Photo by Eric Best

Gift shop Duke Albert opens on Central

Updated: May 19, 2017 - 11:59 am

The store replaces the Water Bar, which is moving next door

Gift shop Duke Albert is now open in the former Water Bar & Public Studio space near Central & Lowry.

The store sells candles, home goods, jewelry and other oddities. Inside, Duke Albert boasts chalkboard-painted walls and a bright-green neon sign.

The shop at 2516 Central Ave. NE is open 11 a.m.–7 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and 1 p.m.–5 p.m. on Sunday. Duke Albert runs an online store at

Duke Albert replaces the Water Bar, which serves tasting flights of free water from cities across the Twin Cities metro in order to raise awareness of water quality and other water-related issues. The artist-run concept from owners Shanai Matteson and Colin Kloecker, also the co-directors of Works Progress Studio, started as a pop-up and will continue on in the neighboring space.

Matteson said their original home required extensive work to complete their vision. The new space, last home to a small grocery store, offers them more room — 200 additional square feet on the ground floor, along with a finished basement — and all the facilities required to maintain regular hours. Soon they’ll fundraise in order to turn the basement into a space for artists.

Since opening last spring, the two have brought on a third partner, artist Jennifer Arave, and have turned the concept into a public-benefit corporation. Matteson said the changes have given them resources to build out their new space.

“[The first year] went really well. We needed this time to regroup and reopen in a new spot,” she said.

The Water Bar & Public Studio will be at the Minnesota State Fair this summer before reopening this fall.

Photo courtesy of Water Bar & Public Studio
Photo courtesy of Water Bar & Public Studio
  • Andrew Jacoby

    Wasn’t this supposed to be an article about duke albert? I feel like the writer got a lot sidetracked.