Remembering Rondo, new art at Bde Maka Ska: 4 great art happenings this week

Rose Smith, 'Journey to Minnesota'

Rose Smith, 'Journey to Minnesota'

Look to the past, imagine the future, and check in with your dreams alongside Twin Cities artists this week.

Rose & Melvin Smith: Remembering Rondo Exhibition Preview Party

Where it’s at: Weisman Art Museum, 333 E. River Pkwy., Minneapolis

What it’s about: The Weisman Art Museum highlights the rich cultural heritage of St. Paul’s Rondo neighborhood, a once-thriving black community torn apart by the construction of Highway 94. Married artist couple Rose J. and Melvin R. Smith lived in Rondo up until 1968, when the highway was put in, and currently reside in Eagan, Minnesota. This exhibition features Melvin’s collage portraits and three-dimensional models of Rondo buildings while Rose’s works includes portraits of family members, musicians, and community members.

Why you should go: The artworks in this exhibition reveal a story of strength within the African American community in St. Paul, and offer a deeper look at how the Civil Rights movement flourished in Minnesota.

When: 7-9 p.m. Thursday (register at

Bde Maka Ska

Bde Maka Ska

Bde Maka Ska Public Art Dedication

Where it’s at: Bde Maka Ska, Southeast Shore, Richfield Rd., Minneapolis

What it’s about: The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board is holding a special celebration in honor of the new public art installation on the East Side of Bde Maka Ska. The sculptures, created by Mona Smith, Sandy Spieler, and Angela Two Stars, pay homage to Mahpiya Wicasta (Cloud Man), the founder of the Heyata Otunwe (Village to the Side) community at the shores of the lake. The event will include music, comments from descendants, and the artists, as well as refreshments and family activities.

Why you should go: If you haven’t had a chance to see Smith, Spieler, and Angela Two Star’s marvelous work, this is a great opportunity. Evoking ritual while at the same time conversing seamlessly with the natural surroundings and water, the sculptures seem like they’ve always been there.

When: 10:30 a.m. to noon, Saturday

"Muscle Memory, Syrian Homecomings" at SooVAC

"Muscle Memory, Syrian Homecomings" at SooVAC Essma Imady

Muscle Memory, Syrian Homecomings | Seeming

Where it’s at: SooVAC, 2909 Bryant Ave. S., Minneapolis

What it’s about: Two separate exhibitions open Saturday at SooVAC this weekend. In “Muscle Memory, Syrian Homecomings,” Essma Imady contemplates the concept of home, drawing on her personal memories of Syria. “Seeming,” by Torey Erin, uses sculpture, photography, film, and an installation of “ash capsules” drawn from her late grandmother’s ash burial in a curling rock.

Why you should go: Sure, light and pretty art is fun, but every once in a while you ought to challenge yourself to experience work that takes you in a place with a bit more danger. Tory Erin’s exploration of life and death and temporality certainly fits that bill, and Essma Imady has been putting out engaging, exciting work for several years now around town. Her latest will be one to keep on your list.

When: 6-9 p.m. Saturday

L-R: Work by Areca Roe and Rebecca Krinke

L-R: Work by Areca Roe and Rebecca Krinke

Areca Roe: Drunken Forest | Rebecca Krinke: Down Below

Where it’s at: Rosalux Gallery, 1400 Van Buren St. NE, Ste 195, Minneapolis

What it’s about: In “Drunken Forest,” Areca Roe presents a new body of photography taken around Fairbanks, Alaska, where rising temperatures are shifting and, in some cases, permanently altering the landscape. Meanwhile, in “Down Below,” Rebecca Krinke continues her eerie bed sculptures with a new piece of feathers, books, and mirrors that will suck you into its dreamy world, complete with a sound installation by David Hedding.

Why you should go: Both of these artists are top notch, and while their approaches and topics vary greatly, it should be interesting to see them paired together.

When: 7-10 p.m. Saturday