Fall arts preview: Your guide to the hottest art and music events

Better start planning.

Better start planning. Natalie Foss

Summer is slipping away. As we pull out our sweaters and leave beach season behind, it's important to remember that it's not -5 degrees yet.

Soon those hibernating urges will kick in and quality time with Netflix and frozen pizza might sound more appealing than sloshing through the snow to hit the latest and greatest exhibit premiere or buzz band concert. Fall is prime time to do, see, experience all the culture your arts-loving heart can handle.

From best-selling authors to megalomaniacal rappers and imaginative puppet plays, this is your guide to the jam-packed season's best events.




Alessandro Sciarroni: UNTITLED_I will be there when you die
Walker Art Center

Italian dance/visual performance artist Alessandro Sciarroni gives juggling a metaphysical twist in “UNTITLED_I will be there when you die.” Described as a meditation on the passing of time, the piece is a vigorous, conceptual feat of human exercise taken to the limits of effort and endurance. Four master jugglers perform increasingly complicated tasks, letting those pins fly every which way. It’s a fine way to kick off the Walker’s 2016-17 performing arts season. 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday. $24. 1750 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612-375-7600. September 23-24 —Linda Shapiro

Grupo Corpo
Northrop Auditorium

The athletic zest of the Olympics and more fuels this Brazilian troupe, which opens the Northrop Dance Season with a program of fast-paced fusion. “Parabelo” unites propulsive Afro-Brazilian rhythms and undulating torsos with hints of ballet and jazz. The lithe and charismatic dancers, capable of elegance and ferocity at warp speed, also perform “Dança Sinfônica,” created in 2015 for Grupo Corpo’s 40th anniversary. The work pays homage to the company’s wide ranging repertory, with a backdrop of photos from its history. Gold medals all around for this explosive ensemble. 8 p.m. $37-$62. 84 Church St. SE, Minneapolis; 612-624-2345. October 1 —Linda Shapiro

Pavel Zuštiak
Walker Art Center

Pavel Zuštiak and his Palissimo Company aim to provide insight into the human condition through work that merges dance, live music, and visual art. The Midwest premiere of Custodians of Beauty raises the question: Where do we find beauty today, and does it need our defense? Zuštiak’s work embraces emotional extremes that collide and elide in startling images. Through an Eastern European dance-theater aesthetic, he deploys the human body as sculpture, emotional trigger, and political symbol. If that sounds a bit conceptual, rest assured there is plenty of juicy content to be had. 8 p.m. $22. 1750 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612-375-7600. October 20-22 —Linda Shapiro

Jérôme Bel: Bookend Festival
Walker Art Center

French performance artist Jérôme Bel is happily becoming a fixture at Walker Art Center. He returns for the fifth time for Bookend Festival with performances, talks, and a film screening. The festival begins with Bel’s 2015 GALA, a spectacle that celebrates the joy of all moving bodies and the diversity of Minnesota’s community. Around 20 local amateurs of varying ages, body types, and physical abilities will dance their hearts out. His eponymous 1995 work, Jérôme Bel, treats the body as a minimalist manifesto, employing spare movement, nudity, and shadow to deconstruct the theatrics of dance. By stripping the body down to what he terms a “zero degree of literature,” he avoids stereotypes of the erotic or perfectly muscled form. There is also a talk with Walker’s performing arts curator Philip Bither that includes a screening of Bel’s short film on classical corps de ballet dancer Véronique Doisneau. 8 p.m. $17.60-$28. 1750 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612-375-7600. November 1-4 —Linda Shapiro

ARENA Dances
The Fitzgerald Theater

One of our most versatile choreographers, Mathew Janczewski creates pieces that range from meticulous to rambunctious. Whatever the theme, Janczewski’s dances and his splendid company explode through space in cascades of full-bodied movement. Twenty years ago, he created ARENA Dances. For this anniversary, he’s taking the considerable risk of presenting a one-night-only program of works old and new at the Fitzgerald Theater, a venue not particularly known for dance. His newest work, “Anthem,” set to music by composer Michael Nyman, is inspired by Janczewski’s youthful memories of moving through space, which he continues to do with the ease and noblesse oblige of a celestial gymnast. It will be terrific to see him reunited with his longtime muse, Amy Behm-Thomson, in the premiere of “Duet at Home.” Other works include his 2010 “Not so good at standing still” and “Matador,” a dynamic foray into the psyche, emotion, and elegant ruthlessness of a bullfighter. 7:30 p.m. $20. 10 East Exchange St., St. Paul; 1-800-514-3849. November 11 —Linda Shapiro




The Thread Live: Jeffrey Toobin
Westminster Presbyterian Church

In 1974, Patty Hearst was kidnapped by the left-wing radical group known as the Symbionese Liberation Army. Despite her family’s attempts to meet the group’s ransom demands in the form of food donations, Hearst soon released a recorded statement saying, “I have chosen to stay and fight.” She took the name “Tania,” and became involved in SLA-related bank robberies and shootings. Despite an aggressive FBI search, she remained elusive. It wasn’t until September 1975 that Hearst was arrested, tried, and claimed to have been brainwashed. Questions of how her quick conversion could be psychologically possible have fascinated the public and boggled experts ever since. Jeffrey Toobin explores this twisted story in American Heiress, his new book based on numerous interviews and previously sealed documents. The attorney and best-selling author believes Hearst reacted rationally to her circumstances, using the SLA as an outlet for rebellion and the brainwashing defense as a way to reenter society. Toobin discusses the case and the book with Kerri Miller. 7 p.m. $25-$50. 1200 S. Marquette Ave., Minneapolis; 651-290-1200. September 28 —Erica Rivera

Emily St. John Mandel
Anderson Student Center

The apocalypse has never been as literary as in Emily St. John Mandel’s Station Eleven. Deftly navigating among genres (horror, speculative fiction, poetry, playwriting), as well as between time and place, voice and character, Mandel’s wholly original tale features a traveling troupe of musicians and actors, a dangerous prophet, and an airport transformed into a Museum of Civilization in the Great Lakes region. The fantastical novel won the Arthur C. Clarke Award in May 2015, in part for its focus on the characters’ dedication to the survival of art and culture in a post-apocalyptic world. These are people who live on Shakespeare. 7 p.m. Free. 2115 Summit Ave., University of St. Thomas, St. Paul; 651-962-6137. September 29 —Camille LeFevre

Zeke Caligiuri
Open Book, Target Performance Hall

“It seems to get forgotten or diminished — the time when our city went crazy,” writes Zeke Caligiuri, recalling 1995, the year he turned 18, the year Minneapolis became “Murderapolis.” Born and raised in the Powderhorn neighborhood, Caligiuri follows an all-too-familiar downward spiral: gang-banger friends + drugs + alcohol + guns = jail time. What is unexpected is the poetic curiosity Caligiuri exhibits in This Is Where I Am, his memoir out this October from the University of Minnesota Press. Over approximately 300 pages, the author attempts to understand how he landed behind bars, despite several wholesome aspects of his youth: a bee-slaying grandmother, a baseball-loving father, a community mural project, a part-time job at Dairy Queen. What dark forces collided, and how did they lead him to the moment that resulted in a jail sentence of over 30 years? You’ll have to read to find out. While Caligiuri remains incarcerated, there will still be a book-release party featuring readings by family, friends, and writing mentors. 7 p.m. 1011 S. Washington Ave., Minneapolis; 612-215-2650. October 24 —Erica Rivera

David Sedaris
State Theatre

It’s not exactly standup. It’s not a reading, either. But David Sedaris tours better than most comedians and authors, hopping from theater to theater under the title of “humorist,” telling stories, critiquing society, and, well, being himself. What to expect when he takes the State Theatre stage this fall? Witty quips on fashion, travel, the election, and picking up litter in West Sussex, where he now lives, are all likely. Perhaps a dramatic interpretation of one of his many essays published in The New Yorker will follow. He may even whip out a few diary entries that form the basis of his next book, Theft by Finding, due out next year. You never know what you’re going to get with Sedaris, but you can bet it’s going to get laughs. The author’s previous books total 10 million copies in print, and include Me Talk Pretty One Day and Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls. Sedaris has also collaborated with his sister Amy Sedaris to write several plays under the name “The Talent Family,” and can frequently be heard on NPR. 8 p.m. $36.50-$46.50. 805 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 800-982-2787. October 28 —Erica Rivera

Talking Volumes: Colson Whitehead
Fitzgerald Theater

In reacting to his new novel, The Underground Railroad, reviewers and readers have made much of Colson Whitehead’s magical transformation of that network of desperate people, hidden places, mythology, and metaphor. But the story of Cora, who begins her life as a slave on a cotton plantation and finds her way out by riding those rails, is so much more than that. It’s also much more than an education in atrocities. Whitehead’s miraculous book is history novelized, and based in hard, incontrovertible truths that continue to be writ on black bodies and psyches in the 21st century. Whitehead blurs time and space as he interlaces the systemic and violent colonization of not-white people by whites — from the abominations of slavery to the sterilization of black women to the unwitting participants of syphilis experiments — as Cora grows from child to woman. “Know your value and you know your place in the order,” Cora is repeatedly reminded. In one harrowing scene, she slips: “Before the slave part of her caught up with the human part of her,” she protects another child’s body with her own, and is not only beaten but further “peeled open the following sunrise.” Cora’s humanity, her worth, her smarts, and her tenacity make her a character of our political and cultural zeitgeist, and Whitehead’s book a resonant meditation on U.S. history. 7 p.m. $23-$50. 10 E. Exchange St., St. Paul; 651-290-1200. November 3 —Camille LeFevre




Danny Brown
First Avenue

Detroit oddball Danny Brown won’t drop his new album, Atrocity Exhibition, until five days after his gig at First Ave, but early indications are that the follow-up to 2013’s Old is the rapper’s magnum opus. Drawing inspiration from Joy Division, Raekwon, Björk, Talking Heads, and, cacophonously enough, System of a Down, the album is sure to be an interesting turn at the very least. Most important is that the eccentric and lit-as-fuck Brown is still a goddamn supernova in the live context. Longtime fans will remember his infamous — and alleged! — oral-sex incident at the Triple Rock back in 2013, but that debauchery is really a poor representation of what makes Danny Brown shows spectacular. The dude rhymes like a buzzsaw through particle board, pogo dancing onstage for hours without any fatigue. He’s an impresario, and if Atrocity Exhibition has managed to bottle any of that in its wayward composition, then this tour will be the one that erases the legacy of that blurry night at the T-Rock back in ’13. With Maxo Kream, and ZelooperZ. 7:30 p.m. $25.50-$28. 701 First Ave. N., Minneapolis; 612-338-8388. September 25 —Jerard Fagerberg

Sigur Rós
Orpheum Theatre

The internet has figured out that if you slow down kids’ music 800 percent, you can basically create your own Sigur Rós songs. Take the theme from Spongebob Squarepants, dial it down to 20 bpm, and all of a sudden you have Ágætis byrjun. Unfortunately, that’s obscured just how monumental the Icelandic post-rock band have become over their 18-year career, rendering them something of a meme to digital natives. Over seven sprawling albums, Sigur Rós have created a mountainous sound that’s as fascinating as it is enigmatic. This tour sets out to reclaim the band’s legacy. Performing with no opening act, the Reykjavik natives will play two full sets that will revisit and reinterpret songs from their entire catalog — including 2013’s Kveikur — while also showcasing unreleased new stuff. There’s probably no better venue in the Twin Cities to enjoy such a sweeping, theatrical show than the Orpheum. You’ll definitely be thankful for your padded orchestra seat around hour three of this elegiac retrospective. 8:30 p.m. $53.50-$83.50. Orpheum Theatre, 910 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612-339-7007. September 29 —Jerard Fagerberg

Brian Wilson presents Pet Sounds
Orpheum Theatre

Fifty years ago, nerds delighted when NBC debuted Star Trek, jocks rallied behind the AFL-NFL merger, and the Beach Boys treated everyone to their magnum opus — Pet Sounds. At the time, the Cali sextet were already certified popstars, having given us 10 albums of beachy, harmonious bubblegum about girls, surfing, and school spirit. But Beach Boys mastermind Brian Wilson, then 24, was not satisfied. Inspired by 1965 Beatles LP Rubber Soul, he set out to make his grand artistic statement, one that would become one of rock ’n’ roll’s first-ever concept albums. During its recording, there was plenty of infighting; there were lyrical assists from ad jingle writer Tony Asher; there were ghost contributions from the ace session players known as the Wrecking Crew. The end result was a masterpiece — an aching, emotional portrait of Wilson set to an ambitiously arty psych-pop odyssey. It’s also one of the best uses of cloven animals on album covers (sorry, Paul McCartney). Former bandmates Al Jardine and Blondie Chaplin will join Wilson at the Orpheum, where he’ll treat fans to Pet Sounds in its entirety “for a final time.” 7:30 p.m. $63-$129. Orpheum Theatre, 910 Hennepin Av., Minneapolis; 612-339-7007. October 2 —Jay Boller

Kanye West
Xcel Energy Center

Future presidential candidate Kanye West is easily the most divisive figure in popular culture today. Some adore him like the Gandhi he claims to be; others detest him like the Christopher Columbus he claims to be. But either way, there’s no doubt that West is a can’t-miss show. Ye’s stadium shows are a hybrid of performance art, political manifesto, paparazzi bait, and genuine hip-hop bravado — a bizarre evening that’s always worth the ticket price. Sure, Yeezy tends to show up about 45-50 minutes late, so you’ll want to prolong your tailgating for this one, but this is madness that truly must be witnessed in person. Also, another thing that gets lost in the typhoon of press clippings is that Kanye West is a consummate rapper and performer. If you could listen to February’s The Life of Pablo in a vacuum, you’d see the Chicagoan’s natural rhyming ability meld seamlessly with some of the best beats of his career. Since you can’t do that, enjoy the stadium-sized spectacle at Xcel. 8 p.m. $27-$127. Xcel Energy Center, 175 W. Kellogg Blvd., St. Paul; 651-726-8240. October 10 —Jerard Fagerberg

The Staves
Fitzgerald Theater

November is a pretty lean month for big-name shows, but that doesn’t mean you can’t catch a band on the rise. The Staves are a British trio that’ve charmed everyone from Tom Jones to Bon Iver into collaborations. Now, after attention-grabbing gigs opening for Nathaniel Rateliff and Florence and the Machine, the Staveley-Taylor sisters are becoming a sensation in their own right. The U.K. folkies are heading out on a short Midwestern headlining tour, which kicks off in St. Paul. There’s a lot to love on their recent Justin Vernon-produced LP, If I Was, from the meditative heartbreak of “No Me, No You, No More” to the exasperated farewell of “Damn It All.” The album is a departure from the Staves’ previous records in that it demonstrates rawness and vulnerability without ever losing its empowerment. You’ll leave the Fitz puffy-eyed and stronger than ever. Afterward, the Staves will follow up with five straight dates in friendly Wisconsin, including three sold-out shows in Vernon’s hometown of Eau Claire. 8 p.m. $22-$47. 10 E. Exchange St., St. Paul; 651-290-1200. November 1 —Jerard Fagerberg




Avalon Theatre

In November 2015, Twin Cities-based artist Junauda Petrus wrote a poem, Could we please give the police departments to the grandmothers?, about a fantasy she had about “fierce, wild elder Black women” who took over the police precincts and made them “love temples with lush gardens.” Around that same time, playwright Erik Ehn had a similar vision, imagining a story about a grandmother who was on a hero’s journey through her own unimaginable grief. In the Heart of the Beast’s Alison Heimsted, a frequent collaborator of Ehn’s, connected the two artists, resulting in the new puppet-based play Queen, co-written by Petrus and Ehn and directed by Heimsted. The work, narrated by Laurie Carlos, evokes current struggles facing African Americans as it weaves contemporary accounts of flight and exile, framing issues of social justice and civil power around the role of witness, compassion, and the power of memory. 7:30 p.m. Friday through Saturday; 2:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. $15. 1500 E. Lake St., Minneapolis; 612-721-2535. September 23 through October 2 —Sheila Regan

Mixed Blood Theatre

Playwright Robert O’Hara is known for exploring the intersections of class, race, and sexual identity in unexpected ways. His breakout Insurrection: Holding History (1996) used time-travel as a device to revisit American slavery; Bootycandy (2014) took a comedic but pointed look at the challenges of being a gay black man. Hilton Als of the New Yorker has already called O’Hara’s new play Barbecue “my idea of an American classic, or the kind of classic we need.” There’s no better venue than Mixed Blood Theatre for this rowdy piece to have its local premiere. Barbecue is about a family mounting a questionably conceived intervention at a picnic. They’re not afraid to give offense to each other or to the audience, and O’Hara further complicates things by flipping the script: We see the family in alternate universes, as both white and black. Eventually, the worlds intersect. A stellar cast — including Regina Marie Williams, Stephen Yoakam, Jevetta Steele, and Sue Scott — will bring this darkly humorous tale to life. 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays through Friday; 8 p.m. Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sundays. Free; $20 guaranteed reservations. 1501 Fourth St. S., Minneapolis; 612-338-0937. September 30 through October 16 —Jay Gabler

TC Horror Fest
The Southern Theater

Theater often explores frightening situations (see: O’Neill), existential horror (see: Beckett), and just plain misery (see: Chekhov). But it’s not too often that you see intestines spilling onto the stage and blood gushing from actors’ throats. The Twin Cities Horror Festival is here to change that. It’s back for a fifth year of things that go bump, and sometimes more than bump, in the night. Without World War Z-size budgets, count on creativity to spur the scares in this mini-festival for theatergoers who aren’t faint of heart. Though the tickets are affordable (with discounts for those who are down for multiple doses of dread), these aren’t cheap thrills. The 10 productions taking the stage at the Southern include shows by some of the area’s best and most creative small theater companies. Savage Umbrella, Four Humors, Dangerous Productions, and others will present works with words like “zombie,” “severed,” “revenge,” “shadows,” and “hot dog” in their titles. Prepare to be pleasantly — which is to say, unpleasantly — surprised. Tickets and showtimes can be found at 1420 S. Washington Ave., Minneapolis; 612-326-1811. October 27 through November 6 —Jay Gabler

The Oldest Boy
Jungle Theater

Did you ever watch Kundun and think, “Okay, this is beautiful, but what if those monks came down from their monastery and showed up at my door to claim my son as the reincarnation of a deity?” That’s exactly what happens in The Oldest Boy, a play about an American couple whose son is discovered to be the latest corporeal form inhabited by the spirit of a holy lama. If you’re not sure exactly what a “lama” is, that’s reason enough to go see the Jungle Theater’s production of this 2014 play by Sarah Ruhl (In the Next Room, or the vibrator play). It provides a primer on Tibetan Buddhism, and gives director Sarah Rasmussen and her team the opportunity to build one of the striking sets the Jungle is known for. Christina Baldwin and Randy Reyes lead the cast of this play about a couple who are asked to make a parenting decision that tests their relationship and their faith. 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays, Sundays; 8 p.m. Fridays through Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sundays. $30-$48. 2951 Lyndale Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-822-7063. November 4 through December 18 —Jay Gabler

Mixed Blood Theatre

The premise of Orange — three teens, including one on the autism spectrum, have an overnight adventure in southern California — makes it sound like a mix between The OC and The Perks of Being a Wallflower. Expect something more substantive, though, from playwright Aditi Kapil (Displaced Hindu Gods trilogy, Agnes Under the Big Top), who’s established herself as one of the most essential playwrights in a town that’s full of them. Orange is premiering at Mixed Blood Theatre, under the direction of Jack Reuler, before heading out to the West Coast. Projected illustrations will expand the world of this coming-of-age story about a girl from India who sets out with her cousin and another companion to find a perfect orange. “The play,” Kapil explains, “wants to position us inside the mind of its protagonist and envelop the audience in all the beauty, fear, and magic of that night when everything changes.” 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays through Friday; 8 p.m. Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sundays. Free; $25 guaranteed reservation. 1501 Fourth St. S., Minneapolis; 612-338-0937. November 11 through December 4 —Jay Gabler




Rogue Citizen at Pop Out
Pop Out

After a hiatus from public exhibition, Rogue Citizen is planning a smashing return at the new Pop Out gallery and event space. Pop Out, which is connected to the Sounds Expensive record label run by Nate Vernon, has housed the artist collective for a couple of months as they create a new crop of work which they’ll be showing in addition to previously unseen older pieces. “Our proposal for an exhibition prompted Nate to land on the [space’s] name, and Rogue Citizen developed the logo,” says RC member Matt Wells, a.k.a. Lizardman. “We’re hoping that there will be enough momentum for Pop Out to grow into its own beast following this show.” Vernon says he plans to continue to work with other artists and groups in the future. “Rogue Citizen at Pop Out” features solo works by collective artists Blaster, Dalsen, Lizardman, Matt McGorry, and Ugaso, plus collaborations with Chuck U and Katie Kroeck. Over 100 pieces will be on display, with hand-painted electric guitars, apparel, works on paper, prints, sculpture, and paintings that range from six inches to 12 feet. 6 p.m. Free. 2014 Central Ave. NE, Minneapolis. September 22 —Sheila Regan

Anthropocenic Midden Survey: Mississippi River
Weisman Art Museum

A year ago, artist Sean Connaughty presented a pop-up show in south Minneapolis featuring the fruits of a kind of archaeological excavation that took place in Lake Hiawatha. Connaughty and his friends had gathered trash bag after trash bag of the waste that had ended up in the lake as a result of litter being drained directly, without any mitigation. He presented his findings as an “anthropocenic midden survey,” a phrase used to describe studying a collection of ancient refuse to better understand that culture. This fall, Connaughty and members of the student group WAM Collective reimagine the the project, this time using “midden” from the Mississippi River gathered from a series of river clean-up days. The crew researched and classified trash found on the East and West Banks of the Twin Cities campus with a goal of creating awareness about our individual actions and how they affect one of the largest river in the United States. The project culminates in a large-scale interactive installation and sculpture using the trash gathered from the river, displayed outside of the museum as part of Open Streets on the University of Minnesota campus. 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. 333 E. River Rd., Minneapolis; 612-625-9494. October 1 —Sheila Regan

Pan American Modernism: Avant-Garde Art in Latin America and the United States
Weisman Art Museum

Culled from the University of Miami’s Lowe Art Museum collection, “Pan American Modernism” is a traveling show in which art, created between 1919 and 1979 from the two Americas, was curated to deepen our understanding of modernism as an intercontinental phenomenon. The 70-some artists hail from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, Guatemala, Mexico, Nicaragua, Peru, Puerto Rico, the United States, Uruguay, and Venezuela. Their works vary in medium, including painting, photography, mixed media, and sculpture. Among the boldface names are Diego Rivera, Lee Krasner, Man Ray, Robert Motherwell, Gordon Matta-Clark, and Edward Weston. But works by less familiar artists go further in demonstrating how, by rejecting a North American-centric view of abstraction and the avant-garde, these 60 years of modern art were infused with innovation. Free. 333 E. River Rd., Minneapolis; 612-625-9494. October 8 through January 1, 2017 —Camille LeFevre

Martin Luther: Art and the Reformation
Minneapolis Institute of Art

It makes sense that a museum in Minnesota, a state known for its large protestant — particularly Lutheran — population, would host the first major exhibition in the United States to survey the impact of the Protestant Reformation through major works of art. The Minneapolis Institute of Art marks the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s Ninety-Five Theses on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences with “Martin Luther: Art and the Reformation,” a show exploring the influence that the movement had on the art world. Featuring paintings, sculptures, gold, textiles, and works on paper, as well as Luther’s personal possessions, the exhibition highlights his belief that art could be used as a tool for worship, teaching, and propaganda. Organized in partnership with four German institutions — the State Museum of Prehistory in Halle, Luther Memorials Foundation in Saxony-Anhalt, German Historical Museum in Berlin, and Foundation Schloss Friedenstein in Gotha — works that have never before left Germany will be on display, offering a fresh look at Luther and the enormous impact the movement had on European culture and spirituality. Archaeological finds from 2004 and 2005 excavations uncovering the household goods of Luther and his family from his boyhood homes in the towns of Eisleben and Mansfeld, as well as his house in Wittenberg, will also be shared. $20. 2400 Third Ave. S., Minneapolis; 612-870-3000. October 30 through January 15, 2017 —Sheila Regan

Question the Wall Itself
Walker Art Center

Architectural Digest. Elle Décor. Houzz, an online community of more than 40 million residential design enthusiasts around the world. House porn, it’s safe to say, is an international obsession and lucrative business. But how often does anyone, much less a curator with a selected roster of artists, delve into the culture, history, symbolism, and materiality of interior design and decor? The discourse starts here, with “Question the Wall Itself.” According to Fionn Meade, exhibition curator and Walker Art Center artistic director, “The exhibition takes as its guiding principle what Belgian artist and poet Marcel Broodthaers termed ‘Esprit Décor,’ a critique of ideas of nationality, the effects of globalization, and the space of the institution through constructed interior scenes.” When is an interior a home? A set or stage? Or a lifestyle prop? How will sculpture, performance, installations, and photographs from 23 international artists cast a global lens on how we read a room? And we’re not just talking houses. Prison cells (paging Foucault), libraries, showrooms, and interior gardens are also examined. 1750 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis; 612-375-7600. November 20 through May 21, 2017 —Camille LeFevre

Verity in Vision: Art at the Edge of Human/Nature
Instinct Gallery

Instinct Gallery continues its fall run with an exhibition that taps into current awe, fear, and excitement (depending on who you ask) about interspecies interaction. The human animal, for example, has always worked to control its environment, with a sentience that may result in an artificial intelligence that will lead to our doom. On the other hand, aren’t we a creative and curious bunch, as the artists in this show — Chase Boston, Kate Casanova, Sean Connaughty, Alison Hiltner, Eric William Carroll, and show curator John Schuerman — will aptly demonstrate. Endlessly inventive, with concerns that span and integrate science and art, these artists will confirm, upend, and illuminate our notions of what we consider human and nonhuman, organic and synthetic. It’s a perfect show for Instinct, which originated several years ago with the intention of examining just these concepts and questions. There will be an opening reception on Saturday, November 12, from 6 to 8 p.m. 940 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis. November 9 through December 17 —Camille LeFevre