COMMUNITY VOICES | Journalist from the heartland

     Laurie Hertzel is as thin and wiry as the coils of blonde hair that sprout from her head in every direction.  At 57, she has been a newspaper woman for three and half decades.  Her career started when she was twelve years old.  “I wrote about the family.  Headlines heralded the moment such as, ‘My aunt had her birthday today.’ Newspaper was ten cents.  Collection was hard! Finally, I just gave them away, and,” with a deadpan expression Hertzel adds, “46 years later, the newspaper business still doesn’t pay well.”       “My first job was at the Duluth News-Tribune.” Hertzel, now the senior book editor at the Minneapolis Star Tribune, adds, “In my early years with them, I could count the number of women who worked there on two hands—even if one hand was missing a couple of fingers.  The editors, reporters, photographers, and printers were by and large men.”  Hertzel says, “Women reporters like Sue Willoughby, Suzanne Perry, Ruth Hammond, Jacqui ‘Bananas’ Banaszynski opened the door for women.  They taught me about writing solid news stories.”     “Journalism is not for wimps,” Hertzel says.  “Our Trib guys on the crime beat go into dangerous situations.  Just a few years ago, rioters attacked our reporters believing the reporters were with the police because they had cameras and microphones.  Two were seriously hurt and had to be hospitalized.”       Hertzel waves her hand past all the shelves and says, “This area is called the book room for obvious reasons. Continue Reading

COMMUNITY VOICES | At the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, 2013 Jerome Fellows emerge with an exceptional show

Guests filled the Minneapolis College of Art and Design [MCAD] Friday night to honor the Jerome Foundation Fellowships granted to Emerging Artists.  The Minnesota Fellows were:  Susannah Bielak, Amanda Hankerson, Michael Hoyt, Melissa Loop, and Lauren Roche.  Each received a $10,000 grant to further develop their artistic careers.Senior Program Director Eleanor Savage, of the Jerome Foundation talked about the application process.  “The Jerome Foundation funds the program for the honored fellows and the Minneapolis College of Art and Design administers it.  We are a non-profit, philanthropic corporation whose mission is to support emerging artists in the creation of new work.”Kerry Morgan of MCAD, explained the juror selection process.  “This is a competitive grant and the Fellows who receive it have to impress three independent arts professionals who hold a deep knowledge of art making practices.”Juror Miranda Lash, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the New Orleans Museum of Art, one of the jurors, talked about the judging.”All three of us began by reviewing the art work digitally for the 245 artists who applied.  Then, we narrowed it down to a small group of 12 artists.  The two of us from out of town flew in and met with the in-state juror to discuss the artists and their work.   We interviewed the 12 artists, completed studio visits, and evaluated their originals in person.” Jill Ewald, Former Director of the Flaten Museum at St. Olaf College discussed the intensity of the experience.  “The level of art was very high.  We had also received an astonishing array of media from installations, performance art, along with more traditional oil and acrylic paintings, photography, and sculpture.”  The third juror, Ms. Tse, artist and professor at the California Institute of Art was unavailable for comment.  The artists stood by their displays and talked about their art work.  Hoyt discussed the portraits of people he sketched in the parks.  One was titled Clyde.  The face revealed tattoos; Godz Gift on one check, Loyalty on both.  “Art in the city,” Mike said, and pointed to his desk on a bike he rode through Minneapolis to catch life on the playground, life in the park, reporting, “I want people to believe that art is truly for everyone—and make it present in their/our everyday worlds.  When I was finished sketching Clyde, I took a print copy and gave him a copy to keep.”Amanda Hankerson photographed people who shared the Hankerson name.  She spoke crisply to one guest, “There are but a few thousand Hankersons in the United States.  I found Hankersons I had never met on Facebook and asked them if I could take their picture.  During this process, I discovered slavery was part of the Hankerson history.”   All of Lauren Roche’s paintings were eerie abstractions of mood and moment. Continue Reading