I took the day to visit a few galleries in the Lyn-Lake neighborhood of Minneapolis. I had read a review of the Not About Bombs exhibition at Intermedia Arts a few days ago, and found the scope of the exhibit intriguing. The collection displays contemporary pieces by Iraqi woman with the intent to question and explore the identity perceived by the outside world and the inner reflections of the women themselves. The works challenge the contrived representation of Iraqi women by the Western media and expose truths of life in a war zone that we may not always consider.
Each of the 5 woman took a different, personal approach, representing their own personal struggle or experience living in Iraq today. Tamara Abdul Hadi portrayed the optimism of the youth through candid photos of female students at their high school graduation ceremony. In another set of photographs, we see the line of widows waiting for the financial aid that often barely supports their children and extended family members. After 9 years of war, there are an estimated 1 million widows in Iraq. On a comment board in the gallery, one visitor asked why s/he had never thought about the widows on that side of the war. It seems so obvious, but upon reading this comment, I realized I had never thought about them either.
Not About Bombs runs through March 3, 2012, with works by Sundus Abdul Hadi, Tamara Abdul Hadi, Julie Adnan, Dena Al-Adeeb, and Sama Alshaibi. On Friday, March, 2, 7:00-9:00p, curator Tricia Khutoretsky will monitor a Panel Discussion with three of the artists, Tamara Abdul Hadi, Dena Al-Adeeb, and Sundus Abdul Hadi, with the opportunity for an open Q&A session afterward.
After a long coffee break with my good friend, Eddie, he and I walked over to the Highpoint Center for Printmaking. Moving from its former studio space across from Bob's Java Hut on Lyndale Avenue, the Highpoint has gained substantial square footage to support its growing number of activities. The Highpoint recently held a juried competition for printmakers nationwide. The Stand Out Prints exhibition opens tomorrow evening with a reception from 6:30-9:00p. I got a sneak-peak today, and I highly recommend it, especially since the pieces are for purchase. The works vary widely in style and production method, but the quality is top notch in all. The competition received nearly 800 entries from 42 states, of which the jurors, Susan Inglett and Mark Pascale, selected 57 prints by 51 artists, representing 26 states. Of this lot, 10 Minnesotans make a strong showing, accounting for my personal favorite piece by Minnesota native, Jeremy Lund.
The Highpoint Center for Printmaking offers a number of opportunities for established artists and the curious alike. Each second Tuesday, the TWOxTUE events invite the public in for free talks, demonstrations, live music, and opportunities to speak with artists. Each event is different and inevitably a good time.
After you have fueled your creative side, stop in and tell us about it this weekend. As you may know, this Sunday will mark the end of our annual Valentine's Sale!
Caroline Engel for Danish Teak Classics