Grand Marais Art Colony, Grand Marais, Minnesota Special Events
120 WEST 3RD AVENUE   PO BOX 626    GRAND MARAIS, MINNESOTA 55604    218-387-2737

Plein Air Grand Marais
September 11 - November 15, 2015
Artists leave the studio and venture into the great outdoors to celebrate the unique beauty of the North Shore landscape. Witness blank canvases become exquisite moments in local history. Competition area is anywhere in Cook County, MN-from the Canadian Border to the Caribou River in Schroeder.

2015 Artists
Invite Class
Richard Abraham | Kristin Blomberg | Bob  Bonawitz | Carl Bretzke | Christopher Copeland | Lee Englund | Bridget Ertelt | David Gilsvik | Paula Gustafson | Catherine Hearding | Shirley Hove | Laurie Kania | Matt Kania | Cynthia Kath | Rick  Kochenash | Cheryl LeClair-Sommer | Scott Lloyd Anderson | Tom McGregor | Spencer Meagher | Susan  Novak | Lawrence  Rudolech | Katherine Seger | Neil Sherman | Lisa Stauffer | Bob Upton | Michelle Wegler

Jury Class
Douglas Berg | Karen Berger | Jerri Jo Brandt | Michele Combs | Patricia Duncan | John Franz | David Hahn | Marva Harms | Wayne Hein | Gary Hittle | Carol Holmblad | David Huth | Julia Jaakola | Susan Klem | Robert Luedtke | Dan Mackerman | Susan McLean-Keeney | Joanne Meierhofer | Dan Mondloch | Sandi Pillsbury Gredzens | Jason Prigge | Joan Reynolds | Linda Ricklefs BaudryLarry Seiler | Joyce Staley | Richard Stryker | Christine Tierney | Kenneth Valentas | William Whalberg | Sue Wipf | Stephen Wysocki

2015 Awards Juror: Tom Nachreiner
Take a class with Tom!

Your Authentic Plein Air Voice
September 19 - 21 | 3 days


2015 Jury Class Juror: Brian Stewart

in collaboration with a panel of art patrons

2015 Timeline
Competition: September 11 - 18
     Quick Paint: Thursday, Sept 17 | 4 - 5:30pm | On Artists Point
Opening Reception: Fri, Sept 18 | 5 - 7pm | Johnson Heritage Post Gallery
Exhibit Open: September 18 - November 15 
2015 Awards
1st Place: $1000
2nd Place: $500
3rd Place: $250
Cash prizes also given to the winners of Quick Paint, Night Paint, & People's Choice

2015 Info for artists can be found here
Photos from Plein Air Grand Marais 2014

Become a Purchase Award Sponsor

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Tour d'Art: Artful Abodes, a Home Tour Fundraiser
October 3, 2015
A Grand Marais Art Colony Fundraiser:

Tour d'Art: Artful Abodes
Saturday, October 3 | NOON | $125
The Artful Abode Exhibit is open to the public: October 4 - 15 
An exclusive home tour, reception, and exhibit highlighting the art of architecture, home design, and functional art.

The tour will provide participants with an exclusive opportunity to visit four unique homes in one afternoon. Homeowners will be present to give context to the story of how their home evolved, the architect and/or designer that inspired their imagination, and the art that enhancesc their living spaces. On display will be architecture and designs by John Howe, Dale Mulfinger, Richard Olson, and David Salmela.

The tour culminates in an exhibition of functional art and reception at the Art Colony. Participants will have the first opportunity to view and buy from this exhibit featuring functional artwork for the home by renowned Minnesota artists, builders and designers including Loll Design, Eastvold Furniture, Ernest Miller Ceramics, Brienne (Handmade by Brienne) and Anton Moody (Taiga Design Build), Melissa Wickwire (Wickwire Clay Works), Tandem Made, Tom Christiansen, and Jeanne McGee.

The exhibit will be open to the public October 4 - 15, 2015. 

These homes are not open to the public so this is a rare opportunity to see the art and properties of some of the North Shore's most interesting homes. Tickets are limited for this exclusive experience and can be purchased in advance for $125. | (218) 387-2737
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Annual Members Show & Sale
October 30 - November 22, 2015
The 2015 Member Show & Sale is themed! The theme is Wabi-sabi, or beauty that is imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete.
Wabi-sabi aesthetic includes asymmetry, roughness, irregularity, simplicity, austerity, modesty, intimacy, and appreciation of the ingenuous integrity of natural objects and processes.

Friday, Oct 30

Annual Member Meeting - 4pm
Opening Reception - 5-7pm

Exhibit runs through Sunday, November 22

The Grand Marais Art Colony annual Member Show & Sale provides an opportunity for artists to share their inspiration with each other and the public.  You won't want to miss this quality exhibit with dynamic pieces in a variety of price ranges.

Attention Artists - Artwork is due by Monday, Oct. 26
Call the office for details: 218-387-2737 
More info

North Shore Readers and Writers Festival: A Minnesota Voice
The Art Colony, along with Drury Lane Books and the Grand Marais Public Library, are pleased to host the:
North Shore Readers and Writers Festival
A Minnesota Voice
November 5 - 8, 2015

Keynote Author: Lorna Landvik

Event Registration is now open! Click on the Festival Registration Packet below for full event details.

The packet is a writable pdf that participants can fill out with Adobe Reader. 
Please note that sending payment information in via email is not a secure route. Instead, please send in a check with the registration packet or call to complete your registration by phone.
More info

Empty Bowls Dinner and Silent Auction
Thursday, November 12, 2015

A Silent Auction accompanies the Empty Bowls Dinner. All funds raised through the Silent Auction support the expenses to organize Empty Bowls so all dinner proceeds can go directly to alleviate hunger needs.

Empty Bowls 2015
Thursday, November 12 | St. John's Catholic Church
11am - 1pm and 5 - 7pm

Soup: $5
Handcrafted Bowl: $10


More info

Winter Arts Festival : Outdoor Painting & Photography
1/24/2016 - 1/29/2016
Every winter since 2010, outdoor painters have gathered at YMCA Camp Menogyn on the threshold of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness to experience the beauty of northern wilds in the heart of winter, enjoy the camaraderie of other artists, and above all—to paint without distraction in an environment of professional and critical support. This event is in collaboration with the Outdoor Painters of Minnesota.  

Detailed information, including registration and suggested supplies, is available from Allison Ecklund: or 651.592.7858.

Meet-n-Greet at the Art Colony
January 24 | 2:30pm

Pop-up Exhibition at the Art Colony
January 29 | 3 – 5pm
More info

Northern Fibers Retreat
February 10 - 14, 2015
Celebrate the Art and Craft of fibers in the heart of winter.  This cozy retreat features a variety of classes, Lunch and Learn lectures, a show and share and more, all while celebrating with other fiber enthusiasts.

Co-hosted with the North House Folk School and the Northwoods Fiber Guild.  Classes and programs will be offered at both the Art Colony & North House (NH).

In 2016 the following events and classes are currently being planned:
  • Fibers Retreat Instructor Exhibtion
  • Show-n-Share
  • Lunchtime Demos
  • Evening Events
  • Classes in printing on clay, printing on fabric, quilting, and papercutting. 

Check back in August for a full schedule and to register!

Past Offerings:

Fiber Revolution: Art Quilt Exhibit
February 9 - March 8 
Opening Reception | Friday, February 13, 5 - 7pm
Gallery Talk | Enid Gjelten Weichselbaum | Friday, Feb 13, 7pm

Participating artists: Deb Schwartzman, Kevan Rupp Lunney, Elena Stokes, Cindy Friedman, Benedicte Caneill, Eileen Lauterborn, Wen Redmond

More info

Grand Marais Art Colony
March 7 - 20, 2016

Application materials will be made available in October of 2015


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Memorial Day Weekend Art Along the Lake
May 22 - May 24, 2015
Art Along the Lake is a Gallery Tour that celebrates the vibrant art scene of Cook County.  Galleries throughout Cook County will be hosting demonstrations, activities, and live music all weekend.

Join the Art Colony for a family-friendly weekend of art-making: papermaking, bookbinding, screenprinting and more!  Plus, visit the Gallery Store and help us put together a masterpiece puzzle.

May 22
9am - noon | Hand Papermaking with Amanda Degener

May 23
9am - noon | Introduction to Letterboxing with Jill Levene
9am - noon | Paper Marbling with Amanda Degener
2 - 4pm | Community Ink Day: Screenprinting with Mike Swindlehurst
2 - 5pm | Natural Dye and Bookbinding with Amanda Degener

May 24
9am - noon | Asian and Western Bookbinding with Amanda Degener
1-6pm | Masterpiece Puzzle-a-thon
More info

The 25th Annual Grand Marais Arts Festival
July 11-12, 2015
Over 70 local and regional artists set up by the glistening shores of Lake Superior for two days during the peak of summer to showcase their unique handcrafted work and provide insight into their artistic process through demonstration and dialogue.

2015 Festival Directory can be found here


for PlaceBase Performance at the Grand Marais Arts Festival
2015 Participating Artists

Martye Allen | Maggie Anderson | Robert Briscoe | Barbara Dreyer | Joan Farnam | Anthony Huonder | Bob Husby | Jd Jorgenson | Ernest Miller | Sharon Moen | Martin Pearson | Nate Saunders | Ray Shelerud | Jason Trebs | Melissa Wickwire

Kelly Beaster | Erica Belkholm | Marilyn Cuellar | Sue Rowe | Dave Steckelberg

Julie Arthur | Julie Crabtree | Dawnette Davis | Emily Derke | Jill Hunter | Elise Kyllo | Mary MacDonald | Mary Reichert | Natalija Walbridge

Mary Ila Duntemann | Nancy Hemstad Seaton | Dan Neff

Melissa Carroll | Kristine Danielson | Monica Hansmeyer | Todd Hawkinson | Christina Holland | Anders Idso |  Sharee Johnson | Jennifer Nunnelee | Cindy Mae Swee | Candyce Westfield | Rebecca Wicklund

Jane Meinz

Mixed Media
Nicole Aufderhar | Christine Dregalla | Betsey Harries | Annette Mattingly | Brenna Busse

Gail Anderson | Beth Homa | Candace LaCosse

Douglas Berg | Jan Killian | Dan Mondloch | Jeffrey Niesen | Tim Pearson | Joyce Staley

Dave Angell | David Barthel | John Caughlan | Jim Gindorff | Nace Hagemann | Ryan Tischer | Bill Gillis | Doug Cummelin

Betsy Bowen | Mary Bruno | Jerry Riach 

Tom Christiansen

James Anderson | Bill Brown | Tim Dennison | Jesse Gerhard | Aryn & Courtney Kern | Andrew Kringen | Elizabeth Levitski | Cooper Ternes | David & Kathy Towley

Fika Coffee will be serving coffee in Harbor Park throughout the weekend! Stop on by and have some Grand Marais roasted coffee.

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Clothesline Art Sale Fundraiser
July 11-12, 2015
Clothesline Art Sale Fundraiser – July 11 - 12, 2015
(occurring simultaneously with the Grand Marais Arts Festival)

A 5x7 sale of artwork donated by talented artists in support of the Grand Marais Art Colony.
$35 each!

Contact to submit a piece to be sold.  All are welcome to submit work. Deadline is July 1, 2015

Submission form can be found here.

2015 Artists to be released soon!
More info

April 23
The Grand Marais Art Colony and Leah Thomas are excited to announce the creation of the Eric Thomas Emerging Artist Award, in memory of Leah’s brother Eric (1956 - 2013).  This annual scholarship will provide full tuition and cost of materials for a young Cook County artist to attend a Grand Marais Art Colony class of their choice.
This scholarship is open to youth who are currently a sophomore or junior in highschool.

Application can be found here and is due annually on April 23.

Listen to a RADIO clip from an interview about the Award with Art Colony director Amy Demmer, Highschool Art Teacher Mary MacDonald and Selection Committee member Michael McHugh
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PAST EVENT | Findings: A Jewelry Symposium
June 11 - 14, 2015
[fahyn-ding] noun
1. A thing that is discovered; related to awareness, uncovering, invention, creation, exploration
2. Pieces that jewelers make and use to join jewelry components together to form a completed article

Full Schedule can be found here

The North Shore is a landscape filled with long horizon lines over Lake Superior, spires of old-growth boreal forests, rivers and waterfalls cutting through jagged rhyolite and basalt. Artists have long retreated to the North Shore to explore the lines, contours, and patterns of nature and abstract them into pieces of art. Ours is an emotive and tactile landscape, resonant with the nature of jewelry.

The Art Colony, in partnership with the Minnesota Jewelry Arts Guild (MNJag), is pleased to host Findings: A Jewelry Symposium, June 11 – 14, 2015. The four days will be filled with classes, demos, discussions, and lectures for the novice to professional artist, art appreciators, and the broader community to learn more about the art of jewelry making. Come to Grand Marais and let the landscape inspire you!

Listen to the radio interview with Soren Priede and Danny Saathoff here
More info

PAST EVENT | Art Excursion: Twin Cities Tour
New Dates & Price! 

April 24 - 26, 2015 | $225
The Grand Marais Art Colony is pleased to host a weekend art excursion to the Twin Cities. The plans for this tour began with the knowledge that George Morrison’s Modern Spirit exhibit would be coming to the Minnesota History Center in the spring of 2015. George was born on the Grand Portage Indian Reservation just northeast of Grand Marais. Along with his numerous artistic accomplishments, George was great friends with the Art Colony’s founder, Birney Quick, and formerly married to longstanding teaching artist, Hazel Belvo. Along with teaching at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, George also taught at the Art Colony.
The Grand Marais Art Colony Art Excursion package includes the following itinerary:
  • Meet and Greet wine party at the home of Hazel Belvo and Marcia Casey Cushmore
  • Behind-the-scenes guided tour of the Minnesota History Center’s art collection
  • Guided tour of the Modern Spirit exhibit with artist, Hazel Belvo and Dr. Kristin Makholm, Executive Director of the Minnesota Museum of Modern Art
  • Lunch discussion at the Minnesota History Center
  • Exclusive guided home tour of Minnesota art collector
  • Private guided Northeast studios tour with Grainbelt building artist, Lynn Speaker
Please see registration document below for more details or call the Art Colony with questions!
More info

PAST EVENT | Liminal Space: Lynn Speaker Solo Exhibition
January 9 - February 1, 2015
Liminal Space  /   Lynn Speaker
Opening Reception January 9, 2015 4-6 pm

This exhibit features new work by Lynn Speaker, which are records of investigations that embrace uncertainty & transition. Speaker’s work is informed by the North Shore landscape & what she finds around her— stones, bones, plants, trees, animals. In searching & discovery these found objects are ultimately remnants of place, time, memory, & experience. 
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The Muffin Man is coming to the Art Colony! Celebrate Storm Weekend and come listen to the Muffin Man read "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs" followed by Kids Go Big! a time for young artists to stretch their creativity and paint in large brush strokes. All supplies will be provided.

This event runs from 11 - 12:30 and is FREE. Pre-registration requested but drop-ins welcome!
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PAST EVENT | Instructor Show
May 9-June 11
Come celebrate the creativity of our instructors!

Opening Reception | Friday, May 9, 5 - 7pm

Pictures from Instructor Show 2014
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PAST EVENT | Warren MacKenzie Pottery Exhibit
Friday, June 6 - Sunday, June 29, 2014


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Take a lunch break with us and enjoy some hearty soup and arty conversation! The Art Colony will host Soup-er Thursdays the third Thursday of the month from November – February; Noon - 1pm.

November 20 |  December 18 | January 15 | February 19
More info

PAST EVENT | Tim Pearson in the Spotlight Gallery
July 5-31, 2014
Painter and local artist, Tim Pearson, will be the July feature artist in the Spotlight Gallery. 

Meet the Artist | July 5, 1-3pm
Exhibit open | July 5-31

Check out Tim's website to see examples of his work.
More info

PAST EVENT | Art Educators of Minnesota: Art Space Revival
JUNE 26 - 27, 2014

Art teachers are so busy putting together art lessons, gathering materials, teaching and then cleaning, cleaning, cleaning, that their own creativity and art time often gets pushed aside. This special time and space is designed just for you to rejuvenate, recycle, reuse, renew, and especially revive your creative spirit. If you have a favorite media or project that you have been craving time to jump into, bring it along. If you want to do some other projects just for fun, try your hand at one, two, three or as many as you want! Art materials and a variety of mini lessons will be taught, from printmaking to using recycled materials for all kinds of art. You pick what you want to do and invent and/or combine your own projects. This is your time to play, experiment, and enjoy!

To register for this event please visit the Art Educators of Minnesota website here.

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