There's something so wonderfully satisfying about low-tech animation, especially when it's surrounded by a world filled with high-tech glitz and showy special effects.
Eric Power's videos are just that - simple, paper cut animations that create a whole world of their own, and give the accompanying music an even greater sense of innocence and wonder.
This is not the first time I've posted an Eric Power animated video - he's created many popular videos for local musician Jeremy Messersmith, including Tattooine, Organ Donor and A Boy, A Girl and A Graveyard. Here's a video Power animated for Cloud Cult, Running With The Wolves.
Posted at 9:23 AM on January 12, 2011
by Marianne Combs
Filed under: News and reviews
Lots of news to peruse this morning - enjoy!
All My Relations Gallery, showcase for Native art, to reopen on Franklin Avenue
All My Relations Arts (AMR) opens the doors of its new gallery space on January 21 after a fast-paced 11 months of the American Indian community pulling together to make it happen. The opening exhibition, called Frank Big Bear Paintings: From the Rez to the Hood to the Lake, marks the start for AMR after it left Ancient Traders Gallery (run by Great Neighborhoods) in 2009.
- Sheila Regan, TC Daily Planet
Depth of field: MN musicians salute photographer Ann Marsden
A parade of Minnesota musicians - plus wordsmith Kevin Kling - took to the stage Monday night at the packed Dakota to honor photographer-to-the-local-stars Ann Marsden.
- Jon Bream, Star Tribune
Somerville's stories ponder the absurdity of life
Amid a variety of absurdities both silly and serious, the characters in this offbeat short-story collection wonder what it all means.
- Kim Hedges, Star Tribune
Minnesotan edits award-winning reference book
"Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion," edited by Minnesotan Joanne B. Eicher, has won the 2011 Dartmouth Medal.
- Mary Ann Grossman, Pioneer Press
Wanted: Individual to take over arts group
Some of the best known arts groups in the Twin Cities face life without their longtime leaders. It's a prospect they find challenging and scary.
- GRAYDON ROYCE, Star Tribune
A good time for zombies, a bad time for witches
- Max Sparber, MinnPost.com
Funereal tattoos, ghoulish British history, and European puppets
- Max Sparber, MinnPost.com
Derek Cianfrance's "Blue Valentine" is intense but rewarding
After waiting months to get its Twin Cities release, Blue Valentine finally opens this Friday at a few local theaters (Lagoon, Eden Prairie, Showplace Icon, Southdale) and you should rush to one of these theaters to see it...unless you've recently had a bad breakup.
Jim Brunzell III, TC Daily Planet
Wang wows audience, but may not have moved them
Yuja Wang wants to knock your socks off. Or at least that's the way it seems. The program that the 23-year-old pianist chose for Tuesday night's Schubert Club recital appeared drawn up for maximum sock knocking, with plenty of keyboard-busting fireworks and eye-popping displays of digital athleticism.
- Rob Hubbard, Pioneer PRess
Beatles expert Jim Berkenstadt is a rock 'n' roll detective
The band hired him to piece together their story
- Will McClain, City Pages
M.anifest and Justin Schell reflect on their trip to Ghana and forthcoming documentaryThe pair have returned refreshed with a more focused plan for Schell's forthcoming documentary, We Rock Long Distance (which will also feature Maria Isa and Tou SaiKo Lee).
- Rebecca McDonald, City Pages
Mamet's Glengarry Glen Ross at Minneapolis Theatre Garage
Actors thrive in David Mamet's legendary tale
- Ed Huyck, City Pages
Through the centuries actors, directors, and producers have felt the urge to fiddle with the Bard, often to their detriment.
- Ed Huyck, City Pages
No joke! Brave New Workshop seeks to buy Hennepin Stages
If Minneapolis City Council approves deal, the workshop would open a second space in theater that once hosted "Tony n' Tina's Wedding."
- Graydon Royce, Star Tribune
Skewed Visions rally support for Belarus Free Theatre
Local theater artists from Skewed Visions have initiated a national series of readings and performances to show solidarity with the Belarus Free Theatre, a group who has been in hiding following massive government crackdowns in the Republic of Belarus.
- Sheila Regan, City Pages
Theatre Terra Firma debuts 'Wash My Sin Away'Tackling a play about the Yugoslavian civil wars by a playwright based in Slovenia carries plenty of challenges, but technology helped in their preparation.
- Ed Huyck, City Pages
Teen quads in Buffalo, Minn., to star on national reality TV show
Identical quads from Buffalo, Minn., are the teenage stars of a reality television show that premieres next month.
- Paul Walsh, Star Tribune
Terry Hempleman and Patrick Coyle in "Glengarry Glen Ross" at Torch Theater
Photo: Thomas Sandelands
"Glengarry Glen Ross" casts a cold eye on the real estate business. Written by David Mamet, the play was turned into a movie in 1992 starring Al Pacino, Jack Lemmon and Alec Baldwin. Torch Theater presents its own version with local star talent through January 29 at the Minneapolis Theatre Garage. Thinking about going? Check out these reviews:
The play is a brutal, searing, and triumphant work, and the current production by Torch Theater lives up to the show's pedigree...
...Glengarry Glen Ross offers plenty of chances for actors to dig into the roles and situations, though it's also easy for the action to quickly overheat and turn into a contest of who can shout "fuck" the loudest. The seven actors keep the heat on simmer, letting the rage that inhabits each member of the sales force emerge as the situations develop. They are led by Terry Hempleman as Levene, who turns in a terrific performance as the crushed-by-life salesman. Throughout, there is a sense of fear behind his every word, even when he is recounting his latest victory or berating Williamson. The only time it seems to completely fade is when he aids Roma in trying to deceive a client with cold feet...
...Glengarry Glen Ross moves with speed and efficiency, due both to Mamet's economical script and the tight directing from David Mann. That not only gives the play lots of energy, but it highlights the stink of desperation that hovers around these characters. This is a world that moves quickly, and if you can't keep up, you will be left along the road to die.
"Glengarry Glen Ross" allows us a safe distance from which to admire the stained slaughterhouse where ravenous slashers carve their pigeons with such finesse that the victim scarcely realizes he's been mortally wounded. Despite its venal intent, this is a marvelously audacious thing to watch.
David Mamet's "Glengarry," in a production by Torch Theater at the Minneapolis Theatre Garage, still arouses that primitive joy of the hunt. That Mamet wrote a classic is easy to discern in the simple games of human behavior, the instinct for survival, response to crisis, and the feral nose for success, however that is defined. Unapologetically masculine and misogynistic, Mamet's play demands we consider a world in which hunters rule, and nesters cower.
"I swear, it's not a world of men," roars Richard Roma, portrayed with cocky and seductive charm by Patrick Coyle in Torch's production. "It's a world of clock watchers, bureaucrats, officeholders. We are the members of a dying breed."
Roma is one of two thrumming engines that should drive Mamet's cynical homage to salesmanship, and Coyle has this character oiled, locked in and charged with volatility. In the first act -- a triptych played out on set designer Michael Hoover's perfectly imagined Chinese restaurant -- Coyle's Roma casts a hook baited with adventure and danger into the limp jaw of one James Lingk, a nicely realized sap in John Middleton's hands. Roma is not offering property as much as he's offering risk and thrill -- the chance to be alive.
"Glengarry Glen Ross" is a tricky play: A successful production of David Mamet's foul-mouthed, rough-edged glimpse at salesmanship and testosterone must balance -- thematically, linguistically and emotionally -- on a razor's edge.
It is a credit, then, to Torch Theater's production that the effort never shows. A talented cast of seven actors under the steady hand of director David Mann moves through the material with confidence and even a sense of coarse grace. The rat-a-tat rhythms of Mamet's language are played with proficiency and polish.
Ironically, though, it's that same effortlessness that ultimately defangs the Torch production, which has the feeling of hitting all the right notes without really making the music.
...There's not enough subtle but critical nuance to set these characters apart from each other. Terry Hempleman doesn't have the requisite mileage on him to play Levene. He radiates the resignation and faded pride of an erstwhile winner, but the performance lacks the sheen of desperation that fuels the character and creates the emotional distance from Ari Hoptman's nicely sad-sack performance as the perennial loser Aaronow.
Peter Carlin plays office manager John Williamson with a proper sense of antagonism but without the necessary faint undertow of menace. Patrick Coyle's Ricky Roma delivers a galvanizing first-act monologue about insecurity and opportunity, but his unflinching cockiness represents too few degrees of separation from James Michael Detmar's bilious, blustering and sometimes overpowering performance as Moss.
This lack of crystal-clear differentiation fuzzes the play's focus. Among other things, this is a play about the hair's-breadth between success and failure, and when the performances don't knit together precisely, the whole doesn't transcend the sum of its parts.
Have you seen Torch Theater's production of Glengarry Glen Ross? If so, share your thoughts in the comments section.
All images courtesy the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum
There's nothing like the gray days of winter to inspire a gardener to reach for his or her seed catalog and dream of spring. And so what better time to celebrate the artwork of antique seed catalogs?
The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum presents "Seed Stories: Catalogs of Life and Gardens in America" featuring covers pulled from the Andersen Horticultural Library's collection of more than 57,000 seed catalogs. Curator Kathy Allen says many of the covers, dating from the late 1800s and early 1900s, feature beautiful engravings, ranging from folk art to more art nouveau imagery.
Allen's personal favorite is an 1893 image of an angel floating above an orange canna (pictured above), because of its ties to the Chicago 1893 World's Fair and its unique imagery.
The exhibition includes images from several Midwestern seed companies, including Northrup King, Lippincott (both of Minneapolis) and Farmer Seed
of Faribault. It's worth noting that Lippincotts was one of just a few seedhouses owned and run by women - in this instance, Miss Carrie Lippincott.
In this detail from a seed catalog, the seed harvesters of Northrup King navigate the troubled waters of "carelessness" and "inexperience."
The exhibition does include artwork from one modern seedhouse - Plant Delights, Inc. - but Allen says such illustrations are increasingly rare.
The majority of modern printed catalogs use photographs, although some are reprinting historical images from their "heyday." Mostly these companies are fighting for their lives right now & aren't commissioning art. There's a strong trend towards web-only catalogs, so the printed ones are fast becoming collector's items!
In addition to the artwork, "Seed Stories" includes letters and essays dealing with such concerns as the influenza pandemic and the first world war war, as well as images depicting the history of particular seed companies.
"Seed Stories: Catalogs of Life and Gardens in America" runs through April 3 at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum.