Art Hounds: Bakken Trio performs with crowd-sourced puppet story

A person stands in front of a wall with large paintings.
Carolyn Kleinberger with her Up Close From A Distance Collection, May 2022, Solo Exhibition at Hopkins Center for the Arts.
Courtesy of Joy Wolfe

Elementary school music teacher and singer Ellen Christensen, of Minneapolis, is a big fan of the Bakken Trio, and she’s looking forward to their final show of the season where they will perform Pavel Haas’ String Quartet No. 2 “From the Monkey Mountains'' alongside the puppeteers of Z Puppets Rosenschnoz.

To create the show, the Bakken Trio invited listening groups to describe what they saw when they heard the music. Those imaginings informed the storytelling puppetry that will accompany the live performance.

Haas was a prolific composer whose musical career was tragically cut short when he was murdered in Auschwitz in 1944. His music was nearly lost following his death but has seen a resurgence in recent decades.

Christensen is glad that Minnesota audiences will have a chance to hear and see this 1925 composition presented in an imaginative way. The performance is Sunday at 4 p.m. at the Barry Family Campus of Sabes Jewish Community Center in Minneapolis.

Arts enthusiast Doris Rubenstein of Richfield recommends painter Carolyn Kleinberger’s solo show at the Hopkins Center for the Arts.

True to its title, the large portraits allow viewers to feel “Up Close from a Distance.”

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The 28 paintings in the show were all created over the last two years as the artist’s antidote for social isolation during the pandemic. The portrait exhibition in Hopkins runs through June 18.

Marisa Hoogenakker loves to visit open artists’ studios in her hometown of Duluth, and that interest led her to the studio of abstract painter David Austin. Austin’s enthusiasm as he described his abstract paintings drew her in. Although the abstract and mixed media forms felt new, Hoogenakker was soon spotting tunnels, lakes and other familiar landmarks of the Lake Superior city.

Large colorful paintings hang on white walls.
David Austin poses for a photo with some of his art in his studio in Duluth.
Courtesy of Kristen Austin

Austin holds live painting demonstrations, sometimes featuring his young son painting on his own canvas, Saturdays at 10:30 a.m. on Instagram.

Hoogenakker recommends visiting Austin’s open artist studio on the third Saturday of the month if you’re in the area.