Peek Inside a Condo at Eleven, Minneapolis's Tallest Residential … – Mpls.St.Paul Magazine

Art from the Twin Cities and world travels helps the first fully furnished condo at Eleven, Minneapolis’s brand-new and tallest residential tower, ascend to colorful heights.
by Shawn Gilliam
December 15, 2022
6:51 AM
Photographs by Spacecrafting
CAPTIVATING MIX-Some people might shy away from pairing a contemporary piece of art with more traditional furnishings. That’s not the case for Bores and Hawkins, who love the play between one of their favorite paintings—a large abstract by Teo Nguyen, whose expansive Việt Nam Peace Project exhibition is currently up at the Minneapolis Institute of Art—and a Persian rug.
Proximity to performing arts venues played a big role in luring Jeffrey Bores and Michael Hawkins to live in downtown Minneapolis’s Mill District eight years ago. “It’s a theater district without people really acknowledging it’s a theater district,” Bores says. “Besides the Guthrie, there’s the Open Book space, where Ten Thousand Things performs, plus there’s the Southern Theater, Mixed Blood Theatre, and Theatre in the Round, all within walking distance.” The options hold great appeal for the theatergoers. “In a good year, we’ll see 80-plus pieces of theater,” Bores says.
But the interiors of the two condos where the couple has lived since moving to the neighborhood—first at Stonebridge Lofts and now on the 16th floor of the just-finished Eleven building—are all about the visual arts, including contemporary paintings (many by local friends who are artists), an exquisite collection of Kosta Boda glass, and rugs gathered from travels to countries including Morocco, Turkey, and Nepal.
To ensure the art would shine, the couple knew they had to get their rooms’ backdrops right. First, they chose an interior finishes package named RAMSA—the acronym for New York–based Robert A.M. Stern Architects, which partnered with local firms PKA Architecture and Martha Dayton Design on Eleven—the most transitional of three options, and one reminiscent of prewar New York apartment interiors. “We loved [this option’s] racetrack ceilings, where you have two levels of Sheetrock that outline the perimeter of the room,” Hawkins says.
From there, the couple worked with interior designers Martha Dayton and Kelly Perry of Martha Dayton Design. Dayton and PKA Architecture designed all finishes “attached to the unit other than lighting,” as she describes them, from cabinetry, countertops, and hardware in the kitchen to tile combinations in the baths. “Within each of the three styles, there were 36 decisions to make about the unit,” she says. White oak flooring was one of the couple’s picks. And although having walls painted Sherwin-Williams Simple White wasn’t one of the choices (it’s the hue used in units and common areas throughout the building), it would provide the perfect foundation for art.
That’s where Perry came in, helping Bores and Hawkins customize interior furnishings—including closet systems and lighting (like the Arteriors fixture in the dining area, purchased locally through Filament)—and place their art.
A longtime favorite piece, a large abstract by local artist Teo Nguyen, was the first one they figured out where to hang. “That piece really resonated with us color-wise and from an abstract perspective,” Bores says. “We had to know exactly where it would go.” It ended up in the living room, front and center, next to the fireplace. Perry and the couple continued until the interior reflected Bores, Hawkins, and their love of art.
The couple couldn’t be happier with the result. “Living in a world that often has a lot of ugliness to it, it’s certainly nice to have ways to find beauty, and part of that is through the art we live with,” Bores says. “But it’s also the art that surrounds us in the neighborhood and in the city.”
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QUIET QUARTET-Calm colors define the works above the fireplace. The large pair, made of the fabric pieces left after patterns are cut out—a reference to the labor that goes into making clothing—are by Rachel Breen, a professor at Anoka-Ramsey Community College who has shown at Soo Visual Arts Center and was a Fulbright Scholar in India earlier this year. The smaller pair, found in San José del Cabo, Mexico, are by artist America Ibarra. EXPERT ASSISTANCE-Bores and Hawkins had professionals from Artserve and Hang It install their art, including the colorful paintings from Hội An, Vietnam, that hang next to a mask from Zululand in the KwaZulu-Natal province of South Africa. “It’s probably not too much of a joke to say it’s the best few hundred bucks you can spend to save your relationship,” Bores laughs.
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ROOFTOP SELFIE-Married since 2013 but together for 35 years, homeowners Jeffrey Bores (left), the managing partner and an attorney at Chestnut Cambronne, and Michael Hawkins (right), who works at Target by day, own taraNa Yoga in south Minneapolis. As with art, yoga often factors into their travels, which include annual retreats they’ve hosted in Italy.
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LANDMARK PRESENCE-At 44 stories, Eleven makes a skyline statement inside and out. “We liked that it was amenity-rich and beautifully designed,” Bores says. Among the couple’s favorite features are a 25-yard pool—which especially appeals to Hawkins, who grew up swimming competitively—and an herb garden.
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BOLD MOVE-To maximize the impact of the backdrop, designer Kelly Perry deliberately made sure not to match the “pea-soup green” grass cloth wall covering with colors from a trio of paintings, two from Vietnam and one (the smallest) from Cambodia. The landscape at top is by artist Dao Hai Phong. “That blue struck us,” Hawkins says.
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IN GOOD TASTE-The kitchen’s white oak cabinets, brass hardware, and Carrara marble countertops came together as expected. The stools, however, were a surprise. “We had ordered teal backs, but when they showed up, they were navy blue,” Perry says. As it turned out, the teal had been discontinued. “It was a blessing in disguise,” Perry says. “The teal would have sort of screamed, and the navy blue works perfectly.”
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EARLY ACQUISITIONS-A rug from Pakistan and a pair of Kosta Boda glass pieces bring character to the main bedroom. But the couple’s favorite pieces, on the wall, are by Laura Migliorino, whose friendship with Bores goes back 40 years. A professor at Anoka-Ramsey Community College, Migliorino was a Fulbright Scholar the first half of 2022. She now works primarily in photography, but these pieces from the late 1980s are mixed media with acrylic crayon.
December 15, 2022
6:51 AM

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