Friday Introduction: Meet Trint!

We're jumping on the #fridayintroductions bandwagon and giving you a little behind the scenes of our little company that could ...

Introducing ... Trint

Introducing ... Trint

Happy Friday!

My name is Trint & here is a brief run down about myself. I have been working here at Area for over three years now and have found my job to be challenging, interesting and fulfilling. I am a prepress/production artist and have been responsible for testing new art, making custom changes to existing art and ensuring that we print the right amount of wallpaper to meet our client's needs. I have always had a deep interest in art and have an extensive background in the world of graphics and printing.

I should mention that I am an aquarius and probably do exhibit some of the signs typical traits. According to the Chinese zodiac, I am a dragon, so yes, very powerful.

I have three kids aged 6 months to 5 years old, so my hands are full, but having a blast with them. This summer we have spent a lot of time at the pool and the lake which is fine with me.
When I have the time I like to travel, play guitar, watch "Game of Thrones" and more recently diving into the show "Mr. Robot".

I have just rediscovered my old ipod and have been listening to it at work. Not to date myself but have enjoyed listening to Sonic Youth, Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks and Minneapolis local band Vampire Hands.

Today I had leftover spagehtti for lunch.

Inside the Area Studio

The Area team is gearing up for the release of the 2016 Collection! We've been working so hard for the past 6 months on building this new collection which includes some amazing new artwork. There is so much that goes into creating and producing a new line but it all feels worth the effort when we are at this point.... ready to share it with all of you. 

We are launching the new collection at the Dwell on Design LA show on June 24th along with our showroom Design Alliance LA. The new work will be available online starting June 20th


Area Environments & Public Functionary Presents Aaron De La Cruz

Area Environments exclusive collection by Aaron De La Cruz
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Aaron De La Cruz: Always Something
Opening Reception: November 7th, 2015 // 7pm-Midnight
Exhibit runs through Dec 5th


Artist-designed wallpaper line Area Environments and contemporary art space Public Functionary have joined forces to create a collaborative series of exclusive wallpapers designed by emerging contemporary artists. PFxAE partner artists are selectively chosen based on their works ability to make a bold, unexpected and beautiful impact when translated into the large format medium of wallpaper.

Each series is a limited edition sold for a short period of time. Designs are presented as the artist intended and are available in a variety of substrates and finishes. Each series will focus on an individual artist or collective of artists, and will be introduced via a full scale exhibition at Public Functionary, showcasing original pieces as well as large-scale wallpaper installations.

San Francisco-based artist Aaron De La Cruz will be the first featured artist in the PFxAE Exhibition Collection line. The limited edition series of wallpaper will be revealed on opening night!


San Francisco based artist Aaron De La Cruz cryptic line work invokes an archeological inquisition that is suggestive of both ancient Mayan hieroglyphics and contemporary graffiti, allowing the viewer to relate, interpret and decipher the work on their own terms. From his wooden sculptures and large scale outdoor murals to his stark two dimensional ink paintings and installations, De La Cruz bridges the gaps between fine art and design, the sum of its parts being simultaneously practical and decorative.

De La Cruz has exhibited most recently at Honolulu’s Loft in Space where he is a regular contributor to the seminal Pow Wow arts and culture annual event. Previous exhibitions include Known Gallery in Los Angeles, which followed his acclaimed large scale showing at the Arkitip Project Space in 2012. De La Cruz has exhibited in Australia, Berlin, Hong Kong, Hawaii, Los Angeles, New York, Art Basel Miami and has produced collaborations with Diesel/55DSL (Italy), Birkenstock (Germany) and Casio G-Shock (Taiwan).


Arkitip has produced an exclusive 24″ x 36″ Aaron De La Cruz silk screen print for the exhibition at Public Functionary. The limited-edition piece will be available at the opening reception and also online at

Arkitip’s founding principles are (1) support the arts, (2) promote freedom of expression, and (3) make art affordable and accessible. Arkitip oversees many diverse creative endeavors including; the publication of a limited-edition, hand-numbered art magazine, artist’s prints, multiples, clothing, accessories and the occasional recording. Arkitip also acts as curator for brands who are interested in delivering artistically embellished products to its customers. In addition, Arkitip collaborates with artists, designers, shops, and galleries to produce art exhibitions and gallery shows worldwide. (


Opening Reception:
Saturday November 7 // 7pm-12am
FREE & Open to the Public

Open Gallery Hours:
Tuesdays 4-8pm
Wednesdays 12-4pm
Fridays 12pm-8pm
Saturdays 7pm-11pm

Public Functionary
1400 12th Ave NE
Minneapolis, MN 55413
(Enter on Buchanan)

Facebook: /pfunctionary
Twitter: @pfunctionary
Instagram: @pfunctionary
Instagram: @aarondelacruz

Q&A : Greg Gossel


How did you get started as an artist? What's been the most exciting thing that has happened thus far in your career?

I went to school for graphic design. After I graduated I got a job as a designer at a small shop in Minneapolis and continued doing my own personal studio work from home on the side. My focus shifted more and more to my studio work until I was able to make the jump to a full time artist.

I've been fortunate to have a number of great opportunities. I'm currently in Japan working on a large scale installation which has definitely been one of the most exciting experiences of my career. A couple others that come to mind include creating a 60ft mural on the facade of the Aqua Art Fair in Miami for Art Basel in 2009, and more recently being invited to participate in my first museum exhibit next year at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art in Indiana.


"You Think?" (Red)

"You Think?" (Red)

Can you tell us about some of the themes that show up in your work?

A lot of the content and themes in my work are rooted in popular culture. I've always been drawn to the bold aesthetics and exaggerated narratives in old comics, pulp novels, advertising, and tabloids. Those fragmented elements often show up in my work placed within a new context.

Where do you draw inspiration from? Certain places etc..

I find inspiration in a variety of places, often the decay and deterioration of the urban environment. Fading signage, torn billboards, old street posters, and chipping paint; I've always been interested in those moments where man-made objects succumb to the inevitable effects of nature. I try to reflect those textures and spontaneous juxtapositions within the process of my own work.

If you could meet one artist from past or present who would it be?

I'd have to say Robert Rauschenberg. Seeing his work for the first time is what inspired me to push my own work as an artist.

If you could have one superhero (magical) power, what would it be and why?

Not much for personal superpowers, but Superman's flying ability would be cool.

What is the best piece of advice you've ever been given?

My grandpa said anything worth doing is worth doing right.

Mixtape: 8 songs you're listening to in your studio or wherever

Beastie Boys - Jimmy James

Chuck Berry - Thirty Days

Led Zepplin - Good Times Bad Times

Tame Impala - The Less I Know The Better

James Brown - Try Me

A Tribe Called Quest - Jazz (We've Got)

The Stooges - Down On The Street

Jamie xx - I Know There's Gonna Be (Good Times)

Design Tuesday: Interior Spaces

As I get ready to move (AGAIN!) I am reminded of all the stuff I have. Most of which is completely unnecessary. As an artist of many mediums, I have a tendency to collect things. Fabric, because someday I am going to make _________ (fill in the blank with just about anything). I collect rocks, sticks, dried flowers, leaves for found object sculptures I am going to make (soon, I keep telling myself, soon). Spools of thread, paper, cards, frogs, books and the list goes on. As I pack I think to myself, "Do I really need this?" I am clear that need is relative in this context.



Then I remember sitting lakeside on the North Shore with my two boys collecting those rocks. I remember how excited I get when I receive a new frog for my collection from loved ones. I think about the effort a friend made to collect leaves from a particular tree that I love and I realize they are memories. What better way to make a house a home than by filling it with wonderful memories.

So I am packing up and hauling all these trinkets and totems to my new house to craft a home. Some day I will find a plot of land somewhere and build a tiny home on it and much of this excess will have to be reserved in the memory banks of my mind. However, until that day happens, I am getting excited by the possibilities of the new space.  In true Diane fashion,  I have collected all sorts of images for inspiration.  Now my biggest question is what AREA wall mural am I going to choose next?

Of course I am doing this!

Of course I am doing this!

via Garance Dore

via Garance Dore

                           This my someday tiny home inspiration. 

                           This my someday tiny home inspiration. 

Design Tuesday

“I am enthusiastic over humanity’s extraordinary and sometimes very timely ingenuity. If you are in a shipwreck and all the boats are gone, a piano top buoyant enough to keep you afloat that comes along makes a fortuitous life preserver. But this is not to say that the best way to design a life preserver is in the form of a piano top. I think that we are clinging to a great many piano tops in accepting yesterday’s fortuitous contrivings as constituting the only means for solving a given problem."

                        -R. Buckminster Fuller-

But I may need a piano in my garden...

Artist Corner: José Parlá

"Day and Night in London Town" 2013, Broken Language, Haunch of Venison, London

"Day and Night in London Town" 2013, Broken Language, Haunch of Venison, London

Today's post is all about my love for artist, José Parlá. Parlá started his career at a young age painting on the streets of Maimi and New York. He decided to take his art form into the the museum and gallery world. This jump from painting outdoors to showing in the gallery and museum setting is a big one, one that most artists cannot do successfully. He worked tirelessly on trying to create a mood or feeling of the streets in the gallery. Here is an excerpt of Parlá's artist statement which eloquently describes his journey and feelings about his art.

"During the beginning, this was an art that was not accepted by society because it was seen as destructive, rebellious, and anarchic. I felt a challenge to present art that originally existed outdoors—inside, like art displayed in museums, and this was an interesting problem for me that needed a solution.  I wanted to create works that retained their roots. My new paintings could not abandon their environment.  I then embarked on a journey to search out in detail the dialogue of decaying walls, the marks on them, and what it all means to me.  This has led my paintings to become memory documents.  As a result, these works are time capsules, mixed documents of memory and research; part performance, as I impersonate the characters that leave their marks on walls. Time is a part of these paintings as their creative process simulates the passing of time on city walls and their layers of history with layers of paint, posters, writing, and re-construction.  This process, like meditation, affirms my everlasting devotion to art as a form of spirituality, which exists in the present and pays homage to those who leave their traces behind.  " - José Parlá 


Diary of Brooklyn, Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY 2013

Diary of Brooklyn, Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY 2013

ONE: Union of the Senses, 2014, One World Trade Center, New York, NY

ONE: Union of the Senses, 2014, One World Trade Center, New York, NY

Detail of "Gesture Performing Dance, Dance Performing Gesture" - 2012

Detail of "Gesture Performing Dance, Dance Performing Gesture" - 2012

Finished shot of "Gesture Performing Dance, Dance Performing Gesture" - BAM Fisher, commissioned by the The Brooklyn Academy of Music, 2012

Finished shot of "Gesture Performing Dance, Dance Performing Gesture" - BAM Fisher, commissioned by the The Brooklyn Academy of Music, 2012

I am now cutting myself off from posting the hundreds of pictures I have from his work... Thank you, José, for producing the most amazing murals and spaces! Here is my Mr. Roger's advice for the day... go out into the world whether it's in person, instagram, email, however you choose and tell an artist that you love  THANK YOU.

Design Tuesday: Watershed Sculpture

I love finding great design, I seek it out on a regular basis. I was downright ecstatic when I stumbled across Watershed Sculpture about two months ago. This duo of amazing artists Daniel McCormick and Mary O'Brian stole my heart with both their art and mission. Based out of California, Daniel and Mary have created their environmentally focused sculptures throughout the US.

The sculptures they create are not only beautiful and aesthetically pleasing, they are actually good for our environment. McCormick and O'Brian concentrate on repairing and healing riparian zones, the area between land and a river. The sculptures are built with the intention to prevent erosion, protect water quality, provide corridors and natural habitat for wildlife, and maintain the health of the in-stream biota. Many of our rivers are being affected by land clearing, livestock grazing, pollutants, invasive species, etc. The sculptors use natural resources that are found in the same area they are repairing to build their works of art. This allows the sculpture to integrate seamlessly into the environment.

There is a beautiful balance of structure and impermanence when one sees these works of art. McCormick's and O'Brian's sculpture is wonderful to observe, to see the natural and leading lines created, the placement of the materials, and the skill and artistry of the assemblage itself. To understand the artists' mark, their signature, dissolves into the landscape and becomes a living, evolving entity, challenges the viewer to remember the art as well as the purpose.

I am enamored with the transformative process and the partnership with mother nature that these artists have created. I wrote about the ten principles of good design a couple of weeks ago and this work touches every single one, effortlessly. I encourage you to read more about Watershed Sculptures and their mission. Someday, I hope to volunteer on one of their teams. 



Behind the Scenes...

We have been busy this week in the Area studio getting ready to launch our final artist for our 2015 wallcovering collection. We are so excited to collaborate with multi-layered cultural pop art Artist, Greg Gossel.   Placing his work into large scaled mural wall paper has opened a new aesthetic for Area and for our clients.  We are getting ready to launch his four piece collection that he has created specifically for Area. Due out at the end of the month, stay tuned!

Artist Greg Gossel...

Artist Greg Gossel, was born in 1982 in western Wisconsin. With a background in design, his work is an expressive interplay of many diverse words, images, and gestures. Gossel’s multi-layered work illustrates a visual history of change and process that simultaneously features and condemns popular culture. His work has been exhibited throughout the U.S. and abroad, including San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, Copenhagen, and London. His commercial clients include Levi's, Burton Snowboards, Stussy, VICE Magazine, and Interscope Records while his work has been published in The San Francisco Chronicle, Juxtapoz Art & Culture Magazine, Artslant, and ROJO Magazine. Greg currently resides in Minneapolis, MN.

GG - You Think? (Blue) | 8 x 10 Samples

Artist Corner: Julie Tremblay

Fission, 2013  spray painted aluminum mesh, LED lights

Fission, 2013  spray painted aluminum mesh, LED lights

Where to begin... I stumbled upon Julie Tremblay's work last year and fell in love. Her work spans various mediums and genres from abstract sculpture and drawings to realistic sculptures that depict figures so real they seem to float around in your subconscious long after you've stopped thinking about them. Her work feels effortless to me, timeless, all while knowing full well that these works are laborious and full of minute details. Tremblay was born in Quebec, Canada and now resides in Brooklyn, NY. After reading many interviews with her it's clear she has always been an artist. As a small girl she loved to draw and was always drawn to materials. This fascination with materials is part of what drives her work today. She is always on the lookout for new materials to experiment with. Her sculptures have been constructed out of punched out steel, tin plates, recycled metal, chicken wire, aluminum mesh and LED lights. What's interesting about her work is it feels and appears weightless despite being made from steel scraps and other metals. She is able to control the density of the pieces by filling the core with chicken wire and other lighter wires. The translucent effects that she is able to create with her sculptures are magical and other worldly. She is able to transport the viewer into a space and time that is truly unique, filled with mystery and inspiration. 

Reflections #5 and #7, 2008

Reflections #5 and #7, 2008

ContinuumIII, 2011

ContinuumIII, 2011

Hyperbola, 2010

Hyperbola, 2010

Similar Motion, 2015

Similar Motion, 2015

Julie Tremblay, in her studio drawing charcoal on vellum, 2015

Julie Tremblay, in her studio drawing charcoal on vellum, 2015

Current Event: MinneCon | Exhibiting with Holly Hunt

This week at Area we have been busy getting ready for the IIDA MINNECON Minneapolis Trade Fair. We've teamed up with our showroom partners at Holly Hunt to share our new mural collections. We couldn't be more excited to collaborate with Holly Hunt.

There will be 114 Exhibitors from a variety of design trades that will be participating. This is a one day event that includes seminars of new commercial product introductions, educational programs, student events, and networking for designers, as well as manufacturers' representatives. 

If you are attending MinneCon this year, we’d love to see you! Come check out our AREA | Holly Hunt booth #317, we will be giving out bags full of goodies and providing sample request forms for those of you who have any upcoming projects that you would like samples for.
Both AREA and Holly Hunt are looking forward to today’s activities as well as meeting all of you great designers out there!

Here are a few Sneak Peak images of our “behind the scenes”  booth-building process for MinneCon. Stay tuned for next weeks recap of the MinneCon Trade Show. 

Special Thanks to Apropos & Holly Hunt for making this all happen!

Artist Corner: David Renggli

Installation view Wentrup, Berlin, Germany, 2012

Installation view Wentrup, Berlin, Germany, 2012

I'm drawn to David Renggli's work for a lot of reasons. What initially caught my attention was his larger 2-dimensional pieces (for purely aesthetic reasons). They stood out not only for their scale and bold colors but they also had a multi-dimensional quality to them due to the fact that they were created using a reverse painting technique that involves painting behind glass using ink and anodized aluminum. He started working primarily as a sculptor but over time progressed into using many mediums to carry out his concepts. The deeper themes in his work range from observing the serious and humorous aspects of dealing with the mundane parts in life to social critique on the fashion industry. There are more in depth pieces written on his conceptual ideas behind the work but in this post I'm going to simply post pictures to give you an overall idea of his talent, his use of color, scale, 3 dimensional and 2 dimensional art. David was born in 1974 in Zurich, Switzerland. He lives and works in Zurich and Texas. 

I Love You (Penny Lane) 2015

I Love You (Penny Lane) 2015

I Love You (meanwhile blue), 2013

I Love You (meanwhile blue), 2013

Design Tuesday: Good Design

What makes for good design? I have agonized over this question so many times in various papers I had to write for school. Now I can cheat and share with you the 10 Principles of Good Design by German designer Dieter Rams. And really, why rewrite what is already well done.  I believe he hit the nail head-on when he generated this list. It is the best reference I have come by when asking if a design is worthwhile. Rams generated this list back in the 80's after questioning his own designs. They are every bit as relevant today as they were 30 years ago. 

  1. Innovative
  2. Useful
  3. Aesthetic
  4. Understandable
  5. Unobtrusive
  6. Honest
  7. Long-Lasting
  8. Attention to Detail
  9. Environmentally Friendly
  10. Little Design as Possible

I also cannot help but be drawn to his ideas and beliefs. A belief that products should be designed to last. Products and designs that are useful and not created for the sole purpose of making money or to be disposed of so that another has to be purchased. 


"The value, and especially the legislation of design will be, in the future, measured more in terms of how it can enable us to survive...on this planet."
-Dieter Rams
Audio 310 designed by Rams in 1971 

Audio 310 designed by Rams in 1971 

Artist Corner: Nicolas Party

Nicolas Party is a Swiss born artist currently living in Glasgow, Scotland. I was turned onto him through his most recent show at the Inverleith House in Edinburgh called 'Boys and Pastels'.  I only saw pictures of the show and was completely blown away. If I could have transported myself magically (i.e. free of charge) to this show I would have. I'll start by saying the gallery space is airy and beautiful and would be a dream location for a solo show. It looks like they encourage the use of the entire house.

What caught my eye about this show was the use of the space. Party uses the entire wall to create a place for his work to live. The walls could stand on their own without the framed art and the art could as well. But instead he uses both elements to create a beautifully unique experience. Obviously, I love the idea of playing with scale and artwork that spans entire walls and in itself creates a type of installation art. Area was born out of this concept, the desire to see art dominate and evoke a sense of the space. Nicolas Party was a graffiti artist originally and I can see the concept of filling a wall or creating large-scale stories with his work has stayed with him. What I love so much in his work is his ability to capture so much energy in his still life's. The vibrancy of color in his paintings and the perfectly paired walls form a relationship with each other creating a playful energy with objects as mundane as a teapot or spoon.

I was captivated by him and I hope you can find some inspiration from his work.  More pics here!


We at Area have been a bit lazy in our blog posting. This is all about to change as several of us have decided to be blog authors on a more regular basis. Be gentle in thought, for we are not literary geniuses nor are we grammatical hotshots. We do however have opinions. Opinions about art, life, design, and this crazy cool company we work for called Area Environments. 

Join us in our crazy adventure of blogging.  Please comment and suggest what you would like to hear. We are collaborators, we will learn from our readers what is relevant and worthwhile and at the end of the day, we will probably need more ideas.

Here is an idea of the who, what and when…



Hi it's Kathryn here... My offerings on the Area blog will be writing about my latest artist obsession every Wednesday. If you're an artist that would like to be featured, write to me. Every Friday I will give you a mixtape of music. Music is my other main love beyond art so I will geek out with you every Friday with a compilation that I put together from the latest stuff I am listening to. I'm thinking themes... so if you have a good theme let know and I will do my best to soundtrack it.



Each Tuesday will be all about design. With a degree in Graphic Design I lean towards the realm of commercial art but I was a photographer long before I was a designer. The lens of my camera has been my window to the world. I have documented nature for so long that I have boxes upon boxes filled with thousands of negatives from my awe  (thank goodness digital came along). My inspiration is generated from nature for my own artwork, so I am sure it is bound to show up in my Design Tuesday posts.