St. Paul

Rachel Breen sews in support of garment industry workers

Minneapolis-based artist Rachel Breen is probably best known for her work with textiles, which she finds funny, since her connection to her sewing machine was purely accidental. "Three days before…


Dana Sikkila takes Project Bike all over the state of Minnesota

Visual artist Dana Sikkila grew up in Litchfield, a farm town in West Central Minnesota with a population of a little over 6,000 people. She describes her family and the area she grew up as being…


Photographer Xavier Tavera documents the Latinx community from one border to the other

Xavier Tavera remembers picking up a camera when he was 11 or 12 years old and fell in love with photography immediately. To this day, he says, that “magical feeling” he gets from photography still…


Leila Awadallah dances stories of Palestine

Leila Awadallah, a 2018-2019 Springboard for the Arts 20/20 Artist Fellow, moved to Minneapolis from Sioux Falls, South Dakota to study dance before she had a sense of the kind of artist she is. “I…


Jose Alvillar is preserving ancient dance traditions in paint

Jose Alvillar is a Minneapolis-based dancer and painter, but rarely have those two parts of his life his met. Now, as a 2018-2019 Springboard for the Arts 20/20 Fellow, he plans to make those…


Ready Go Toolkit

Ready Go is a resource from Springboard for the Arts that connects neighborhoods, non-profits, businesses and individuals to artist-created, mobile tools that are purpose-built to pique curiosity and…


Lightning Rod is performance for the present moment

Imagine a group of artists gathering: writers, directors, and performers; many of whom have never met before; some who don’t even call themselves “artists.” They’re handed news headlines from the…


Of art and baseball: Rachel Wacker brings art to the community by working with some unlikely partners

Rachel Wacker hasn't had what might be called a "traditional" experience working in the art world. Based in Saint Paul's Lowertown neighborhood, Wacker has eschewed more "traditional" arts…


Saying “Yes” to 4th Street

In a downtown core experiencing change, the 4th Street Market District partnership leads creative experiments & looks to the future It was a summer Sunday afternoon in Saint Paul, Minnesota, and…


Toolkit Cohort Announced!

New toolkits are coming! We're excited to announce a new round of artists and organizations selected from our open call for toolkits, and we'll be working with these artists over the summer to create…


Announcing IdeaLab:Westwood in Denver on April 17!

IdeaLab is rooted in the notion that everyone is capable of being part of a movement, based around events that cross-pollinate local and national experts, create new opportunities for community…


Toolkit Toolkit

Yes, this is what you think it is. Since the launch of Creative Exchange in 2014, over 6,000 toolkits have been downloaded from the site, facilitating artist-led projects, business skills…


Creative Exchange Call for Toolkits!

As the national program of Springboard for the Arts, Creative Exchange hosts free, practical toolkits created by artists and arts organizations along with our editorial work sharing the stories and…


5 Questions with Creative Exchange: What we have learned from our artists

Since August 2016, Creative Exchange has been asking each of our Artists With Impact a series of five questions, which appear at the end of every profile. We did this to create a thread of continuity…


Ifrah Mansour finds light in the darkness of civil war

Ifrah Mansour bubbles over with energy when she talks. She is so cheerful and positive, it's all too easy to forget the nature of her work as a mixed media artist and theatre maker. Confronting…


Tana Hargest's wide-ranging work addresses issues of surveillance, policing, and public policy

As a long-time arts organization leader and cultural producer based in the Twin Cities, Tana Hargest says now that she is "mid-career" she has made a shift to focus on three different, yet…


Lucas Koski sees lawn art as a vehicle to diversifying funding sources

Lucas Koski, Asset Manager at Minneapolis-based Artspace, has always enjoyed a good spectacle. In high school he got into event production because he wanted to see bigger and better events than those…


"Miss Neighbor Lady" Kathy Mouacheupao hosts "Gatherings" in her St. Paul neighborhood

Kathy Mouacheupao has worked in arts-based nonprofits her entire professional career, working as the Executive Director for the Center for Hmong Arts and Talent in Saint Paul for ten years and as…


Connecting Americans to Healthcare

I’ve said it on this platform before, but artists need access to healthcare. In fact, everyone needs access to healthcare, but artists, who often work non-traditional jobs and have sporadic income,…


A small area plan with big ambitions: Frogtown's illustrated SMAPL is a document of tactical urbanism

A "small area plan" is a very common development document for individual districts within a city. Typically the stuff of purely esoteric urban planner interest, these are documents containing focused…


Leon Wang designs posters with impact

It was the Philando Castile shooting in July 2016 that ultimately drove Leon Wang to action. "It happened in my community, on the streets I drive on, in the area my kids are growing up in," Wang…


Connecting creative practice to healthcare through Ready Go tools at the People's Center Health Services

Amid all the uncertainty around health insurance, the fact remains that people need access to healthcare. Clinics and healthcare systems around the country have been seeking new and innovative ways…


Train-the-Trainer Intensive recap

In July, Springboard for the Arts held the first Train-the-Trainer Intensive, a “summer camp for artist organizers, creative community development folks and creative economy nerds,” according to the…


What would happen if the NEA were defunded, and why should we care?

It has been a little over six months since Donald Trump took office, and a lot has happened during that time. Although the budgeting process for the federal government is a long and arduous process…


Artists launch from Work of Art classes to a collective

When the five artists of the Springstep Collective met in a workshop on business skills for artists in Minnetonka, Minnesota, they were looking for a push in the right direction. Each of them had…


Rural Arts & Culture Summit Videos

The Rural Arts & Culture Summit was held from June 6-8 in Morris, MN, and it was magical. 400 artists, community development professionals, leaders, and advocates from 22 states came to the town of…


Soundset & Possibility

“This is possible,” Black Liquid, the Richmond, Virginia-based emcee, writer, instructor, and radio personality, told me at this year's Soundset festival. “Not only getting on the stage, but building…


Springboard for the Arts announces new national Train-the-Trainer Intensive

Springboard for the Arts is excited to announce the first Train-the-Trainer Intensive for their Work of Art: Business Skills for Artists curriculum and award-winning artist-led community development…


Roots of Rondo honors a neighborhood, looks to the future

America’s network of interstate highways is considered to be one of the most impressive infrastructure achievements of all time, a lasting symbol of the country’s postwar prosperity. But the…


Artist Hassan Nor draws old world vision of Somalia for new generation

In a high-rise tower located on Portland Avenue lives Hassan Nor, a Somali immigrant. Most of the residents in the building, like Nor, are seniors. He lives in a one-bedroom apartment by himself and…