Art Shanty Projects Celebrates 20 Years


Art Shanty Projects is returning to the frozen water of Bdé Umá / Lake Harriet in south Minneapolis Jan. 20 - Feb.11, 2024.
One big change this year: classic shanties are back! Artists have followed exterior-only guidelines for their structures in the past two programs with shanties taking on open air shapes and forms that responded to the necessary safety precautions of the pandemic. This year artists have a choice to continue that design directive or go back to classic shanties with interior experiences. Artistic Director Erin Lavelle, in her position since pre-pandemic, comments, “We’ve got a 50/50 mix - so if you’ve been waiting to cozy up inside with us again, this is your year! And if you’re still not comfortable with that, we got you!” A new requirement for classic shanties: in an effort to remain as accessible as possible, they must have complementary exterior activities or experiences to accommodate anyone who prefers to remain outside.
The full program offerings this year include 18 Shanties that stay up all month, and more than 20 performances + art actions that pop up throughout the village at different times throughout the run.
Lavelle also says, “We’re extremely proud to enter our 20th season - and we’ve got a mix of new artists and ideas coming forth as well as some throwbacks. There will be a few nods to our founders and our origins.” This includes a recreation of the first ever art shanty, with the concept and design attributed to Peter Haakon Thompson and David Pitman, the organization’s founders.
They’re also working to collect candid origin stories from founders and will host a rotating set of programming each weekend.
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