The Minneapolis Park Board and the city's Art in Public Places program have selected three artists to create new public art honoring the Dakota leader Cloud Man and the story of his village on the shores of Lake Calhoun.
Angela Two Stars of East Lansing, Mich., Mona Smith of Minneapolis, and Sandy Spieler of Minneapolis, will work with the community and a design team to brainstorm ideas. Two Stars is a descendant of Cloud Man and Smith is also an artist of Dakota heritage.
The art is part of an ongoing effort to recognize Dakota history at the lake. The Park Board voted in May to change the lake's name to Bde Maka Ska (buh-DAY, MAH-kah skah). The change isn't final until it wins approval at the county, state and federal level.
There were 17 responses to a request for artists' proposals released in late January, and the list was narrowed down to three artists who had "experience working with Dakota symbols and knowledge of Dakota language."
"The idea behind the project is to really celebrate the history of the Dakota people and Cloud Man village at the site," said Mary Altman, the city's public arts administrator. "Cloud Man's village is where the Dakota language … first started to be written down. So that language piece is a super important part of the history."
The $475,000 project will involve installing permanent artwork at the gathering space on the southeast corner of the lake and four other prominent locations.
Much of the artwork is expected to be completed in 2018. The public will get a chance to weigh in on design concepts by late fall 2017.