Our new artist incubator facilitated by Alison Heimstead is back, and celebrating its 6th year of radical, genre-expanding, boundary-pushing work.
In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre is excited to announce the selection of four emerging Minnesota artists to participate in the 2016-17 Puppet Lab program. Puppet Lab supports the creation and presentation of new and experimental work by emerging local artists. This will be Puppet Lab’s sixth year of generating radical, genre-expanding performances.
A panel of professional puppeteers selected Patricia Gille, Madeline Helling, Allison Osberg, and Chamindika Wanduragala to be part of the 2016-2017 Puppet Lab cohort. Their individual work will be presented over two weekends in March 2017. Program Director Alison Heimstead says, “The creative minds assembled are truly amazing. Watch out for their genius in March!”
About the participants:
Patricia (Patty) Gille has been a Powderhorn resident and MayDay Parade participant for years. As an Associate Artist of In the Heart of the Beast, Patty’s playful and unique creations are cherished by the local community. Patty said, “I am excited to create a show of my own based on songs I’ve written and my life experience called Bi-polar Lite. I’ve recently assembled a window collection of work in the front window at the Avalon theater. So come by and see it.”
Madeline Helling is a multidisciplinary artist with an impenetrable love of cardboard gems. She is an Associate Artist at HOBT and arts educator at large. She marks her calendar by the MayDay Parade and Festival in spring, Adventures in Cardboard in summer and the BareBones Halloween Extravaganza in the fall. Helling is excited for the challenge to grow this winter while deep at work in Puppet Lab.
Allison Osberg is an interdisciplinary performance artist who uses spectacle, participatory and conceptual art to facilitate question asking and wonder making. A self-taught performer and fabricator, Osberg uses mask and guise to bring inanimate objects to life, to give them emotions and a voice. From a prancing chanterelle mushroom to a broken pair of dentures to a walking, blinking eyeball, her puppetry is ripe for metaphor, humor and symbolism. With a grotesque, absurd and surreal aesthetic, Osberg is able to distill emotion simply, directly and most unexpectedly. As a Puppet Lab participant, Osberg plans to use giant puppet costumes and table-top object puppetry to tell the story of a “mythomaniac” or pathological liar who has so convincingly lied to everyone, including herself, that she now lives alone in her alternate world—trying desperately to return to the one we share. Where are the cracks in her stories and can she escape through them back to reality or do these fissures take her deeper down into her cave of deception and loneliness?
Chamindika Wanduragala is a Sri Lankan American visual artist, DJ and emerging puppeteer. You can see her work at www.chamindika.com . She is also the Artistic Director of Monkeybear's Harmolodic Workshop, a new nonprofit that nurtures artists of color in contemporary puppetry. She states, “I've dreamed about doing puppet theater for most of my life so I'm thrilled about the space Puppet Lab provides to experiment. Looking forward to the hard work of giving my vision a narrative! I'm excited to combine my love of music with the primal magic of bringing objects and figures to life. I'm not exaggerating when I say that by being accepted to the program, Heart of the Beast has made my dream come true!”
**Thank you to all the candidates who submitted applications for the 16-17 program. The deadline for submissions closed on June 8, 2016.
This program is made possible by generous support from the Jerome Foundation.