On View: Art Shanty Projects

by Vivien Park

The fifth annual Art Shanty Projects has opened this past weekend on top of the frozen Medicine Lake near Minneapolis, MN. Twenty shanties, built by local artists, with themes ranging from community-building to science, will be opened to the public for four weekends. Inspired by traditional fishing houses, the idea of interactive temporary structures displayed on top of a temporary ground no doubt opens up new ways of experiencing art.

Art Shanty Projects is on view until February 6, 2010. I hope to make it out there during its last week open, and report back with a firsthand experience. Maybe I'll see you there.

Credits: Photo from Art Shanty Projects.


  1. Hector Fernando BurgaMon Jan 18, 09:36:00 AM EST

    Interesting post. Could we consider this is an aesthetization of Poverty?
    How can art deal with such a concrete subject without making it into an

  2. I don't think you can associate ice fishing with poverty. Not all ice fisherman are poor or spending their days on the frozen lakes in order to procure their only means of sustinance. Ice fishing is a cultural activity and sport here in Minnesota, enjoyed by many people irregardless of class, race, or gender. The ice shanty projects are an aesthetization of heritage and tradition, and also a celebration or humanity's wonderous ability to thrive and create vibrant cultures even in the most hostile of climatic conditions.

    Gravitymax, see you there for sure!

  3. Chris I think the confusion is semantic. In closer analysis I may have mis-intepreted Gravitymax's post. I associate the word "shanty" to a pejorative description of self-help construction taking place around cities in the so called "Global South". But in a closer analysis the definition of this term also applies to the type of construction in this exhibition. Indeed these are "shanties". Who would have thought, there are shanties - but not towns, at least for now - in American cities. You learn something new everyday.


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