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Potato art, art and mental health: Four art happenings this week

Nguyen Trinh Thi

Nguyen Trinh Thi

Surreal cityscapes, artists working at the intersection of art and mental health, anti-colonial documentary-making and a bit of navel-oriented art make up what to see in the art world this week. 

Deborah Aschheim

Deborah Aschheim

Deborah Aschheim: Artist Talk and Opening Reception

Where it’s at: Bethel University, 3900 Bethel Dr., St. Paul 

What it’s about: In 2015, artist Deborah Aschheim created “Camelot,” a site-specific series of illuminated white sculptures for the Los Angeles International Airport. The collection offered a mish-mash of urban architecture, buildings from different cities, hybrids of different towers, and ghosts of buildings long ago torn down, playing with the state of disorientation travelers may feel as they wander jet-lagged through airports. For “Landmark,” her new series of work at Bethel University, Aschheim builds on “Camelot” with new sculptures and drawings that further investigate the notions of memory, myth making, and geography. 

Why you should go: Travel to imagined places with Aschheim’s dream-like cityscape creations, and find out a bit about the ongoing project at the artist talk. 

When: 6-8 p.m. Wednesday

“InVISIBLE” Opening Reception

Where it’s at: Circa Gallery, 1125 Buchanan St. NE, Minneapolis 

What it’s about: For World Mental Health Day, UCare and Circa Gallery will use art to raise mental health visibility. The juried show includes individual pieces by 21 artists, as well as collaboratively created works. 

Why you should go: What do mental health, art, and social change have to do with each other? Find out at this exhibition at Circa’s new space in northeast Minneapolis. 

When: 5:30-7:30 p.m. Thursday; the show is on view through Saturday, October 12. 

Artist Talk: Nguyen Trinh Thi

Where it’s at: Minneapolis Institute of Art, 2400 Third Ave. S., Minneapolis

What it’s about: Hanoi-based film/media artist Nguyen Trinh Thi runs Hanoi DocLab, a center for documentary and experimental films and video art. This week she will be speaking, via web cam, about her latest work. The talk is in conjunction with the premiere of her new hybrid essay-film, Fifth Cinema (2018), which explores how film can be used to reclaim indigenous history and land from colonization. The screening and artist talk is part of Mia’s latest exhibition, “Artists Respond: American Art and the Vietnam War, 1965–1975.” 

Why you should go: Nguyen Trinh Thi's Fifth Cinema draws on pop culture, government films, found footage, home movies, and YouTube videos to deconstruct power and illuminate new ways of representation. 

When: 6:30 to 8 p.m. Thursday. Tickets are $10. Reserve online here or call 612-870-3000.

"Omphalos"

"Omphalos"

“Omphalos” Opening Reception

Where it’s at: Future Tense Gallery, 2205 California St., the California Building, Suite 310, Minneapolis 

What it’s about: Artist Elizabeth Garvey meditates on origins, connection, and loss in this solo exhibition that utilizes everything from casts of bellybuttons to raw potatoes. The title of the show, “Omphalos,” comes from the Ancient Greek word meaning bellybutton, and also refers to a sacred stone in Delphi that, according to myth, is the center of the world. 

Why you should go: There’s not enough potato art in the world. Get to this show while you have a chance.