Travel the world this week through art. Visit Milan through the mixed media works of Paolo Ventura at Weinstein Hammons Gallery, sample Japanese philosophy through sculptural installations by Mayumi Amada at Gordon Parks Gallery, and learn about Palestinian history through Pangea World’s premiere of “Return to Haifa” at Mixed Blood Theatre, And enjoy the rhythm and blues of Malian Ngoni player Bassikou Kouyate. Also this week, Cameron Patricia Downey is showing their work at the Hair + Nails Gallery, and New Native Theater is presenting the US premiere of “This is How We Got Here.”
Milan Per Filho and Per Signo
Paolo Ventura brings together a love letter to his home city, Milan, in an exhibition of 16 works that combines photography, painting and collage, with a focus on the beauty of Milanese architecture. Beginning with an image etched onto multiple canvases fused together, Ventura uses paint to create a dreamlike cityscape, infusing the viewer with emotion and wonder. It is the artist’s third solo exhibition at the gallery, and a companion book to the exhibition, published by Danilo Montanari Editor (Ravenna, 2023). The reception is on Thursday, April 20 from 6pm-8pm at Weinstein Hammons (free). More information here.
That’s how we got here
New Native Theater addresses the issue of teen suicide in the American Indian community with “This is How We Got Here” by Keith Parker, member of the Metis Nation of Ontario. The play won several awards after its premiere in Canada, and received its first US premiere for the production directed by NNT Artistic Director Rihanna Yazzi. The production features a new score, commissioned by NNT, by Danielle Jagielski, member of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin and Redcliff Band of Ojibwe. The play runs through May 7, Wednesday, through Saturday at 7:30 PM and Sunday at 2:00 PM (pay what you can, suggested price $35). More information here.
Zen philosophy and Buddhism Japanese artist Mayumi Amada explores meticulously recycled plastic objects in Once and For All, which opens Friday at the Gordon Parks Gallery at Metro University. Using plastic bottles, grocery bags, egg cartons, and packing foam, Amada uses crochet techniques and other traditional artwork as she contemplates the flow of water in works that reflect her heritage and philosophy. The inaugural reception is on Friday, April 21st from 5pm-7:30pm at Gordon Parks Gallery and runs through June 22nd (free of charge). More information here.
Return to Haifa
The Pangea International Theater’s US premiere of “Return to Haifa” follows a history of controversy over theatrical adaptations of the novel by Palestinian writer and journalist Ghassan Kanafani. Among them: the arrest of Hossam Abu Aisha in the midst of the performance In Israel in 1980. Recently, the novel by American playwright Naomi Wallace and Palestinian-American writer Ismail Khalidi was adapted by The Public Theatre, but performances were canceled due to pressure from the board of directors, According to The Guardian.
The story is about a Palestinian couple who are forced to flee their home during the “Nakba”, when three-quarters of Palestinians were forced to flee their homeland. They return 26 years later in the aftermath of the 1967 Six-Day War when the borders open, and find their home occupied by Miriam, who fled Poland after her father was sent to Auschwitz, and her husband. The lives of the two families are intertwined in complex and painful ways. Pangea’s artistic director Dipankar Mukherjee is directing the production. Starts Friday, April 21 and Saturday, April 22 at 7:30 PM, Sunday, April 23 at 2:30 PM, then Wednesday, May 3 through Friday, May 5 at 7:30 PM, and Saturday, May 6 at 2:30 PM at Mixed Blood Theater ($18). More information here.
Lord split me open
Hailing from North Minneapolis, Cameron Patricia Downey’s career has skyrocketed in the past few years, showing work in Germany, New Zealand, New York and Minnesota. During that time, Downey’s work has been shown several times with the Hair + Nails gallery, both at the Minneapolis location and at art festivals around the United States. takes place in all rooms of the South Minneapolis Gallery. Through photography, video and sculpture, Downey looks at the sponge of truth regarding memory and the way we document history. The opening reception is taking place Saturday, April 22 from 6pm-9pm at Hair + Nails Offer valid until May 28th (for free). More information here.
An evening with Bassekou Kouyate and Ngoni ba
Malian musician Baseko Kouyaté has performed with legends like Bonnie Raitt, Bono, and the Taj Mahal, and won fans over with the magic he created with the Ngoni, a lute-like instrument Kouyate mastered. His band Ngoni Ba is playing at Cedar Cultural Centre, after their last show at Big Ears festival, where Kouyate sang with Bela Fleck. Saturday, April 22 at 8 p.m. at Cedar ($27 in advance, $32 per day of the show). More information here.