logo Songs of Returning, Both Silent and Aloud
(The Domestic Struggle Part Threee)

  Monoculture Effigy
Let's Remake installation, Effigy of Monoculture, fifty cornstalks made from newspaper representing numerous food riots around the world in 2008. 
More images and explanation are on their blog:

Let's Remake distribited this silk-sceened poster and Library of Radiant Optimism booklets.

We also distrubuted copies of a collaborative zine, Passing Notes, by Aaron Hughes and
Nada Shalaby.

Aaron installed 25 Days to Chicago, which included  graphite drawings, a small map of Chicago super-imposed on a military map of Iraq, photgraphs of troop patrols in "Chicago", an audio recording of a psychological evaluation of Aaron, and his military medical file.

Aaron also provided a description of all of these materials along his own brief contextualization in this pamphlet (pdf 1.5 MB).

Dan Wang made Old Words in Present Form: An Installation Exercise in Political Speech.  Here he tests out the system.  It uses a lap-top with a web based telepromper, a camcorder, microphone, monitor. Everyone was invited to try it out and there is a selection of speeches to choose from.
This is the moniter-side view. These were  the speeches selected by Sam Gould, Shea Peeples, and Dan S. Wang:
Emma Goldman, What is Patriotism? (San Francisco, 1908); Malcolm X, The Ballot or the Bullet (excerpt, Detroit, April 12, 1964);Eugene V. Debs, Yes, I Am My Brother’s Keeper (Girard, Kansas, May 23, 1908); A House Divided, Abraham Lincoln (Springfield, Illinois, June 16, 1858); Emmeline Pankhurst, Freedom or Death (HartfordNovember 13, 1913); Creek Chief Red Eagle to Andrew Jackson (Fort Jackson, in what is now Alabama, 1814); President Andrew Jackson Messsage to Congress on Indian Removal (1830); Seneca Chief Red Jacket,  Address to White Missionaries and Iroquois Six Nations (Buffalo Grove, New York,1805); Remarks at the Bill of Rights Dinner, Bob Dylan (Americana Hotel, New York City, December 13, 1963);
William Pitt, On the Stamp Act (excerpt, the Parliament of England, London); Mario Savio, Speech at Vietnam Day Teach-in (Berkeley, California,May 21, 1965); Fred Hampton, Power Anywhere Where There's People (Olivet Church, Chicago); Russell Conwell, Acres of Diamonds (Philadelphia, Sometime between 1900-1925).

Collage by Minneapolis artist, Andrew Moore.

Songs of Returning, Both Silent and Aloud
(The Domestic Struggle Part Threee)
August 23-September 7, 2009

Art of This
3506 Nicollet Avenue, Minneapolis

Songs of Returning Booklet (pdf)
with writing by Mike Wolf and Mark Shippley

How do we touch the land and how does it touch us? There is a long, vibrant history of so-called "back to the land movements." But in fact we have never left the land. We have always been dependent on the land--and the people who work closely with it--for our survival. When we fill the tank, flip a switch, open a bag of chips, sit quietly in a comfy chair, or get on-line--even though we are largely unconscious of it--we are in relationship to the land. We are constantly touching the land and it is constantly touching us back.

Songs of Returning is an occasion to appraise different relationships to the land. It is an opportunity to imagine how stolen land can be given back, how people are coerced with physical and economic violence to relate to the land in ways they would not choose for themselves. And it is an effort to make a home, nurturing, imaginative places for speech and acts that begin to erode the colonial pathologies that pervade in our culture--our relationships to the land.

Several cultural workers with intimate connections to different parts of the Midwest contributed to the exhibition, coinciding events, publications, and initiatives. Among the contributors are: Let's Remake! (Bonnie Fortune and Brett Bloom, www.letsremake.info), Dan S. Wang (www.prop-press.vox.com), Paul Durand, Jacob Chistopher Hammes, Aaron Hughes(www.aarhughes.org), Courtney Moran, Mike Wolf.

Event Calendar

August 23, 7pm to 11pm
Opening Reception

August 26
8pm Free Video Screening
"The World According to Monsanto"
DVD, 90 minutes

A documentary by French writer, film maker Marie-Monique Robin that "pieces together the story of Monsanto, focusing on a look at its domination in the field of agricultural products."

Snacks! (bring drinks to share)

August 29, 7pm
ARP!  Release Party

August 31
Noon - Brunchluck
Potluck brunch, hang out, share food, socialize, read the paper, look at art.

September 1, noon
Anti-War march
meet at the Capital

Here's my mom as rad as she gets, at the anti-war march.
And later that day...

Post-Anti-War March Mixer at my mom and dad's place.  We had delicious tacos. 

September 2, noon
Peavey Plaza, Minneapolis
BBQ lunch with Allimentary Tropism and Red76

September 4, 8pm
Free Video Screening
Threee Landscape Videos
Snacks! (bring drinks to share)

Gone Tomorrow: The Hidden Life of Garbage
DVD, 19 minutes, Directed by Heather Rogers
A brief history of garbage and landfills in north america

Manoomin: A Minnesota Way of Life
DVD, 22 minutes, Directed by Teresa Koneche
A short documentary on the effort to defend wild rice from patenting and maintain the spritual and cultural sustenance it provides.

The Land Connection
DVD, 11 Minutes
A documentary about the history of the rise of organic farming in part of Central Illinois.

September 6
Noon - Brunchluck
Potluck brunch, hang out, share food, socialize, read the paper, look at art.
3pm - Domestic Struggle Part Threee Travelog
Mike Wolf presented a travelog, with pictures and anecdotes about his Midwestern driftings over the past three years.

September 7th,
8pm - Closing Bonfire: Burning Monoculture in Effigy

This fire is like 12 feet high. That's pretty tall for the Powderhorn neighborhood in Minneapolis!

Art of This has a small woodshop in the basement which made hanging out there during open hours a lot of fun.  We made two of these benches. Red76 made these signs to get people to call 1-888-445-
9148 and talk about the wars.

Where the Waters Gather, the Durand family kindly lent a digital reproduction of Paul Durand's hand drawn map of indigenous place names in the upper Mississippi water shed.

Detail of the map.

This is a detail from a potogrpah by Jacob Christopher Hammes in the show.  It documents a stencil paineted on an interior door of a confined animal feedlot opperation (CAFO) that was recently built adjacent to his family's home in Iowa. (Appologies for the illegibility. hopefully I'll be able to find the text soon.) We painted another of this series of stencils on the rear door of the gallery.  There was also a handmade book with photos and  text pertaining to CAFO's.

Courtney and I made crates from scrap wood based on the crates we used working on Henry's Farm in central Illinois.  We used these haul food and dishes around for the different parts of the Domestic Struggle Part Threee.  They also make good stools.  We used the same scrap wood to make booklet holders and shelves in the gallery.

Crates in use to haul stuff for the Peavey Plaza lunch.

We arrived at the gallery one morning to find our bench was missing so we erected this sign.

The following morning the bench was returned by a loud, friendly, possibly drunk man who found it a few blocks away and carried it back for us.  He shouted, "You're welcome! God bless the troops!" We deemed it the Bench of Returning.

Iraq Veterans Against the War speeking at the Anti-war march. Aaron Hughes is on the tall guy on the far right.

Here Courtney inspects the effigy before we started the fire.

There are additional, higher resolution images on Picasa.

Posts about these projects and times on Dan Wang's blog:  beautiful mpls, the cities part 2, and ,one more rnc report