, in Adam’s words showing that, “… There is a deep relationship between art and science. The more we learn about our surroundings, where we came from and who we are, the more likely we will thrive in a universe of endless possibilities.

Also from the artist's web site, " I am primarily a painter, though I have a strong interest in photography and film. I paint largely from photographs and videos I have taken. 
See more at:  https://www.adamswanson.com/about-the-artist/

That is a wonderful quality an artist, such as Adam can bring to art.  Life's experiences gives all of us a special "perspective" that few of us can put into or on to the arts. Some do it through paintings, some through sculpture, and some through performing arts.  But they all can "teach" us something about the world we live in and experiences we live. Here is that one artist has to say about the world through art. One that needs to be experienced to appreciate. 

What better time is there than see this beautiful exhibition than during the opening reception and get a chance to meet the artist about it? Why not come on June 1st at 5PM to 7PM? Refreshments will be served. 

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

What Do Vibrant Colors, Vivid Imaginations, Young Enthusiasm, and a Wild Variety Have In Common?

There is one of the Bigfork Art Expositions that is a family favorite and very unique every season. It is the annual student art exposition that opens the gallery season each year and is, in many ways, very enjoyable.  No matter what else follows it, the art that young minds present at the Edge Center Art Gallery in Bigfork will open viewers imaginations with its young and fresh approach. The show always feature lots of colors and variety, and this year the art presented will be the first under the direction of our new art teacher: Alexa Reichensperger.  It is in the art...come and see for yourself. To see this exhibition, visit the Bigfork Art Gallery that is attached to the Bigfork School from April 26th through May 26th during the regular hours of the gallery which are Thursdays through Saturdays 10AM to 4PM each day.  There is no charge to see the exhibits.

For Alexa this is her first teaching assignment. With her BA in media communications she is well versed in Digital art, Videography, photography and graphic design. And with an MS in education, she is an excellent art teacher for the Bigfork school.  She says, "I have lived in four different states in the past 10 years, but MN is home. I enjoy outside, coaching basketball, and to create -- especially taking something old and making it into something new. I feel right at home here in the Bigfork/Marcel area. I love being nestled in the trees and surrounded by lakes."  So come and see what our new art teacher brings to the area in terms of inspiring the art in our students. Below is an example of some of the results.