Entries Tagged 'Washington Pavilion' ↓

The Pavilion is NOT comparable to our Parks System

I still haven’t figured out exactly if this editorial by the Argus is about anything, but I certainly found this line troubling and extremely inaccurate;

It is a valuable city asset akin to our parks system, one that enriches those of us who already call Sioux Falls home.

It is NOTHING like our parks system when it comes to value. Many things in our parks system are FREE due to the taxes we pay. What is free at the Pavilion? Nothing. I suppose you could sit in the lobby and take a nap on one of the benches. The Pavilion use to offer many free events and a free visual arts center. Not any more.

And that is another reason why you cannot compare our parks system to the Pavilion. Taxpayers take it in the shorts on many fronts with the Pavilion. We NOT only subsidize operations, but the city also robs the 3rd penny entertainment tax to make upgrades to a building that really isn’t that old and went almost $20 million over budget. The 3rd penny should really be used to promote tourism and FREE public art programs in our community.

The Pavilion doesn’t give any cultural value back to the community UNLESS you pay for it, TWICE. Once in your tax bill and again when you buy a ticket.

Do we need the Pavilion? Most definitely. But I think they should bring back some FREE programming so we can truly compare it to the city’s GREATEST asset, our Parks System.

Art is Art

Here we go again, the Pavilion seems to think fine art should be split into age appropriate categories;

“We want to implement a concept where we get more kids and families into the Visual Arts Center,” said Smith, who hopes to boost attendance numbers by 25 percent in 2018.

I think historically it’s been more of an adult-oriented area,” continued Smith. “Certainly much of it will continue to be focused on high quality art that adults are interested in, but we really need to get more young people interested in visual art and coming so they become lifelong patrons.”

Unless it is highly political in nature or pornographic (I’ve seen neither at the Pavilion) fine art is age appropriate for EVERYONE. If people think art is ‘more adult like’ or challenging, it is a perfect opportunity to have a conversation with your children about that art. Art can inspire but it should also be thought provoking.

It is troubling to me that one of our publicly funded art museums has management and directors that think visual art needs to be split up into age categories. I’m all for kid’s art classes and play areas at the Pavilion, but I don’t believe we need to turn the VAC into a childrens or family art museum. Art is subjective, it has always been. When it comes to taste or what you personally like in art, it has nothing to do with your age, it has to do with your preference. If your children don’t like an 18th century landscape, maybe it is because it bores them, not because they are too young to understand.

This is what happens when you remove art professionals from an art center. Chaos.

Pavilion adds a Development Officer after an absence

Image: Siouxfalls.business

I’m glad to see the Pavilion is finally getting a development person back on staff;

Kerri DeGraff will join the Washington Pavilion as the chief development officer Feb. 12. DeGraff most recently served as the development director for Feeding South Dakota for six years. Before that, she worked for five years with the Sioux Empire United Way as the community impact director.

I think Kerri has done a good job at FSD, I just find it interesting she is taking her talents to a different kind of non-profit model. Of course, development officers are in charge of raising private donations and other gifts. Obviously she is probably going to tap into her current list of contacts for these donations and you wonder what kind of toes may not like being stepped on. Raising money for the arts and raising money to feed the less fortunate are two different beasts. I wish her luck!

Pavilion ‘creates’ mysterious position

The new position appears to be an assistant to Mr. Folkerts.

In the past the Pavilion has had either a curator or an assistant to the director.

It’s an Exhibitions and Collections Project Assistant.  A new title that the Pavilion has never had, and when you read the job description, you will be scratching your head (DOC: Exhibitions & Collections Project Assistant Jan18)

‘Bachelors Degree in related field’ What does that even mean? What field?

The new position, like Mr. Folkerts, doesn’t require experience or professional museum training.

It seems the Pavilion is getting away from ANY museum/science professionals. The rumor in artists circles is the Pavilion is going to get away from having a ‘real’ arts center and ‘real’ science center, and I guess when you hire cartoonist pastors to take over these positions, what do you expect?

It only took the Pavilion 13 months to make 2016 Annual Report public

I guess better late than never. DOC: Annual Report 2016

This was one of the main reasons why I asked the council to do a better job vetting the Pavilion’s financials before renewing their 5 year contract.

Washington Pavilion’s NEW Leadership?

Lot’s of new people and a lot of old hats are gone. I have a rough count of about 5-6 people missing that were there last year;

Senior Management Team

(605-367-7397) Ext. xxxx

President & CEO: Darrin Smith | 2494

Chief Operations Officer: John Seitz | 2343

Chief Financial Officer: Jane Hathaway | 2310

Director of Exhibits & Collections: Jason Folkerts | 2349

Director of Programming & Education: Rose Ann Hofland | 2350

Director of the Husby Performing Arts Center: Regina Ruhberg | 2344

Director of Marketing & Public Relations: Rebecca Sevening | 2367

Director of Facility Services: Scott Stratman | 2318

Director of Patron Services: Nick Suridis | 2308

Does the Pavilion need to have the plagiarism talk with Folkerts?

I guess some people never learn. Below Jason brags about plagiarizing Peanuts cartoons and handing them out to kids at the Pavilion. After Schulz died Disney took ownership of the cartoons copyrights. There is nothing wrong with drawing these toons for his own use and pleasure, but using them as marketing for the Pavilion, even if they are not being sold, is a No, No, unless they got consent (which they might have, but I highly doubt it).

But this isn’t Jason’s first rodeo doing this. Schulz never appreciated it when he was alive either.

Jason also took a stab at Star Wars.

I wonder if Jason knows about this handy contact list?

The troubling part is that Jason is doing this while representing the Pavilion as the Visual Arts Director for a city contractor on city property. If Disney gets wind of his plagiarism, a lot of people could be in a lot of hot water besides just Mr. Folkerts.

Jason, we both know you are talented enough to draw your own cartoons, so next time, hand out Folkert’s originals.

Pavilion cancels Thursday night Jazz

Now that the 5 year contract has been renewed and the over a million a year in subsidies is coming in it’s time to start the chopping.

While the Thursday night jazz was not free ($5 cover) I felt it was well attended every time I went. I was told that they averaged about 50 people per event. In the bigger perspective, that’s a pretty good crowd for local jazz on a Thursday night.

There are also rumors flowing from the place that the Visual Arts Center will see major changes over the next year. Not sure what they will be, but what I have been hearing isn’t good.

It’s unfortunate that after almost 20 years the Pavilion is actually providing less and less FREE (or affordable) arts events to us common folk, even though the bonds were paid off years ago and the yearly subsidy and remodeling projects have increased by hundreds of thousands of dollars each year. Where is the money going?

The Pavilion was built for the upper crust, and it is getting crustier by the day.

‘Loving Vincent’ to play in Sioux Falls on Sunday

You can’t miss this movie!

The film brings the paintings of Vincent van Gogh to life to tell his remarkable story. Every one of the 65,000 frames of the film is an oil-painting hand-painted by 125 professional oil-painters who travelled from all across the world to the LOVING VINCENT studios in Poland and Greece to be a part of the production. As remarkable as Vincent’s brilliant paintings, is his passionate and ill-fated life, and mysterious death.

I have been following the progress of this movie for over a year.

Art museums are supposed to be ‘Art’ friendly NOT ‘Kid’ friendly

Should have seen this coming a mile away when you put a youth pastor cartoonist in charge of a fine arts center. To that in a moment.

Last night at the council meeting they only had three resolutions on the agenda. It was 5 year contract renewals for SMG, Ovations & the Washington Pavilion.

I suggested that SMG promote more of their own shows to make the city coffers a little money. After the meeting, Argus Leader reporter Joe Sneve told me it may be difficult for the Denty to promote their own shows because they signed a contract with Live Nation. I said, “Well that was stupid.” Joe then asked Turbak who was standing there if that was true and like the grump toad mayor he just stood there and glared at me. Joe said to me, “You just aren’t happy about anything Scott” and chuckled. I responded, “We are running a concert hall not a church hall.”

When the resolution for the Pavilion came up, I suggested to the council that they look at audits and financials more thoroughly before okaying these contracts. I also suggested they amend the contract so that the visual arts center is free to all for local and regional exhibits. Councilor Starr called up Darrin Smith and asked him about the VAC. Smith said they are going to be making ‘great changes’ over the next couple of years in the VAC to make it better, including making the arts center more ‘kid’ friendly.


Arts centers should concentrate on ART. Visual art no matter the style has a wide appeal to all ages, that’s what makes it great. If there is a challenging exhibit to younger tikes – this is a great opportunity for parents to talk to their young ins about the topic and start a conversation. Art museums are not playlands, they are there to inspire emotion, influence creativity and are supposed to make you think. If kids want to play, they can play in the Science Center.

As for the VAC being FREE, there are two reasons why it is important. First off, it brings people into the Pavilion that normally wouldn’t visit an arts center, but more importantly it is a nice service to the public who help fund the facility. The city subsidizes the Pavilion for over a million a year. Besides FREE Tuesdays and First Fridays, the only other thing in the entire building that is FREE is the Sioux Falls black history cases (that few people know about because it is buried on a back hallway.)

Just another facility the taxpayers subsidize and still have to pay to walk through it’s doors. The Pavilion for years has tried to shake off the stigma they are only for the elite in Sioux Falls, I guess they have just given up that fight and accepted it. Sad.