Started in 1998, Fired Up Studios has quickly evolved from a small pottery studio to an art center with classes and a gallery. Despite this growth, its mission remains the same: to raise the spirits of anyone who enters. In the 7,200-square-foot studio, experienced potters provide a judgment-free creative outlet for students and visiting artists alike, inviting them to have fun and experiment with the studio's collection of pottery wheels, kilns, and glazes. These potters also teach students how to throw clay, shape up elegant bowls and vases, and sculpt pixelization onto nude figures.
On a secluded ranch near the Cotopaxi volcano, the powerful Ecuadorian sun nourishes Las Rosas' rose bushes before they are carefully harvested and shipped to the Minneapolis store. Rare rose varieties, grown in the ranch's temperature- and humidity-regulated greenhouses, range from 45 centimeters to six feet in length, so customers can use them to measure a kiddie pool to the depth of a fathom. Their flowery palette in hand, the shop's resident floral artists can craft arrangements or bouquets for weddings, holidays, and other events.
Since 1995, the dexterous framers at Hang It Inc. have been embellishing artwork and other displayables with more than 1,000 first-rate frame varieties culled from around the world. Enclose a photograph or a napkin from a particularly delicious barbecue dinner with a 16”x20" black wood frame ($64), equipped with glass and a mount. Drab dorm rooms are illuminated with a poster encased in a 24”x36" black metal frame ($69), and gold, silver, and ornate borders enable customized constructions. Other combinations may be seen here. Hang It’s unique plasma-TV-framing service adorns wall-hung television sets with a quality picture frame and liner, transforming T.J. Hooker reruns into art. After shopping, customers can peruse the studio's art gallery, Gallery 122, which features a variety of mediums from local artists.
Like sword makers in a samurai movie, Eversharp?s skilled artisans toil over blades to ensure that each one is flawlessly straight and sharp. Their shop, hailed as one of the nation's largest Wusthof retailers, houses specialized knives and knife sets suited for any need, be it cutting a turkey, slicing bread, or carving a jack-o?-lantern into the spitting image of Alex Trebek. In addition to supplying cutlery, the staffers sharpen blades on a rolling grindstone and host knife-skills classes that prepare students to tackle any cooking emergency with gusto.
As an unstoppably daring design duo, Michael Byzewski and Dan Ibarra have been churning out posters since relocating from Madison to the Twin Cities in 2002. Even more than proper flossing habits, screen-printing posters is a laborious pursuit that’s difficult to keep up. Yet, their mutual appreciation of music, design, and blood-curdling screams has propelled their poster-making prowess and allowed them the opportunity to create posters for acts such as Andrew Bird, The Decemberists, and The Dead Weather. Utilizing its mastery of the three senses, Aesthetic Apparatus prides itself on its ability to render Future of the Left’s comically misanthropic demeanor in convenient 19”x25” posterized form. With years of experience, Aesthetic Apparatus is your one-stop shop for poster needs.
When Mercedes Austin sees a piece of artwork, her imagination immediately breaks it down into pixels and rebuilds it as a tile mosaic. Recently, she executed this process by making a mosaic of a wall mural: She fabricated jagged tiles, arranged them to resemble the original, and grouted the piece together. The resulting mosaic speaks to her intuition as an artist, and also to the years she?s spent honing the craft.
At Mercury Mosaics? studio, Mercedes and a team of ?tile elves? share their passion in two ways: through mosaic classes and custom installations. Classes explore all facets of mosaic creation, from cutting and gluing to grouting tiles into a pattern that resembles a real-life object or fuzzy television screen. Installations, which are fully customized to the client?s specifications, add a distinctive flair to commonly tiled areas such as bathrooms, backsplashes, and fireplaces.