Tag Archives: Artists of NW Minnesota

Artists of Northwest Minnesota Promotional Booklet — Submit your application Today!

DEADLINE EXTENDED TO NOVEMBER 10!

The Northwest Minnesota Arts Council is updating our Artists of Northwest Minnesota booklet and will be printing 3,000 copies of our 5th edition this winter. This is a marketing booklet that will be distributed throughout our region.

We are looking for a variety of creative people and artists to provide information for this booklet, but we’d love to include bands, musicians, performing artists, or writers. The cost for a listing for individuals is $20. In addition to the listing you will receive 20 booklets, which makes the listing practically free!  The booklet helps those who are listed reach out to the general public and is a means to help the public “get in touch with them” to purchase art, book them, or have them provide a service. The booklet will include visual artists, fine crafters, performing artists like musicians, dancers, actors, creative writers, fine art photographers, creative videographers, serious graphic artists, interior design artists, landscape artists, journalists, screenwriters, history writers, editors, artistic architects, very unique artsy floral designers, theater directors, choreographers, accompanists, bands, folk musicians, and more.

While our approach will be inclusive, criteria will be applied related to selection.  Things like tattoo, taxidermy, kit crafters, pre-existing patterns from a book crafters, and purchased ceramics that are just painted don’t fit as nicely unless they are over the top excellent in technique or if they are preserving a fine artistic tradition like Rosemaling, for instance. Please contact us if you have questions.

Arts organizations, dance studios, stores with local art, local suppliers of supplies and materials for artists, coffee shops that have open mic or live bands often, etc. will be included in the back of the booklet.

If you would like to be listed, please print out an entry form, fill it out and mail to us. Here is the form:

There is also an entry form for businesses. It also costs $20 for businesses/groups that want to have a logo or picture in the booklet. Here is the form for businesses: NWMAC Groups Application form 2017 edition.

We are also considering briefly listing very artistic local festivals in this edition. These festivals would need to have a very strong history of existence – since we print every three years + an “arts budget” of a certain amount to qualify.  If you think your festival qualifies and you are interested in being listed, please contact Mara at director@nwartscouncil.org.

To see the 4rd edition booklet that was published three years ago, click here.

Please spread the word to other creative and artistic residents in our region!

 

Northwest Star Award Winner is Joe Wavra

The Northwest Minnesota Arts Council is pleased to announce that Joe Wavra of Red Lake Falls has been selected as the 2020 Northwest Minnesota Star Artist of the Year for his lifetime achievement in wood carving. Wavra received his award at a program in Red Lake Falls.

Wavra is a self-taught chainsaw carver and owner of Klondike Carvings. His carvings include life-sized Vikings, trolls, Voyageurs, Wind Spirits, walleyes, and eagles. He has had no formal training. Fifteen years ago, he started with small hand tools and then progressed into chainsaws. He has been a full-time carver for 5 years. 

A prolific artist and community-minded, Wavra has created many carvings for communities in our region, including benches on trails in Red Lake Falls, sculptures, and trolls throughout Thief River Falls. He’s also been one of the organizers of Summerfest. Northwest Minnesota Arts Council Board Chair Briana Ingraham said, “he’s always willing to donate carvings to fundraising events for families in need or community events.”

Asked about his creative process, Wavra said, “Practice, practice, repetition, muscle memory. Shut the critical part of your mind off and let the creative part go.” Wavra doesn’t draw the design beforehand. He just starts. “It was a natural for me. I take out the parts that are in the way – it’s already in there. I just need to reveal it.”

Red Lake Falls Summerfest Chair Janet Wiskow explained, “Joe has shown over his many years here that he is an avid artist who is always willing to let others see how he creates his masterpieces, always willing to ensure his art is accessible to others, and is always willing to help our community thrive. He has been instrumental in the success of Summerfest.”

Red Lake Falls Mayor Allen Bertilrud shared that Wavra’s “artwork has added a unique beauty to our little town… Making art accessible to the young, the old, and everyone in between. He draws on our cultural history and memorializes it for the next generation. He has done so much over his long career to bring our past, our heritage, and our northwest Minnesota wildlife to life in his sculptures.”

The Northwest Star Artist Award is given each year to recognize artists within our seven-county region who stand out in terms of artistry. Of the Year Award winners are nominated by area residents. This award comes with $5,000. Artists can only receive our Northwest Star Award once, as a lifetime achievement award. Funding for the Northwest Star comes from the McKnight Foundation.  

Congratulations Joe Wavra on winning the Northwest Star Award!

Bruce Piersol is NW Arts Advocate of the Year

Bruce Piersol is Northwest Arts Advocate of the Year

The Northwest Minnesota Arts Council is pleased to announce this year’s recipient for the Arts Advocate of the Year Award is Bruce Piersol of Red Lake Falls.

Bruce Piersol Arts Advocate of the Year

Piersol was the long-time school band director in Red Lake Falls and is now retired. His bands have marched on the street and football fields, as well as performed concert, jazz, and ensemble music in school and public settings. As a teacher, he was dedicated to connecting his students to the community as much as possible. He arranged for his students to play around town at the senior center, upstairs at the courthouse, and at community events, including Summerfest. 

Piersol continues to be involved in music in the area by playing in the University of Minnesota Crookston Community Band, coordinating and singing in a Red Lake Falls community choir, and organizing and playing in a brass quintet called Windblown

According to Northwest Minnesota Arts Council Board Chair Briana Ingraham, “Bruce brings music to people who otherwise might not be able to get out and enjoy it. He has done so much to ensure people of all ages are exposed to and enjoy music.” 

Red Lake Falls resident JoAnn Zutz explained, “Bruce has always been a promoter of the arts. He was instrumental in organizing, finding appropriate music, and then conducting a community choir to sing a Christmas or Easter cantata.”

In addition to teaching band, Piersol also taught photography at the high school. His wife Ann was the art teacher. When his students performed a band concert, the couple collaborated by putting up an art show next to it.

Our Arts Advocate of the Year award is given each year to recognize arts advocates within our seven-county region who stand out in terms of volunteerism in the arts. “Of the Year” award winners were nominated by area residents. This award comes with a cash award of $500.00. Funding for the Northwest Arts Advocate of the Year comes from the Minnesota State Legislature.

Of the Year Award Winners Announced

The Northwest Minnesota Arts Council is Pleased to Announce
Of the Year Award Winners

Three awards are given each year to recognize artists and arts advocates within our seven county region who stand out in terms of artistry or volunteerism in the arts. Many times people serve in both roles. Of the Year Award winners were nominated by area residents.

2020 Of the Year Award Winners include:

Rob Burkel of Thief River Falls will be awarded the Northwest Artist of the Year Award for theater arts. Rob has been involved in theater in the Thief River Falls area for 30 years. His dedication and talent is well known and admired. Our Artist of the Year award can be given to any discipline artist including visual, performing, or creative writing who are emerging or at a mid-way point in their artistic endeavors. It is a cash award of $500.00.

NW Artist of the Year Rob Burkel in The Boys Next Door

Bruce Piersol of Red Lake Falls will be awarded the Northwest Arts Advocate of the Year Award. Mr. Piersol is a musician and a strong advocate for the arts. He has performed and organized numerous musical groups bringing music to people who otherwise might not be able to experience it. Our Arts Advocate of the Year award is $500 and includes arts from all disciplines.

NW Arts Advocate of the Year Bruce Piersol

Joe Wavra of Red Lake Falls will receive the Northwest Star Award. Mr. Wavra is a self-taught wood carver, creating life-size animals, Vikings, and trolls with a chainsaw. His carvings can be found throughout the area. This award comes with $5,000. Artists can only receive our Northwest Star Award once as a lifetime achievement award.

NW Star Award Winner Joe Wavra

These awards will be presented on Tuesday, August 18 in Red Lake Falls. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, our celebration of these wonderful artists and leaders in our area will be limited to close friends and family.

Funding for Northwest Star and Northwest Artist of the Year comes from The McKnight Foundation. Funding for Northwest Arts Advocate of the Year comes from the Minnesota State Legislature.