Weekend Best Bets: May 13-16

Your guide to this weekend around the Twin Cities: Art-A-Whirl, the MSP Film Society’s global fest, a Sculpture Garden event, the outdoor Twin Cities Auto Show, and more
An exhibit about stillness opens at the Walker, including Franz Erhard Walther's "Definierter Ort, beweglich Ziele (Defined Place, Mobile Targets)"
An exhibit about stillness opens at the Walker, including Franz Erhard Walther’s “Definierter Ort, beweglich Ziele (Defined Place, Mobile Targets)”

Photo by Nicholas Knight Studio/Courtesy of the artist and Peter Freeman

40 Years of Global Films

What: Minneapolis-St. Paul International Film Festival
When: May 13-23
Where: Online and in-person (Como Lakeside Pavilion, 1360 Lexington Parkway N., St. Paul)

The 40th annual festival is a hybrid model this year, as a mostly virtual fest with select in-person outdoor screenings in Minneapolis and St. Paul. The massive lineup will feature over 150 films from across the globe, to screen over two weekends. In addition to thought-provoking international filmmakers, you can watch veteran and first-time filmmakers of Minnesota in the mix through the Minnesota Made program. The debut weekend, from May 13-15, takes place at Como Lakeside Pavilion.

Speaking for the Trees

What: Tree Time
When: Thursday, May 13, 5-8 p.m. 
Where: Minneapolis Sculpture Garden

In a continuation of a digital workshop in October, the Walker heads into the Sculpture Garden to gain insight into the relationship between humans and trees. Wander through the maze of trees that form a living gateway into our history and are crucial to our future, with help from Professor Karen Lutsky of the Great Lakes Design Lab. This free, drop-in, and self-guided workshop functions through a series of prompts (also posted online) that aim to grant a new perspective on how trees comprise an accessible part of our lives. 

Whirlwind of Art

What: Art-A-Whirl
When: May 14-16
Where: Virtual and in-person

Like many events, Art-A-Whirl is experiencing a hybrid adaptation this year, with virtual and in-person activities that offer a wide range of artistic media to tour in northeast Minneapolis. Some studios, galleries, and businesses will open their doors this weekend; you can find them using the Northeast Minneapolis Arts Association website, which also allows you to buy art online and locate food and activities. (Those visiting in-person must wear masks and practice social distancing.)

Still Life at the Walker

What: The Paradox of Stillness: Art, Object, and Performance
When: May 15-August 8
Where: Walker Art Center, 725 Vineland Place, Minneapolis

Also at the Walker Art Center this weekend (see Tree Time, above), a new exhibit, The Paradox of Stillness: Art, Object, and Performance, debuts, and it’s all about the “performative and visual gesture” of stillness. That means more than 100 works by about 60 international artists together posing the question, “Where does the border lie between stasis and motion, between death and life?” Expect the heightened poses of tableau, the stuck-in-time nature of a still life, and more as artists transpose these artistic ideas as actions.

Gassed Up

What: Twin Cities Auto Show
When: May 15-22, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; May 23, 10 a.m.-7 p.m.
Where: Minnesota State Fairgrounds, 1265 Snelling Ave N., St. Paul 

This is the first time in 48 years that the largest auto show in the Upper Midwest will be held outdoors at the State Fairgrounds, featuring fair food favorites. The event has daily events and shows that highlight cars ranging from luxury to vintage.

Chasing the White Rabbit

What: Wonderland
When: May 15-16, two showtimes per day
Where: James J. Hill House, 240 Summit Ave., St. Paul

Fall into Collide Theatrical Dance Company’s rendition of a classic in a pop-rock dance performance that follows the stories of the White Rabbit, Alice, and the Queen as they navigate “Wonderland”—a psychiatric hospital. The rabbit has severe anxiety disorder, Alice has body dysmorphia, and the Queen suffers from narcissistic rage. This 70-minute updated story of acceptance and friendship questions what “normal” truly means, created by Collide Theatrical Dance Company artistic director Regina Peluso, with choreography by the company. Taking place at the historic James J. Hill House, the production intends to follow COVID-19 safety guidelines.

Activism Through Song

What: Witness 2021
When: Sunday, May 16, 4 p.m.-5:15 p.m.
Where: Virtual

VocalEssence’s Witness concert explores African American heritage as well as activism and resistance in this annual concert of songs that voice a history of challenging the country’s status quo. Along with the VocalEssence chorus and ensemble singers, hear from the group’s Singers Of This Age—a team of 40 young people from metro-area high schools—as the collective sets out to tackle social injustice through music.