Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Come to Franconia Sculpture Park September 24th

Come Early and Stay Late for my New Performance... "Dream"
At 9:30 PM the Dream will begin!!
"Dream" is Mary Jane Mansfield's Eclectic surrealist vision featuring Electric Water Sculptures, circus performer Chimgee Haltarhuu and a live soundtrack by Matt Cisler using strange toy instruments and de-tuned electric guitars processed through the computer. The performance will kick off with a Charlie Brown style Marching Band led by Bridget Beck and Carrissa Samaniego... bring a band instrument or make one and join in!!

Free and Open to the Public

Saturday · September 24th is the
15th Annual Franconia Art & Artists Celebration
10:00am to 10:00pm
Franconia Sculpture Park is located just 45min out of the Twin Cities near Taylor Falls.
29836 St. Croix Trail Franconia, MN

Mary Jane Mansfield is a fiscal year 2011 recipient of an Artist initiative grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board. This activity is funded, in part, by the Minnesota arts and cultural heritage fund as appropriated by the Minnesota State Legislature with money from the vote of the people of Minnesota on November 4, 2008.

Ship of Dreams

Building the sail was the first project I jumped into once I got my new work space up and running. It came together more beautifully than I had imagined. Nearly 12' tall and 8' wide, it is designed to stand in a 100 gallon galvanized steel water trough like you would find on a farm. It gives the piece a feel of a toy boat in a child's bathtub... truly exaggerated... "Dream" Style!! There are triangle frames on the front of it to hold 6 1500 Watt Ball Park lights that will be controlled with dimmer switches. I am renting a generator to run this one!!
When I finished building it on the floor of my studio, it was so big and heavy I had to tie ropes to the rafters of the ceiling to lift it. Once I got the ropes secure I literally stood under the spine of the sail and lifted it onto a beam with my back... So... that takes up half my space now and I had to do some major rearranging to make room to build the house of Dreams...

A Dreamy House ?

This Electric House with the roof blowing off has been a lot of fun designing. It has evolved nicely since the preliminary sketch you see here. It is 10' long almost 12 feet tall and has a small back deck with an electrified window and a runway on the front!! Instead of the roof blowing off in one piece it has literally blown to pieces!! I am really looking forward to setting it up at the park the week before the show and seeing it all together. In my studio I am building it in pieces the way they build pre-fab homes.

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Studio Week: Show Update

Mary Jane Mansfield's Electric Water performance Art... "Dream" is Coming soon to the Greatest Sculpture Park on Earth!!
I found a sweet little garage space to rent down by the Mississippi where I can work on building a sail for my boat. After a long Winter & Spring... Moving and changing jobs, I set up shop in a double garage in the Longfellow neighborhood. The move meant splitting up my live in work space into a new apartment and what has turned out to be my favorite studio space of all time. The space opens up to the back yards of a few buildings with nice neighbors where evidently I have become the resident artist of their neighborhood. The Birchwood Cafe is across the street. Local, sustainable, organic and fair trade ingredients whenever possible... Highly recommended. They also have a cute little restroom... Studio complete!! Tuesday Wednesday & Thursdays all summer have been studio time for me. Now with just a few weeks left before the show I am pulling together the finishing touches on two really fun sculptures. Be sure to save the date... September 24th for a trip just 45 min out of town to Franconia Sculpture Park!! See you there...

Sunday, June 05, 2011

Re discovering an old link — Click HERE.

I stumbled upon this old clip from my last feature length performance... May 1st 2009.
I always liked it, so I am posting it here merely to entertain myself.
By Debbie Donnovan.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Something to Write Home about

Photo of Yanomamos — by James Lindbloom
Last Saturday there was a reunion show with a band I was in in 1988 called Yanomamos. The circumstances that brought us back together were Grant Harts (our drummer) house fire and loss of his mother. The 2 incidents were unrelated yet eerily close in proximity. (Oddly enough 1988 was the year my mother passed away which is what led to the band drifting apart... and now 22 years later to have the loss of his mother see us back together. Go figure world...) After what was already the hardest winter anyone around here can ever remember, this was a bit more icing on the cake than any of us really needs in life. It felt good to be back on stage together and may even open the door for more adventure!! Today Grant is on his way to celebrate his 50th birthday watching the sunrise at the Kokino observatory... the launch of his latest tour.
As for me... It marks the end of the same dreary winter and the opportunity to start work on my new project with a grant from the MN State Arts board. The focus of this one is a performance art piece – "Dream" that will be at Franconia Sculpture park early fall this year in conjunction with my installation Tornado Sky: Sunrise.
So without further explanation... I am off to get some studio time in before I have to leave for work. If I can stay focused enough for the next 2 months, It is going to make a huge impact on the rest of my summer... Here's to good studio habits, sunshine and green grass.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

A Few of My Favorite Things

This is the day I have been waiting for. The first day that felt like spring was within reach. The next few weeks will be focused on Grant-writing... Organizing... Starting new work and getting out from under the heaviness of winter.
The last item on that list can not be stressed enough. So to the sun shining brightly through my window today and the green grass emerging from a long winters nap... All I can say is thank you for returning... I have never missed you so much.

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Is mystified apparently by conflicting mystical conflicts... Clearly the message is unclear.

I have been very restless as of late. Having recently entered into my 50th year at the age of 49 I am sensing a shift in my universal energy field. It is a bit difficult to navigate. I am reading more, clearer of mind, feeling a push to move in a new direction with work, trying to follow the leads and coming up short of a conclusive solution. Tonight I have been swept off the deck and placed back at home where I am planning on finishing the Patti Smith book... "Just Kids" I am also planning to fall asleep early and see what my dreams reveal to me in the morning. There is much work to be done. One thing I know for sure is that I will be here to do it. What ever the universe has in store for me.. After all... I believe I was the one who donned the blueprint for my steps to follow. It's the delicate signs we must pay attention to to keep us on track. Despite the possibility of financial collapse, I hold dear to my heart a Chinese astrological account I stumbled upon years ago illuminating my coarse in life to be guided by the universal law of abundance... There isn't a moment in my adult life and awareness that doesn't support it fully. I won't be losing any sleep to worry. I am confident that the changes that are taking place are meant to move me on to the next level of service in my journey here on earth. Patience and faith will take us a long way.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Universe According to Miss Jane

On Dec 28 I woke up from a dream with "The Universe According to Miss Jane" being the first words on my mind for the day. With no pen in sight, I tucked the thought away here for a future post so as not to forget it. Then a few moments later I found the pen and filled a page in my journal with a long list of dreams and expectations I have my heart set on for the year. No wonder I have needed so much sleep lately. I was worn out by the time I got to the end of the list!! But now 2011 is here and it is time to kick into gear and make it all happen. One thing on my list is volunteering for an after school program for girls from third to sixth grade... I have been invited to do a sculpture workshop... the theme is "Dream". I am really looking forward to spending time setting imaginations free and watching their dreams take shape.
As for me tonight... It is a studio night. Time away from the world for a few precious hours of daydreaming and junk drawers.

Monday, December 13, 2010

New Beginnings

There is nothing more liberating in this life than the fact that we have endless opportunities to start over... Make something new...Try life a new way... At times our lives move quickly and work is swift. Other days you could swear the air is made of mud. Those are the days that require the most patience and faith. Setting up new studio space and starting new work for me has been one of those days for the past few months. In the Tesla film I have been watching Mr. Westinghouse says to Tesla as he offers him a million dollars for his patents explains that you must be rich so you can be free to create. Ahhhh... but most of us are not. We face long hours at exhausting jobs yet our creative spirits pester us... reminding us we have another very important job to do. The one that is our gift to the world. To share our creative spirits with others and inspire people to carry on against all odds.
As I look around at the clutter of a halfway renovated work space, I am determined to try and make a difference today. The recent 20" snowfall and a car that doesn't want to start had zapped away most of my energy. I went to sleep early praying for dreams of sunny riverbanks where someone would read uplifting poems to me as I was too tired to read myself. Instead what I woke up from were scary nightmares. Yet somehow I feel re-energized and I am ready to take on another day...

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Tornado Sky: Sunrise

Thank you to everyone who helped make this vision possible, and to all of you who cheered me on !! Most of these are pictures I took with my cell phone. I don't have any professional photos just yet. The Opening on September 25th was Amazing, Fun, Sunny and very muddy !! The days before were torrential rains at times and heavy wind. Outside of the fact that the ground was already soaked, the wind blew my waterfall right out of the pond and left a cute little swamp before it was discovered and turned off.
I am very excited about the future of this piece. The waterfall portion will be closed down for the winter soon, then next spring... New flowers in bloom & up and running for the entire season. If any of you plan on passing through MN, feel free to get in touch with me. It would be great to meet you at the park for a picnic :-)

Monday, September 20, 2010

Only a few Finishing Touches left

Tornado Sky: Sunrise is up and running now!! Hope to see you all at the Fall arts Festival at Franconia Sculpture Park this Saturday Sept. 25th
For those of you who can't be here.... I will be posting photos and writing about the experience of putting it all together when I come back home and catch my breath :-)
I have so many of you that have helped bring this vision to life... to you I say... Woo Hoo... We did it!! Thanks for being a part of this amazing opportunity... & especially thank you to John Hock for the gift of Franconia Sculpture Park.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Work In Progress

This week we picked up the utility pole. It was so much more beautiful than I had anticipated, so I am pretty happy about that. Cedar Red Wood and bigger around than most. All of the pieces are falling neatly into place. Just wanted to post a few new images now that it is all coming together. Hope to see you at the Fall Arts Festival Sept. 25th. It will surely be a day to remember.