Art Hounds: Bike shop textile art

Four men are on a stage with a grid-like backdrop.
Elijah Leer, Mitchell Dallman, Armando Ronconi, Eric Sargent in "Million Dollar Quartet" at Old Log Theatre.
Courtesy Old Log Theatre

Pamela Ziegenhagen-Shefland of Minnetonka, Minn., is an animation features editor and textile artist. Recently, she made the trip to the Owatonna Center for the Arts, where she marveled at the multi-sensory, interactive installation that is “Legacy Dream Space.”

The exhibit was created by composer Craig Harris and visual artist Candy Kuehn, in collaboration with Kym Longhi and Jim Peitzman.

Photographs line the walls, as do scrims, which are overlaid with video of exhibit visitors. Two play spaces invite visitors to interact with the exhibit by pressing buttons to hear spoken words or write their own words that appear on the scrims.

Harris’s original piano composition complements the experience. Taken together, the exhibit explores our hopes for the future and the legacy we leave behind. 

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“There's things for everyone to enjoy,” says Ziegenhagen-Shefland. “It just made me feel really hopeful that the arts in this state and in this community are just so vibrant and exciting and explorative because it's not just the normal kind of going to a gallery show.” 

The show runs through Oct. 15, with an artist event scheduled on Oct. 8 from 1-4 p.m. 

Jaime Davis of Minneapolis says her current theater obsession is with the musical Million Dollar Quartet,” currently playing at the Old Log Theatre in Greenwood, Minn. in the west metro. 

The show captures a real moment in musical history: the 1956 jam session of Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and Elvis Presley at Sun Records Studio in Memphis, Tenn. Directed by Christine O’Grady Roberts and featuring all local talent, the show is packed with hit songs that Davis says have the audience tapping their toes and singing along.

The actors’ voices and their high-energy performances are “phenomenal,” Davis says. If you attend the Thursday or Sunday matinee, she recommends getting brunch beforehand at the theater’s restaurant. 

“Million Dollar Quartet” runs Thursday through Sunday through Feb. 17. 

A sculpted figure of an elderly man with a beard holds a wooden guitar.
"Man with a Guitar," fiber, wood and paint (2023) by Eric Ouren.
Courtesy of Eric Ouren

Janet Anderson recently moved to St. Peter, Minn., and she’s been enjoying discovering the local arts scene. One exhibit that captured her imagination has been Eric Ouren’s textile figures on the wall of The Smallest Cog Bike Shop.

It’s a small show with about 10 pieces, but each one is intricately detailed and rewards close attention. The figures, which are about a foot tall, have stitched shoes and handmade clothing, and their faces are stitched with multiple colors of thread that reminded Anderson of an impressionist painter’s brushstrokes. Many of the figures are mounted in elaborate frames that resemble wooden furniture. 

“There's a folk quality to the pieces,” says Anderson, “as if they were figures whittled out of wood, but they're made of textiles.”

Ouren’s show is viewable on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through Oct. 7. 

This activity is made possible in part by the Minnesota Legacy Amendment’s Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund.