Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

The art of a downtown October 10, 2014

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 6:00 AM
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I CHALLENGE YOU, the next time you are strolling Main Street, Anywhere, to look for art.

Hogan Brothers Acoustic Cafe sells original art showcased on its walls, plus serves up some great soup and sandwiches.

Hogan Brothers Acoustic Cafe sells original art showcased on its walls, plus serves up some great soup and sandwiches and more.

Not just the obvious, as in art created as art.

See all the art going on here in the stone, the angles, the curve of the door, etc. in the alley by The Contented Cow.

See all the art going on here in the stone, the angles, the door, etc. in the alley by The Contented Cow.

But art that weaves itself into the streetscape, into the fabric that defines a downtown.

Attractive sandwich board signage

Attractive sandwich board signage designed to draw shoppers into Glass Garden Beads and the Eclectic Goat.

Notice the colors, the textures, the fonts, the shapes—all those details that we often overlook in our hurry.

An eye-catching window display at the Yarn Shop. (Photo edited.)

An eye-catching window display at Northfield Yarn. (Photo edited.)

Appreciate that which someone created whether to draw your business or your eye or simply for the joy of creating.

Art is everywhere:

A kitschy painting outside a business entry.

A kitschy painting outside a business entry.

I'll tell you more about this piece of art in a larger scale public art project in an upcoming post.

I’ll tell you more about this piece of art in a larger scale public art project in an upcoming post.

The Northfield Arts Guild showcases fine original art. But don't miss this stained glass window and the scene beyond it on the center's second floor.

The Northfield Arts Guild showcases fine original art. But don’t miss the stained glass art and the scene beyond on the center’s second floor.

Don't miss the poetry imprinted upon sidewalks on Northfield's downtown. Word art.

Don’t miss the word art (poetry) imprinted upon sidewalks in Northfield’s downtown.

Love the Hogan Brothers sign and the architecture above it.

Love the Hogan Brothers sign and the architecture above it.

If only we will pause to notice, and appreciate, streetscape art.

FYI: All of these photos were taken this past summer in downtown Northfield, Minnesota.

© Copyright 2014 Audrey Kletscher Helbling

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15 Responses to “The art of a downtown”

  1. Beth Ann Says:

    I just had a blog prompt with the question about what is your favorite type of art. You are right—art is everywhere around us and so often we are too busy to take it all in. I actually did a mixed media class last night at Market 124 and made a “creation” . I didn’t really like it much when I was there but looking at it again this morning—-it has started to grow on me and I like it! Sometimes art is like that.

  2. I’ll try to remember to open my eyes. I feel the same way about nature; sometimes I forget to notice the beauty all around.

  3. Thread crazy Says:

    I so agree with you on art and poetry….by looking up rather than down we see so much more of art all around us.

  4. I am like you in that I look for the art around me when wandering and exploring – loving your captures 🙂 Happy Weekend!

  5. Rena Says:

    Liked all the art your keen eyes spot… Did you notice the Wooly Bear crawling along the sidewalk poetry?

  6. Oh, that goat in the window is fantastic! I laughed at the sidewalk poem; sometimes, you do have to look down to see something really cool.

  7. hotlyspiced Says:

    It’s so true that as we’re rushing around, we don’t notice all that is around us. It’s much more easy to notice statues and art in recreational places like parks than it is on a main street. Love how wherever we go we’re surrounded by art xx

  8. Dan Traun Says:

    Pausing to take in and appreciate your surrounds is important on so many levels.


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