A2 Art Storage and Services Color Square

Meet A2

MEET A2

Hi, there. We’re A2 Art Storage and it’s so nice to meet you. Allow us to introduce ourselves…

When our founder, M.E. Kirwan, and her husband and business partner, Chris, spent two years researching business opportunities that would complement their current business, Acorn Mini Storage, she knew she wanted something that would blend the demand in the market and her own passions. Enter: A2, a safe and thoughtful solution to the underserved art collector community in the Twin Cities. 

As the first museum-grade art storage facility in the market, A2 safely stores objects of nearly any size, shape, medium or value at our 35,000-square-foot facility located just east of Minneapolis. This site was strategically selected based on a variety of factors that are critical to art storage: Conditions for climate control, overall footprint, flood zoning, proximity to freeways and railways, and ability to have state-of-the-art security onsite. Who knew? 

With our proprietary inventory management system, highly-secure facility and our team’s robust understanding of the local and global art community, we are quickly becoming the go-to for art storage and management needs in the Minneapolis-St. Paul market and the Midwest since opening in May 2021. 

Private Unit Storage Spaces at A2 Art Storage & Services
A2 Art Storage & Services Private Unit Storage Spaces

To learn more about the A2 story, our future goals and overall business model, we sat down with our M.E., CEO + President, to learn more:

Why A2? What led you to creating this solution?
M.E.: My family has been in the storage business for nearly 40 years. Six or so years ago, the Twin Cities was identified as an under-served market for self storage and the developers really inundated the market. We love the Twin Cities and were looking for opportunities to continue to grow. As a born and raised Minnesotan, we also have deep connections in the arts community and knew that a facility of this magnitude did not yet exist in the area. After two years of research, A2 Art Storage & Services was born!  

What has been the most unexpected part of delivering this art solution to the market? Any surprises? 

M.E.: I have been so inspired by our customer’s passion for their collections. We really enjoy learning about our customers, how they came to become collectors. Some are collectors themselves, others have inherited their collections and consider themselves stewards. In terms of surprises, never again will I underestimate how large some art can be! 

What have been your biggest A-HA moments so far? 

M.E.: We recognize that by providing storage & services, A2 is just a sliver of the pie. Meaning that our customers tend to need other complimentary services in addition to storage. The team has spent the last year rounding out our referral list. We have a growing list of trusted providers we can refer our customers to so that the whole need of the customer can be met.

Now, tell us a little more about your passions surrounding art. When did you fall in love with this medium? 

M.E.: I love how art makes me feel. I love color. I love supporting individuals who are working so hard to make a living as artists. Especially when I was working from home, I found my eyes wandering over to the art within my eyeline. Observing it, the choices the artist made, the colors he/she used, gave my brain a little break from the chaos. Isn’t that what we’re all looking for?

Who are your favorite artists and why?
M.E.: I am fortunate enough to sit on the Board of Trustees at the Minneapolis College of Art & Design (MCAD). My involvement there has introduced me to so many artists – both newer to the market and experienced. I love the opportunity to own original art and support my local community. MCAD ticks both those boxes for me. Right now, I am inspired by the work of Julie Buffalohead, Suyao Tian and Kylin Thomas. Additionally, Rob Sherer at The Orange Advisory has introduced me to many favorite artists. He has a gallery in NE Minneapolis I urge everyone to check out. It’s another great way to surround yourself with original art, but with the guidance of a seasoned professional.

What’s next for A2? Any goals in 2022 you’d like to share? 

M.E.: Our focus this year is spreading the word about all that A2 has to offer! We find that many of our customers are experiencing a life event which has spurred the need for storage, such as a home renovation or a move. We have short and long term solutions and work to make the experience as hassle-free as possible. No collection is too small. If it’s meaningful to you, we want to help you protect it.

To learn more about what A2 Art Storage & Services can do for you, Contact Us here!

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