Monday, December 30, 2013

Sketching on Saint Paul's Skyways - Cray-1 Supercomputer

The temperature outside was below zero, so I walked a few blocks through the skyway to Cray Plaza (formerly Gaultier Plaza). In a window of to the side of the skyway is a Cray-1 supercomputer along with a framed photo of Seymour Cray. Click to make the sketch bigger:

As I sketched, a security guard intervened and insisted I get permission to sit and sketch. He insisted I get permission from the building management otherwise I would removed for "loitering".  I took the elevator to the third floor and talked with someone who gave me permission.... permission to sit and sketch in a public place. 

This annoying, insulting episode took place in Lowertown where I assumed most people would be supportive of artists. Also ironic because I am one of four artists who has artwork reproduced on drink coasters celebrating Lowertown (read an article on the coasters in the Pioneer Press).

I was harassed in a similar way by a security guard in Minneapolis nearly a decade ago (read "Landscape of Fear" at Counterpunch).

Here's a comic I did about the incident - click to make it bigger:


  1. You better keep those coasters in your pocket. Coaster-carrying Lowertown artists have blanket permission to sketch St Paul from any public place.

  2. Wow Ken, I often sketch in the skyways on my lunch break and haven't encountered such an episode. "Loitering?" How insane. The more open sketching we do, the more familiar we'll become to the community. I love your work. It gives me joy each time you post a sketch.

  3. Ken, this just makes me sad and angry. They should be happy that you are there sketching. I think we should ALL go together and "LOITER" there.

  4. May be how he told his way is wrong.But think it was his part of guard company


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