Art Shanty Projects 2018

by | Jan 17, 2018

It's not too rare to see ice fishing huts dot our Minnesotan lakes, but with one step inside any of the 22 shanties on Lake Harriet (also known as Bde Unma), anyone can see that you're not just dealing with bait buckets and folding chairs. Every weekend from Jan. 20-Feb. 11, the Art Shanty Projects will be bringing performances and interactive art both inside and outside the shanties.

Hear the song of the lonely whale at a frequency said to be higher than its ocean compatriots can hear and listen to its story at shanty No. 9, or put a wish into physical token form at No. 21. At The Archive, or shanty No. 3, look at real and imagined artifacts from Lake Harriet, and get some old-time bingo fun at the BINGO! Shanty, or shanty No. 4. At Why Not Knit!, shanty No. 20, the artists provide a community space to converse, tell stories, knit, crochet and more thread crafts, and art meets the highest of practicalities at The Notary Shanty where you can get your documents legally notarized and fill out a selection of pledges, contracts and resolutions as well.

Other shanties offer short performances of dance, theater, song and more, and roaming out in the open are more artists sharing their projects. Pair up with a stranger or friend and stroll along the lake while sipping tea and talking about life and energy medicine at Energetic Tea Time, or hunt down hot pink flags with a word and number to call or text to receive a written message in return from local poets and authors through the project Literary Dev(ice). Fire & Ice: A Winter Flamenco Odyssey is part street processional, part performance and part sing along featuring Deborah Elias Danza Española and the Coro Flamenco Street Choir, and make sure to give Leady Bear the Polar Bear Puppet a nose rub when you see her—she’s hard to miss.

For the past 13 years, anything goes at the Art Shanty Project, and that’s what make them so special. The shanties try to blend community, shared space, shared stories and art all in one, and while you might get some shanties more than others, you’ll definitely never find an experience like it. So bundle up and take that first step on the ice—you’ll be amazed by what you find.

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