Ben Etten

Grain Belt Brewery

I am currently working on a large pen drawing of the old Grain Belt Brewery. Located on the east bank of the Mississippi River, this historic building sat vacant for over 25 years. However, in 1975 renovation efforts began, and today the building has become a virtual poster child for the National Register of Historic Places. It is an excellent example of preserving a historic building while also making it functional. In fact, this building is now home to a library, artists studios, and many offices, including an architecture firm.

Click here to read the article on the National Register of Historic Places website.

As I continue working on this image I will be taking photos to document my progress, but also to allow other people to see what I am currently working on, so check back often!


(click to view progress)

In Progress:
Grain Belt Brewery
Pen on paper
33" x 50"
(expected) 2009

Grain Belt Brewery (photo taken Fall 2008)
Photography is often the first step in my process. It allows me to explore a location or a building from many angles and often multiple points of view are used to construct my final image. In this way, my drawings can allow a fuller way of experiencing a location than photography, or even at times, more than reality.