Staff & Artists
Yale Summer Intern | started w/JXTA: 2016
Undergraduate at Yale University
Hawa brings energy, enthusiasm and an authentic commitment to service to her summer with JXTA. “As someone who grew up with six other siblings, I have always been inclined to want to heal, help, and grow with the people, communities and youth around me. For this reason, I was drawn to JXTA as it encompassed all of those aspects.” As Hawa works toward her B.A in economics and global affairs her hope is to one-day start an organization that works both nationally and internationally to provide under-resourced youth and adults with opportunities to tap into their creative genius, academic potential and the richness of their cultural heritage.
Environmental Design Studio Instructor | started w/JXTA: 2014
Adjunct professor and artist Coal Dorius, was first introduced to JXTA through the U of M ongoing service learning collaboration, Remix/Streetlife while pursuing her M.L.A. Coal’s thesis focused on the relationships between urban planning and cultural imprints, and how they influenced the history, equity and growth of North Minneapolis. She continues to explore placemaking opportunities in Minneapolis city policy. “My intent has always been to be as creative and purposeful as possible and I feel like that is right in line with JXTA – teaching apprentices to look for opportunities and help build an infrastructure to encourage an exchange of ideas in everyday life.”
Adrienne entered JXTA 2010 through the STEP Up job training program. Though she initially thought that a creative career would not take her far, Adrienne’s time since joining JXTA combines teaching, arts-based community organizing and publishing the zine Burn Something. But, all-in-all, it’s personal connections that inspire much of Adrienne’s work: “The majority of my work at JXTA requires conversations with apprentices and community members about the systems and processes that shape society. I enjoy witnessing our young people challenge, critique, and re-imagine the world as it is, and providing support and resources as they make moves to build it better.”
Political Science Major and Chuck Green Civic Engagement Fellow at Macalester College
Having collectively started an independent feminist magazine, built a roof garden in her hometown of Kansas City and organized various food justice events at Macalester College, Ilana brings with her a tested commitment to the community work that is central to life at JXTA. “I was inspired by JXTA’s vision for their students and the unique asset-based language that they use in their messaging. I also have a background in visual art and consider myself to be a practicing artist.” Ilana feels quite confident that her summer will not be wasted.
Samuel Babatunde Ero-Phillips
Environmental Design Studio Instructor | started w/JXTA: 2007
B.S. Architecture – University of Minnesota | M.Arch – University of Illinois | Fulbright Fellow, Nigeria
“I love being an architect for many reasons but mainly because design is such a valuable tool to express solutions creatively,” says Sam Ero-Phillips. An architect and educator, he brings his passion for problem-solving to the Environmental Design Studio at Juxtaposition where he works with students on projects that connect directly to the surrounding community. When he’s not at Juxtaposition, you might just find him in Nigeria lecturing at the University of Lagos where he’s also working on a PhD in sustainable development.
Contemporary Arts Lab Instructor| started w/JXTA: 2016
PhD Candidate in Feminist Studies at University of Minnesota
Upon her arrival to Minnesota, Tia–a shining academic and subsequent 2016 McKnight Fellow in Visual Arts–had difficulty finding a community and space outside the University that would nurture her creative and intellectual life. Introduced to the organization by fellow artists, Tia was “overwhelmed with excitement to have the chance to join JXTA and such a sharp group of instructors doing work that I love.” She admits that her time as a lab instructor has expanded her idea of teaching, specifically ideas about when and where learning can take place. And she is particularly grateful for the support that the JXTA family shows one another in both lab and office.
Outreach and Engagement | started w/JXTA: 2014
As a mentor, writer, reader and explorer, Jared funnels the energy of his combined experiences – working in Minneapolis Public Schools AVID program, creating an enrichment program for homeless youth and families which he continues to run, board president of a South Minneapolis housing co-op – into his current efforts in youth work. “JXTA allows me to combine my passion for youth development and education in my role,” he says, “while also tapping into my affinity for social enterprise and innovation.”
Owen Thoreau Heine
GraphicsLab Co-Instructor | started w/JXTA: 2014
Drawing has been a part of Owen’s practice since he was very young. Pre-degree, much of his pencil skills were largely self-taught. Upon entering the professional design world five years ago (which includes working with local fashion company Brims & Tongues), he came to JXTA to give his personal insight to young adult artists. “As an instructor, I want to bring to the forefront the things they don’t teach in school to youth artists who can benefit the most from my experience.”
Receptionist | JXTA Alum-started w/JXTA: 2012
Student at MCTC
Jahliah is a JXTA alumnus and graduate of Southwest High School. She entered JXTA on a referral from the job-training program Step-Up and has stayed on because she “loves the kind of culture that resides within the JXTA community.” While building on the professional skills she began to develop in her job-training program, Jahliah also credits JXTA with nurturing her personal growth as an artist and providing a support system in and out of the workplace, adding that “it also helps that the staff never treat me as if I am just a kid that is incapable of handling responsibility. They always have asked and assigned projects to me that created that sense of responsibility in my life.”
Rising Senior at Macalester College, 2016 Chuck Green Civic Engagement Fellow
Originally from Charlottesville, Virginia, Jane has spent the past three attending Macalester College. She studies Political Science and English and hopes to use her education to challenge political systems and inequalities as well as bridge human connections through communication and self-expression. Jane’s passions lie in literature, music, and feminism, “especially anything related to riot grrrl and ’90s feminist aesthetics.” She is thrilled to have the opportunity to work with JXTA and is humbled by the artists here. During her summer appointment Jane hopes to “continue to learn from the staff and discover how to work responsibly for social justice causes as a white, privileged individual.”
Office & Facilities | started w/JXTA: 2010
M.F.A. Acting and Directing – Tisch School of the Arts, New York University
Theater is Justin Kirkeberg’s first love; a passion that has afforded him opportunities to work throughout the United States and internationally. On returning to the Twin Cities following periods of living in New Orleans, New York, and Chicago, Justin wanted to find a way to make a living and make a difference in the community where he grew up. He felt a natural affinity with JXTA and has been playing a role in advancing the organization’s work with his diverse organizational support skills ever since.
Property Maintenance Manager | started w/JXTA: 2014
Certified Medical Assistant, Crime/Trauma Scene Clean up, Construction Worker and Drywall Finisher
As owner and operator of her own commercial and residential cleaning company, Tamala, is an expert problem solver, especially when it come to property maintenance. Tamala brings with her years of the kind of hands-on professional experience that is required to keep the JXTA campus safe, efficient and operational for the JXTA family. And like in an ideal family, Tamala suggests that the relationship has been mutually beneficial: “as a JXTA team member, I have learned more about the administrative side of the physical work that I have done for years.”
Tactical Urbanism & Community Engagement | started w/JXTA: 2013
For Kristen, JXTA is a place where love of learning and love of art-making come together. Incorporating her backgrounds in youth development, urban design and program development into her role at JXTA, Kristen sees the intersection of design and entrepreneurship as a boost to a youth artist’s impact in their immediate environments. “It is a wonderful thing,” Kristen says, “to be a part of a team of young people, artists, designers and leaders who ask big questions and look at the world with a sense of possibility and a desire to create.”
Graphic Design and Textile Studio Instructor| Started w/JXTA: 2015
BFA Graphic Design—Minneapolis College of Art & Design
Ben was referred to JXTA by other artists in the print and design community and, upon his first visit, knew he’d found a match. For Ben, JXTA is “an organization with a heart beat; real people, all about coming up together.” He says that JXTA has helped him to stay grounded, reminding him that things can always get better. Ever the optimist, Ben brings to JXTA light-heartedness and a model work ethic for his students: “I started learning how to screen print by volunteering at a print shop, doing the dirty work (taking out the trash, cleaning the toilet…sweeping, mopping) in order to have access to the facilities.” He keeps a daily sketch-booking ritual and, in order to remain flexible enough to maintain his freelance print and design work, the avid skateboarder keeps trying to do the splits!
Visual Art Literacy Training | JXTA Alum – started teaching w/JXTA: 2010
Drew Peterson began working with Juxtaposition Arts as a 16 year old participant in a summer mural project! He says that summer experience had a tremendous impact on his decision to become a working artist. In thinking about his work today as both a practicing artist and teaching artist Drew says, “What I enjoy most about my work at JXTA is seeing young people make their own discoveries and gain a sense of understanding and accomplishment. Engaging with young people and the JXTA community helps me escape the individualist mentality that a studio practice can develop. Its meaningful. It feeds my soul.”
Student of Organizational Administration at Metropolitan State University
Tanika brings to JXTA over 15 years of professional experience in public welfare, human services, employment training and progressive administrative services roles. She has a sincere passion for providing community service, and thrives in environments where she has the ability to bring about real practical changes in the lives of individuals. Tanika will be working as a part of JXTA’s Pathways to College and Careers (PaCC) fellowship implementing Family Engagement and Achievement Planning. And she proudly admits that, “I am a football fanatic (Da Bears!!!) who also enjoys reading African American literature and the occasional cheesy novel!”
Graphic Design Lab Instructor | started w/JXTA: 2014
Kenneth joins JXTA with over a decade of experience working for Fortune 1000 companies in New York as well as smaller, locally owned businesses and nonprofits. He was lead to this current role by referral, and he maintains the guiding principles of instilling a sense of belief in the possibilities that life has to offer youth. “I love seeing young artists struggle, learn, and experience the joy of breakthroughs that come with creative growth.” In his down time, Kenneth is a competitive volleyball player, coach, and a huge classic and genre film enthusiast.
PhD (a.b.d) & MA in English, University of Minnesota
An alumnus of JXTA’s inaugural year (1995), Davu is an adjunct professor of literature, a published writer, former editorial assistant and was, for five years, research fellow to the Givens Collection of African American Literature where he worked to sing the praises of African American literature and culture to audiences on and off campus. He views his role as Communications Manager similarly: that of translating to the organization’s many audiences the manner in which its values and mission manifest in the work. “I feel very fortunate to this work at JXTA where a commitment to equity, arts and education is so clearly reflected in the day-to-day.”
Textile & Screenprinting Lab Instructor | started w/JXTA: 2011
Educator, artist, Girl Scout (yes, Girl Scout!), Lindsay Splichal embraces her role teaching young people how to make art and think like artists. Working at JXTA has reinforced her belief that making art can change lives and confirmed that empowering youth through arts training is her destiny. When not making art, Lindsay is most likely talking about it or experiencing it.
VALT Assistant Instructor | JXTA Alum-started w/JXTA: 2013
Former student at Minneapolis College of Art and Design
Hawwa passed by the JXTA campus years before finally entering. Since then the former VALT student has come to explore a number of roles at JXTA: “I grew an interest in teaching, began creative writing, and was opened to different artistic avenues.” While having developed an interest in the arts prior to her time here, Hawwa credits JXTA with broadening her artistic range and opportunities. Consequently, she says, “My greatest joy at JXTA is working with the youth and making lifelong connections.” As organizer and founder of Masjid An-Nur Youth Council (MAYC) and a former Youth Farm employee, Hawwa’s passion and sense of purpose are well matched and suit her in her additional role as manager of JXTA’s Summer Food Program.