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Seen-Unseen 300

U of M professor and artist Rebecca Krinke (third from left) shows her map of the Twin Cities area with several students.

U of M professor's new public art project to map joy and pain in the Twin Cities

"Unseen/Seen: The Mapping of Joy and Pain" to be unveiled at Father Hennepin Bluffs Park this Friday, July 23

Contacts: Laura Weber, College of Design,, (612) 625-6566
Jeff Falk, University News Service,, (612) 626-1720

July 20, 2010

People in Minneapolis-St. Paul will receive an unusual opportunity starting Friday. They can map where in the Twin Cities they have experienced joy and pain. Called "Unseen/Seen: The Mapping of Joy and Pain," this new, interactive outdoor public art project is traveling to several parks in Minneapolis this summer and flows from the creative mind of Rebecca Krinke, associate professor in the University of Minnesota College of Design's Department of Landscape Architecture.

The project's sculptural setting includes a unique table-like object that contains a custom, wooden map of the Twin Cities. The scale map has streets clearly labeled to provide easy orientation for mapping, and visitors have the opportunity to literally add color to this map -- gold where they have felt joy and gray for pain. Members of the project team will be on hand in each location to talk with anyone interested about the project and invite them to add their experiences to the map.

"Unseen/Seen: The Mapping of Joy and Pain challenges conventional ways of seeing the Twin Cities", says Krinke. "The project has the potential to be revealing, even cathartic." Krinke is partnering with the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board in her project.

"We at the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board are thrilled to be a partner in this process," says Diane Moe, cultural arts administrator for the board. "We are confident it will bring individuals of all ages to the parks to view and participate in this fabulous idea."

The project is the first step in what Krinke envisions as a continuing exploration of pain/joy through public art and the community engagement. Bringing the project to the national, even international level is planned. In 2011, she plans to designate a day for cities, public art programs and individuals to create a setting and event for The Mapping of Joy and Pain in their city.

Schedule for the Mapping of Joy and Pain project:

Friday, July 23, Father Hennepin Bluffs Park, Minneapolis, 3-7 p.m.

Special Location: Saturday, July 24, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

Saturday, July 31, Gluek Park, Minneapolis, 3-7 p.m.

Friday, Aug. 6, Minnehaha Park, Minneapolis, 3-7 p.m.

Additional parks and dates are being planned; see Krinke's website for updates at

Krinke is a multimedia artist and designer working in sculpture, installations and site art. In broad terms, her work deals with issues related to trauma and recovery. Krinke’s sculpture often explores and embodies themes of trauma - using the body as a starting point - while her installations and site works have focused on ideas of recovery - through contemplative, transformative environments.

University students Yamuna Golden, David Kerber and Michael Dorfman assisted her in this project. Kevin Groenke and Justin Kindlespire of the College of Design provided lasercutting and woodworking expertise. In addition, university student Joseph Cronick is producing a video documentary on the project. The University of Minnesota’s Imagine Fund and the university’s Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program provided funding for this project.

Tags: College of Design

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Related Links

"Mapping Joy and Pain" - the blog

Rebecca Krinke's webpage