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Textile Center image by Star Tribune staff photographer Bruce Bisping
The Textile Center of Minnesota has hired management consultant Nancy Lee as interim director, a post she is expected to retain for about six months while the organization seeks a permanent leader.
"She's a perfect fit for what we need right now," said Donna C. Peterson, president of the Textile Center's 12 member board. Peterson is a former associate vice president of government and community relations at the University of Minnesota.
As a consultant, Lee specializes in non-profit management and the development of strategic business plans. She is a former CFO of Minnesota Goodwill and Easter Seals, and a former vice president of the Minnesota Children's Museum.
Lee began work at the Textile Center April 28th. Over the next few months she is expected to oversee the Center's ongoing operations and to assist the board in defining the organizational qualities and expertise needed to run the organization. The difficulty is striking a balance between management skills and knowledge of an artform that encompasses everything from historic rugs to contemporary art clothes.
"We're taking our time to really understand what are strengths and capacitiy are, and to define the profile of our members and potential funders" Peterson said.
The Textile Center is an umbrella organization whose members are professsional and amateur arists engaged in textile crafts ranging from weaving to lace making, batik, knitting, crochetting, custom tailoring, hand dying and doll making.
The non profit organization at 3000 University Av S. E., near the University of Minnesota's Minneapolis campus, has a staff of 14 full and part-time employees and an annual budget of about $800,000. It runs an exhibition gallery and a small shop selling handmade clothing, accessories and textile-related crafts. Its professional services include a library and facilities for dying and weaving textiles, classrooms and meeting spaces for school kids and adults.
Rebricked Barnes wing of Walker Art Center; Star Tribune photo by Joel Koyama
Walker Art Center's "Midnight Party" exhibit features paintings, sculptures, films and installations drawn primarily from the museum's permanent collection. The title derives from a 1938 film by American surrealist Joseph Cornell in which "mystery trumps logic." In a similar vein, the often enchanting exhibit is a marvelous array of strange objects (a stairway to nowhere; mid-century modern abstractions, a bare white room reminiscent of an interrogation chamber).
The show opened in 2011, was reconfigured with new art in 2013, and is officially scheduled to close August 3. However, it has been closed since late March and the Walker has not set a reopening date.
The show is installed in Galleries 4, 5, 6 of the museum's 1971 brick-clad building designed by Edward Larrabee Barnes. The deteriorating brick skin of that building was removed and replaced last year but some finishing touches are still underway.
"Although the scaffolding was removed in December, the final states of the [rebricking] project are still underway including some interior work. . . . As with any project of this scope, the Walker occasionally will close galleries or public areas in order to make a safe work environment for the builders and pleasant experience for our patrons," emailed Walker spokesperson Meredith Kessler.
"Time, time. What is time? Swiss manufacture it. French hoard it. Italians squander it. Americans say it is money. Hindus say it does not exist. Do you know what I say? I say time is a crook," mutters Peter Lorre apropos of absolutely nothing in "Beat the Devil," John Huston's brilliant 1953 parody of crime-sex-comedy-adventure films.
With an all star cast (Humphrey Bogart, Gina Lollobrigida, Jennifer Jones, Robert Morley and others too numerous to mention), the movie is a cult classic that deserves its own little Northern Spark revival just for the delicious pleasure of hearing Lorre's daffy riff on time.
It would be the perfect accompaniment to Christian Marclay's "The Clock," a 24-hour-long work of genius that Walker Art Center plans to run June 14 -15 as part of Northern Spark, the dusk-to-dawn art festival that this year bounces back to Minneapolis after a season in St. Paul.
In "The Clock," Marclay splices together 24 hours of second-by-second images of clocks clipped from other movies, each of them moving inexorably and sequentially through a day and a night and a day again as time passes. There are wrist watches, digital alarms, tower clocks, train-station clocks and more snipped from murder mysteries, romantic comedies, adventure tales and every other type of cinematic encounter in which someone, somewhere glanced at a timepiece while marking time waiting for something to happen.
As "Beat the Devil" screen-writer Truman Capote said, through the lips of Lorre, "Time is a crook."
Walker has booked "The Clock" from 11 a.m. Saturday to 5 p.m. Sunday. That's a long 24 hours, perhaps broken up by popcorn and bathroom breaks?
The Textile Center in Minneapolis is seeking a new executive director following the resignation of Tim Fleming after 18 months in the post. Fleming succeeded founding director Margaret Miller who retired in June 2012.
"Our plan right now is to hire an interim director, and we're hoping to name someone within the next couple of weeks," said board chair Donna Peterson, a retired University of Minnesota associate vice president for government and community relations. "We really have not had time to decide what we want in an executive director, so we want to take our time and be sure to do it right."
The organization's programs and $831,000 annual budget are stable, Peterson said. Fleming simply resigned "to pursue other opportunities" she said.
"We just had a benefit fund raiser to celebrate our 20th birthday fund raiser and exceeded our goal," said Peterson. The organization hoped to raise $20,000 with the gala, but brought in $22,000.
The Center at 3000 University Av. S.E., runs an exhibition gallery and a shop selling hand-made clothing and textile crafts, and offers lectures, classes and other programs in the textile arts ranging from weaving, crocheting and basketry to fabric design and dying. It's classrooms and facilities serve members of 40 craft guilds throughout the state.
Kyle Fokken took first place honors for his mixed media sculpture "Fokko."
Members of the Society of Minnesota Sculptors turned out for the opening of an exhibit of art by their colleagues at the Minnetonka Center for the Arts, on view through April 3. The society's 85 members are an eclectic lot whose work typically tends toward whimsical, figurative or abstract pieces in wire, bronze, ceramic or mixed media.
Jurors Sally Johnson of Groveland Gallery and Holly Streekstra of Minneapolis College of Art and Design presented ribbon awards to: Kyle Fokken for "Fokko," a mixed media sculpture that took first place; Richards Poey for "Let's Tango, a bronze sculpture in second place; and Kate Chrisopher, whose ceramic bust, "My Vanishing Illusion," took third place.
Honorable mentions went to Thomas Zahn for his bronze "Solo Dance," Carl A. Smith III, for a wire sculpture, "My Eyes are Here," and Norman Holen for his stoneware piece, "Man with an Owl Mask."
The society is also sponsoring a one-day workshop by Twin Cities area sculptor Foster Wiley, Jr. who will explain how to "Sculpt a Head in Clay." (10 a.m. - 5 p.m. March 15, Minnetonka Center for the Arts, 2240 Northshore Dr., Wayzata/ Orono. To register go here or call 952-473-7261, ext. 16)
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