The thrill of Light Rail Transit connecting St. Paul and Minneapolis is set to begin in 2014, but a new train-based music and art project will enliven Union Depot even sooner. The Station to Station tour, aka multimedia artist Doug Aitken's latest "Happening," is stopping at the St. Paul Depot as part of a ten-city trip on the rails between New York's Brooklyn Navy Yard and 16th Street Station in Oakland.
Each date of the tour features different activities specific to the site, and all embrace a multidisciplinary approach to performance art. Participating musicians include Beck, Cat Power, Dan Deacon, Giorgio Moroder, and many more, and the visual artists involved range from Black Flag collaborator Raymond Pettibon to Pop art pioneer Ed Ruscha. This should prove to be a once-in-a-lifetime event, and prove to send a creative spark bouncing through the streets of St. Paul.
The Station to Station event at Union Depot is scheduled to take place on Thursday, September 12. Details are still forthcoming, but so far the musicians confirmed for the evening include Patti Smith performing acoustically with son Jackson Smith, Fiery Furnaces singer Eleanor Friedberger, garage punk duo White Mystery, and punk deconstructionists No Age, with more to follow.
Visually, expect to see Minnesota-based Kate Casanova's Vivarium Americana -- a sculptural work in which the interior of a black 1976 AMC Pacer has become overgrown with live oyster mushrooms -- parked on the premises. There will also be a performance choreographed by the BodyCartography Project, utilizing produce from Walker Art Center-commissioned Fritz Haeg's Edible Gardens.
Tickets for all Station to Station events go on sale on Friday, August 9. The St. Paul event tickets are $25 and can be obtained here.
Update: A video focusing on the Minneapolis-St. Paul community.
Here's the rest of the Station to Station schedule:
New York - September 6, 2013
The new, state-of-the-art Duggal Greenhouse is the setting for the New York Happening and launch of Station to Station. Performers appearing in New York include No Age, Charlotte Gainsbourg & Connan Mockasin, Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti, Jim Jarmusch & SQÜRL, Boredoms, and others to be announced.
Pittsburgh - September 8, 2013
The Pennsylvanian was designed and constructed around 1900, and was originally a train terminus and office building for the Pennsylvania railroad. The Happening in Pittsburgh will feature performances by Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti, The Boredoms, No Age, and others to be announced.
Chicago - September 10, 2013
Originally designed by famed architect Daniel Burnham and completed in 1925 by the Graham, Anderson, Probst and White Firm, the Beaux Arts-style building is the setting for the Chicago Happening, which will feature performances by Black Monks of Mississippi (choreography by Theaster Gates) and No Age, among others to be announced. Chicago-based artist Theaster Gates and Black Monks of Mississippi will bring together elements of Eastern restraint, Gospel, and Blues music that is sure to be a transcendent and participatory experience.
Twin Cities - September 12, 2013
Union Depot in downtown St. Paul has been transformed from a defunct rail station to an active transportation center in the heart of a thriving urban neighborhood and serves as the terminus of Twin Cities' newest LRT line, connecting the downtowns of Minneapolis and St. Paul. The evening will include performances by Eleanor Friedberger, No Age, and others to be announced.
Santa Fe / Lamy - September 18, 2013
The site of the opening scenes of David Bowie's The Man Who Fell to Earth, Lamy is a desolate town with a population of approximately 220 people and a single room train station. Station to Station will merge with this desert landscape to create a unique Happening. Performers include Cat Power, The Handsome Family, Nite Jewel, THEESatisfaction, and others to be announced.
Winslow - September 21, 2013
Located 35 miles from James Turrell's Roden Crater, Winslow exists as an underground art community that was created through the passage of the rails and Route 66. The La Posada, built by the Santa Fe Railway, will feature performances by Cat Power, Cold Cave, Giorgio Moroder, THEESatisfaction, and others to be announced. Ed Ruscha gave Station to Station a recipe for a cactus omelet, and Chef Leif Hedendal will prepare the omelet for 200 people. This edible artwork will be served only in Winslow, and the recipe itself will be used to make a poster.
Barstow - September 24, 2013
In Barstow, Station to Station will move into a large, high-desert drive-in movie theater. At dusk, the entire grounds of the two-screen drive-in will be activated by experimental music and performances that will merge with moving images projected on the drive-in screens. The Skyline Drive-In will feature musical performances by Beck, Cat Power, No Age, Cold Cave, Lucky Dragons, and others to be announced. Peter Coffin's UFO will fly over Barstow during the Happening. The aluminum UFO structure is covered in 3,000 individually controlled LEDs displaying a series of changing patterns.
Los Angeles - September 26, 2013
Union Station is the main railway station in Los Angeles. In recent years, it has become a major transportation hub for Southern California serving 60,000 passengers a day. The Happening will feature performances by Beck, Dan Deacon, Sun Araw & The Congos, No Age, and others to be announced.
Oakland/San Francisco - September 28, 2013
The final Happening on the Station to Station journey will take place at the historic 16th Street Station in Oakland, California. Musical performances include Dan Deacon, Savages, Sun Araw & The Congos, Lia Ices, Twin Shadow, No Age, and others to be announced.
Read more about the project here.