The Northern Spirit Shop | A Holiday Marketplace

Showing November 2018 |  MacRostie Gallery |  Sponsored by First National Bank of Coleraine


Starting the day after Thanksgiving and continuing through the month of December, the MacRostie Gallery is transformed into a holiday marketplace. This annual exhibition celebrates the diverse and talented artists that live and work in northern Minnesota. It’s also an opportunity for MAC members and patrons to find unique, handmade gifts during the holiday season and make purchases that support both local artists and MacRostie Art Center.

A wide variety of work from local artists is displayed including jewelry, carved wooden bowls, pottery, drawings, wooden toys, birch bark weaving, hand-dyed scarves, paintings, and more. The MAC also carries a number of local books, CDs and DVDs.


Dekorgladje: Scandinavian pattern painting | Alison Aune

Showing December 2018 |  Minnesota Gallery |  Sponsored by First National Bank of Coleraine

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In this exhibition, Alison Aune shares her densely patterned and colorful mixed media paintings inspired by Nordic textiles, designs, and symbols. She has created these works to honor her Minnesota-Swedish-Norwegian forbearers and other artists in aprons. In this way, she is working within the framework of a feminist aesthetic—honoring women’s contributions to folk art by reviving and reinterpreting traditional designs into a contemporary context 

Alison Aune (Duluth, MN) is a professor of art education at UMD. She received her BFA from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, M.A. from the University of Minnesota, and her Ph.D. from Ohio University Athens. She has exhibited her artwork in over 70 solo and group exhibitions in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Estonia and throughout the United States. Aune’s large-scale, colorful paintings combine narratives of Scandinavian heritage and contemporary perspectives on folk art.

“For the past ten years, I have focused my creative research on the decorative-symbolic motifs found in Swedish, Norwegian, and Finnish historic and contemporary textiles and domestic artifacts. These sources have served as artistic inspiration to expand my current interest in Dekorglädje, literally translated from Swedish as “decoration happiness,” into a new, larger and more informed, body of work; Recently, I have added a Norwegian component to explore my immigrant Norwegian heritage using symbolic textile patterns and Finnish designs to connect to the textile traditions of northern Minnesota.

Through the process of inquiry, critical reflection, and the direct referencing of these decorative sources of ancient pattern into my paintings, I am not only exploring my cultural heritage but I am keeping the imagery alive. I am re-applying and re-contextualizing these ancient forms into a new and contemporary artistic form that acquire new cultural meaning and visual significance.”