North Shore Art Scene

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Cook County MN Arts and Entertainment Weekly
Updated: 3 hours 34 min ago

SplinterTones, Winter Solstice Shadow Puppet Show

Wed, 12/17/2014 - 11:44pm

The big news this week: The annual Winter Solstice Shadow Puppet Show will be performed by the Good Harbor Hill Players at North House Folk School at 6 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 21.

The event is always a lot of fun.

Here’s a sneak preview of one of the scenes in “Heat Wave,” the Winter Solstice Shadow Puppet Show at North House Folk School at 6 p.m. Dec. 21.

Everyone bundles up and gathers outside the red building on the North House campus to watch a shadow puppet story that’s always full of wonderful characters having quirky and highly amusing adventures. The title of this year’s show is “Heat Wave.”

As can be seen from a a sneak preview shot from the upcoming show, left, the shadow puppets do out-of-the-box things and really catch the imagination.

There’s live music, too, played behind the screen. And there’s a surprise at the end…we don’t know what it will be this year, but it’s pretty well guaranteed.

Then the bonfire is lit and everyone is invited to throw in their gloomies (pieces of paper on which   gloomy thoughts, feelings, etc. are written down and then best thrown into the fire and given up to the flames.) Then everyone goes indoors for a winter potluck.

If you’d like to help with the shadow puppet show, workshops will be held at North House Folk School at 6 p.m. through Saturday. All welcome. Call Betsy at 218-370-8077 for more info.

Liz Sivertson did this painting of the SplinterTones, now the band’s official image.

Also not to be missed this weekend, the high-octane band, the SplinterTones, plays at Papa Charlie’s on Saturday night.

A band that’s both exciting to listen to and dance to, the SplinterTones includes Max Bichel, fiddle; Liz Sivertson, saxophone; Leah Thomas, accordion; John Gruber, guiter; Holly Harwig, percussion; Jeff DeShaw, Bass; Rick Brandenburg, drums. The music starts at 9 p.m.

In other art news, Paula Sundet Wolf’s  pastels and Timothy Young’s acrylic paintings will be on exhibit at Cook County Higher Education from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 18.  A portion of the sales will be donated to CCHE. All invited. Dec. 18 is also the day of the CCHE Holiday Open house from 1-2 p.m.

The Art Underground Holiday Show at Betsy Bowen’s Studio continues this weekend with a wide variety of art by local and regional artists. The show includes pottery, fiber art, fused glass, paintings, woodcut prints, photographs and more. The gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday through Sunday through Dec. 20, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dec. 21-24. The exhibit closes on Christmas Eve.

Neil Sherman was interviewed by painter and PBS videographer Roger Bansimer and his wife, Sarah, for an upcoming program on public television. The couple produce a series entitled “Painting and Travel” for PBS stations. Click to see their web site. Here’s the segment they made with Sherman. The couple are great producers and used a camera drone very effectively in this video. (Plus the interview with Neil is great!) Click here to see the video.  Enjoy!

The Spirit of the Wilderness is inviting artists of every age to participate in an exhibit at the Johnson Heritage Post (to open March 13) entitled “Igniting Imagination.” The show encourages artists to examine the overlap between creativity and spirituality — specifically paying attention to illumination and how it is expressed in the artist’s particular medium. Illumination is a broad and nuanced term. Electric lights illuminate a room would be the literal meaning, for example, but medieval artists illuminated manuscripts and painters have “illuminated” music.

In the art show, all artists are invited to explore this theme. Choose a “significant passage” to illuminate, or consider working with another artist, perhaps across a media or genre.

Questions? Call Lee Stewart at 218-387-2983, Bonnie Gay Hedstrom at 218-387-2538 or Mary Ellen Ashcroft at 218-387-1536.

Here’s the music for the weekend.

Thursday, Dec. 18:

  • Eric Frost & Bill Hanson, Poplar River Pub, Lutsen Resort, 6 p.m.
  • Gordon Thorne, Gunflint Tavern, 8 p.m.

Friday, Dec. 19:

  • Eric Frost & Friends, Gunflint Tavern, 8:30 p.m.

Saturday, Dec. 20:

  • Portage Band, Grand Portage Lodge & Casino, 3 p.m.
  • Al Oikari and Rod Dockan, Papa Charlie’s, 3:15 p.m.
  • Briand Morrison, Lutsen Resort, 7 p.m.
  • Cook County’s Most Wanted, American Legion, 8 p.m.
  • SplinterTones, Papa Charlie’s, 9 p.m.

Sunday, Dec. 21:

  • Eric Frost, Papa Charlie’s, 3:15 p.m.
  • Timmy Haus, Gunflint Tavern, 8:30 p.m.

Monday, Dec. 22:

  • Boyd “Bump” Blomberg, Papa Charlie’s, 3:15 p.m.

Tuesday, Dec. 23:

  • Timmy Haus, Poplar River Pub, 6 p.m.

We found some great photos this week.

Here are two wonderful shots of dogs enjoying the outdoors.

Photo by Lori Schaefer.


Photo by Erin Altemus.


Photographers are starting to post wonderful birds-in-winter shots, too. Here’s a chickadee by John Sikkila.

Photo by John Sikkila.


Gail Murton caught this classic shot of a blue jay.

Photo by Gail Murton.


John Sikkila posted this great shot of a gray jay, too.

Photo by John Sikkila.


Ice has been a big topic this week, as well. Here’s a pretty wonderful natural ice sculpture that Bryan Hansel found.

Photo by Bryan Hansel.


David Johnson caught this moment on the ice-covered shores of Lake Superior.

Photo by David Johnson.


Here’s a wonderful icy sunset by Ann Possis. She calls it “This is the season of sherbet sunsets.”

Photo by Ann Possis.


This black & white beauty is by John Ongaro.

Photo by John Ongara.


Here’s another black & white…this time of a shot of a river’s ice flow by Thomas Spence.

Photo by Thomas Spence.


David Grinstead took this photo of an ice volcano where the Brule River in Wisconsin enters Lake Superior. There’s black sand on that beach and it is carried onto the ice when the water rushes through the “volcano’s” hole.

Photo by David Grinstead.


The hoar frost was also beautiful this week. Here’s a lovely photo by Don Davison.

Photo by Don Davison.


Nancy Seaton took this beauty.

Photo by Nancy Seaton.


And where there’s ice, there are fishermen. This is one of Layne Kennedy‘s photos from “A Hard-Water World.”

Photo by Layne Kennedy.

 And since Christmas is right around the corner, here’s a beautiful holiday shot by Thomas Spence.

Photo by Thomas Spence.

Happy Holidays!



















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A Play, Holiday Art Underground & Printmaking

Wed, 12/10/2014 - 10:49pm

Paul Sundberg took this fantastic photo of the full moon  over Split Rock Lighthouse the other night.

Christmas in two weeks! Meanwhile, there’s lots to do in Cook County this weekend.

First up is the annual holiday play at the Arrowhead Center for the Arts.

“We Happy Few,” a production of the Grand Marais Playhouse, is getting good reviews and will be performed at the ACA at 7 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. The dramatic comedy was written by Imogen Stubbs.

Tickets can be purchased online or at the door.

The Grand Marais Art Colony will hold a Community Ink Day on Saturday from 1-4 p.m.

And on Saturday, the Grand Marais Art Colony will hold a Community Ink Day from 1-4 p.m. in the Print Studio.

Participants will learn how to make a monoprint (a cross between painting and printing) and be able to make their own Christmas card, if they wish.

All invited. Some instruction included. $5.

Also this weekend, the Holiday Art Underground show at Betsy Bowen’s Studio continues.

The show features new work by more than 40 local and regional artists and includes ceramics, woodcut prints, paintings, fused glass, photographs, sculpture, jewelry and more.

The studio is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday through Sunday through Dec. 20, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dec. 21-24. The exhibit closes on Christmas Eve.

Also in Betsy Bowen news, she was recently featured on Minnesota Public Radio in a program entitled “In Grand Marais, She’s the Community’s Woman for all Seasons.” To hear the interview and see photos of her working, click here.

And on Saturday night, Barbara Jean will be among the musicians performing at Papa Charlie’s in “Into the Wild” North Shore Triple CD Release Party.” Communist Daughter (Johnny Solomon and Molly Moore), Rogue Valley (Chris Koza and his band) and Barbara Jean and her band will perform from 8:30 p.m. to 1 p.m.

Barbara Jean just recently released her second album, “Bluer Than Blue.” She’ll perform at 11:30 p.m.

In another headliners-return-home story, Dave and Amy Freeman, who completed paddling 2,000 miles from Ely to Washington, D.C. to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act and to present their “petition canoe” to federal officials, will be interviewed on WTIP’s The Roadhouse on Friday night. More than 1,400 people signed the canoe during their journey  to ask for protection of the the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness from sulfide mining pollution. The Roadhouse airs from 5-7 p.m.

“The World of Birch” at Sivertson Gallery.

Sivertson Gallery is highlighting  artwork in the gallery for the next week or so.

One of their posts put the spotlight on the world of birch including porcelain mugs and tumblers by Lenore Lampi, “Autumn Birches,” a painting by David Gilsvik and a silver and copper “birch” ring by Silver Seasons. Twelve themed days are planned.

This is the last weekend for the holiday sale at the Blue Moose, featuring artwork as well as handmade Christmas decorations and treats. It will close for the season Dec. 15.

And if you’re planning to attend the 30th annual Christmas Caroled Dinner at Naniboujou Lodge & Restaurant this year, now is the time to reserve your seats. The event will be held Dec. 27 and Dec. 28 at 6 p.m., and features a multi-course dinner with all the trimmings while carolers share songs of the season. For tickets, click here.

There’s lots of music this weekend, too. Here’s the line-up:

Thursday, Dec. 11:

  • Teague Alexy, Gunflint Tavern, 7 p.m.
  • Eric Frost & Bill Hansen, Poplar River Pub, 6 p.m.

Friday, Dec. 12:

  • Portage Band, American Legion, 6 p.m.
  • Pushing Chain Quartet, Gunflint Tavern, 8:30 p.m.

Saturday, Dec. 13:

  • Cherry Dirt, Cascade Lodge Pub, 7  p.m.
  • Joe Paulik, Lutsen Resort, 7 p.m.
  • Pushing Chain Quartet, Gunflint Tavern, 8:30 p.m.
  • Into the Wild: North Shore Triple CD Release Party, Papa Charlie’s, 8:30 p.m.
  • Wild Horses, Grand Portage Lodge & Casino, 9 p.m.

Tuesday, Dec. 16:

  • Jim & Michelle Miller, Poplar River Pub, Lutsen Resort, 6 p.m.

Wednesday, Dec. 17:

  • Open Mic, Gunflint Tavern, 5 p.m.

We found some wonderful photos to share this week.

First up, some wildlife shots. Nace Hagemann calls this “Moose Eyes.”

Photo by Nace Hagemann.


Michael Furtman caught this hawk on the wing, totally focused on hunting. He said it was a Rough-Legged Hawk, light morph.

Photo by Michael Furtman.


Sunrises and sunsets were really incredible this week. Here’s a selection.

“December Sunset Over Lake Superior” by Travis Novitsky.


Sunrise by David Johnson.


Conditions were perfect for full moon photos, too.

“Moon Rising Over Split Rock” by John Gregor.


“Christmas Moon” by David Johnson.


And ice formations along Lake Superior’s shores were incredible as well. Here’s a selection from the photos we found.

“Ice Fields Forever” by Allison Gimpel.


And here are two spectacular ice shots by Paul Sundberg.

Ice Sculpture 003 by Paul Sundberg.


Ice Sculpture 004 by Paul Sundberg.


Enjoy your weekend, everyone!













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