Art + Design in Public Spaces

The Heart of the City design team is pleased to invite you to join a panel discussion and conversation on the roles art and design play in creating vibrant public spaces.

This month’s topic will address how art in the public realm creates new dialogues around the essence of art beyond the form of art itself. Chicago-based artist Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle and Heart of the City curator Hesse McGraw will lead the discussion.

Early in the conceptual development of Heart of the City, Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle said, “I want to put sculpture to work.” His work exemplifies the civic-scale ambition and impact of art being commissioned for Peace Plaza. During this conversation, he and McGraw will discuss his expansive view of sculpture for the public realm and the essential artistic qualities that carry through complex public projects.

During his 30-year career, Manglano-Ovalle has been internationally hailed for technologically advanced works that crystalize our most confounding political and cultural narratives into iconic, beautiful form—a thundercloud, an iceberg, Mies van der Rohe’s architecture, or a simple town well. Manglano-Ovalle’s numerous awards include a United States Artists Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a MacArthur Foundation Award. He is noted in Rochester for his landmark 2006 survey exhibition at Rochester Art Center. See more here:

To reserve your space, register here:
This event is free and open to everyone; however, space is limited.

The Art + Design in Public Space Series kicked off this summer with topics ranging from how universal design and access are a key to social equity, to how art and design can reflect local context and values, and how to create meaningful interaction and spectacle.

Upcoming Art + Design in Public Space series will be presented by artists Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Ann Hamilton, and Nicole and Seth Nfonoyim-Hara. Future event details to be announced.

Opening Reception: AOV10

Art(ists) on the Verge 10
Opening Reception: October 5, 2019, 5-7 pm

Northern and Rochester Art Center are excited to announce the exhibition of new work by 5 Minnesota-based artists in the Art(ists) on the Verge fellowship: Lindsy Halleckson, Essma Imady, Kathy McTavish, Khadijah Muse, and Chris Rackley.

AOV10 is an intensive, mentor-based fellowship program for 5 Minnesota-based, emerging artists working experimentally at the intersection of art, technology, and digital culture with a focus on network-based practices that are interactive and/or participatory.

The AOV fellowship program is administered by Northern with generous support from the Jerome Foundation.

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Lazerbeak: Music Matters + Mental Health


THURSDAY // 10.10.2019

Doors @ 6:30 // Discussion @ 7:00 // Meet LAZERBEAK @ 8:00

RAC MEMBER $10* // General Admission $15*

Join LAZERBEAK of Doomtree Collective + guests in an intimate conversation about the music industry, creativity and mental health. How do you balance working in the music industry with forming heart-felt relationships? How do you battle the choice between playing a gig and tucking your child into bed at night? Can a creative person maintain their music career and their mental health at the same time? Musician or not, ALL are invited to join the conversation. After the discussion, explore the Rochester Art Center’s galleries, purchase the artist’s latest music, and meet LAZERBEAK and special guests.

Special Guests:

Mike Terrill of Fires of Denmark

Bekki Hart of My Town My Music

Dustin Hart of My Town My Music

*Additional Online Processing Fees Apply. Want to skip the Processing Fee? Order by phone (507) 282-8629 OR in person at the Rochester Art Center. Hours: Tues – Sat 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM 




Aaron Mader, known professionally as Lazerbeak, is a Minneapolis-based artist and producer. Aside from being a founding member of the Doomtree collective, he is also the CEO and General Manager of Doomtree Records, handling the day-to-day operations, management, and inner workings of the crew and label. Over the past decade he has worked with a wide range of artists including Doomtree, Lizzo, Matt and Kim, Shredders, Trampled By Turtles, Dessa, GAYNGS, P.O.S, Speedy Ortiz, Mixed Blood Majority, The Plastic Constellations, and the Minnesota Orchestra. In addition to original production and songwriting, Beak also works musically behind the scenes on commercials, movie trailers, TV shows, and remixes.

Lazerbeak Photo by Graham Gardner



Mike Terrill, known as Fires of Denmark, is a producer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist artist from Rochester, MN. The project is a psychedelic look into songwriting and moving pictures while playing with rules on tempo, recording quality, lyrical ambiguity and optical illusions. On Sept 28th Fires of Denmark will be releasing their second full length album, “Interference”.



Bekkie and Dustin Hart are Co-Founders of Rochester, MN – based music promotion / production company, My Town My Music. Dustin and Bekkie balance their lives in the music industry, parenthood, and other pursuits with a keen sense of understanding, and are advocates for speaking openly about mental health.


Bekkie’s Take On Music

“Music is such an awesome thing. I believe it to be one of the greatest-ever creations, or at least my favorite one. The existence of music is intriguing to me. It seems to be one of our earliest inventions. And, while it isn’t absolutely essential to the perpetuation of the human race, it has stayed a constant throughout our existence, changing and evolving right alongside us. Music is one thing we all share, with its presence found in all known cultures.

Even for those who aren’t self-proclaimed music enthusiasts, music has the power to stir emotions, to move our bodies. It can transport us into our own memories. It conveys feelings when mere words cannot. Its effect on each of us is personal and individual, but it can connect us in a way nothing else can”



Opening Reception: Eric Anderson & Carley McHenry

Join us Friday, October 18th at 5:30 as we celebrate the opening of two new ROOTED exhibitions. This event is free and open to the public.

Eric Anderson: Fantasy For Eleven Fingers | On view October 5, 2019 – February 8, 2020

Fantasy for Eleven Fingers juxtaposes traditional art making practices with emerging technologies. Reflected in a series of oil paintings and mixed media, Eric Anderson employed image-based Artificial Intelligence (AI) models, surveillance software, visual encryption and 3D printing in search of prompts for new handmade works. Advances in technology, especially in the field of AI, promise inhuman, if not impossible, perfection. Fantasy for Eleven Fingers asks viewers to pause when they are confronted with terms like perfect and imperfect, accurate and flawed. How can a painter translate algorithm-based outputs into something that reaches beyond the preconceived limitations of new technologies as well as the artist’s understanding of their own capacities to create? What inefficiencies, accidents, failures, and physical limitations contribute to creating work that is personal? Fantasy for Eleven Fingers considers our uniquely human imperfections as a potential source of freedom.


Carley McHenry: Collecting Roots | On view October 6 – November 16, 2019

Collecting Roots is an exhibition of paintings, drawings, and natural objects where the artist invites the viewer to take a peak into their collection of nearly 10 years worth of ferreting away objects of inspiration. The inspiration for the works in Collecting Roots comes from growing up and living in rural southeast Minnesota on a horse ranch turned county park. The artist illustrates the connection between man and nature and man and their inner self.

Library Storytime @ RAC

Join us for Art Storytime! Enjoy an art-themed storytime with Rochester Public Library staff at RAC then explore the galleries.  Art Center admission will be free for storytime attendees. This program is offered in partnership with the Rochester Public Library.

Wednesday, October 23 | Rochester Art Center | 10:00AM | FREE

Library Storytime

Join us for Art Storytime! Enjoy an art-themed storytime with Rochester Public Library staff at RAC then explore the galleries. Art Center admission will be free for storytime attendees. This program is offered in partnership with the Rochester Public Library.

Wednesday, December 11 | Rochester Art Center | 10:00AM | FREE