Thunder Bay Youth Art Exchange in Duluth

Yesterday afternoon saw the opening of an exhibit of works done by Thunder Bay area high school students participating in the Thunder Bay Youth Art Exchange. Students aged 14-18 from seven area high schools participated in the exchange, which began in the summer of 2015 in Duluth with the Art = Bridges to Understanding project.

During the course of  that summer, selected Duluth middle school students attended class where they created works that were intended to educate others about their town thanks to funding from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council and the Lloyd K. Johnson Foundation, with the intent to showcase the art in each of Duluth’s Sister Cities. After being exhibited at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Duluth and the Duluth Art Institute these works traveled to Thunder Bay in 2016 and were shown at the Baggage Building Art Center; thus beginning the exchange as it is now.

The Thunder Bay Sister Cities Committee facilitated the current exchange, and Thunder Bay artist and educator Elizabeth Buset curated the works. Selected “for their content, craftsmanship and creativity,” this grouping of various themes and mediums reflects “the diversity and strength of youth voices and culture in Thunder Bay,” Buset explains.

Artist Clara Adams from Thunder Bay in front of her piece “Wolf” during an interview with local news stations

Now on display at The American Indian Community Housing Organization (AICHO) galleries, the works are able to be viewed as per AICHO’s open hours: Monday through Friday from 8:00AM to 5:00PM until they travel back to Thunder Bay in mid-September. Students from Dennis Franklin Cromarty High School in Thunder Bay were able to attend the opening yesterday, allowing the public to interact with a handful of those “youth voices” that Buset made mention to.

It is of note that many of the works that were featured included themes from First Nations culture, pairing well with the venue within which they are housed. DSCI looks forward to being able to partner with First Nations communities in Thunder Bay and Native American communities here at home in the future.

 

Welcome Party for Japanese Students a Success!

Yesterday afternoon at Enger Park, Duluth Sister Cities International board members and participating families welcomed students and teachers from Ohara Isumi-City for a week-long visit as part of the DSCI student exchange program.

Duluth area students traveled to Ohara Isumi-City last summer to meet their Japanese hosts; this summer they have the opportunity to return the favor as they show off the Zenith City to students who are experiencing American life for the first time.

Area news stations were present at Enger Tower yesterday to interview party attendees about their experiences within the exchange, check it out!

Duluth Welcomes Students from Sister City in Japan, WDIO

Duluthians Meet with Students from Sister City in Japan, Fox21

Duluth welcomes students from Japanese sister city, KBJR6

Applications are now available for Duluth middle school aged students interested in participating in the 2018-2019 exchange with Ohara Isumi-City, click here to read more!

DSCI in the DNT

Duluth Sister Cities International board member Dr. Tom Morgan was recently published in the Duluth News Tribune Opinion section after submitting a piece relating to the current delegation visit to Petrozavodsk, Russia. Dr. Morgan, in addition to other members of the board, is visiting Russia with hopes to reinvigorate the sister city relationship that is being tested by current geopolitical tensions.

The delegation travels with a letter signed by current Duluth Mayor Emily Larson, as well as past mayors Don Ness, Herb Bergson, Gary Doty and John Fedo, who have all served during our span as sister cities with Petrozavodsk. The letter, Dr. Morgan writes, “celebrates the achievements that we have made over the past 30 years and that calls for continued people-to- people exchanges”.

The official visit to Petrozavodsk follows the successful exhibition of artist Anne Labovitz’s project 122 Conversations at the Petrozavodsk City Exhibition Hall this month. Labovitz’s project features art inspired by each of Duluth’s sister cities and allows for interactive displays that will then travel with the exhibit to the subsequent cities it visits.

You can read Dr. Morgan’s piece here.

Tai Chi Delegation from Thunder Bay Arrives Tomorrow!

Thanks to a collaboration with the University of Minnesota Duluth University for Seniors, a delegation from our Canadian Sister City, Thunder Bay, will be coming to town tomorrow June 6th to visit and practice Tai Chi in two of Duluth’s great parks!

From 1:30pm to 2:30pm tomorrow there will be Tai Chi in Duluth’s Lake Place Park* and a second opportunity to engage will be available on Wednesday, June 7th at the same time at Leif Erickson Park*! Both sessions will be led by Thunder Bay’s own Master Peng, Vice President of the Thunder Bay Martial Arts Council and Chairman of the Canadian Organization of Traditional Taiji Quan Associations.

We hope you’ll join us!

 

* In the event of unfavorable weather, Tai Chi will move to the First Lutheran Church of Duluth.

122 Conversations in Petrozavodsk, Russia

DSCI is excited to announce the opening of Anne Labovitz’s project 122 Conversations in Petrozavodsk, Russia at the Petrozavodsk City Exhibition Hall! The exhibit will run until mid-June of this year and will feature the works inspired by conversations with citizens from each of Duluth’s Sister Cities (shown in the slideshow above) in addition to multiple interactive art projects that allow for anyone visiting the exhibit to add their mark.

The exhibit has already traveled to Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada (September-October 2015); Rania, Iraqi Kurdistan (January-February 2017); and Växjö, Sweden (March 2017) before making it’s way to Petrozavodsk.

122 Conversations is slated to visit the last Sister City, Ohara Isumi-City, Japan in January of next year before returning to the Tweed Museum of Art in Duluth, MN in the fall of 2018.

Check out the Russian social media feed of the exhibit in real time!