The Nemeth Art Center (NAC) opened for the season this week.
Admission is free to the NAC galleries, which are open Thursday through Saturday from noon to 6 p.m. May through September.
Julie Buffalohead and Nathanael Flink are the featured artists through July 14. Buffalohead, an enrolled member of the Ponca Tribe of Oklahoma, lives and works in St. Paul. She has exhibited both locally and nationally.
"My work has focused thematically upon describing Indian cultural experience through personal metaphor and narrative, drawing from the substance of traditional stories while contextualizing motifs of cultural identity," she said. "In pictorial terms, the works tend to evoke animals or anthropomorphism within a horizonless field, who are caught within the human condition, often tragic and comedic."
Buffalohead said animals figure prominently in her work. "The paintings juxtapose representations of animal spirit, deer, and coyote forms, and speak to issues of commercialization of Native culture. I create narrative as a means to access a range of these concerns," she said. "It is common in native stories and imagery to find polymorphic beings. This figuration in masks, potter, and dress, manifests as a taking of the animal spirit to protect, to defeat, or as a didactic force."
Buffalohead hopes her work helps "dispel cultural mistruths and bring about understanding and connection between people and to broaden my audience."
Flink was born and raised in St. Paul, and earned his bachelor's of fine arts from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. Since 2010, he has continued to explore boundaries in his work, primarily paintings with acrylic.
"Throughout my career, I have worked in series that bridge multiple themes, stylistic qualities and media," Flink said. "My recent painting is an continuation of an exploration of the visual language of color and form. With each successive iteration of works, there are remnants of a practice of 'seeing experiences.' I am intrigued by narrative, and my practice sprang forth from ideas of painterly narratives."
Mostly new paintings and sculptures by Flink are displayed at the Nemeth.
"I like to build up layers of the painting until it starts to have a personality," he said. "My recent work investigates an inherent materiality of the physical spaces people inhabit. There is a narrative to one's domestic surroundings — the objects, decorations that adorn the home or workplace. In a few different ways, my recent pieces seek to explore the visual process of how we create the mental construction of the interior spaces we inhabit."
An artist reception for Buffalohead and Flink is slated for 5-7 p.m. Saturday, June 23.
2nd Sat Hap
In 2018, the NAC will initiate the "2nd Sat Hap," an evening of live music, poetry, film and performance held at the art center the second Saturday of every month. The event begins at 5 p.m.
Musicians Amanda Standalone and Eddie Lee Kid, along with local poet LouAnn Muhm kick off the 2nd Sat Hap on Saturday, May 12.
"First Daughter and the Black Snake," a documentary about environmentalist Winona LaDuke as she fights to block an Enbridge pipeline threatening sacred wild rice watersheds and her tribe's land, will be screened at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 19 at the art center.
Youth Art Exhibit
From May 3 through May 26, the art center is partnering on a Youth Art Exhibit with the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD). MCAD will award the top sophomore or junior participant a $3,400 scholarship for their pre-summer college session. Cash prizes will be awarded to the top three artists in the exhibit. A reception and award ceremony will be held from 5-7 p.m. on Saturday, May 19.
The NAC's permanent collection of over 40 European paintings spans six centuries.
The Nemeth is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. It is located in the upstairs of the historic Hubbard County Courthouse, located at 301 Court Ave.
For more information upcoming exhibits and membership privileges, visit www.nemethartcenter.org or call 218-616-2064.