Posts Tagged ‘Events’


Hello Kitty debuts in Super Mario Maker

2016 at 07:40 pm by admin | Comments Off


Nintendo’s Super Mario Maker, which released back in September 2015, lets fans create their own Mario stages, and allows players to play as their favorite Nintendo characters along with a number of other collaborative releases. Now, with the latest update released by Nintendo, Sanrio characters have finally entered the fray; Hello Kitty and My Melody are now playable characters! Sanrio is no stranger to Nintendo or video games in general, with a number of Hello Kitty-themed video games being released over the past couple of decades. This exciting announcement, however, marks the first time that Hello Kitty and other Sanrio characters are playable within a video game released by Nintendo themselves! These new adorable characters are available now worldwide, so players can unlock them for themselves to try out. Check out the video below to see these two cuddly characters in action!


Image: Joe and Jen Photography for Public Functionary

TOMODACHI’s home state of Minnesota is well-known for its vibrant art scene, and at the center of that scene is Northeast Minneapolis — a neighborhood designated as “The Northeast Art District.” Every 3rd weekend in May, the popular district hosts Art-A-Whirl, a massive 3-day studio and gallery crawl (the largest in North America, according to their website). Now in its 21st year, the festival has grown to include everything from visual art to live music to lots and lots of beer (another thing the district is famous for — its myriad of brew pubs). There are hundreds of studios, galleries and art-centric businesses to visit during the crawl — odds are you’ll never be able to see it all.

We’ve compiled our top 6 must-see picks for this year’s event below — but don’t forget to visit the official AAW site at for information on artists, district maps and even a download for an Art-A-Whirl app — a new addition this year. Enjoy!


My Colours Are Bizee + Cool Girls Issue 1 Release

A new art space is popping up in Northeast! The mini-space, a little cube, which is actually the garage of freelance art director John Hardy, boasts finished gallery walls and will likely be one of the best hidden gems of this year’s Art-A-Whirl. a little cube’s inaugural exhibit features the work of OUECHA aka husband/wife art duo Frank and Christina Lyon. The exhibit “My Colours Are Bizee” (a name inspired by their future baby) is a collection of drawings derived from a larger body of OUECHA designed materials, which explore techniques for marker on paper. Also featured in the exhibit is the release of Cool Girls Issue 1 ‘On Dreaming’ that seeks to “colour and thematize the notion of the “digital dream”.”

If you go:

a little cube
1139 Monroe St NE, Minneapolis
(Garage faces large parking lot on Quincy St.)

Friday 5/20: 6 – 10pm
Saturday 5/21: 12 – 8pm
Sunday 5/22: 12 – 5pm


57Princes: Artists’ homage to the Purple One

Nestled in a residential area, in one of the oldest studio buildings in Northeast (an old Polish school house, no less) is Studio A, which ironically, is the last artist-occupied space in the building, which was recently bought by a developer who ousted all other artist tenants. Possibly the last AAW hurrah for this storied building, Studio A will host “57Princes: Artists’ homage to the Purple One” featuring a Prince-inspired group display of works set upon a muralized backdrop created by Erin Sayer and Liseli Polivka. Studio A, owned and operated by Northeast-specializing realtor and all-around cool cat, Aaron Neumann, is always a must-visit AAW spot! Of note: party with the artists after 9pm Friday night — Music by Warehouse Eyes, Lady Parts and Damian D. Anderson.

If you go:

Studio A
607 22nd Ave NE, Minneapolis
(just a couple blocks up from Grumpy’s NE)

Friday 5/20: 5pm-? (Party starts and 9pm and goes late)
Saturday 5/21: 12 – 8pm
Sunday 5/22: 12 – 5pm


Screaming Hand 30th Anniversary Show

A chance to see some of the most influential artists of the past 30 years side by side with local artists? We’ll take it! A tribute to artist and skateboarding icon Jim Phillips, creator of the famed Screaming Hand logo, this touring exhibit inspired by Phillips’ iconic work makes a stop at Burlesque of North America’s CO Exhibitions space, just in time for AAW weekend. Featuring work by Jim Phillips Sr., Jimbo Phillips, Colby Phillips, Jeremy Fish, Mike Giant, Todd Bratrud, Bigfoot, Michael Sieben, John Lucero, John Munnerlyn, Steve Caballero, Steve Olson, Natas Kaupus, Eric Dressen, Thomas Campbell, Sean Cliver, Mark Gonzales, Benny Gold, Jason Jessee, Mark Widmann, Makoto Yamaki, Skinner and many more PLUS, Burlesque has contributed to the exhibit with over a dozen favored locals such as Jennifer Davis, Michael Cina, Michael Gaughan and Jared Tuttle.

If you go:

CO Exhibitions
1101 Stinson Blvd, Minneapolis

Friday 5/20: 5-10pm
Saturday 5/21: 12-6pm
Sunday 5/22: 12-5pm


Mark Schoening: Shape Shifter

Our friends at Public Functionary never disappoint, hence this Art-A-Whirl, make it a point to stop by and lay eyes on their current exhibit, featuring artist Mark Schoening. A bit off the beaten path, this colorful collection of obsessively pieced together laser cut wood pieces and process materials is a cleanly presented exhibit that you won’t have to battle the crowds to experience – and that’s a good thing. Stop by on Friday night for live music from 7pm-10pm featuring G.P. Jacob and Toki Wright, DJ Keezy and Khem Clam for the release of new EP – The Longest Bridge.

If you go:

Public Functionary
1400 12th Ave NE, Minneapolis
(Corner of Buchanan & Broadway)

Friday 5/20: 5-10pm
Saturday 5/21: 12-8pm
Sunday 5/22: 12-5pm


Art-A-Whirl at the Food Building

Art and food are two things we certainly can’t argue with, especially when they are combined! Stop by this beautifully restored building, currently home to The Lone Grazer Creamery, Red Table Meat Company, 2 Gingers Whiskey and (one of our favorite restaurants) The Draft Horse. They’ll be hosting a myriad of local NEMAA member artists throughout their expansive space, which is a treat to explore regardless. Bonus: sampling of the building’s delicious wares will be happening all weekend long — plus a stop at the Draft Horse for one of their famous pot pies and a cocktail is never a bad idea!

If you go:

The Food Building
1401 Marshall Ave NE, Minneapolis

Friday 5/20: 5-10pm
Saturday 5/21: 12-8pm
Sunday 5/22: 12-5pm


Rogue Buddha Gallery

An art star on the busy AAW thoroughfare of 13th Avenue, the Rogue Buddha is the oldest gallery in Northeast, run by renowned oil painter Nicholas Harper. This dimly lit, dark art destination features the work of a number of artists of Harper’s choosing, including assemblage artist Michael Thomsen, whose large-scale sculptures are exploratory labyrinths of found objects and gilded wonder. Harper’s paintings take center stage, however, ranging from surrealist long-necked ladies, richly shadowed portraits and delicate bone assemblage pieces. Be sure to check out the back room while your there for a decadent sampling of Rogue Buddha art favorites, hung salon-style.

Rogue Buddha Gallery
357 13th Ave NE, Minneapolis
(Next to Northeast Social)

Friday 5/20: 5-10pm
Saturday 5/21: 12-8pm
Sunday 5/22: 12-5pm


Halloween Recap & Contest Results

2015 at 10:10 pm by admin | Comments Off


This Halloween was a blast for TOMODACHI, thanks to everyone who showed up at both of our retail locations! We had a great time handing out candy to all of our guests, plus we got to check out all of your awesome costumes! Our trick-or-treat events went off without a hitch, and it was all thanks to all of our fans and customers!

File Nov 03, 3 36 01 PM

The costume contest went well too, with a bunch of fans turning up with awesome and creative outfits to celebrate the spooky holiday. And now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for; here are the results of our Halloween Costume Contest!


Grand Prize (1 winner) – Jumbo Rilakkuma plush/4ft tall ($250 value)
Ray Fuller


1st Place (1 winner) – one Rilakkuma Kigurumi/onesie ($100 value)
Laura Novatney


2nd Place (2 winners) – one Totoro backpack/8″ x 10″ x5″ ($75 value)
Wendy Lindberg

2nd place

3rd Place (10 winners) – one Popin’ Cooking do-it-yourself candy kit ($10 value)
Bella Lor
Ashley Lauren Pew

Winners must come and claim their prizes at our Mall of America location by 7PM on Sunday, November 8th. Thank you so much to everyone who came out and celebrated Halloween with us, and we can’t wait to see you all again very soon!


TOMODACHI Halloween Costume Contest

2015 at 09:56 pm by admin | Comments Off


In keeping with the spooky celebrations this Halloween, TOMODACHI is holding a special costume contest event for all of our visitors and fans! Children and adults alike can come to either our Rosedale Shopping Center store from 1PM to 3PM or our Mall of America store from 4:30PM to 7:30PM in order to participate in our trick-or-treat candy giveaway, as well as take advantage of our 10% in-store discount.


On top of that, visitors who come in their coolest costumes can take part in our costume contest giveaway event! In order to participate, a photo of your costume will be taken at TOMODACHI, which you can then upload to Facebook or Instagram with the tag “@tomodachi_us” or the hashtag “#tomodachihalloween”. Once the event is over, TOMODACHI representatives will vote on their favorite costume, and announce the winning entries via Facebook and Instagram on Monday, November 2nd. Remember, your costume must be family-friendly in order to qualify!


Winners in our upcoming costume event will receive a variety of awesome prizes, such as:

Grand Prize (1 winner) – Jumbo Rilakkuma plush/4ft tall ($250 value)
1st place(1 winner) – one Rilakkuma Kigurumi/onesie ($100 value)
2nd Place (2 winners) – two Totoro backpack/8″ x 10″ x5″ ($75 value)
3rd Place (10 winners) – one Popin’ Cooking do-it-yourself candy kit ($10 value)


Make sure to visit TOMODACHI this Halloween to take part in these awesome events and to have fun in the meantime!


Halloween at TOMODACHI

2015 at 02:01 pm by admin | Comments Off


Get ready to celebrate Halloween with TOMODACHI next week with our fun trick-or-treat events! Come visit our Rosedale Shopping Center location on Saturday, October 31st to take part in our candy giveaway from 1PM to 3PM. If you can’t make it out to Rosedale, don’t fret; our Mall of America location is also handing out candy as part of the MoA’s Howl-O-Ween event from 4:30PM to 7:30PM! These events offer a safe and fun way for kids and parents alike to enjoy trick-or-treating indoors, and TOMODACHI is proud to help everyone have a warmer and safer Halloween. Make sure to bring your best Halloween costume to either of our locations, and have a great time with us during this spooky celebration!


TOMODACHI x mt tape Art Exhibit: Retrospective

2015 at 01:21 pm by admin | Comments Off

banner and article

Through the month of September, we had an amazing time hosting 19 local artists working in the medium of Japanese washi brand, mt tape. Each piece was more unique than the last, with artists creating everything from entire dresses made out of washi tape to design-based works, portraits, multi-dimensional pieces, installation art and more. Artists like Jennifer Davis and Michael Cina stayed true to their aesthetics, using mt tape to accent and embellish their beautiful, recognizable compositions, while artists such as Joshua Nelson and Lex Thompson chose to go more large scale, bringing a Minnesota wildlife themes into the equation for a fun front window display. We’re sad to see the work go, but happy to have collaborated with such talented artists — and hopefully helped them discover a new art medium in mt tape!


Thank you to all the artists involved: Lex Thompson, James Rojas, Michael Cina, Bryant Locher, Samantha Rei Crossland, Christopher Straub, Jennifer Davis, Ashley Hay, Leekyung Kang, Jamie Owens, Rudy Fig, Christina Da Cruz, Caitlin Karolczak, Joshua Nelson, Emiel Gregor, Kao Lee Thao, Andi Hillestad, Chris Matta.

Thanks to Public Functionary, Professor Frenchy @ MCAD, along with our sponsors at Coca-Cola, SkullCandy, Masu Sushi and Robata, Fire Lake Grill House & Cocktail Bar @MOA, Shanghai Bistro, Wasabi Fusion, Freshens @MoA, Urban Decay Cosmetics, Sweetbella, and In-signity!

Special thanks to Kamoi Kakoshi / mt masking tape!







Poster: Robert Johnston
Music: DJ Sally
Photos: Kate Iverson, Lex Thompson
Installation and set up: Mike Bishop

This show was co-curated by Public Functionary and Denny Park

More photos Click Here


Artist recreates Van Gogh work through landscaping

2015 at 02:33 pm by admin | Comments Off


As part of the celebration of their 100th anniversary, the Minneapolis Institute of Art has commissioned art into reality by transforming a large plot of land into a living Van Gogh painting! Created by landscape artist Stan Herd, the large-scale replication of Van Gogh’s famous “Olive Trees” painting was created through the use of native Minnesotan plants, and spans an area of over 1.2 acres on the Thomson Reuters campus in Eagen. The work has been in progress since this past spring, when Herd planted the wide variety of seeds needed to recreate Van Gogh’s iconic brushstroke art style, such as grass, oats, and other plants. The landscape art is purposefully located near the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, where fliers can see the painting in its full glory from an airborne perspective. For the rest of us on the ground, make sure to visit this piece of living art while you can, since the piece will eventually wither and disappear with the passing of autumn. Don’t worry if you miss out; you can also check out the real “Olive Trees” painting and other classic works of art at the Minneapolis Institute of Art!

Stan Herd, Of Us and Art: The 100 Videos Project, Episode 30 from Minneapolis Institute of Art on Vimeo.


Live art experience at Envision Fall 2015

2015 at 03:01 pm by admin | Comments Off


TOMODACHI is excited to partner with the Envision Fall 2015 fashion show and our friends at Public Functionary and Fulton Beer to help create the event’s VIP experience on Saturday, September 26th at Orchestra Hall. We collaborated on a vibrant backdrop for the VIP room’s photo booth, which is designed completely with Japanese washi brand, mt tape!

More than just a pretty background, the photo booth is a unique live art collaboration. Guests are invited to pose for fashion photographer Alex Butterfield in front the washi installation; Alex then hands images off to award-winning illustrator, Allegra Lockstad, who will further embellish them using a digital Wacom tablet, projected LIVE. The photos will be posted on Facebook after the event — watch for them to be shared by TOMODACHI!

The Envision Fall fashion show is the Twin Cities preeminent fashion showcase, and the longest running fashion event in Minnesota. Held in the stunning venue of Orchestra Hall, Envision features a runway show of looks from both emerging and established local designers and boutiques.

The VIP Room, curated by Public Functionary, and sponsored by Fulton and TOMODACHI, will also feature music from Eric Mayson and special guests as well as a bar, food and a pop-up shop from Hotrocity and a mt tape table hosted by TOMODACHI!

Runway Line Up:

Caroline Hayden
Jenny Carle
Cory Allen
Form Over Function
Joeleen Torvick
Russell Bourrienne
Sarah Furnae
Tessa Louise
Yevette Willaert


Goorin Bros.
Larissa Loden
Mona Williams
See Eyewear
Stephanie Lake

For more info and to purchase tickets, visit


Mechademia conference returns to MCAD this fall

2015 at 01:34 pm by admin | Comments Off


The Minneapolis College of Art and Design, or MCAD for short, will once again be bringing anime and Asian culture to the Twin Cities with their annual Mechademia conference! Originally titled “School Girls and Mobile Suits”, the Mechademia conference was originally founded in 2001 as a means for discussion of Asian culture and its influence in design, fashion, and art from all over the world. The three-day event has often hosted a number of talks and events hosted by internationally renowned artists in the past, including “Cowboy Bebop” and “Ghost in the Shell” screenwriter Dai Sato and art critic Hiroki Azuma, and will be hosting art and talks this year from manga artist Tomoko Taniguchi, fashion artist Novala Takemoto, videogame designer Brianna Wu, and more!


On top of that, the event hosts a wide variety of workshops and hands-on experiences for visitors of all ages, and even a runway fashion show! The event even publishes an annual “Mechademia” art book, which has received international praise. Special thanks goes out to Samantha Rei Crossland and Frenchy Lunning for helping make this event a reality every year! The Mechademia conference will take place this month from September 25th to the 27th, so make sure to get your tickets and check out this awesome annual experience! Click here to find out more about Mechademia and MCAD!


Back-to-School Special: Buy 2 Get 1 Free on mt tape!

2015 at 02:11 pm by admin | Comments Off


Now that summer is winding down and it’s time to head back to school, TOMODACHI is offering a special deal on our colorful selection of designer washi tape! Through the end of September, customers who purchase two rolls of mt tape will get one for free! Stock up on tons of cool colors and patterns to use for creatively decorating dorm rooms, embellishing interiors and making beautiful, eye-catching arts and crafts. This offer is only available while supplies last and will conclude at the end of September, so don’t miss out!

What is mt tape? mt is a brand of washi rice paper masking tape produced by Japanese company Kamoi Kakoshi. This no-damage adhesive is designed to be easily applied, aligned and repositioned, making it a perfect tool for use in crafts, interior decoration, contemporary art installation and design. Available in a huge variety of colors, patterns, styles, and sizes, mt has become a part of daily life for customers and artists across the world, adding a little bit of color everywhere!

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