Music blogger Jon Behm recommends the Illusion Theater’s Fresh Ink New Work series, which is streaming online through August. It’s a series of three shows by artists of color. The shows contextualize this moment, from the COVID-19 pandemic to the uprisings that have followed the police killing of George Floyd in May.
Behm is particularly excited about the first show, “In this Moment,” which draws together spoken word, visual art, music and other performances in one setting. The second show, “Acting Black,” is a one-man show, and the third, “Serving Black Futures: Loving Black Artists,” is an evening of poetry.
Poet and art-lover Mary Jean Mulherin enjoys the work of St. Paul artist Emily Talley. Talley uses the shavings of her wax pastels to create vibrant, colorful abstracts and portraits that respond to the pandemic and celebrate Black Lives Matter. Mulherin particularly appreciates the way Talley makes her process public. She posts works in progress as well as finished pieces on her Facebook page.
Taherah Shamsulbahri-Cobb looks forward to attending the student-led StoryArk Festival at 4 p.m. Sunday. The free online festival from Stillwater is the culmination of student summer work that features short films, podcasts, poetry, fiction and visual arts. The event will be emceed by a student comedian, with music by the band Nunnabove, recently featured on “America’s Got Talent.” Shamsulbahri-Cobb says this isn’t the kind of Zoom event that you just sit back and watch. “Being student-led and student-initiated, they were very mindful about wanting to create a very hands-on, interactive experience, so it’s going to be like you’re right there with them,” Shamsulbahri-Cobb said.