Spoiled Affluence Evicts Art

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Welcome Historic Preservation Month 2015! And another round of Farkitecture Follies awards for those who are destroying the historic buildings and residential neighborhoods of Minneapolis and Saint Paul. Dracarys! one and all.

First up:
the Handicraft Guild building and its addition. According to Marcia Anderson, who was the head of collections and curator of manuscripts at the Minnesota Historical Society, Emma Roberts and eleven women artists received funds to build a building on 10th Street South in downtown Minneapolis, dedicated to training teachers in arts education and providing apprenticeships, classes, studios and opportunities for artists to sell their work to the public. The Architect was William Channing Whitney. The builder Horace Leighton. The Guild was so successful that they built an addition in 1914 designed by Edwin Hewitt and his colleague Edwin Brown on Marquette Avenue. Ernest Batchelder designed a tile entryway. A state of the art skylight system illuminated the interior. Arts and Crafts staircases, paneling, windows and doors provided an environment of architectural beauty that inspired artistic achievement.

If these buildings were designed today, they would receive awards in Green Architecture and Sustainable Design.

Artists have worked in these buildings since they were built and continue to work and live there today.

Instead they will be destroyed. The addition(which was built on an entire City block 10th and Marquette and a neighboring building 1016) will be demolished and replaced by eighteen floors of cool hip COZE micro apartments for the spoiled affluent children of the suburbs who have plenty of other identical apartments to be cool and hip in for the ten minutes they’ll live there.

The Artists collective and violin shops will be evicted, the exterior of the surviving Handicraft building tuckpointed and defaced with a big ugly sign….it’s interior gutted for a “health club” and “concierge service” for the spoiled affluents who will never be there.

Our City needs unique historic buildings, places for artists, small businesses for independent enterepreneurs, but apparently it needs filthy developer lucre and yet another building that is a clone of dozens of others courting the money of the spoiled affluents and their parents until they return to the suburbs from whence they came.

Farkitecture Follies Award #1 Spoiled Affluence Evicts Industrious Art and Independent Enterpreneurs as an irreplaceable unique Arts and Crafts architectural masterwork is destroyed.

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One Response

  1. Minneapolis seems unable to help itself in its continuing addiction to demolishing historic buildings.

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