Hello! I am really enjoying my time working as the staff photographer for the Art Shanty Projects! I always feel so energized when I am there. Like I could burst my face with my smile (super cheesy but true!) So on Sunday my husband and I went back out with our kids...
This is such a GREAT PLACE to go with the family! Nothing beats that feeling when you go to bed at night after being outside in the winter all day. You feel like you can just melt into bed after filling your lungs with the freshest air out there. So much space for the kids to run. So many great artists and people to interact with. And something SO different than "screen time." Imagination time instead!!
Here's a little photo-guide to this year's shanties!
Air Hockey Arcade: Its just as it sounds: a full sized air hockey table inside a shanty! You can hear those beloved air hockey "dings" as you walk up, and it is fully equipped even with two referees and arcade music. This was the shanty we could not get the boys to leave!
Artetarium: Great for photo opps! A nice place to sit, relax, consult your map and gaze up at some of the world's more popular art.
Birdhouse Shanty: Definitely one of the brightest and sweetest little shanties there. You are encouraged to quiet your mind and take a step back from the daily grind and be in the moment!
Chef Shanty: Play with food. Make food art!
Conversation Shanty: Have lively, unique conversations with other festival attendees!
Dance Shanty: Always one of my favorites. This year the structure is slightly transparent so you are treated to dancing silhouettes from outside. High energy and definitely the spot to let loose!
Ghost Shanty: Really quite beautiful from the outside. It is dark and you feel a little intimidated walking towards it. Once you open the door, it is a bit surprising as to how bright and light it is inside! Such a creative idea! Be inspired by the stories of once-loved objects that hang above you then draw your own stories on the walls.
I-C SPArkle-matic: A human car wash. Definitely hit this up after you color on the walls (and yourself) at the Ghost Shanty!
Leaf Your Fears Behind: I was told that this shanty artist drove all the way from California to share her shanty dreams with us. This shanty is quiet and contemplative. Write your fears on a leaf and hang them on the tree as a way to let them go. Reading others' fears was inspiring, depressing and really wonderful all the same time. Really made my kids think about other people and their feelings in a way that is hard to do.
Sci-Fi Book Club: This shanty is SO fun for kids! They have come back from 900 years ahead in the future. They have a shelf with Sci Fi books that you can read. You can write notes to put in a time capsule. The artists play the part so well that my kids left as believers!!
Sensa-station Story Shanty: From the outside you wonder if it is the "Breaking Bad" shanty but when you go inside you realize it is quite different! You are encourage to travel through the shanty to feel and sense different landscapes!
Shanty National Park: Talk to a ranger, listen to park sounds and watch a stream bubble by when you step into this shanty! No need to plan a spring break road trip when you can just get your fix on White Bear Lake!
Slumber Party Shanty: Always my kid's favorite. The first floor is the "space under the bed" where you can meet the monster family, see their dust bunny collection and see lost single socks. There's even a mattress tag! Then climb upstairs for a real slumber party with fortune teller games, coloring, legos and more!
Snow Blind Shanty: Also one of the cooler shanties for photo opps. This shanty is all about "moire" - that type of pattern that gives you the illusion/sensation that the wall is moving. Really beautiful experience on a frozen lake!
String Box Shanty: Started out as some plastic (I think they're plastic) pipes and some balls of yarn. Will be a brilliant, colorful yarn shanty by the end of the month with the help of festival visitors!
The Justice Shack: Take the time to write to a legislator or politician. Read notes from others. See protest signs. And stand up on your Soap Box and announce your cause. A fitting shanty for the times!
The Sky Is Falling Shanty: Also felt a little intimidating to enter. Its bright colors and strange aluminum shape make you really wonder "what you're getting into..." However once inside you realize that it really is a calming shanty. Place your hand on a reader that tells you what's going on inside. Sort of like a moonstone but with lights and moisture!
Vehicle of Expression: Make words with giant scrabble-like pieces. See a performance. Be literally literarily inspired!
Winter Parasol. More sculpture than shanty. This brilliant piece will grab your eye. Take time to study the shadows and effects of light. Of course I was drawn to it!
Welcome Shanty: meet staff, buy a cup that will give you unlimited hot cocoa and climb to the roof for the best view on the ice!
And that's a wrap on my Shanty story! Hope to see you out there! It is on White Bear Lake, Minnesota and open every weekend in February. See their web site www.ArtShantyProjects.org for details. I also wrote some visiting tips in my previous blog post!