Tag Archives: Northeast Minneapolis Arts District

Business skills for those whose work is their art

Though artists would prefer to create beautiful and evocative expressions of truth many are learning that “doing art” may well  evolve into a successful business.  The challenge is to learn and practice the skills of marketing, pricing, record keeping, tax considerations, social media and the importance of thoughtful planning.  It is said that some creative artists even begin to appreciate the art of creating a successful business!

Towards that end, Springboard for the Arts is joining with Hennepin County Library to address the opportunity to shape business skills programming specifically targeted to the needs of creative artists.  Last Winter sponsors launched a weekly series entitled “Work of Art” a program focused on identifying and honing business skills for artists facing the hope and challenge of making it in a robust business environment.

That venture was such a success that the series has is being fine-tuned in readiness of a second series that will begin tomorrow, June 10, at the Northeast Library, 2200 Central Avenue, in the heart of the Northeast Minneapolis arts community.  Sessions are held Saturday afternoons, 1:00 – 3:30 in the Library.  All of the sessions are free and open.  Registration is requested for individual sessions or for the series.

The summer schedule:

June 16: Time Management. Analytical tool-based approaches to tackle hurdles related to efficiency, flexibility and work-life balance.

June 23: Portfolio Kit: Focus on the essential elements of the portfolio; sharpening the artist statement, tailoring the artistic resume, selection and formatting work samples

June 30: January 11. Marketing for Artists. Defining the product, discovering the target audience, making decisions about selling, and identifying a budget and strategy for an artistic business.

July 14 – Social Media Basics for Artists. Focused on Facebook and Twitter examples – core functionality, best practices and exercises to build an online strategy for an artistic business. 

July 21: Pricing: An analytical approach to defining key elements to calculate costs and prices of art for a variety of markets.

July 28: Recordkeeping:  Tracking revenues, making informed projects, gaining a clearer understanding of artistic business finances.

August 4: Legal Considerations.  General information about intellectual property, contract basics and structuring artistic business.

August 11: Funding.  How to think creatively about diversifying funding streams, exploring traditional and new models for generating value, resources and revenue. 

August 18: Business Plan Essentials.  How to prepare a simple business plan in art-friendly language to help organize the various aspects of artistic practice and informed business decisions.

For more information or to register for individual sessions or for the series click here: https://springboardforthearts.org/professional-growth/work-of-art-program/work-of-art-business-skills-for-artists/

Logan Park Honors a National War Hero and Patriot

Logan Park residents enjoying the ten-acre open space where neighbors gather probably do not spend much time reflecting on the life and times of their community’s namesake; it’s unlikely that most even know the political drama that surrounded the selection of John A. Logan for the honor.  Still, Logan was a legend in his own time — racist turned anti-slavery advocate in defense of the Union, Major General in the Civil War, Republican nominee for vice president in 1884, and the man generally credited with the establishment of Memorial Day (originally Decoration Day), a day to honor those who died in the Civil War.

In 1883, when the park was first designated it was christened First Ward Park, later changed to Ninth Ward Park when the political wards were restructured.  At that point, in 1887, the Civil War veterans of the Dudley Chase Post of the Grand Army of the Republic proposed the park recognize the deeds of John A. Logan.   After some Park Board deliberations, the name selection went instead to one Cadwallader C. Washburn, founder of the Washburn Crosby Company (now General Mills) and one-time Governor of Wisconsin.

Next, the Park Board decided the honor should go to Cadwallader’s brother William who actually ran the Minneapolis business interests of Washburn Crosby.  William Washburn, a former Congressman and a friend of a couple of park commissioners, was subsequently sent to Washington DC when Minneapolis voters elected him to the U.S. Senate in 1889.

That’s when the Park Board had a change of heart – and John A. Logan’s name reappeared on the agenda of the Park Board Nomenclature Committee.  Later Dr. William Folwell, who served on t he Nomenclature Committee, explained the turn of events and the role of Northeast DFLer and Park Board member Patrick Ryan, in this way:  “Because Paddy Ryan wanted that name, it probably was named for Major-General John A. Logan, who was also a United States Senator for while Paddy was a good Democrat, he also was a good politician and that may be the reason for naming the park after a republican statesman and Major-General.”

Minneapolis park historian David C. Smith suggests that [Ryan] preferred naming the park for a man who had been elected from both political parties in Illinois instead of the brother of the incumbent Republican senator from Minnesota.”

No matter the politics, Logan’s name and reputation add to the rich history of the park and the neighborhood.

John Alexander Logan was born in 1836 in what is now Murphrysboro, a Southern Illinois town that began with a gift of 20 acres of land donated by Logan’s parents.  After three years of study at Shiloh College Logan served as a second lieutenant with the Illinois Infantry in the Mexican-American War, earned a degree in law from the University of Louisville, practiced law and dabbled in local politics.  His political career took him from county clerk to the State House of Representatives and in time to election as a Democrat to the U.S. House of Representatives.

With the onset of the Civil War Logan, once pro-Southern and thus pro-slavery, determined that “the union must prevail.”   While still a member of Congress, Logan fought at Bull Run as a volunteer with a Michigan regiment.  He returned to Washington, resigned his Congressional seat, and entered the Union army as Colonel of the 31st Illinois Volunteers which he organized.  It was there that he acquired the nickname “Black Jack” because of his dark complexion and black eyes; the nickname stayed with him throughout his lifetime.  Nickname or no he went on to succeed as a military hero, ultimately named by Sherman to command the Union army during the May 1865 Grand Review in Washington.  Some historians have identified Logan as the most prominent volunteer general in the Civil War.

After the war Logan, now a Republican, returned to his seat in the House of Representatives and then to the Senate.  It was his involvement in veteran’s affairs that motivated him to lead efforts to create Memorial Day, then Decoration Day, as a tribute to those who lost their lives during the War Between the States.  He was elected to serve in the Senate in 1871 and again in 1877.

In 1884 Logan was nominated for Vice President on the presidential ticket with James G. Blaine, Republican from Maine.  He nomination was based to a great extent on his military record and on his personal following as a platform speaker and partisan spokesperson.  Though the Republican ticket was defeated in that election by Grover Cleveland Logan continued to serve in the Senate until his untimely death in 1886 at the age of sixty.

Today, Logan Park is not the only public tribute to John A. Logan.  Minneapolitans know Logan Avenue, of course.  Travelers may have had their pictures taken at the equestrian statue at Logan Circle in Northwest Washington DC or at Grant Park in Chicago. Visitors to Murphrysboro will know the Logan Museum in his hometown.

Over the years, Logan Park, the park itself, has thrived as the locus and gathering place for countless community events for every age.  Dancing, singing, theater, sports events, ice skating and scores of other lively activities have engaged and united the neighborhood.   Today, Logan Park, the neighborhood, blossoms as the epicenter of the flourishing arts area that is the pride of Northeast Minneapolis.

The story of its namesake, military hero and political leader James A. Logan, simply adds a brilliant splash of color to the rich tapestry that is the Logan Park neighborhood of today..




Reflections on Art-A-Whirl 2012

If you were able to walk and gawk through the delights of Art-a-Whirl 2012 you’ll want to compare your responses with those reflected in the June 2012 issue of In the District., the report from the Northeast Area Arts District spearheaded by Josh Blanc.

If you missed the seventeenth annual celebration of the arts in the Northeast community you will feel as if you had been there when you read the reflections of artist Caitlin Karolczak who explored her innate performance art talents as a first-timer at this year’s AAW.

Josh posed a series of queries, all of which Caitlin answers with enthusiasm for her experience and her life working in the Northeast arts community. “My studio is like a sanctuary,” Caitlin observes, adding that  “it’s also nice to be a part of a bigger community of artists.  NEMAA is a great hub and resource for all artists in Northeast”.  As an artist relatively new to the community Caitlin notes that “I also really appreciate there are resident ‘old guards’ who are willing to act as mentors.”

Watch for Caitlin at the Modern Café where she loves the vintage drinks and the pot roast! “  She is not the first to sing the praises of the comfort food that fuels artists and lovers of art, Northeast Minneapolis and classic food served with panache.

Northeast Minneapolis Arts District Features Art and Eats

It might be said that the fortunate residents of Northeast Minneapolis “marinate” in art.  The area is home to countless artists who are at the ready to share their talents and commitment to their profession with their neighbors.  The tie that binds – also plans, promotes and shares the riches — is the Northeast Minneapolis Arts Association (NEMAA). Though keeping up with the arts in Northeast a comprehensive listing of Northeast art events is a fool’s mission, some examples offer a glimpse of the possibilities.

  • The work of local photographer Tim Davis will be on display through the month of February at the Wilde Roast Café.  Tim has added a touch of high tech to his exhibit.  Rather than merely labeling photos,  he has equipped each with a Quick Response (QR) code so that cell phones are able to read and instantly link to any website, including Tim’s home  website.
  • The juried Spiritual Art Show has become a destination in Northeast for the past eleven years.  Nicholas and Rosemary Heille, producers of the show, have published a clear explanation of the “why” of a spiritual art show on their website.  They have also issued a call for Minnesota artists to submit their work for the show which is set for April 10-15, 3:00-7:00 p.m. at the Kolbe Center of Pope John Paul II School. Admission is free. Rules and entry forms are available from Rosie Heille, NE Minneapolis Artist Concierge Service, 3460 Garfield St NE, Mpls 55418.
  • Brickmania Toyworks, located in the Thorp Building at 1618 Central Avenue, hosts a monthly open house on the second Saturday of the month, 11 AM – 4:00 PM.  Visitors will find LEGO creations, including a working train created by the Greater Midwest Lego Train Club and the Twin Cities Lego Train Club.  Brickmania also features displays of historical military models and a kids’ town.
  • Meanwhile, NEMAA continues to sponsor regular open studio events.  This is the season when Northeast artists are hard at work preparing for Art-A-Whirl, the annual springtime showcase of the community’s artists and their works.  The open studio series offers an insider’s view  into the work that goes on day-by-day in neighborhood studios, many of which share their work spaces and their wares throughout the year.  The longstanding mainstays are the monthly open studio events held on First Thursdays and Second Saturdays.

Ø     On First Thursday artists open their studios at the Casket Arts Building, Casket Arts-Carriage House, the Northrup King Building, Q.arma Building, and the Thorp Building.  Also in the neighborhood visitors will find bargains at Two 12 Pottery and Gifts and a welcome at Who Made Who Design+Screenprint Emporium. Hours vary, all are listed on the NEMAA website.  Stay in the neighborhood for the special happy hour and late night music nearby at the Red Stag.

Ø     Open Studios on Second Saturdays each month are in the California Building where visitors will find six floors of studios bustling with 25 artists at work. Visit with the artists, sip and snack on the refreshments and catch the Art-A-Whirl fever the second Saturday of each month 11:00AM-6:00 PM.

The arts community of Northeast Minneapolis is a magnet the draws art enthusiasts – and those who love a good meal in a friendly environment.  The community’s eat treats is growing by exponentially as any guide to good eating, including friends and neighbors, will attest.  Don’t leave Northeast with an unsatisfied appetite for good art – or good food!