Energy: Made Here

Energy: Made Here features the work of more than 30 Minnesota artists. Their works explore the theme “energy.” Open to interpretation, artists explore what “energy” means to them – from sources of inspiration to what powers our world. The run fills 20 window displays until April 4, 2018 in WeDo™.

View a printable map or learn more about our Arts Advisory Panel.

2. 901 Hennepin Avenue (Le Méridien Chambers Minneapolis)

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 107: Anthony Chapin + Erin Lavelle
Title: breathe

Breathe brings to life the energy centers that exist within our human bodies in the form of the chakra system. In this visual representation, the chakras appear out of balance in two of the figures, and then in balance on the figure who practices conscious breathing, a component of meditation.
We aim to bring attention to the energy and power within our own beings, and promote the ability of using conscious breath as a means to regain balance amidst the backdrop of the surrounding urban landscape of downtown Minneapolis.

We invite you to open your QR reader to scan the code and breathe with us.

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 108: Galen Higgins
Title: Untitled

Dance, in many ways, is the gathering, shaping and dispersion of energy. It is first transferred to the dancer, and then through the dancer’s movement sent back into the world with new intention and texture. The goal of my photographic work is to use my years of dance training to influence how dance imagery is captured and displayed, with the hope that it may afford the onlooker the experience of fulfilling the movement that they behold.

This display features a selection of Minnesota-trained dancers, with whom I have collaborated and photographed.

3. 730 Hennepin Avenue (City Place Lofts)

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 109: Andersen Windows

Creativity has been acknowledged as one of the most predominant factors contributing to individual performance in various domains of work, and researchers have been devoting increasing attention to the study of creative performance. Analysis has revealed that creativity is stronger when the person possesses strong extrinsic motivation. Creative Ideas and Motivation combine into a type of force, and this force is a type of Energy.

E = Ci x M

The images in this presentation are examples of creativity and motivation in action. These delightful homes use windows in unexpected ways representing passions, interests and aesthetics.

What does the “energy” behind an “idea” look like? The “box” in the foreground showing a lightbulb and a radiometer is an attempt to answer the question.

A light bulb has long been a symbol of “having an idea.” The spinning object next to the light bulb is a “Radiometer” commonly used to visualize heat transfer through a window. The vanes or wings are alternately dark and light in color. When the light strikes these wings, it transfers heat to each one — but not to the same degree. The lighter wing reflects the rays, and the dark wing absorbs the rays. When the atoms inside the Radiometer strike the dark vanes, they take on a great deal of energy and “kick” away at terrific speed. The vane begins to spin as the bits of air continue to “kick” away from the dark-sided vane. The light “motivates” the movement. Energy is a measure of how fast the wings spin.

Make a creative idea into reality.

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 110: Minneapolis MAD DADS: Keynon Starks + V. J. Smith
Title: Untitled

MAD DADS, Inc. was founded in May 1989 by a group of concerned Omaha Nebraska African-American men and parents who were fed up with gang violence and the unmolested flow of illegal drugs in their community.

These men understood that they could not hold any one responsible for this but themselves, because they had allowed this to happen.

They presented themselves as positive role models and concerned loving parents who were a visible presence in communities against the negative forces destroying children, families and neighborhoods. MAD DADS started out of pain, the pain of children dying in the streets of their own communities. They were, and still are, tired of looking into the hollow eyes of youth who lack hope, and who have ceased to dream. These men realized that they could hold no one responsible for this but themselves; they had allowed this to happen. So they united as a handful of community fathers who have come to know that they must be the force behind change. A change that is already taking place across America as men begin the monumental task of rescuing their children, families and cities from drugs, gangs and violence. At long last, men are coming to the forefront of the battle!

As such, MAD DADS activities are designed to promote and demonstrate positive images of fathers engaging and protecting community, youth and families.

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 111: Global Rights for Women: Marissa Murdy + Sarah White
Title: The Global Pandemic of Domestic Violence

Marissa Murdy

I am a fine art photographer, world traveler and women’s rights activist. I have always been curious about vulnerability, relationships and what happens behind closed doors, which is where my photography has stemmed from. My goals as an artist are to help end violence against women locally and internationally and express women’s experiences through art.

My interest in photographing survivors of domestic abuse came from my recent project “Our Experiences: Surviving Sexual Assault.” For this project I worked with Global Rights for Women & local shelters to photograph survivors of domestic abuse in Minnesota and Romania. As courageous and difficult it is to leave their abuser, it is important to understand the harsh reality these women face everyday. Whether it’s living in constant fear, escaping their abuser, raising children as a single mother, experiencing injustice in the legal system or having to relocate and start over, each survivor has their own story. My hope is that sharing these strong and beautiful women’s experiences allows other survivors to feel they are not alone.

Sarah White (Fotos For Barcelona)

My personal art journey and life path have crossed into part of my life’s purpose. I make art to heal from trauma both individually and collectively, and to tell stories that need to be heard. To remind us we are human. Remind us of the many ways we are all the same…

My passion with photography runs deep into the intimate experience and honor of the connection that it builds with my muse, and the eyes that experience it. With my lens, I can find beauty in everyone. I stay vulnerable throughout the whole process, there to learn as much as uplift any story that needs to be heard.

As a fine artist, activist, mother, Black Woman, songstress and healer — this project is very important to me. Too often, Domestic Abuse is normalized in our society, and survivors voices are silenced.

I am in awe of these brave spirits, their beautiful courage and the POWER of being SEEN.

Global Rights for Women collaborates with partners around the world to promote women’s human rights to equality and freedom from violence through legal reform and systems change.

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 112: Akiko Ostlund

Nina Simone said

“How can you be an artist and not reflect the times?”

I make a giant collage with images of beautiful indigenous, black and brown bodies in our community to fill a downtown store front.

This is the way I push back. This is how I resist.

This is me stepping over white fear, doing bachata on white fragility.

One collage at a time I tell the world:

We are here. We are not going anywhere.

Because America ain’t shit without us.

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 113: Nick Knutson, Ben Severns + Nick Smith
Title: Construct///Obstruct

This city has been littered in orange and white stripes, dust, dirt and noise. For the past year we have all been under preparation for a game. The energy it takes to put on this show is never seen on a national stage, showing this energy is the visual goal of Construct///Obstruct.

An amalgamation of lights, projections and geometric obstructions make up this body of work. The brightness and pulse of the spotlights are meant to directly reference the construction hazards, and at the same time the spectacle of a stadium. Orange stripes envelop the borders of space in the installation, calling to order between hazard and havoc. A video projected on a replica of “The People’s Stadium” frames imagery of stressed congestion and frantic reprise.

I have been drawn to more primary geometric shapes in sculpture, similar to the facade design of the us bank stadium. Against popular opinion, I somewhat admire the architecture of the stadium. With its scale and shape, the stadium brings its own unique voice to the Minneapolis skyline.

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 115: Donald Thomas
Title: Stardust Us; Rivers Touch, Home

“Stardust Us; Rivers Touch, Home” is about home, a reminder of who calls this place home and the energy that feels like home.

Home is as much the Mississippi River Valley as it is the entire planet, the solar system, the galaxy and beyond. Everything that makes up this home comes from stardust. Indigenous people native to this homeland call themselves Star People and know they come from the stars. This woven art explores the Bdote they call the center of the world and is the meeting of the Minnesota River and the Haha Wakpa/ Gichi-Ziibii (Mississippi River).

I moved near this point three years ago; the energy of the river and surrounding woods have been transformative. I am beginning to learn more about this home … this river valley, and this is a thanks to the anceStars.

This is indigenous land, planet, solar system, galaxy, we are all connected.

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 116: Giuliana Pinto
Title: Underneath

The endurance of our natural world is inspiring. From harsh winters to human interference, nature ventures to survive. This piece is inspired by the idea that even in the dead of winter there is a hidden energy under the layers of ice and snow. This piece is about honoring that energy.

Giuliana is an installation artist based in Minneapolis, MN. Her work focuses on creating interactive environments designed to engage participants in a playful manner while asking them to pause for personal reflection and exploration.

4. 40 South 7th Street (City Center)

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 117: Rock Johnsen
Title: Recreating Nature, where science becomes art

This work is to be a reminder of Earth’s power to create. Crystals and gemstones naturally form in the earth because of heat, pressure and time. I recreate this environment, then let nature do its thing, with a little guidance. These concentrated zinc crystals are grown on a ceramic surface and easily manipulated with heat fluctuation, giving me the opportunity to show what is generally a microscopic process. These visual representations let you take a peek at what is at work underneath our feet. I hope this work reminds you that the world is amazing and fragile.

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 118: Jayson Randall
Title: Refilled

This showcase is centered around my interactive electronic sculpture entitled Refilled, which is a conceptual work of art utilizing over 1,000 individual pieces.

The sculpture consists of a satellite dish receiving an electronic transmission beam. The 6’ long freestanding beam is composed of several hundred interlocking prescription pill bottles of varying size. Each individual bottle contains a unique modern relic. Constructing the internal support structure from sheet metal and acrylic allows for experimental controlled-release illumination.

Refilled radiates light from an interactive, multicolored source, that reacts to sonic energy. Ambient sounds alter the color of light that Refilled displays.

Flowing natural forms and the interplay of light and shadow inspire me. I am intrigued by the colors in nature that can be reproduced by experimenting with different techniques and mediums. Discarded industrial objects call out as they are encountered. A story is told of when their hard work was integral to the function of humanity; their service is no longer required. The combination of mysterious forms with common human interactions and the relationship between useful and forgotten is explored.

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 119: Heather M. Cole
Title: Burst

I am interested in the transformation of things — both the concept of changing or having a new purpose and the physical change from one thing to another.

My work revolves around the transformation of common, everyday objects and materials into art that prompts, and hopefully, inspires the viewer to look at these objects in a new way.

When I make my work, I think about the life cycle of the original object as I am working with it. I also visualize the larger story of the object being a waste material moving through the world with multiple paths, some potentially very destructive to our own existence.

My hope in creating and exhibiting this work is to cause the viewer to consider personal actions and choices that either create or reduce larger impacts in their own lives as well as on the larger environment as a whole.

In 1907, chemist Leo Hendrik Baekland formulated for a new synthetic polymer originating from coal tar. “Bakelite.” By 1909, Baekland had coined “plastics.”

A study published Science Advances estimates the total amount of plastic ever produced throughout the world to be 8,300 million metric tons.

600 Hennepin Avenue (Mayo Clinic Square)

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 120: Maya Washington, Hannah Foslien + Tom Baker
Title: Legendary

Legendary is a collaboration between Maya Washington, Hannah Foslien and Tom Baker. The work is inspired by Maya Washington’s documentary film Through the Banks of the Red Cedar about her father, football legend Gene Washington, who was a member of the first fully integrated college football team in America. As pedestrians pass by, they will feel the textures of a bygone era in Minnesota history through dignified portraiture of football legends, Carl Eller, Alan Page and Gene Washington, while considering how their physical experiences live on through today’s players. We hope that audiences of all ages will feel inspired to learn more about these pioneers and consider the impact aging and athleticism have on the body.

Photo by Steven Lang

Showcase 121: Neal Peterson
Title: Urban Mandalas

This collage of Minneapolis was created using hundreds of photos taken throughout the city. It is one in a series of Urban Mandalas that pay tribute to cities around the world. Inspired by Buddhist art, this mandala represents a community and our connection to all people and things. For more information and cities, visit