Coco Fusco is in Northfield today. But if you can’t make that roadtrip, there’s also lots going on in town, with shows by Pao Houa Her and Linda Brooks at Catherine G. Murphy Gallery, Amanda Biewald and Frank Meuschke at Rosalux, and a Halloween party at the Walker Art Center.
Where it’s at: Boe Chapel, 1500 St. Olaf Ave., Northfield
What it’s about: Without question, Coco Fusco is one of the foremost thinkers in the arts world. So a lecture with Coco Fusco is definitely worth making the drive to Northfield for. The interdisciplinary artist and critic is a powerful force in art and performance, taking on colonialism, race, gender, and power in her work. A reception with the artist follows.
Why you should go: Coco Fusco has a noteworthy history here in Minnesota, having performed the infamous Undiscovered Amerindians Visit the West at the Walker Art Center in 1994. There, she and Guillermo Gómez-Peña dressed as “primitives” in a cage to be stared at, and stare back. Twenty years later, she returned to the Walker again to give a speech in a Planet of the Apes-style costume. This is your chance to hear the artist discuss her work and share a few thoughts on critical thinking.
When: 7 p.m. Tuesday
Where it’s at: Walker Art Center, 725 Vineland Place, Minneapolis
What it’s about: All dressed up and no place to go? Head to the Walker Art Center. Mark McGee (MAKR), known for his work in bands like Father You See Queen, RONiiA, Marijuana Deathsquads, and his latest collaboration, Ringing Bell, will be spinning tunes in the main lobby beginning at 5 p.m. Artists will lead haunted garden tours at 6 p.m. in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, then in the Wurtele Upper Garden at 7:30 p.m. The evening also features a free screening of Jim Jarmusch’s vampire flick Only Lovers Left Alive at 7 p.m.
Why you should go: Dress up like a Picasso, a surrealist art party attendee, a conceptual installation -- whatever. The sky’s the limit for this costume art event.
When: 5-9 p.m. Thursday
Pao Houa Her: After the Fall of Hmong Tebchaw / Linda Brooks: lifecycles objects
Where it’s at: The Catherine G. Murphy Gallery at St. Catherine University, 2004 Randolph Ave., St. Paul
What it’s about: In 2017, a man by the name of Seng Xiong was sentenced to seven years in prison for swindling over 400 Hmong elders in a multi-state fraud scheme. Claiming he was working with the White House and the United Nations to secure land for the Hmong people, the con artist convinced his victims to invest money in what turned out to be a false premise. Artist Pao Houa Her frames her recent body of work around the events of the scam, linking it to larger themes of longing for a Hmong homeland and displacement.
Meanwhile, in "lifecycles objects,” Linda Brooks documents purses, bags, coats, and other objects made and used by members of her family since the 1920s, celebrating the tradition of creativity and utilitarian purpose of handmade goods in women’s lives.
Why you should go: Both of these artists explore notions of history to create their work. Pao Her’s exhibition uses a tragic scenario to probe deeply into a sense of loss, using a mixture of poignant portraiture, lush landscape, and a dash of irony. Brooks, meanwhile, celebrates the joy of craft, the connection of family, and the pride of creating something beautifully well-made in her series of photographs.
When: 5-7 p.m. Saturday
Where it’s at: Rosalux Gallery, 1400 Van Buren St. NE, Minneapolis
What it’s about: On view at Rosalux are Frank Meuschke’s landscape photographs of Minnesota’s Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve, and a large, site-specific installation by Amanda Biewald that jumps through centuries, mixes fact and fiction, and looks at the notion of hysteria.
Why you should go: From a human that gives birth to a rabbit, to a concerted look at the invisibility of ecological sciences: These two shows maybe exploring vastly different things, but feature two artists worth showing up for.
When: 7-10 p.m. Saturday