December 6, 2012 by Sarah M
// By Amelia Kaderabek – Murphy News Service //
Shoppers in search of a special and original holiday gift this season can browse through hundreds of paintings, photographs, jewelry and other art at the new Soo Visual Arts Center’s shop on Nicollet Avenue South.
The holiday shop, at 3506 Nicollet Ave. S., opened Nov. 17 and features work from 80 different local artists and crafters with 700 pieces of original art hung on the walls ready to sell. Other work includes drawings, collages, prints, screenprints, knitwear and ceramics. It will be open through Monday, Dec. 24.
“Art is the best holiday gift,” said Joe Sinness, one of the SooVAC’s shop organizers, who also has paintings for sale in the shop.
Most items are priced at under $200, and many are under $50, according to Soo VAC Executive Director Carolyn Payne.
“We have done a couple of holiday sales in the past and just set up some tables. We were given the opportunity to use the space and thought it would be fun to encourage people to support and buy from local artists,” Payne said.
“Local visual artists generally don’t get paid to show their artwork; as a gallery we show their work for free. It’s nice to help them make money off of their artwork,” Payne said.
Soo VAC is a non-profit arts organization with gallery space at 2638 Lyndale Ave. S. Its stated mission is to foster interaction between art and the community “with fresh, underrepresented and provocative art.” The center has been around for 11 years and also conducts workshops and educational events.
SooVAC’s board of directors and artists helped the staff ready the shop in time for holiday shopping.
The shop, on Nicollet between Pat’s Tap and the Honeycomb Salon, is open Thursday and Friday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Amelia Kaderabek studies journalism at the University of Minnesota.