This blog exists to inspire people to seek out all the great art that lives in and around the Minneapolis skyway.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Main Street on Marquette - Michael Birawer in the window

On a mundane mission to find an ATM, I was confronted with First Avenue in the window of the Main Street Gallery & Gifts in the skyway. This art perfectly suits its location, reminding the good people rushing from Caribou back to their cubicles that there are not simply clean silhouettes and straight modern lines in downtown Minneapolis. Sure, Target has taught us the power of the graphic symbol on white, but there are curves and a variety of colors in this metropolis as well. St. Paul native Michael Birawer understands his Twin Cities subjects, and has carved out an individual style that is both compelling and commercial. 

This painting entitled 35W Into Downtown encapsulates the feel of demarcation between downtown and the rest of Minneapolis. In addition to this, Birawer has captured the important places of this burgh: Nye's, the Gay 90's, Matt's, the dearly departed Uptown Bar, Murray's steakhouse and even Target Field (a commission). His style is a kind of contemporary urban, with roots in graffiti and comic book art, and he plays with depth perception by adding "plains of dimension" as can be seen in this video posted on his website. It shows stills taken as he creates a painting of downtown St. Paul.

If you'd like to purchase First Avenue, I'm sure that the Gallery will fill its easel with another of Birawer's works so that I can re-experience the coaction of time, place and art in my every day life again. So go for it.

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