Thursday, September 1, 2011

Culturology 9-1: Summer's last hurrah

by Travis Ryder
Lory Worthing doesn’t have a permanent studio right now.  When she paints, she either brings her watercolors out into her living room, overlooking Amen Lake north of Grand Rapids, or she sets up down by the water.  So she brought her studio… to our studios.

Lory Worthing chooses a lot of water-related subjects – sunfish are one of her favorite.  She also brought along some more whimsical pieces, like one of mice using a big leaf as a boat, and a depiction of freshwater mermaids.  Don’t let the light subject matter fool you.  Lory Worthing has a deep and philosophical connection to making art, and she lets us in on some of her thoughts.  First, we talk about the finer points of her current favored medium: watercolor.

 Worthing told me her next challenge is depicting more personal and emotional works in the rich medium of oil paints. She has work on display at Frame Up and MacRostie Art Center, both in Grand Rapids.  

Courtesy: royal_broil via Flickr
Volunteer producer Dave Lathrop headed to the Hibbing Raceway to learn about how family connections play into motorsports.  He found that the upstarts, the NASCAR vets, and even the fans tend to have racing in their blood.  Some families go three and four generations deep into racing history, with Grandpa (who hit the dirt tracks in the Fifties) helping the grandkids get started on the kart circuit.  Take a trip to the track with your ears, here.

Culture Calendar: Thursday, Sept. 1
Heavy music from Colmekill and Fifth Floor at the Minnesota Discovery Center in Chisholm starting at 7.  Free admission to the Center starts at 5 with access to all the exhibits, including the current ones: "Peanuts...Naturally," "Minnesota On The Map," and photo exhibits about the Range in the '20s to '50s era and today.

Friday, Sept. 2
Community celebrations in our region this weekend include the hundredth annual Farmers’ Day celebration in Bovey throughout the long weekend, with a Parade Monday morning, and Wild Rice Days all weekend in McGregor.  Their parade is Saturday afternoon.
First Friday Art Walk in Bemidji:  including a touring exhibition from the Textile Center at the Bemidji Community Art Center, mobiles from Mali Mattson at Wild Hare Bistro, mixed media from Maria Thompson at Bad Cat Creations, and an open mic event at Rail River Folk School.
First Friday in Grand Rapids includes an opening reception at MacRostie Art Center for painter Alice Blessing and photographer John Connelly.  Blessing juxtaposes works depicting grandmothers with ones showing preteen beauty pageant contestants.  Connelly’s photography documents Itasca County agriculture.  Also Friday from 5 to 7, Painter JK Herman is on hand at Wings and Willows gallery with her new exhibition, The Red Series.
Harp Concert in Bemidji with mother and daughter Karin and Joy Gunderson will include harp duets, also singing and flute.  7 p.m., Calvary Lutheran Church in Bemidji.
Astronaut Jones has solo original acoustic rock at The Beanery in Aitkin at 8 p.m.
Psych-rockers The Color Pharmacy play Brigid’s Cross Pub in Bemidji at 9:30 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 3
Storyhill Fest is an intimate and interactive musical and outdoors activity event at Presbyterian Clearwater Forest Camp near Deerwood this Saturday and Sunday. All ages are included.  Headlining musical acts include Storyhill, Peter Mayer, and Ray Bonneville. 
The Brainerd Jaycees have a street festival with a rib cookoff, battle of the bands, and evening street dance, all in downtown Brainerd Saturday.
Highway 84 in the Longville and Pine River area is the place for a stretch of arts exhibitions and activities throughout the weekend.  Details and a map can be found at

Tuesday, Sept. 6
Lyric Center for the Arts presents its Words and Lyrics series, with Joanne Bergman reading from the columns of the late Nelmi Koivu, writer for the Cook News-Herald for over 50 years.  This event is at 6:30 p.m. in downtown Virginia. 

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