Art Market: Gather around art and home

In an age when we can fill our homes with an abundance of uniform, sleek, inexpensive, mass-produced goods, the gracious imperfections of handmade objects provide a particularly human comfort. A few artisanal pieces incorporated here and there into your living spaces, whether it’s a simply constructed paper pendant lamp or a bit of ornate whimsy […]

Zoom In: Michael Thomsen

Michael Thomsen was born into a line of circus people and performers and, in a way, he’s continuing in the family business. Thomsen grew up in Austin, Minnesota, "in the shadow of the Hormel meatpacking plant." His first job as a kid involved sorting through the junk drawers and closets of the recently deceased for […]

Zoom In: Susan Hensel

I’m greeted at Susan Hensel Design Gallery by the gallery’s namesake, a small, ebullient woman who is a nationally recognized book artist and recent Minnesota transplant. “I’ve had friends here for years, my son was away at college—it was time,” she explains. As for her gallery, “I wanted the opportunity, not only to show my […]

Zoom In: Richard C. Johnson

Richard Johnson’s photos of weathered storefronts, thrift-store castoffs, and tattered religious iconography in northern Minnesota serve as an astute chronicle of the erosion of small Midwestern towns. He grew up in Cloquet, which he describes as “an OK place,” one with “a slightly higher-than-average number of churches as well as per-capita consumption of distilled spirits, […]

The Man from Hamburg

As you walk down the narrow hallway into Frank Sander’s sunlit studio in Lowertown you’re greeted by an entryway table piled with cables, cast-off camera bits, miscellaneous video equipment, and a couple of discarded microphone heads. On the walls are personal treasures the German-born artist has picked up during his twenty-odd years of travel. He […]

Zoom In: Amy Jo Hendrickson

Hendrickson’s handiwork is a mélange of burlesque camp, cowgirl grit, and Victorian flourish. She’s undeniably influenced by ’70s pop design and ’80s album covers, but this North Dakota girl also mixes in a frontier spirit straight out of a nineteenth-century Sears, Roebuck catalog. But make no mistake, the work has some bite: Hendrickson’s all-American blonde […]

Zoom In: Dona Schwartz

Spend a few minutes with photographer Dona Schwartz and you’ll start to see a bit of grandeur hiding beneath humble day-to-day routines. “I want to see what’s amazing that’s right under my nose,” she explains. “To me, that’s really compelling. But to photograph daily life, you have to first really see it. You have to […]

Zoom In: Lori Greene

Mosaic on a Stick hums with chatter from neighbors coming in to browse for supplies, gossip, sign up for classes, and admire new pieces on display. In the three years since mosaicist Lori Greene and her business partner Maria Ricke opened “The Stick” in Saint Paul’s Midway area, they’ve put down solid roots through neighborhood […]