"Lots of dogs; not much art." This is what Off-Leash Area learned about the Nokomis neighborhood upon opening their new performing arts space, Off-Leash Art Box, in the area earlier this year. In an effort to connect these two communities--dogs and arts-- Off-Leash Area is thrilled to announce its inaugural Bark!Art: a Dog and Art Festival, a massive two-day, family-friendly festival for Dogs and Art Lovers, Families & Friends, September 15th 12pm-8pm and September 16th 12pm-5pm at the Off-Leash Art Box in the Nokomis Neighborhood! Bark!Art will be hosted by Off-Leash Area in collaboration with community partner Canine Coach, voted #1 Dog Trainer in the Twin Cities since 2005.
Bark!Art Dog & Art Festival will feature:
*A NEW PRODUCTION BY OFF-LEASH AREA, "PAWS 'N' EFFECT" STARRING A REAL DOG: “Paws and Effect” is a family-friendly production exploring the journey of a girl who doesn’t fit in and a dog who teaches her how to show love and acceptance to others. Featuring OLA’s signature award-winning interdisciplinary style, the performance will blend company choreographer, Jennifer Ilse’s highly theatrical movement with Paul Herwig’s elaborate visual set design using live projected animation. It’s a show for audiences comprised of adults, kids, and their dogs. “Paws and Effect” will feature dog-friendly seating, along with opportunities for audience participation (or should we say ‘pawticipation!’).
*OPEN STAGE TALENT SHOW: The Bark!Art Open Stage Talent Show will offer folks from throughout the community an opportunity to share their talents with performances featuring their own dogs. The Talent Show takes place on an Outdoor Stage in the heart of the Festival gourds, and everyone is invited to participate in sharing their unique dog-trick, or in creating an original performance with themselves and their dog. A panel will choose the top participants to receive gift bags with goodies from local dog-related businesses.
*DOG-CENTRIC BUSINESS AND ARTIST BOOTHS: Bark!Art will round out its festival activities with booths featuring businesses and artisans specializing in gifts, products, services, and more for dogs, dog families, and dog lovers. Community partner Canine Coach will be onsite conducting interactive dog training and agility demonstrations.
Bark!Art Dog & Art Festival will take place indoors and outdoors at the Off-Leash Art Box, the Twin Cities newest alternative performing arts space. The Art Box is an intimate and fully equipped dance & theater space located in the Nokomis neighborhood of South Minneapolis, less than a mile from the Minnehaha Regional Dog Park.
Risks and challenges
With the opening of their new performance space, Off-Leash Art Box, Off-Leash Area is taking on the role of leaders and mentors in the Twin Cities artistic community. Bark!Art represents a huge undertaking as it seeks to meet the needs and interests of a new neighborhood (lots of dogs; not much art) while also extending past Off-Leash Area's typical communities to meet new neighbors, new audience members, and new artists in the community. This festival challenges Off-Leash Area as well as the festival participants to imagine their community artistic spaces in new ways, pushing the boundaries of what sort of creative, collaborative ventures can take place when a performing arts space collaborates with its surrounding neighborhood. Off-Leash Area plans to meet the artistic challenge of this large-scale festival by blending their artistic voice and vision into the mix, creating a new performance starring a dog and with dog-friendly seating available. They have already begun the process of addressing the organizational challenge by assembling a team of collaborators to help support the event including community partner Canine Coach, voted #1 Dog Trainer in the Twin Cities, Nokomis East Neighborhood Association, and additional administrative staff.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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