Summer Arts Workshops for Adults

The reviews are in, and they are terrific.

“One of my favorite days off ever!”

“Informative, engaging, and FUN!!!”

Rimon: The Minnesota Jewish Arts Council and the Sabes JCC teamed up in July and August of 2015 to produce a series of four summer arts workshops for adults. The playgrounds were the banks of the Mississippi River, the shady gardens of The Landscape Arboretum, the avenues of Minneapolis’ North Side, and The Marsh in Minnetonka.

Each workshop explored an encounter with nature, one or two art forms—from drawing and cooking to collage and photography—and an exploration of personal belief.

In the words of Laura French, writing for the American Jewish World: “Why should kids have all the summer fun? This year grown-ups can enjoy the creativity, camaraderie and natural beauty of a summer day-camp experience.” The thirty participants came from an unusually broad spectrum of backgrounds; their ages spanned early-20s to mid-80s.

“The Spices of Life” launched the series with interactive visits to three cultural institutions on the North Side—Homewood Studios on Plymouth Avenue and Cookie Cart and Appetite for Change on Broadway. Whether the subject was painting, cookie dough, or a great beet soup, each of these cornerstone organizations showed how all the arts enrich the community in which they thrive and can empower individuals to live a more balanced, healthier life.

“One with Nature” put pencils and brushes in the hands of its participants. Masterfully guided by teacher Lynda Monick-Isenberg, the participants learned to look more acutely, to pay attention to their bodies through simple yoga poses, and to let their hands connect with their observational skills. A gorgeous Minnesota summer day in the gardens of The Arboretum gave everyone plenty to look at and draw.

“Mysteries of the Mississippi” combined preservationist Aaron Rubenstein’s intriguing stories of the social history of the river in downtown Minneapolis with artistic opportunities to capture the colorful natural landscape and wildlife which live on the water’s shores. Cameras, pens, torn paper, and collage were all used—under the guidance of artist Susan Armington–to evoke the watery passage of St. Anthony Falls, the secluded backwaters of the river’s small tributaries, and the Mill City Ruins.

The series concluded at The Marsh with “Skin & Bones and Everything in Between,” led by palliative care physician, artist, and storyteller Joel Carter and textile artist Beth Barron. Using personal experience as a starting point for discovery, the participants found unexpected ways to tell their individual stories using found objects, beads, paint, wood, and fabric.

Did you miss the workshops? The full list of past events is below.

We can’t wait to bring you more information about Rimon’s next arts workshops. Until then, visit rimonmn.org to keep up with how this Federation initiative is promoting and enhancing Jewish identity through art of all kinds.

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