Tag Archives: Minnesota artists

Art-A-Whirl: Northeast Mpls artists open studios, create community

Art – along with a certain amount of dust – is in the air as the creative makers of the Northeast Minneapolis arts community ready themselves and their workspaces for Art-A-Whirl 2017!   A-A-W is the crowning jewel in the star-studded diadem of the Northeast Minneapolis Arts Agency.  (https://nemaa.org/about/ne-minneapolis-arts-district)

Much of the dust is coming from the studios of the artists – a sure sign that this is no ordinary “art fair.”  A-A-W is, first and foremost, the nation’s largest open studio tour of the working spaces of artists and crafters who work, and often live, in Northeast.  Paintings, pottery, mobiles, furniture, photos, tapestries, sketches, rugs, art books, and a host of unique renderings of the artists’ imaginations and talents are poised for last minute touch-ups and final presentation to the public.

Music also fills the air, much flowing from the studios of A-A-W host artists and crafters. Neighborhood boutiques, coffee shops and the renowned eateries and pubs of Northeast are primed for visitors!

A totally family-friendly weekend  A-A-W offers the rare opportunity to tour not only galleries but artists’ working spaces.  Visitors of all ages will have a chance to observe the makers of art at work – sculpting, glass blowing, painting, weaving, printmaking, creating photo images, collages, and mixed media works that marry sound and visual images.   Future makers will be able to touch, feel, smell, even try their hand at creating art.

A-A-W’s virtual welcome mat will be out beginning Friday, May 19, 5:00-10:00 p.m., Saturday, May 20- Noon-8:00 p.m. and Sunday, May 21, Noon- 5:00 p.m.

Visitors are welcome to wander randomly through the studio buildings, home studios, galleries and storefronts in the neighborhood.  Personal experience suggests that a bit of advance planning about walking the hood, identifying studio locations and exploring public transit options is worth the effort.

Fortunately, print and digital guides to A-A-W abound.  If you live, work or frequent the hot spots of Northeast, you can pick up a copy of the Artist Directory and Guide at any one of the arts buildings in the community.   Or click here (https://nemaa.org/art-a-whirl.)  for links to the essentials – the artist directory, map, dining guide, parking information and updates on A-A-W and NEMAA. Take special note of the “How to Whirl” section!

To appreciate the roots of the Northeast Minneapolis Arts Area, take a few minutes to read about the unique history here: (https://nemaa.org/about/history)  It’s an evolving story of community development focused on an understanding of the role of the arts in the local economy and in the life of a neighborhood that thrives on creative expression!

Consider a close-to-home Cruise – To Beautiful Bemidji

Thinking of taking a cruise this autumn?   You might want to check Minnesota’s intra-state cruise, the Studio Cruise of Bemidji and environs.

The Bemidji – First City of Arts Studio Cruise is “a self-guided tour of the studios of artists working within a 40 mile radius of Bemidji.” For three days, October 21-23, 2016, the free and open Cruise guides art lovers to a host of land-locked ports of call, the creative workspaces of participating artists who live in or around beautiful Bemidji.

Promotional materials from Cruise planners boast that Bemidji has more visual, performance and literary artists “than one can imagine!” With just a bit of local pride Cruise promotional materials describe the magnetic attraction of Bemidji. “Whether it’s the pristine natural surroundings, the relaxed pace or the educational atmosphere, many artists create their life’s work, quietly tucked away in their individual studios.”

Studio cruisers are invited to take a self-guided tour of some of the area’s best-known artists and artisans in their studios where visitors will find demos and show sale specials.

*For the latest news on sites, participating hours, and cruising conditions, keep a look-out on the Cruise website: http://visitbemidji.com/specialevents/stuio-cruise.html

* For descriptions of artists’ work and descriptions of Cruise ports of call –https://www.facebook.com/FirstCityofArtsStudioCruise/

* For a calendar of Bemidji area activities – http://www.visitbemidji.com/events-calendar/For maps, info on area sites and lodging – DrivingBemidji.com or 877-250-5939

Arts Administrator Alejandra Pelinka to Head NEMAA

Arts Administrator Alejandra Pelinka to Head Art-A-Whirl

The Northeast Minneapolis Arts Association (NEMAA) has announced that Alejandra Pelinka has accepted the position of Executive Director of Art-A-Whirl, the signature event of NEMAA’s thriving agenda of arts programming.  In making the appointment Susan Wagner Ginter, Board President of NEMAA, commented that “hiring an Executive Director now is happening at the right time for us in our organization’s growth path.  We have all levels of member sectors from local business partners to nationally recognized artists and we want to make sure NEMAA continues to be a vital organization for all of them.

Pelinka has served most recently as Art Gallery Director of the Burnsville Performing Arts Center, a theater and multi-purpose venue which includes an art gallery.  She is President of the Burnsville Arts Society and has worked at Intermedia Arts, the community arts center in South Minneapolis.  In accepting her appointment Pelinka commended the organization and its members who, she observes, “are well-known for the high level of creativity and quality of their work.”