Janaki Ranpura, Egg and Sperm Ride

by Stephen R. Miller

The Egg and the Sperm are a matter of prosaic beginnings. They meet in passion, lust, happiness, joy; in individuals coupled to each other. They can meet through violence; they can be frozen and shipped like cargo. Are they commodities sans soul? The conversation rapidly evokes larger questions. “Manhood’s repose of If,” as Herman Melville says in Moby Dick, is shaken by the subject. Adding to this existential ambivalence, the egg and sperm reference not only life but after life; Marilynne Robinson writes in Gilead: “We participate in Being without Remainder.” T.S. Eliot reminds us that the egg and sperm’s passage, the passage of a journey, is also the passage of time: “To arrive where we started / And know the place for the first time.” (Little Gidding)

AOV2 artists featured at SPARK Festival

Today, the SPARK Festival of Electronic Music and Arts, directed by Ali Momeni, announced the line up for its 2010, 8th annual edition.

“Minneapolis, MN (09/02/2010) — The University of Minnesota’s West Bank Arts Quarter will present the eighth annual SPARK Festival of Electronic Music & Arts, Wednesday, September 29 through Saturday, October 2, 2010. SPARK will present a significant portion of its programming in the historic and iconic “Love Power Church” building at 1407 Washington Avenue, in addition to numerous venues within the University’s West Bank Arts Quarter. A complete schedule can be found at www.sparkfestival.org.”

In addition to the extensive music programming, SPARK 2010 will present new commissioned works by grantees of the Art(ists) on the Verge 2 program by Northern Lights.mn: Arlene Birt, Kyle Phillips, Tyler Stefanich, and tectonic industries will premiere their new media installation works at the University of Minnesota’s Regis Center for Art.

SPARK will also host the URBAN CARAVAN Bicycle Tour; a mobile media project by Minneapolis Art on Wheels artists, Andrea Steudel – an AOV 1 grantee – and Luke Anderson. This work is distinguished as a Forecast Public Art’s Public Project.

“The SPARK Festival is a week-long celebration of the latest electronic music and arts, featuring fresh works created by artists from around the globe— The United States, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, Ireland, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. SPARK brings internationally recognized scholars and performers of electronic music and arts to the West Bank Arts Quarter for lectures, performances, and master classes. Other festival highlights include presentations by artists on their works and ideas, video and sound installations, guerrilla-style events throughout the University’s West Bank Arts Quarter and expanding to other venues including the Love Power Church and the 1419 Artist Collective.

“This year’s featured composers/performers include multi-instrumentalist, composer and improviser FRED FRITH, London-based electronic duo FURT, Montreal-based composer/ performer group KLAXON GUEULE and Chicago-based trio FRICTION BROTHERS. This year’s Night Life programming includes DroidBehaivior, techno-master MOE ESPINOZA (DRUMCELL), Los Angeles-based electro-duo Vangelis and Vidal Vargas, Danish electronics recycler Mikkel Meyer and dub-step warrior Puzzleweasel.

“The opening reception, concert and exhibition event will take place on Thursday September 30 at 5pm in the Regis Center for Art’s Quarter Gallery. For an up-to-date schedule of SPARK events, visit www.sparkfestival.org. Photographs available upon request. E-mail photo requests to mbalhorn@macalester.edu.”

AOV2 @ Art-a-Whirl

Art-a-Whirl this weekend

Northern.Lights.mn, Art(ists) On the Verge, works-in-progress @ Art-a-Whirl

Art(ists) On the Verge will again be participating in the Art-a-Whirl Open Studio and Gallery Tour in the historic Thorp Building on Central Avenue, this Friday, May 14 – Sunday, May 16.


Arlene Birt, tectonic industries, Kyle Phillips, Janaki Ranpura, Tyler Stefanich

Arlene Birt Visualizing sustainability.An in-store grocery products tracking system
Kyle PhillipsEmpathetic Architecture. An interactive exploration of previous inhabitants in a space
Janaki RanpuraEgg Alley Cat bike race. Interactive costumes
Tyler Stefanich – Exploring strategies for interpretation of the digital cultural archive
tectonic industriesThe Oprah Winfrey Show. We watch so you don’t have to



Designing our way out of this

Pechakucha Night 4 MCAD April 22 7.30 pm

AOV2 Fellow Arlene Birt will be presenting her latest design/art work on communicating back-stories at this event on Thursday.

See you there.