Sad news for art lovers was found on Facebook today: "You may have noticed that maintenance of mplsart.com has dropped off quite a bit in the last few months. You've surely noticed that the site itself has been running at a minimum -- aside from calendar updates and the occasional written contribution -- for some time now. "
It's been a great run, but after eight years Mplsart.com is saying farewell. The website, originally started by designer Emma Berg and also managed by Kristoffer Knutson, features a curated calendar of events happening around the Twin Cities. The intent was to showcase the strongest gallery shows and artist happenings around town, while also encouraging art lovers to get to know the scene better and not feel intimidated. The site also featured a blog and a phone-friendly app.
Ultimately, it sounds like the time commitment was what made the project unmanageable. Berg and Knutson state via the Facebook announcement:
When we launched the current site in June of 2006, originally started by Emma Berg the year before, our version of 'society' photos were meant to attract gallery visitors and show that everyone is welcome in the 'scene'. We believed that the hand-picked, gallery opening listings we provided would build trust in our recommendations and make mplsart.com a regular visit for weekend planning. We wanted our street art photo galleries to provide a forum for people to debate and consider the art that is around them every day. Having never considered ad revenue or contributions, we relied on proceeds from curated art events to sustain the site, along with our own time and devotion. Over the years we brought the Twin Cities its first gallery showing of street artist '27' (in partnership with SooVac), we were one of the first to stage pop-up art shows in the booming condo construction sites of the North Loop, we brought together graphic designers, fine artists and fashion designers in a real-time 'art sweat shop' to create one-of-a-kind, custom clothing pieces for event participants, and our iPhone app provided hundreds of users instant weekend art itineraries. Over the past couple of years Emma has gone on to curate gallery shows for Fox Tax and HAUS Salon in support of the site while Kristoffer has continued to update the calendar listings week after week with new gallery names and new artists to discover.
The site will be shuttering on Sunday, May 18. You can read their goodbye statement in it's entirety here.