Whole Foods Co-op
Open Memorial Day, May 29th 9am – 8pm  

Supporting Local Artists

Nourished Artists = Nourished Community

Your Whole Foods Co-op is proud to support the Twin Ports’ art community. We believe that having a beautiful as well as functional building meets our ENDS Statement in being part of “a healthy community.”


Each month, a local artist’s work is featured in the seating areas at both the Hillside and Denfeld stores. To date, the work of over 200 local artists have been displayed and admired by Co-op customers and staff.

Denfeld Brewer Ridge Overlook

Our featured artist for May is Kristina Wheatman – her surrealistic pieces are dreamy and ethereal. She utilizes aspects of an east Asian technique called Sumi-e, in which emphasis is placed on the beauty of each individual stroke of the brush.

In Kristina’s words:

Rather than emulating the styles and techniques found in traditional sumi-e brush
painting, I respectfully respond with my own unique style of magical realism, presenting a
variety of images and scenes that are meant to invoke emotions and transport viewers. My paintings not only reflect my journey and experiences throughout life, but the inspirations I find in music, photography, and nature. These elements are brought to life by using sumi-e ink either alone or accompanied by colored acrylic inks. My technique includes utilizing the full spectrum of sumi-e’s rich tonality and shading by producing velvety grays and blacks. The addition of purples, reds, and golds creates a contrast within my paintings, while adding an additional layer of depth.


Hillside Brewery Creek Overlook

For the month of April our Hillside store is showcasing the photography of Pat Thomas. Pat’s extreme close-up photos of insects on local flora give one an entirely new perspective on bees, spiders,  beetles and other bugs.

Pat really enjoys taking pictures of insects in the yard and around Lake Superior.  She is a local wildlife gardener who teaches about butterflies, bees and other insects through Duluth Community Education.  Her classes are at the Ordean Middle School on May 2nd and 9th from 6:30-8:00 p.m.


If you are interested in displaying your art at either of our stores please contact the Brand Department at brand@wholefoods.coop



In anticipation of our move to our Hillside location, our Board of Directors set aside funds for an outdoor art display. This artwork was intended to be a permanent installation for the public good on the store exterior.

After a process with a jury of the Management Team and the Board of Directors, local artist Ron Benson was chosen. His design, incorporating recycled glass (most of it from the demolished Two Harbors High School), nontoxic coloring agents and a water theme made this particular design stand out. It was clearly representative of our ENDS, both in design and material use.

In the fall of 2008, the recycled glass mural was installed on the east end of the store, wrapping around the entrance area. A contest was held by Mr. Benson to allow a Co-op Owner to name the piece. In January 2009, the name selected was “The Great Lake,” submitted by Bonnie Summers.

“I believe that there is potent symbolism in water. It is elemental–all life and good health is dependent upon it. We have the good fortune of living next to the largest body of fresh water on the planet. We have a choice, we can live sustainably with respect for the earth, air, and its waters and be wise consumers, too.

I am an environmentalist. I believe there needs to be a cultural shift to organics and sustainability in all aspects of our lives. Anything that can increase awareness of this need should be implemented. My recycled glass mural will draw positive attention to Whole Foods Co-op and its ethos.”

-Ron Benson, artist


Two mosaics are installed on the interior of the east wall of the Co-op. They can be viewed as customers wait to check out.

These mosaics are the work of Knife River artist Laura Stone. This was a three-year project completed in the fall of 2008. The pieces, entitled “Fruiting” and “Seedling” represent the idea that energy is at the heart of all things. Except for the material cost, these pieces were donated in the cooperative business spirit.

“Color to color; from one piece of glass to the next — a visual energy unwinds from unseen centers of endless generation. I have put my past experience looking and drawing mosses, viola blossoms, apple trees and reflections to work as I did the meditation drawings that the mosaics are based on. Italian glass called smalti is the material cut using tools called hammer and hardie.”

– Laura Stone, artist

The mosaics were developed with the assistance of Charlie Bauer, Deanna and Randy Ellestad, Sandy Bissell, Lawrence Jones, Steve Carlson, Brad Nelson and Alex Comb and an Arrowhead Regional Arts Board Fellowship Grant.


Whole Foods Co•op


Hillside Location

610 E 4th Street
Duluth, MN 55805

Denfeld Location

4426 Grand Avenue
Duluth, MN 55807