Nicole Roberts Hoiland ’97 and Beth (Johnson) Winterfeldt ’94 share a strong friendship. Both are active in the arts scene across Minnesota. Hoiland is a sculptor and Winterfeldt is a pianist. They recently realized that their artistic mediums also share a strong bond.
When Winterfeldt found “The Enchanted Garden Preludes” by Richard Danielpour, an idea was born: Put on a recital with sculptures inspired by the music. She asked her friend Hoiland over for coffee, and they both got to work.
While Winterfeldt practiced the music, Hoiland listened to the music extensively, read about the composer’s work and investigated the composer’s notes on the piece while she constructed her sculptures, which she says reflect the movement of the music and the concepts of gardens of the mind and reality.
Now they are sharing their artwork with audiences at several venues in the Upper Midwest. Hoiland’s sculptures are displayed on stage while Winterfeldt performs on the piano. They love to see how the two mediums help the audience connect more deeply.
“The ultimate goal of artistic and musical expression is to give voice to what it means to be human, drawing connections between our world and life experiences in a way that language fails,” Winterfeldt says.
Although combining two artistic mediums may seem unusual, the pair isn’t reinventing the wheel.
“For centuries, visual arts and music have been used in conjunction with each other. In the ’50s and ’60s, artistic happenings were put on by John Cage, Merce Cunningham and Robert Rauschenberg,” Hoiland says. “The fusion of the arts is getting to be more and more common practice.”
Hoiland and Winterfeldt will perform a recital at 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 6, in Christiansen Recital Hall, Hvidsten Hall of Music. It will be a very sweet homecoming for both, who were profoundly impacted by professors who challenged them and believed they could succeed as artists.
“I am very excited to return to the place that started me on the path to being the artist I have become,” Hoiland says.