St’ArtUp 317: Circle Centre Mall

Launched just last year, St’ArtUp 317 is a competitive program aiming to match vacant commercial spaces in Downtown Indianapolis with artists, brands, startups and established businesses to create pop-up stores. With a similar goal in mind and new ties between PATTERN and Develop Indy, a sector of the Indy Chamber, this year St’ArtUp 317 will feature 30 pop-ups at 10 locations in and surrounding Downtown in order to showcase the authenticity of Indy’s creative class and in hopes to secure long-term tenants for underutilized storefronts, enhancing the overall cultural identity of our city.

This series of stories highlights artists, entrepreneurs and businesses that were selected to participate in this year’s return of St’ArtUp 317.

THE PAPER PEONY

Stephen Brooks once sought out to surprise his wife with Juliet Roses in celebration of their second daughter Juliet’s birth. After realizing the price, Stephen decided to create paper flowers in the realistic shape of these roses and realized the joy that the creation of paper flowers brought him. After a few attempts at perfecting the art of paper flowers, Stephen decided to craft and sell custom arrangements of these intricate flowers. Stephen launched The Paper Peony in May of 2017 and the business has steadily grown to cater to his audience in Indy and around the country. As The Paper Peony has grown, the business has been selected for the St’AartUp 317 program. Stephen is selling hyper realistic paper flower arrangements at his location and each flower is created to be one-of-a-kind for his customers. Having a storefront in Downtown Indy, Stephen can bring in attention and appreciation for his work. St’ArtUp 317 has helped The Paper Peony gain exposure in the creative and art communities in Indy and is expanding Stephens business.

Photo by Maddie Scarpone

Tell us about yourself.
My wife and I have three kids and live Midtown, here in Indy. I co-own a theater company, teach piano lessons and make paper flowers.

Tell us a little bit about your business or art practice.
I create ultra-realistic paper flowers from high quality German crepe paper. Every petal is hand-cut, cupped and shaped and attached to a stem to create a bloom. Flowers range in size from nine petals to over 100 petals per flower. Each flower is a one-of-a-kind creation

What do you hope to get out of this opportunity?
This is such an exciting opportunity—to have a window space— and I hope the floral wreath will draw some attention and appreciation for alternative flowers. Paper flowers are a wonderful option for weddings, people with allergies, or those who want to enjoy flowers year round.

Check out The Paper Peony on Instagram and the website to find out more about the business and take a look at Stephens arrangements.

PROJECT ONE STUDIO

Adam Buente and Kyle Perry are Indianapolis based entrepreneurs who are connecting and expanding the threshold of art and architecture. These two architects have been selected by St’ArtUp 317 to create an experimental installation in order to promote Project One Studio and expose Indianapolis to art that is not very prevalent in the city. Project One Studio designs, fabricates and installs complex art pieces in Indianapolis.

Tell us about yourself.
We are an Indianapolis based digital design + fabrication studio, founded by Adam Buente and Kyle Perry in 2009. After receiving graduate degrees in architecture, we shifted our direction and began creating work that spans the boundaries of art and architecture.

Tell us a little bit about your business or art practice.
Our goal for this project is to expose a style of work that is not widely seen in Indianapolis. We took this pop-up show as an opportunity to highlight and share this style to a larger public audience. While each of our projects has unique forms, techniques and materials, this underlying strategy exists in our body of work. We are interested in experimentation, learning new processes and continually investigating different fabrication techniques and computational tools.

What do you hope to get out of this opportunity?
The studio represents our combined view of design and artwork in the physical environment, and a focus on how each project has a specific goal, client, material strategy or aesthetic quality. The intent is to “carve out” the corner of this traditional building to expose a vibrant geometric

Photo by Jamar Mitchell

interior volume. This juxtaposition contrasts the standardization of the built environment with the unique effects of mass customization. Each component of the overall form has an individual scale, shape and color, but all work together to create a larger composition. While each of our projects has unique forms, techniques and materials, this underlying strategy exists in our body of work.

Check out Project One Studios Instagram, Facebook, and website to see Adam and Kyle’s work.

AMY WARD

Amy Ward is an artist that creates unique paintings with unique color and form. Right now, this self-taught artist is aiding fellow artists on their creative journey, helping them find a direction and grow. Amy’s business is helping rising artists get exposure in the industry and become able to display their work for a bigger audience. Amy has been selected by St’ArtUp 317 to display these works in a collaborative gallery in downtown Indy.

Photo by Maddie Scarpone

Tell us about yourself.
I’m an alien, new to Earth, but consider myself an artistic maker and doer more than an extraterrestrial. I paint abstract works of art, overzealous with all the colors of the rainbow. Many appreciate my work because “within any painting you can appreciate dozens of layers of activity. Collectors find new and interesting things in the composition that they hadn’t noticed or connected to the first time they saw it …maybe because we are hardwired with the desire to find familiar shapes and objects even when there are no literal characters.”

Simultaneously, I aid as a resource for other artists of all backgrounds. One of my favorite quotes is “Nothing of me is original. I am the combined effort of everyone I’ve ever known.” by Chuck Palahniuk. I’m truly molded by the thousands before and after me.

Tell us a little bit about your business or art practice.
It’s a balancing act. My business is a resource for others like me seeking direction and growth. It’s structured, organized and methodical. However, as a painter, it’s mostly freestyle. I rarely begin a painting with a planned

vision (with exception to commissioned work) The process is raw, emotional and somewhat spiritual. The ‘Doer’ and the ‘Maker’ equality share a tiny space in my human head for both the left and right brain.

What do you hope to get out of this opportunity?
Growth above all. Additionally, (we) hope we created a visual for others to potentially see in their own space. I wanted the area to replicate the art work displayed in my personal home. There isn’t just one piece of art that is the sole proprietor. Instead, it’s a collaborative arena for several creatives – Ergo, support living artists and share that wonderful wall space with the masses.

You can follow Amy Ward on Instagram and Facebook or view her work on her website.

FLORALS BY EMMA AND BRITTANY

Brittany Kugler and Emma Landwerlen have been selected by St’ArtUp 317 to collaborate and work on a project together. With very different backgrounds and talents, Brittany and Emma are both bringing their creativity together in this space provided by St’ArtUp 317. Both are eager to work together and bring array of talents to the table for this project. Brittany having a background in costume design and Emma having a background in illustration makes them excited to collaborate and see how they can bring their talents together.

Tell us about yourself.
I am a costume designer/stitcher and social practice artist based in Indianapolis, Indiana. In Indiana, I have designed costumes for the Phoenix Theatre, Indiana University-Kokomo, University of Indianapolis, Summit Performance Indianapolis and Cathedral High School. I work at Cathedral High as their Costume Coordinator and love sharing my skill set with young people. I applied my passion for sewing and social nature to her masters degree in Social Practice Art from the University of Indianapolis (2018). And have since partnered with Big Car Collaborative and Garfield Park Arts Center to create free, arts based, public programming. This summer I am working as a Design Assistant on two plays at American Players Theatre (Spring Green, WI), designing costumes for Matilda at Dare to Dream Theatre (Manitowoc, WI), and can be found teaching classes as the Maker in Residence at the Hamilton East Public Library makerspace, Ignite, in the fall.

Tell us a little bit about your business or art practice.
As you can tell, I like to stay busy and keep my work diverse. My process is often collaborative. I’ve been creating costumes for live theatre for over ten years, and

Photo by Maddie Scarpone

theatre is a highly collaborative field. A costume designer works with a director to execute their vision. They work with a shop of stitchers to create costumes. They work with actors to create a fully realized character. This collaborative nature was what attracted me to social practice art. To create work with people who don’t consider themselves artists or artists with wildly different focuses opens my eyes to a new way of working. While I still regularly design and make costumes, I am a stronger artist through my accessible and social art with Indy organizations like the Garfield Park Arts Center and Big Car Collaborative.

What do you hope to get out of this opportunity?
My partner on this project, Emma Landwerlen, and I were excited to work on a project collaboratively. She is an illustrator and I make costumes so it was a fun to figure out how to work together! We both appreciate the visible platform for our work (thanks, StArtUp317!). We hope viewers can see not only how our talents combined (I used fabric with their floral design to create with) and our sense of humor.

You can follow Brittany on Instagram and check out Brittany’s website and Emma’s website.

COMFORT OPTION

Landon Erwin is a mattress master and you could say he gets it from his grandfather. Founded in 1952 by Landon’s grandfather, Foamcraft Inc. has become one of the largest foam fabricators in the United States and in 2017 transitioned its focus to a local and personal experience. Comfort Option was created by Landon to give customers an easier way to receive their mattresses. St’ArtUp 317 selected Landon to open up a pop up shop for Comfort Option and become the first mattress store in downtown. This opportunity is helping grow Comfort Option and cater to everyone in Indy needing a high quality mattress that’s local.

Photo by Samantha Ripperger

Tell us about yourself.
I’m fortunate to say that I was born and raised in Indianapolis and never lived any further than Bloomington, where I went to college. I’ve been married going on nine years to a woman who truly makes me a better man, and we’ve been blessed with three children.

Tell us a little bit about your business or art practice.
My grandfather founded Foamcraft, Inc. in 1952, so I’ve literally grown up with foam. We’ve supplied foam into the mattress industry since then, but in 2017 elected to focus on providing a mattress straight from our factory to the customer. We started Comfort Option because we grew tired of the gimmicks, inflated prices and one-size-fits-most mentality that have become so common in the bedding industry. Especially focusing locally, we know we can provide a better experience for people in need of a high quality mattress.

What do you hope to get out of this opportunity?
The St’ArtUp 317 opportunity is a gift. Simple as that. We never would have thought to try out Circle Center as a retail store potential, so the St’ArtUp initiative has been an eye-opener. At this point, our hope is twofold. First, we hope to utilize this opportunity to prove that we can stay. Our new store, at least for now, is the only mattress store in downtown Indy. Thus, our hope is to leverage our location to grow our brand. Secondly, as we’ve gotten more versed with the management at Circle Centre, we’re excited about the chance to strengthen the overall shopping experience in downtown Indianapolis. My family and this company have literally been in Indy since the 50’s, so having the chance to participate in the city’s growth is truly an honor.

Follow Comfort Option on Instagram and discover more about their products on their website.

WISHFUL THINKIN CLOTHING

Wishful Thinkin is a clothing brand that is based out of Indianapolis and encourages customers to rebuild their wishful thoughts. This brand was established in 2008 and is inspired by the music and art cultures. St’ArtUp 317 has selected Wishful Thinkin to promote the brand and help the brand reach a bigger market.

Photo by Maddie Scarpone

Tell us about yourself.
I’ve been designing and making clothes since I graduated high school, and that’s how the brand Wishful Thinkin came about. We like to provoke thought with in each of our customers or any one that come across the name. I am also one half of Cargo Streetwear boutique set to re-open in the upcoming months.

Tell us a little bit about your business or art practice.
I am graphic designer first, so I try to push my form of art thought the clothing I produce in the most cool yet fashionable ways.

What do you hope to get out of this opportunity?
With this window installation my hope was to gather the interest of wondering eyes by reworking a recent pop up event I did entitled “Be Careful What You Wish For.” Our purpose was to recreate a crazy scene of things in magazines we want but most likely don’t need while showing both pictures and clothes from the brand.

Follow Wishful Thinkin’s Instagram and find out more about the brand on the website.

KOMAFI

Founded in 2013, Komäfi is a brand based out of Indianapolis and ran by Cahmelan Porter. This inclusive, yet exclusive label has been selected by St’ArtUP 317 to display their products in a window space downtown to generate exposure to the community. Porter is excited for Komäfi to get more awareness in Indianapolis.

Photo by Maddie Scarpone

Tell us about yourself.
My name is CP and I founded and operate the brand Komafi. I recognize myself more as a problem solver than a designer.

Tell us a little bit about your business or art practice.
Komäfi is an urban heritage brand founded in 2013 out of Indianapolis. The Midwest label creates detail oriented garments focused on urban silhouettes and creative functionality. Komäfi is a craft clothing brand, known for producing limited hand numbered pieces.

What do you hope to get out of this opportunity?
More brand awareness/ exposure.

Follow Komäfi on Instagram and take a look at products on the website.

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