“I’ve been coming to Belwin for years and never sat within this forest. It’s beautiful!“– Guest at 2019’s Music in the Trees
Belwin recognizes the arts’ ability to bridge divides, open doors, and make the intangible more easily understood. Since 2015, our Arts, Culture, and Ecology program has been doing just that. You’re invited to join us in engaging deeply with nature through performance events, hands-on artmaking, and our Artist in Residence program. Through arts and culture, we can inspire even more people to treasure and care for our natural spaces.
Annual Arts, Culture, and Ecology Events
EcoArts at Belwin’s Bison Festival
Every May, our Bison Festival celebrates the release of the herd onto the prairie. Join the fun with live music and hands-on art making inspired by and created with the natural elements surrounding you.
Music in the Trees
Each August, this music festival celebrating forest ecology and music features performers playing from tree stands in a four-acre pine grove. Featuring a fully accessible performance hosted by the Center for Hmong Arts and Talent that includes traditional and contemporary dance and music. (Hmong-English and ALS translation provided.)
This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through grants from the Minnesota State Arts Board and the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund. Music in the Trees is also funded in part by the St. Croix Valley Foundation.
Winter Solstice Bonfire
This beloved event features night hikes, a warming house, and storytelling each year. Sometimes the stories are musical, with sing-a-longs or group dancing, and most recently, Ikidowin Youth Theater told traditional seasonal Ojibwe stories. “Winter is the time for telling stories.“
Artist in Residence
Started in 2016, Belwin’s Artist in Residence program offers creatives the opportunity to learn from and be inspired by the natural processes that take place on our 1,500 acre preserve. Artists learn about the multitude of species, the importance of healthy ecosystems, and the purpose of land restoration from Belwin’s staff and have time to focus on their creative process.
We are excited to announce our 2021 Artist in Residence, Tom Bierlein.
Tom Bierlein is a Minneapolis-based sculptor, builder, and gardener who creates spaces to experience rest, connection, and reflection between people and the natural environment. In 2021, Tom will create a living “sculpture” that engages some of the ecological systems found at Belwin.
Thank you to all who applied this year, and to our artist selection panel who helped us choose our 2021 Artist in Residence. Members of the panel included: