This week's must-see art shows

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With July Fourth falling on a Monday this year, it’s going to be a luxuriously long holiday weekend. Whether you're grilling, camping, or taking in a fireworks show, there’s also plenty of great stuff happening on the Twin Cities art scene to supplement your outdoor fun.

"CONFLUENCE: Geography, History, and Culture at the Intersection of the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers"

Where it’s at: Marsden/Gustafson Gallery at IFP MN, 550 Vandalia St., #120, St. Paul.

What it’s about: A 2015 recipient of the Minnesota State Arts Board Artist Initiative Grant, Luke Erickson exhibits his photographs of Minnesota’s great rivers — including the Mississippi, the Minnesota, and the St. Croix — this week at IFP. Using digital and analog rangefinder cameras recalling a documentary tradition, Erickson highlights the rivers’ historic, economic, and social significance — as well as the work we need to do to preserve and protect them.

Why you should go: Like the air we breathe, the water we drink is so second nature that sometimes we take it for granted. It’s only when disasters happen, like the Flint water crisis, that we’re jolted into remembering how vital these resources are to our very survival. Erickson helps remind us of how water remains a cornerstone of our existence by showcasing Minnesota’s rivers.

When: 5-9 p.m. Thursday, June 30.  "Coarsely Fashioned Beauties" 

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Where it’s at: TuckUnder Projects, 5120 York Ave. S., Minneapolis.

What it’s about: Ceramic artist Lynn Wadsworth exhibits her sculptural work for the latest art opening at TuckUnder Projects, located in a home in southwest Minneapolis. The show also features a number of artists’ pieces on display in different parts of the house and yard. Andy Delaney and Lauren Flynn will be sharing ink-jet prints on fabric in an installation called All that is known by people. Other artists to check out include ceramic artist Marisha Erickson; Julia Helen Rice, who is continuing her front yard durational sculpture; Meena Manalvedhekar; Reid Oyen; and an anonymous collective called the Patch of Harald Szeemann.

Why you should go: There’s something very attractive about art openings that take place at somebody’s house, as it's a more relaxed environment than a traditional gallery or museum. Openings at TuckUnder Projects often feel more like hanging out at a summer party, with cool local art on exhibit as a bonus.

When: 6-9 p.m. Thursday.

Prince Art and Sound Show

Where it’s at: Gamut Gallery, 717 S. 10th St., Minneapolis. 

What it’s about: After co-curating a tribute exhibition for David Bowie back in April, Erin Sayer now brings a second event to Gamut Gallery, this time honoring Minnesota’s own musical hero, Prince, who died just a week before the Bowie show opened. The party features over 60 artists celebrating the Purple One, a mural out back by Sayer and Liseli Polivka, a projection of Purple Rain, and DJ sets on all three nights of the exhibition.

Why you should go: From the moment Prince died, it became an inevitable that this would be a year filled with tribute shows of every kind as fans grapple with the loss of such a great artist. This one is not to be missed, with three whole nights dedicated to Prince.

When: 7-11 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, tickets are $10 Thursday and $5 Friday and Saturday.

"ArtPlusOne Series: Silvana Ravena" 

Where it’s at: Veronique Wantz Gallery, 121 N. First. St., Minneapolis.

What it’s about: This week, Veronique Wantz Gallery launches a new “meet the artist” event in conjunction with its ArtPlusOne Series, which will feature the work of a solo artist. First up is Silvana LaCreta Ravena, who will be showing new pieces from her Interdimensional series, incorporating psychological concepts like memory, passage of time, and connection in her abstract works. Ravena will demonstrate her process throughout the evening. Guests will also have a chance to participate in a raffle to win her demo painting, with proceeds going to WARM.

Why you should go: How does an artist take an empty canvas and turn it into something that you might see on a gallery wall? With this event, visitors get a chance to go “behind the scenes,” watching an artist in the midst of the creation process. The experience just might give you a better appreciation for the end result.

When: 5-8 p.m. Thursday. 


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