*** Open invitation for the Seventh Art Shanty Projects ***

August 18, 2009

posted by Caroline Picard

*** Open invitation for the Seventh Art Shanty Projects ***

Seeking visual artists, musicians, composers, media artists,
architects, poets, scientists, dancer/choreographers, writers,
builders, fisher-people, outdoors-people, naturalists, puppeteers, set
designers, vocalists, spoken word artists, craftspeople, storytellers,
actors, playwrights, etc. interested in participating in the design
and construction of ice fishing shanty-like structures, producing
engaging projects, art, events and shows on frozen Medicine Lake in
Plymouth, MN during January and February 2010.

The weather in Minnesota is challenging. Cold being the harshest. The
desire to get out of the house requires significant amounts of energy
and creativity. Lakes are an often-used medium for recreational
activity in Minnesota. Winter does not stop this use, but transforms
it. One of these uses, ice fishing, is a popular winter activity in
Minnesota and indeed throughout the world. People often fish from a
structure commonly known as an ice fishing house, shelter, shack or
shanty. The absence of building codes and restrictions cultivate
diversity and uniqueness. From portable, commercially-made shelters to
homemade plywood boxes to deluxe fish houses approximating the
comforts of home. The architectural common denominator is a trapdoor
in the floor allowing access to a hole drilled through the ice.
Makeshift communities position themselves over the best fishing spots.
Deep in winter, the lake ice can get to be 2-3 feet thick. More than
enough to support trucks and cars. The ice fishing season begins when
the ice is thick enough to support the weight (around the middle of
December) to the last day of February (officially the end of the

Last year was the sixth and, to date, biggest Art Shanty Projects
organized by David Pitman as a program of The Soap Factory in
Minneapolis. Some 135 artists built shanties, performed, created
sculptures, and interacted with the public. Approximately 10,000
visitors showed up to fend off the briskest of windchills. The Art
Post Shanty, the world’s only Post Office on ice, invited participants
to make a postcard and send it from (or to) the ice. The Black Box
Theater Shanty thrilled audiences with music, puppets, interpretive
dance, and fishing. The Snap Shot Shanty documented their weekly
projects and ASP participants. The Norae Shanty was back rocking the
ice for everyone’s karaoke needs. The bearded crew of the Imperial
TransAntarctic Expedition kept spirits high with storytelling,
sing-alongs, and many other adventures on the ice. The Projects
received extensive media coverage, bringing a large and diverse
audience including lake residents, ice fishers, suburbanites, city
dwellers, artists, and snowmobilers.

*** The Call Guidelines and Timeline ***

We plan to offer 20 residencies for the 2010 Art Shanty Projects
(ASP). All proposals must be submitted electronically at
http://www.artshantyprojects.org/. Proposals will be selected via a
juried process. Due to funding uncertainties this year, the stipend
amounts will be announced on September 28th, 2009. The number of
residencies is also subject to change depending on the availability of
funding. These funds are intended to support artists in building a
shanty and/or to spend a significant portion of time on the ice. We do
our best to support ASP artists fiscally, logistically, and with as
many other resources as we are able.

We plan to offer additional stipends for weekend performances and
programming in cooperation with Scott Stulen and mnartists.org. Please
keep the aspect of performance in mind when planning and proposing
your shanty. A separate call will go out in a few weeks detailing this

* Informational meetings for applicants at:
801 Washington Ave
Minneapolis, MN 55401
(entrance on 8th Ave)
Thursday, September 10, 7pm
OR Saturday, September 12, 1pm
* October 5: Deadline for receipt of proposals
* October 19: Notification of accepted proposals
* October TBD: Meeting for participants
* October-December: Construction of shanties
* January 9-15 Installation of shanties on the ice
* January 16: Opening of Art Shanty Projects on Medicine Lake
* February 14: Closing of Art Shanty Projects
* February 21: All the shanties must be off the ice

Proposal Requirements:
Please make certain to include details in your proposal speaking to
the following requirements.
1. How does the proposal fit the artistic goals of Art Shanty
Projects. (see http://artshantyprojects.org/mission)
2. The Hennepin County Water Patrol requires everything to have
walls (be an enclosed structure.) If you have questions about this,
contact us.
3. Your Shanty must be easily moveable to avoid freezing to the
ice. One common option is “skis.” Igloos or other structures that rest
directly on the ice are not allowed.
4. The main obstacle to working on the lake is the harsh
environment. The lake is very windy, which places incredible strain
and wear on structures. Any small bits that come off your shanty will
become litter. Your shanty must leave no trace. The design of your
structure must take the harsh environment into consideration and be
built soundly out of durable materials.
5. Reflectors. One of the few codes involving structures on the ice
is the placement of reflective material on all sides. This applies to
anything on the ice. Think of speeding cars and snowmobiles at night.
Reflective tape works well on irregular structures. (See DNR Fishing
Shelter regulations, starting page 61:
6. The lake is a quiet place, consequently generators are not
allowed at any time. If you require power there are many options using
deep cycle batteries, and even renewable methods to charge those

1. Consider working in teams, there are many physical and
logistical challenges which are much easier when working with others.
2. Think about open hours for your shanty. How will it be staffed?
The project lasts 5 weekends across 4 weeks.
3. How will your structure stand up to intense winds? Make sure
there is nothing on your structure that can fall off or be frozen in
the ice.

Questions: e-mail Caitlin at info@artshantyprojects.org

Call for Proposals: http://www.artshantyprojects.org/call
Application Form: http://www.artshantyprojects.org/application


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: