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Arts Briefs, Oct. 7

In 2017, painter and fabric artist Mary Therese and photographer Monika Lawrence traveled to Kenya. A collaboration of their work will be on display beginning Oct. 12 at the Watermark Art Center. Submitted Photo1 / 2
Watermark Art Center hosts classes for adults and children, as well as "Art Family Style," an opportunity for all ages to work on art projects together. Submitted photo. 2 / 2

Watermark features Kenyan exhibit

BEMIDJI—An opening reception will be held from 5-7 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 12 at the Watermark Art Center for "Spirit of Ukambani," a mixed-media exhibit depicting wildlife and landscapes from the Ukambani region of southern Kenya. The event will include a presentation at 6 p.m.

In 2017, painter and fabric artist Mary Therese and photographer Monika Lawrence traveled to Kenya. This collaboration of work is an outcome of that journey, reflecting on the memories the artists shared from their time experiencing this rich culture.

"This exhibit celebrates the richness of culture with the perspective of multiple mediums," said Watermark Executive Director Lori Forshee-Donnay. "We are looking forward to highlighting these talented women and hearing about the journey that inspired this body of work."

Mary Therese, a painter/surface designer and art and yoga teacher, has lived on Fern Lake in Bemidji for over 25 years. Originally from Pennsylvania, she attended Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, receiving degrees in Painting and Printmaking, and Art Education. As a fabric artist, Mary Therese paints on silk and other fibers, using the ancient technique of batik, a method of layering dyes and applying hot bee's wax as a resist. She creates wearable art, hangings, paraments, window dressings and flags. In 2017, Mary Therese was awarded an artist fellowship grant by Region 2 Arts Council.

Growing up in Germany, Monika Lawrence began her career as a foreign language teacher, later shifting to social work. She started studying photography in the mid-nineties at the prestigious photography school Am Schiffbauerdamm and the School of Photography and Design Ostkreuz, both in Berlin. In 2007, she moved to Bemidji, where she lives with her husband Mark. Monika now teaches photography and photojournalism at Bemidji State University and works as a freelance photojournalist for Minnesota Public Radio, all while pursuing her own exhibition work in the U.S. and overseas.

TEDxBemidji announces student speakers, entertainers

BEMIDJI—Student speakers and entertainers have been announced for the TEDxBemidji event at the Chief Theater.

Red Lake Middle School students Angelo Lajeunesse and Reina Strong will talk about healing through music and art. Young entertainers Natalie and Sawyer Corcoran and accompanist Jeff Sawyer will be the musical guests. Sawyer Corcoran was recently awarded first place in the junior division at the Minnesota Old Time Fiddle Contest.

TEDxBemidji will take place from 1-5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 18. The independently organized event, licensed by TED, will feature local voices and TED videos under the theme of "Momentum."

Launched in 2009, TEDx is a program of locally organized events that bring the community together to share a TED-like experience. Some of the best talks from TEDx events have gone on to be featured on and garnered millions of views from audiences across the globe.

Limited TEDxBemidji tickets are available at and are priced between $35 and $99.

For more information about TEDxBemidji, please visit OR

Watermark to hold classes for adults and children

BEMIDJI—Watermark Art Center has scheduled several art classes in the coming weeks.

Second Saturday Kids Art will be held from 1-2:30 p.m. on Oct. 13. For this month's project, children age 6 and older will use chalk pastels to create a drawing of pumpkins in a pumpkin patch. Cost is $15 per person. Parents can drop their kids off and are not required to stay.

On Oct. 20-21, weaving instructor Kristin Majkrzak will lead "Introduction to Tapestry Weaving," a two-day, hands-on workshop where participants create a small wall hanging using basic weaving techniques. The class runs 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. both days. Participants must be present for the whole class. This workshop is geared for adults, but teenagers are welcome. Cost is $120 plus materials fee. There will be an advanced, second session of this workshop on Nov. 17-18 titled "Tapestry Weaving: Beyond the Basics."

Art Family Style is a monthly opportunity for families to participate in an art project together for $5 per family. The next event, held on Friday, Oct. 26, will be pumpkin painting. This is a drop-in style class; families can come by Watermark any time between 5-6:30 p.m. to work on their pumpkins; no pre-registration required.

Goodnight Art is a new monthly program for young children. Children ages 3-8 come to Watermark in their pajamas to enjoy a bedtime story, followed by a related art project. Cost is $8 per family. This month's event will be held from 7-8 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 5.

Registration for each of these classes, along with further details, can be found at Most classes also include price discounts for members. Watermark Art Center is a member-supported nonprofit dedicated to encouraging the growth and development of art. The art center is located at 505 Bemidji Ave N.

Gallery North to host Creative Cafe

BEMIDJI—Gallery North's Creative Cafe event will be held from 4-6 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 9. Three artists will lead a hands-on adventure into the arts. Creative Café activities are sponsored by Gallery North and Paul Bunyan Communications.

Marion Caroline Reil will be demonstrating a watercolor technique called "Rock 'n' Roll," Charles Alberti will teach "Basic Origami" and Joan Dreyer will teach "Stitches to create a Sampler." Classes are geared to ages 13 and up. Cost is $5 per activity; no pre-registration is required.

Gallery North, located at 310 4th St. NW, is a non-profit cooperative art gallery that has been displaying and selling original art and fine crafts by area artists since 1989. Additional information is on the gallery's website at

Watermark receives National Endowment grant

BEMIDJI—The National Endowment for the Arts has awarded Watermark Art Center a $10,000 grant to support the art center's exhibitions and educational programming. This grant was awarded through NEA's Challenge America program, which supports small and mid-sized organizations that bring arts access to underserved populations.

"The National Endowment for the Arts is committed to ensuring all Americans have access to the arts, whether they are in a small or large, rural or urban area," said NEA Acting Chairman Mary Anne Carter. "We are proud to support organizations such as Watermark Art Center that are providing opportunities for more people to experience and engage in the arts in their communities."

"We are thrilled that the NEA recognized Watermark's efforts to provide access to quality art programming in North Central Minnesota," said Watermark Executive Director Lori Forshee-Donnay. "They understand the importance of professional arts programming and projects and recognize the potential of the arts in community development. We serve some of the counties that have the lowest per capita income in the state, and believe our role is to help make the arts as accessible as possible."

5th annual Ooh La La for the Arts on Oct. 7

BEMIDJI—The Bemidji Area Arts Endowment (BAAE) will hold its 5th annual Ooh La La for the Arts fundraiser from 5 to 8 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 7, at the Bemidji Town and Country Club.

This year's theme is "Tug, Fish, Fly and Dive for the Arts," a release said. The event will feature four adventure packages as a part of the silent auction to benefit the arts in and around Bemidji:

• Tug Boat Cruise on Lake Bemidji with captain Lloyd Holy

• Scenic Flight around the Bemidji area with pilot Marsh Muirhead

• Muskie Fishing Trip with professional fishing guide Brian Truax

• Scuba Lesson from The Dive Shop in Bemidji

The silent auction also will include several works of art, handmade and donated by local and area artists, including pottery, jewelry, paintings and more. Eve Sumsky will weave a basket during the event. The basket will be among the silent auction items. Cellists from Bemidji High School will provide a live music performance throughout the evening, organizers said.

One dollar of each beverage purchased at the open bar will benefit BAAE fundraising efforts for the arts. Evening attire is black & white fancy, or funky dress.

Tickets for the event can be purchased online by visiting the Northwest Minnesota Foundation website at or in person from Sue Snyder at Remax. Tickets will also be available for purchase at the door the night of the event. Tickets are $60 per person. Funds raised from ticket sales and the silent auction will go to the endowment and enable BAAE to continue to provide grants to the arts in our community, the release said.

The BAAE's mission is to "strengthen the long-term financial viability of the Bemidji area arts community," according to the release. Through the years, BAAE has provided substantial funding to local organizations such as the Bemidji Community Theater, Paul Bunyan Playhouse, Boys & Girls Club of the Bemidji Area, Bemidji Symphony Orchestra, Clear Waters Life Center in Clearbook, Mask and Rose Theater, Watermark Art Center, Headwaters School for the Arts, and others.

BSU alumnus Ferreri opens gallery schedule

BEMIDJI—Bemidji State University's Talley Gallery opens its 2018-19 exhibition calendar with "The Internal Affairs of Mr. Invincible," a collection of prints from Bemidji State alumnus Lou Ferreri.

The exhibition, open now through Oct. 17, features a selection of 25 prints from a series of hundreds of drawings — done on editorial pages of the New York Times — produced by Ferreri as part of the "Mr. Invincible" collection between 2010—2017.

Ferreri will visit the gallery to deliver an artist's talk from 1-2 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 4.

"Drawing on the surface of ever-changing newspaper headlines underscores the idea that, beneath the surface of our lives, the news resides as perpetual background noise," Ferreri said. "This subtext infiltrates our consciousness. My drawings elaborate on ordinary and extraordinary phenomena, physical preoccupations, anxieties and observations regarding the details of everyday living."

The project has been supported by an Artist Initiative Grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board. He has received two grants from the arts board during his career, as well as a McKnight Foundation fellowship and a Bush Foundation Artist in Education grant.

Prints from Ferreri's collections have been included in BSU's Lillie M. Kleven Print Collection, the Minnesota Historical Society and the Library of Congress.

In addition to his drawing work, the St. Paul resident wrote and illustrated the poetry book "Ostrich Logic" and wrote a memoir entitled "So Long, Betty and Veronica."

Bemidji State's presentation of "The Internal Affairs of Mr. Invincible" is made possible by funding from the university's Student Activity Fee Allocation Committee.

Rennan to perform concert Oct. 14 in Fosston

FOSSTON—Arna Rennan will perform a concert at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 14 at the Fosston Library Arts Theater.

Rennan performs joyful dance music, the sound of ballads from hundreds of years ago, and the stories of trolls, giants and the underground world in nature.

Featuring ballads from the Middle Ages, Rennan sets the scene by telling the story of the song first.

The concert is free and open to all ages. A time for refreshments and a chance to meet the artist will follow the concert.