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Best Gallery to Die in the Past Year St. Louis 2012 - Snowflake Gallery

It was a sad loss indeed this past summer, when Bevin and David Early ceased programming at their personal labor of love, the alternative art space Snowflake. Poised on the corner of Cherokee Street and South Compton Avenue, the charismatic storefront (above which the proprietors live) was host to more than a dozen thoughtful art exhibitions since its 2007 opening. Local practitioners were the dominant focus, but this was no provincial endeavor. A bright white interior space with pristinely finished hardwood floors, it was a charming and dignified template that presented some of the city's finest solo and group shows by some of its equally fine artists (Gina Alvarez, Peter Pranschke, Jamie Kreher, Jesse Thomas, Marian Amies, Leslie Mutchler, Jason Urban, Jason Wallace Triefenbach, Mike Schuh, Michael Worful, Elysia Mann, Robert Goetz, Jana Harper, Justin Visnesky, Amy Thompson, Wonder Koch, John Early and Brian DePauli, among many others). On the Compton Avenue side, the building had an ancillary display window-turned-project space, which the proprietors called "Driveby"; it inspired additional unique projects by Colby Ellison, Nicole Stevens, Cameron Fuller and Sarah Paulsen (among others) that proved marvelous to the unsuspecting passerby. Fundamentally, Snowflake was an inviting space, motivated by goodwill and benevolent support. (It even briefly played host to a book club.) The Earlys now turn their focus to family and their full-time careers — Bevin works with autistic middle-schoolers, Dave a high school art teacher — and so they carry on the erstwhile gallery's slogan: Snowflake Cares.

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