First Thursday serves up arts and brats

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It’s First Thursday in the Arts District once again, and this time the folks at the Northrup King Building are bringing out the big grill (5-9 p.m.) to char some goodies and give visitors the wherewithall to trek the many stairs and hallways of this Pantheon of artists’ studios. And even though there are more than 130 artists occupying space in the building, no one says you have to visit them all in one evening — here are some spots you might want to check out around the Northeast arts district during this month’s First Thursday events.

One of the highlights will surely be a special satellite exhibition from the Rosalux collective, who run a gallery in the Open Book building (1011 Washington Ave. S., Minneapolis); but this evening only, they will be showing their work in the Northrup King Building’s third floor group room — it’s a kind of sneak preview of upcoming exhibitions at the Rosalux Gallery. The NK Building is at 1500 Jackson St. NE, Minneapolis. www.northrupkingbuilding.com

After you’ve fueled up on brats and seen the Rosalux show, you might want to mosey on over to the California Building, 2205 California St. NE, where you can look in on the latest developments in Babylon, the epic ongoing work by bona fide starving artist Aldo Moroni, and maybe pick up one of his trademark (and quite affordable!) terra cotta towers to grace your garden and provide potential habitat for any elvin types who may visit late at night when you’re not looking.

Several other artists will be displaying their works in the California Building Gallery as well. And you really must step into the hall to see the “Musee du refuses” — works contributed by artists because they had been rejected elsewhere. The Mill City Café (also in the building) will be serving up food and drinks, in case you didn’t get enough to eat at NK, or maybe you’ll be thirsty and want to try one of their drink specials.

Three stops makes for a nicely balanced evening of art and revelry, so consider a visit to the little village of galleries on either side of 13th and University NE — an intersection with so many art galleries and shops that they’ve published their own gallery guide, which you can pick up at any of the businesses here.

At Gallery 13, 302 NE 13th Ave., you can still check out Greta Pratt’s photos of Abraham Lincoln impersonators and other works from her book Using History. They have extended this popular show a couple of times, but it looks like they’ll really have to take it down in a few more days, so this may indeed be your last chance to see these thought-provoking photographs that explore the ways in which we tend to selectively interpret history each according to our own filters. www.gallery13.com

Nobody’s promising fireworks, but there should be plenty to inspire a few oohs and aahs from art lovers, and the artists are always glad to see you, which is probably more than you’ve come to expect from your relatives, so why not go where you’ll be appreciated? It promises to be a lovely evening, last we checked.

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