Thursday, June 23, 2005

Tornado hits Minnesota!

On June 20, a tornado and wind storm hit both the county I am living in (Ottertail) and the county I am working in (Wadena). I was painting the mural indoors at the Wadena Emporium when the storm hit: the sky turned green with black swirling clouds, hail rained down, and the windows shook. Then the sky went dark. The power went out and we all sat by candlelight listening to the radio, until the local station got hit by lightning, and the radio went out. I am lucky enough to be painting in a very secure building, so many people fled the storm to join us in our candlelit safety, including one woman who had seven trees fall in her yard, one through her roof. What surprised me most was how graciously everyone weathered the weather, even those with massive damage to their property seemed affably awed by the power of nature. The home I am staying at in Ottertail is just not the same, as all the trees on the property were lost. Here is a picture of my yard after the storm.

The top of this tree was lopped off right next to the house. Although much damage was done in two counties, I haven't heard about any injuries, and many houses were luckily just missed by falling trees.

Man VS. Nature.... nature wins!

It was tragic to see all the beautiful old trees felled by the winds,

Saturday, June 18, 2005

The New York Mills Cultural Center has graciously allowed me to use their beautiful upstairs studio space to work on wire dress forms for the next project.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Work in progress...

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

First Stop

Ottertail, Minnesota (population 451) is where I am laying my head these days, while I paint a mural in the neighboring town of Wadena. Small town life is something to get used to again after Chicago. I need to remember to pay AFTER pumping gas, and get used to people looking at me like I'm crazy when I lock my car door. I was near here last year with the New York Mills Regional Cultural Center, making the Corn Dress, and the Alley Arts project in Wadena asked me to come back and help get an ambitious mural project started in their town.

"Pieces of History" Mural

The theme of the mural is Minnesota history and I am painting a prairie scene of the Lakota Sioux. More pics to come of its progress...

Thursday, June 02, 2005

First Days on the Road

Driving through Sauk City, WI, the sky lit up with an amazing rainbow, a good omen for the journey! I am on my way to Wadena, MN, to help the town with a mural project they are starting. I will try to jump over to the Dakotas on my days off to create a dress sculpture.... Does anyone have any contacts in North or South Dakota?

Leaving my home in Chi-town

Getting a little help (?!) from my friends....