Just For Us
New work from Calvin Hafermann and Sam Dirck
June 4th-July 3rd, 2022
Opening reception June 4th, 2022
Just For Us is the first collaborative exchange between artists Calvin Hafermann and Sam Dirck. We are excited to present work from each artist after hosting our first studio residency at Waiting Room’s location on Columbus Avenue.
Engulfed between the shimmering, far-off beauty of one’s ideals and the inarticulate banality in the succession of days. The title is both deeply, viciously self-mocking and cynical, but also earnest in its intimate suggestion. The work displays a demeanor that resembles an aloof geniality, preserving aesthetic ties to Fine Art and Design as much as cosmic hyperbole. Once you delve deeper, past the aesthetics, it's hard not to wish for a few more distinguishing moments to hold onto. Maybe that’s an aspect of the artists, Sam Dirck and Calvin Hafermann’s well-developed gaze toward abstraction: one that sees the futility of overcrowding meaning, both personal and political, acknowledging that prescriptive interpretation is an unbearable alternative. Read more here.
Sam Dirck (he/him) is a visual artist living and working in Saint Paul, Minnesota. Dirck’s studio practice centers around concepts of camouflage, semiotics and simultaneity. He utilizes hard edge abstraction and expressionism to create a slurring of historically formulaic styles of painting. When situated properly, the work depicts a system of layers that oppose and reinforce eachother. Dirck’s work is owned by private collectors across the globe. His first solo show at Waiting Room in 2020, Boredom Fantasy Mimesis, was featured in Art Forum’s Critic’s Picks.
Calvin Hafermann (he/him) is an artist living and working in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Primarily working in sculpture, he is interested in surface as a polyvalent expression of synthetic design as it relates to desire, distraction, intimacy, distance and presence. He received his BFA from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design in 2020.
Exhibition by Kristina Johnson
Located within the Otto Bremer Room at the George Latimer Central Library in downtown St. Paul, Minnesota.
January 29th to February 6th, 2022
Link to exhibition text and gallery map
Celebrated for over 135 years, the St. Paul Winter Carnival is one of our nation’s oldest and greatest seasonal traditions. Special events sponsored by major local businesses began in the late 1880s as a way to reinvigorate the spirit of the North during its most desolate months. For the artist Kristina Johnson, the Carnival is a way to connect to her family and their strongly rooted ties to Minnesota’s history. Johnson is the great, great, great granddaughter of Jacob Schmidt, founder of the Schmidt Brewery; and the great granddaughter of Edward G. Bremer, a St. Paul banker who was kidnapped by the infamous Barker-Karpis gang in 1934. This exhibition is a unique display of Johnson’s artwork interwoven with heirloom treasures from her family’s archive, highlighting the multiple generations of relatives who all grew up enjoying the Winter Carnival.
Kristina Johnson is an artist and curator currently living in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She runs Waiting Room, an arts platform that directly supports the cultivation of art and culture within the Twin Cities. Johnson has curated exhibitions exploring critical questions about the relationship of art to abstraction, the environment, social concerns, political issues and theories of identity, individuation, and subjectivation. Her curatorial work has been featured in Artforum’s “Critics’ Picks”; as well as personally featured in local Twin Cities publications such as City Pages, MNDaily, and Star Tribune.
The Saint Paul Winter Carnival is produced by the Saint Paul Festival and Heritage Foundation and is funded by private donations and corporate contributions. The Board of Directors, supported by hundreds of corporate and individual members, employs a full time staff to help plan this community celebration.
I forgot my day
Organized by John Herbert
July 30th, 2021-August 29th, 2021
“I forgot my day” stands as a chronicling of engagement with everyday magical acts. A nostalgic importance is set on the memorable but history-stricken outcomes of navigating the world through shared yet unfamiliar moments. The participating artists in “I forgot my day” examine the intimate yet impersonal nature of humanity. Throughout the exhibition are referential interactions and imagined confrontations with time. The artists present us with feelings of humor, nostalgia, and nothingness which become harmoniously interwoven with Waiting Room’s enamoring basement space.
This exhibition is held in a century old structure imbued with memory, the works included lend an appreciative hand to the everyday and imagined-- noting that the magic behind the unmonumental is paradoxically monumental. The artists uniquely identify the degrees in which forgetfulness of the past, present, and future create the remembered facets of humanity in their myriad of executions.
Preston Dorsett (he/him) is a designer living and working in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He is currently positioned between the worlds of furniture making at Concrete Pig and city planning at Juxtaposition Arts. These two perspectives exist in his artistic work as simultaneous experimentations of material fabrication and social study. His current effort is to explore the failures and successes of the European Midcentury Modernists by bootlegging their highly valued original designs.
Michael C.F Hansen (he/him) is an interdisciplinary artist living and working in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Primarily focusing on videography, he earned his BFA in New Genres from the San Francisco Art Institute (’19).
Sam Larom (he/him) is a South Korean born painter who received his BFA from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design in 2019. Currently, he lives and works in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Thomas Moore (he/him) is a Chicago, Illinois based artist from Columbus, Ohio. Moore’s work is referential to the fantasies which accrue from a personal visual lexicon of idealized Midwestern dreamscapes, similar to parking garages, convention centers, and malls. Moore’s work regards the effects dreams have on these remembered and invented landscapes, oftentimes exaggerating the purpose of scale and personality of space as a reaction to how these purposes might shift seamlessly during a dream. Another point of interest within these works are the fictitious paths and environments created for a point-and-click game character's pursuit of a goal which lays out a destiny before the adventure takes place, proving the landscape’s impact upon the individual.
Kelsey Olson (she/her) is an artist that makes paintings and photo process works. She received her BFA from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design in 2010 and was a recipient of the 2016-17 Jerome Emerging Artists Fellowship. She has participated in group and solo exhibitions throughout Minneapolis and Minnesota, including at the Rochester Art Center and St. Cloud State University. Olson is from Montana and lives in Minneapolis.
Matt Yaeger (he/him) is a Minneapolis artist who works in painting, print and sculpture. His work explores aspects of digital social culture framed within science fiction narratives. He is interested in how the abstract space of text messages, DMs, news feeds, and other forms of digital consumption become psychologically and emotionally pervasive, shaping how we think, feel, and live.
June 6, 2021-July 7, 2021
Harrison Wayne Gallo
Kieran Myles-Andrés Tverbakk
After nearly a year without formal programming or events, Waiting Room is eager to welcome guests into their new space, homeroom, and celebrate with peers and patrons.
Off the intersections of Franklin and Chicago, in the heart of Ventura Village, is Waiting Room’s newest exhibition space homeroom. The building itself is currently home to Waiting Room’s director Kristina Johnson (KJ). homeroom situates itself far from the traditional gallery space by preserving the charm of its history that enhance the curatorial perspective and bring attention to it’s architecture and age. The perimeters of the showrooms date back to 1893 and are constructed from laid stone, brick, and shiplap. Exhibitions in our forthcoming season feature an impressive array of contemporary talent that expand the growing genres in identity culture and technology.
The selected works featured in our inaugural show, camedowndifferent, come from ten emerging and established artists living across the US. camedowndifferent offers unconventional associations between artists seldom exhibited together, implicitly exploring the diverse relationships amongst their medias. Works in this show harness feelings of existential mortality by the visual signifiers through use of coded imagery and language in order to provide a particularly overwhelming sense of one’s humor, memory, and conditional identity. There’s a breath – well, a lot of breaths – of edifying inward energy available in that approach, and that’s exactly where these artists shine their spotlight. Altogether the works exhibit a surge of communal confidence in the face of the last year’s upending travails.
homeroom is devoted to experimentation, discussion and the production of exhibition projects, presentations, lectures, and publishing ventures in collaboration with artists, curators, independent and institutional actors. The exhibition program is mainly focused on a new generation of artists who are rarely exhibited in the Twin Cities or Minnesota.
Kate Burke (she/her) is an Atlanta-based mixed-media and textile artist. Kate graduated with honors from the University of Georgia, receiving her BFA in Fabric Design in 2016. While in school, she received the Mary Rosenblatt Art Scholarship and recently received the ArtFields 2019 Category Award for Textiles. Kate has shown at the Lyndon House Art Center, ATHICA, Sulfur Studios, the Lamar Dodd School of Art, Hartsfield Jackson International, whitespec, as well as other galleries and art centers throughout the southeast. Kate recently returned from a residency at the Hambidge Center, with thanks to the Hambidge Center Fulton County Scholarship.
Andrew CS (he/him) is a web designer, creative programmer, and media-agnostic artist living in Chicago, IL. Andrew is interested in media as memory, or media over time, or something like that. Memory in the mind forms misty trails, but media (ink, computers, microphones, objects, & data) can create discrete imprints of time and pace at a given resolution. Make an archive of these and you have a time capsule, a prosthetic memory, or a time travel mechanism. Just as memory must define oneself (as the sum of experiences) so too does the archive. Kept close these efforts become a record of gestures made, places felt, still listening sessions, observations, time with friends, and time to oneself.
Micah Dillman (they/he) is a queer performance and textile artist based out of Chicago, IL. His textile and fiber work commonly employs motifs and materials that recall associations to early childhood stages of development. Early learning experiences are the basis of how we inform our identity as adults and especially how we internalize the performative behaviors relative to a constructed gender identity. Dillman’s work explicitly questions their agency in that experience.
Sam Dirck (he/him) accommodates limitless arrangements of environments that criticize the function of one’s spatial relationship to design. His use of materials reinforces the idea that our identity is moulded through memories and that we exist paradoxically as multiple selves.
Harrison Gallo (he/him) is an artist born and raised in Atlanta, GA. Having worked in research and industrial laboratories as an experimental chemist for several years, his practice is informed by a reckless passion for research, rapid prototyping, and making sense out of errant data points. Approaching new concepts and materials with a capricious yet obsessive attitude, his current work mixes carbon media, recycled industrial waste materials, and religious motifs in order to explore his overlapping experiences with grief, memory, and sex.
Rene Gibson (he/him) is a painter that lives in New Zealand.
Reade Gosen (he/him) is an interdisciplinary artist working mainly in music (as Sweet Reade) and body art. He's the orignal real daddy badass of Minneapolis and also your favorite uncle. Gosen employs his sharp wit and sense of humor to relay the absurdity of modern life. Currently, he is tattooing out of Sea Wolf Tattoos in Minneapolis, MN. Hit him up for some sick ink and make sure to tell him KJ sent ya--he might even give you a free sticker.
Jordan Homstad (they/them) is a Minneapolis-based visual artist who works primarily in acrylic paint. They are currently pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Art History at the University of Minnesota. Homstad’s work centers around the emotional, social, and existential impact of technology on contemporary life. Their paintings explore and investigate parasocial relationships with new forms of social media; often questioning and interrogating the hypersexualized female form using narrative to emphasize the ways in which it connects its users back to society.
Kayla Mattes (she/her) is a visual artist working across disciplines including weaving, sculpture, and installation. She archives the ephemeral vernacular of digital culture through the interconnected threads of tapestry. Currently based out of Los Angeles, Mattes is represented by Richard Heller Gallery.
Kieran Myles-Andrés Tverbakk (they/them) is an artist from Houston TX, currently living and working on Dakhóta land (Minneapolis-St. Paul). They create mixed media artwork exploring dichotomies within their experience as a first-generation Mexican-Norwegian-American who is also non-binary transgender. Their interests lie in how we as humans divide ourselves socially, politically, and physically.
Lee Noble (he/him) is a musician, performer, and visual artist moving between sound, video, collage, and installation. He is the designer and co-founder (along with Stephen Molyneux) of No Kings Record Co., a cassette label focused on field recordings, ambient, drone, and experimental music, as well as Night Club (along with Emma Beatrez), a transdisciplinary, conceptual art study and activity group, and Vague Intl., a new publishing imprint. He has performed at venues and festivals in the US, Europe, and Japan, including Sonihouse (Nara, JP), Hopscotch Fest (Raleigh, NC), Soy Fest (Nantes, FR), Rewire Fest (Den Haag, NL), the Walker Art Center, the Chicago Art Book Fair, the Los Angeles Art Book Fair, the Wire’s Adventures in Modern Music Fest (Chicago), Human Resources (Los Angeles), Temporary Space (Los Angeles), EMS (Stockholm) and Issue Project Room (Brooklyn). His visual work has been exhibited in Los Angeles, Austin, Minneapolis, New York, Manchester, and Berkeley, and in publications by Picturebox Inc., Thames & Hudson, Spector Books, and Secret Headquarters.
Paradisce: A Spring Break Beach Collection
Launching Friday, April 2, 2021
Waiting Room x backroom are pleased to present to you, Joshua McGarvey’s latest collection in experimental fashion, Uselding Fridays Paradisce.
This collection is a collage of processed product. Paradisce is like hot nacho cheese in Cancun on Spring Break. It’s not a celebration of the memory but a reflection on the acceleration we have experienced since a guy got his tongue pierced on TV standing next to Carson Daly at the Spring Break Beach House—I don’t remember if Carson was dating Tara Reid at this point in time, so the exact year escapes me. But seriously, I recently watched a live stream of the Minnesota Orchestra performing a percussion ensemble called “Perfectly Voiceless'' composed by Devonté Hynes and everyone should listen to the song.
A professor once told me, “Paradise isn’t real and trying to get there is like staring into the sun, it will blind you.” I don’t know what that means, but I do think paradise is an oversaturated concept. So my collection is called Paradisce, which is just paradise misspelled.