News // December 10, 2019

Did you know that early work experiences are critical to ensuring livable-wage jobs later in life? At Juxtaposition Arts (JXTA), young people receive top-quality hands-on art and design training and employment. Your gift can ensure more young people have opportunities to generate income, develop professional art and design skillsets, and build meaningful relationships with professionals that will propel them into the creative workforce. Join us by making a gift today!

Our youth apprentices say it best: “I would describe Juxtaposition Arts as a micro-community in the Northside specifically, for kids to be expressive, be introduced to jobs that they didn’t know existed, and as a place to make art. When I first came, I thought it was an afterschool program. As I spent more time here, I realized it’s more of a career prep program,” JUSTICE, 21, Environmental Design (started in 2017).

JXTA is filled with joy and gratitude for the support of our individual donors each year. Through the generosity of donors, we hire 70 youth annually in our JXTALabs. After completing our free 12-week Visual Arts Literacy Training (VALT), young people ages 14 to 21 are eligible to apply for an apprenticeship in one of our JXTALab micro-businesses (Environmental Design, Graphic Design, Tactical, Textiles, Screen Printing, and Contemporary Art), producing high-quality design products and services for sale to local, regional, and national customers.

Each year it costs $500,000 to run and operate the JXTALabs. This includes apprentice wages, materials, teaching artist salaries, and other operational costs. That is $41,000 per month or $9,615 per week or $1,369 per day. During this year’s Give to the Max Day campaign, we raised $10,259 – let’s keep it going! Your Contribution Matters: We need your support to continue to ensure apprentices and students have meaningful, life-changing opportunities that catalyze them into their future.

“Working here is a piece of what has equipped me to be successful in the future. The teaching style (at JXTA) is more for visual/hands-on learners. It’s not ‘memorize, regurgitate.’ It’s: ‘learn how to do it. Repeat.’ I’m more of a visual and hands-on learner,” ODIS, 20, Textiles & Screen Printing (started in 2017).

“Sometimes I call this school because I feel like I’m getting college-level teaching and education from JXTA. And you’re getting paid for it, which is crazy,” LAUREL, 21, Contemporary (started in 2017).

“At JXTA, I feel I have more of a sense of community than at school. I’m able to focus on what I’m actually interested in and get real-life experience doing the things I’m interested in and making money from it and actually enjoying my time, not feeling like I’m forced to do it. I want to come every week and do stuff. I haven’t gotten bored yet,” AVAHNII, 17, Graphics (started in 2015).

We couldn’t do this without you. Thank you for your contribution today!

News // September 26, 2019

Representatives from Wells Fargo & JXTA pose with a giant check celebrating this $12,000 gift. Photo by Ryan Stopera.


We are excited to announce that we have been awarded a $12,000 Community Leadership Academy award from Wells Fargo! This year’s Community Leadership Academy grants focused on Workforce Development and Youth Entrepreneurship.

What will this fund?

With this award, we will secure new and upgraded computers for apprentices in our Textiles & Screen Printing and Environmental Design Labs. Thus, we will ensure that the Labs have adequate and professional tools to accomplish their work. With these new computers, apprentices ages 14-21 will be more equipped to complete their work in textile design, graphic design, and 2-D and 3-D modeling. We can ensure the best environment and resources for young people to develop and hone their creative skills in software like Adobe Creative Suite and SketchUp, which was close to impossible on our older machines nearing ten years old.

JXTA apprentices and teaching designers pose with staff shirts designed and printed by apprentices in our Graphic Design and Textiles & Screen Printing Labs. Photo by Ryan Stopera.


An apprentice in Textiles & Screen Printing Lab works on their designs. Photo by Justin Sengly.


In the JXTALabs, apprentices learn alongside teaching artists and designers by working on real client projects in four areas: graphic design, textiles & screen printing, architectural design and public art, and contemporary art. The skills they acquire in the Labs propel them into careers, higher education, and entrepreneurship, all while getting paid an hourly wage. With updated tools, apprentices can build their portfolios by developing projects ranging from unique textile designs (often screen-printed in-house by apprentices in the Textiles & Screen Printing Lab) to large-scale sculptural installations like the recently completed Luminous Current light-based installation now on view at the Guthrie Theater.

Luminous Current was installed at the Guthrie Theater in May 2019. Click here to watch a video about the creative process for this large-scale installation. Photo by Riché Effinger.


Luminous Current was installed at the Guthrie Theater in May 2019. Click here to watch a video about the creative process for this large-scale installation.

New computers are just a piece of the whole range of resources and tools that make our work possible – every gift counts! If you’re interested in donating to JXTA or in hiring our professional creative services, reach out to us at or give us a ring at 612.588.1148.

Thank you to Wells Fargo for their support!

News // September 17, 2019

Saturday, September 14, 2019, was declared “JXTA Day” by the City of Minneapolis! We announced this exciting news during Open Streets West Broadway, where we celebrated a $50,000 Market Impact Fund grant from U.S. Bank to help fund the inaugural season of programming on our skate-able art plaza along with our partners City of Skate and West Broadway Coalition.

Check out a digital version of the Proclamation below:


DeAnna Cummings (left) and council member Jeremiah Ellison posed with the Proclamation. Photo by Ryan Stopera.


Representatives from JXTA, U.S. Bank, City of Skate, and West Broadway Coalition posed with a $50,000 skate deck “check” granted to JXTA and partners WBC and CoS. Photo by Ryan Stopera.

News // September 3, 2019

1995 – 2020.

25 years since Juxtaposition Arts’ inception, the name still embodies our ethos: core strategies juxtaposed to create a vibrant and sustainable whole. Art & economics; individual development through collaborative work; young artists employed and their professional counterparts. And now, JXTA is poised to become the foremost arts organization in North Minneapolis, with a permanent and essential legacy.

On our 25th anniversary, we reflect on successes and lessons learned and look ahead with clear eyes and a set intention. When JXTA was founded in 1995, DeAnna and Roger Cummings’ focus was on the immediate future: building access to the arts for talented young people in North Minneapolis. Now, 25 years of work gives us a basis for what we want the future to look like. That future includes a capital campaign, a brand-new building, continued programming, more students through our doors, and, ultimately, an established cultural legacy in North Minneapolis.

Today, in the first days of our fiscal year 2020, we want to share with you our vision and our new logo, created to celebrate this quarter-century milestone. Designed by our Graphic Design Lab, our 25th-anniversary logo embodies the JXTA ethos we’ve cultivated over the last 25 years: it’s dynamic, bright, and stays true to our roots. Ready to tackle any challenge, and nimble enough to keep up.

Over the next few months, keep an eye out for updates around celebrations, announcements, projects, and other 25th anniversary happenings. And for now, mark January 1–December 31, 2020, in your calendars as the 25th year of JXTA, launching us into the next 25 and beyond.

We’re going to celebrate, and we hope you will join us.


News // August 22, 2019

Luminous Current, a large-scale light-based installation designed by JXTA’s Environmental Design Lab, is now a permanent fixture at the Guthrie Theater’s Pohlad Lobby on the ninth floor.

“I think it’s exciting to have North Minneapolis youth be able to create an intervention in a space that was not necessarily created for them. It’s a coup – something that can not only go in your portfolio, but it also says, ‘this is part of the genius of North Minneapolis and youth,’” says Roger Cummings, JXTA Co-Founder and Chief Cultural Producer about the project.

In 2018, Guthrie Theater received an Arts Access grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board with the intention of fostering relationships between the theater and nonprofit organizations in North Minneapolis. So, the Guthrie commissioned JXTA to produce a work of art that was influenced by the theater’s physical location and surroundings; specifically, the Mississippi River.

Luminous Current fully installed at the Guthrie Theater. Photo by Adja Gildersleve.


Youth apprentices, teaching designers, and JXTA creative director Roger Cummings worked with the Guthrie to develop a work of art to complement the interior and exterior of the building, which was designed by architect Jean Nouvel. Luminous Current’s undulating form and colors mirror the neighboring Mississippi River, and the geometric shapes created and cast in blue light along the installation’s surrounding walls are reminiscent of the architecture of the neighborhood.

Designed over a period of two months, fabricated in collaboration with our partners Solid Metal Arts in three weeks, and installed on May 10, 2019, Luminous Current is now on view to the public and all visitors of the Guthrie Theater.

“The creative genius of North Minneapolis and youth”

Though the JXTA ethos promotes a collaborative approach to all of our work, two apprentices, Temesgen Besha and D’Angelo Raymond, assumed leadership roles in this project. Besha, age 20, immigrated from Ethiopia, attended Wellstone HS, and currently works at MSP airport in the summer. He will be starting a Computer Science program at Augsburg University in Fall 2019. Raymond, age 19, immigrated from France, attended North HS, and is currently working at Atomic Data. Both had the opportunity to flex their creative muscles in producing concepts for this piece, working with imagery and ideas presented by the Guthrie.

“We created several prototypes, first out of wood, then out of Styrofoam. Our goal was to play with the transparency of the light. I got to make some Photoshop renderings of the sculpture, and I’m happy with how the final sculpture came out,” says Raymond of his role in the project.

JXTA Apprentices Temesgen Besha, left, and D’Angelo Raymond at the Guthrie’s ninth floor Pohlad Lobby. Photo by Adja Gildersleve.


Through this work, D’Angelo and Raymond developed their creative skills, practiced using software and technology to develop their vision, and can now add this high-profile piece to their portfolios. Says Besha: “I’m proud to [have participated] in this project, from start to end.”

Visitors watch the ‘Luminous Current’ process video at the opening event at the Guthrie. Photo by Riché Effinger.

Building relationships that last

Luminous Current is the result of a long-time relationship with the Guthrie Theater, and will hopefully serve as a jumping-off point for similar projects.

“The most exciting thing [right now] is that there’s a very clear pattern of growth in the relationship between the Guthrie and JXTA…I’m really excited to see all the different ways that the different disciplines that JXTA teaches can be utilized in the Guthrie, and how all the learnings that JXTA has on their turf can be applied to this building and these people, and the very particular conditions that the Guthrie exists within,” says Daisuke Kawachi, the Community Engagement Assistant at the Guthrie.

The work serves as a beacon; a beacon illuminating our relationship to our natural surroundings, and also as one that highlights the creative genius of North Minneapolis youth and other creatives. Thank you to the Guthrie Theater for their partnership and support in this project and beyond.

On Wednesday, August 14, 2019, we celebrated Luminous Current at the Guthrie; if you weren’t able to make it, check out more photos from the event on Flickr or Facebook.

Want a similar piece for your space? Interested in learning more about what JXTA can do? Email to set up a consultation.

JXTA Enviro Design apprentices hang out in the Guthrie Theater’s level 9 Pohlad Lobby viewing area. Photo by Riché Effinger.


This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

Video produced by Adja Gildersleve and Free Truth Media. 

News // August 21, 2019

$50,000 U.S. Bank fund awarded to Juxtaposition Arts for New Skate Park

Part of New $1 Million Annual Fund Supporting Workforce Development, Arts and Culture and Affordable Housing

Photo courtesy of Mississippi Watershed Management Organization.

U.S. Bank recently gifted Juxtaposition Arts (JXTA) a $50,000 Community Possible grant to help fund the inaugural programming season of its new skate-able art plaza. The grant is part of U.S. Bank’s new annual $1 million fund focused on organizations driving economic development across the country in the areas of workforce preparation, affordable housing and arts and culture.

“We are thrilled to be selected as recipients of U.S. Bank’s first-ever Market Impact Fund to help us launch the first year of programming on our new skate-able art plaza,” said DeAnna Cummings, Juxtaposition Arts CEO and Co-Founder. “Through this programming, we hope to engage our neighborhood with free and accessible events, encourage community co-ownership of this space, and complement our ongoing mission to provide education and employment opportunities to young people in North Minneapolis and the greater Twin Cities.”

To celebrate this gift, JXTA will host a day of art-making, activities, and acknowledgements during Open Streets West Broadway on Saturday, September 14, 2019 from 11:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. JXTA’s participation in Open Streets 2019 will include skateboarding demonstrations, performances on the skate-able art plaza, refreshments, JXTA retail for sale, art-making, a game booth, and a meet-and-greet with Timberwolves mascot Crunch. A brief presentation will occur at approximately 1:00 p.m.

JXTA will use the funds to provide programming for the new skate-able art plaza in partnership with the West Broadway Business and Area Coalition and City of Skate. Through the new annual Market Impact Fund, U.S. Bank invests $50,000 grants to 20 nonprofit organizations across the country. The new Fund is in addition to U.S. Bank’s Community Possible giving platform focused on grant cycles in the areas of Work, Home and Play.

“Establishing this new Fund allows us to further focus our efforts on supporting those organizations like Juxtaposition Arts, which are working to close historical economic gaps in the areas of greatest need,” said Phillip Trier, Twin Cities Market President for U.S. Bank. “Our communities are stronger when people have jobs, stable housing and when their communities are connected through the arts, recreation and play. Our goal is to give larger grants to create meaningful local impact working with and through market leaders and nonprofit organizations who know their communities the best.”

Learn more about U.S. Bank’s social responsibility work here: or

Open Streets at Juxtaposition Arts event information:

• What: performances, art-making, skateboarding demonstrations, face painting, and other activities
• When: Saturday, September 14, 2019, 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
• Where: Juxtaposition Arts Skate-Able Art Plaza (corner of West Broadway Avenue and North Emerson Avenue)
• Meet-and-greet with Timberwolves Mascot Crunch at 12:00 p.m.
• Program and check presentation at approximately 1:00 p.m.

 RSVP on Facebook

News // July 9, 2019

This August, Juxtaposition Arts presents a special collaborative project and exhibit featuring the work of Minnesota-based visual storyteller Nancy Musinguzi, on view in the JXTA Emerson Gallery from August 1–31, 2019. NORTHSIDE: An Oral History Publication and Installation is a multimedia oral history project featuring candid conversations and portraits of North Minneapolis youth that highlights their approach to using art as a catalyst for community-building and social change. Using their background in ethnographic research, cultural anthropology, and photojournalism, Nancy mapped the intergenerational narrative of Cameron Downey, a JXTA alum and Northside native emerging interdisciplinary “anti-disciplinary” artist through their relationships with friends, family, and peers from the region, and identified and anchored the impact of their perspectives on the North Minneapolis community.

Cameron Downey, Northside native. Photo by Patience Zalanga.


Building on Nancy’s work documenting this oral history of North Minneapolis’ youth, NORTHSIDE was expanded upon through a residency with JXTA apprentices. Youth artists in JXTA’s Contemporary Arts Lab took material from Nancy’s interviews and created portraits in collage to complement the stories, and finally, apprentices in JXTA’s Graphic Design Lab designed a Zine so that visitors and community members can take home a piece of this project. The resulting exhibit, August 2019 X Northside, will be on view in the JXTA Emerson Gallery from August 1–31, 2019.

Opening Reception: Thursday, August 1, 6:00PM–8:00PM
Special Gallery Tours with Artist Nancy Musinguzi:

  • Friday, August 30, 2019: 4:00PM–5:00PM
  • Saturday, August 31, 2019: 2:00PM–3:00PM

Gallery Hours: Monday–Thursday 10:00AM–4:00PM
Gallery Location: 2007 Emerson Avenue North, Minneapolis, MN 55411
 RSVP on Facebook
All events are free and open to the public.

Photo by Patience Zalanga.


About the Artist:

Nancy Musinguzi (they/them) is a visual storyteller, teaching artist and freelance photojournalist working and living in Minneapolis, Minnesota. As a documentary photographer chronicling the contemporary American experience through a first-generation Black Immigrant Queer lens, they primarily focus on emerging musicians, artists, performers, community organizers, educators, and other cultural and creative practitioners from the Black Trans-Atlantic Diaspora. Their artist practice consists of blending traditional and experimental approaches to portraiture that captures the authentic experiences of BIPOC & LGBTQ folks with dignity, attentiveness and patience.

Since 2014, they have installed finished and on-going series in solo and group exhibitions across the nation, and guest-curated gallery shows in collaboration with mid-career and emerging artists, non-profit organizations and foundations, private and public universities, high schools, and grassroots and community organizations. They have also self-published series and collections in 8 photography books, most recently, The Letter Formally Known As Q: an intergenerational portrait of the Queer Immigrant community in Minnesota, in 2018.

Artist website:

News // July 6, 2019

We’ve had quite a few new faces join the team at JXTA, and some of our staff members have shifted roles. Read on for recent updates to the #JXTASquad!



Takara Henegar


Development Manager

Started at JXTA:

March 2019

What are you most excited for in the coming year at JXTA?

We have dope programming, events, projects, etc. that will take place during our 25th anniversary in 2020. I can’t wait to meet and thank JXTA’s longtime participants, neighbors, and supporters and include them in the 25th anniversary festivities, too. Lastly, JXTA’s capacity is growing and I can’t wait to see how our resources grow, too! JXTA has been doing amazing things on a smaller budget, but it is time for our financial resources to be on pace with that amazing work. I am excited to collaborate with the entire team to engage new and ongoing supporters in that conversation.


Abdul-Hafeez Nakumbe


Outreach and Engagement Coordinator

Started at JXTA:

September 2018

What are you most excited for in the coming year at JXTA?

I am excited to continue working on programming strategies over the next year. I’m working on adjusting recruitment strategies to reach recruitment goals (50% Northside youth), as well as refining Pathways to College and Careers (PaCC) curriculum and strengthening partner relationships. I’m also excited to buy more JXTA gear and product!


Greta Kotz


Graphic Design Lab Lead

Started at JXTA:

May 2018

What are you most excited for in the coming year at JXTA?

JXTA has developed so much flexibility in what we can do within our lab programs and graphic design projects. I’m so excited to share that with our apprentices and see what they create!


Mason Lambert


Buildings and Grounds Manager

Started at JXTA:

March 2019

What are you most excited for in the coming year at JXTA?

This will be my first year at JXTA, so I’m looking forward to seeing how the new apprentices develop in our programming. I’ve already seen how they evolve in the VALT program, and you can see how their confidence grows, so I’m excited to see what happens during a year in our program.


Robbie Seltzer


Environmental Design Lab Lead

Started at JXTA:

January 2019

What are you most excited for in the coming year at JXTA?

I am most excited to collaborate across the JXTA labs. I’ve never been in a work or school setting where there are so many different talents under one roof. And that means we can make things that aren’t possible elsewhere. As Alex said the other day, when Enviro was helping Textile build a 24-foot-long fabric-printing table, “JXTA is unstoppable.”


Gabby Coll


Communications Manager

Started at JXTA:

May 2018

What are you most excited for in the coming year at JXTA?

I want to keep thinking big and planning for the future of JXTA. There are so many opportunities for engagement, expansion, and positive growth in this next year and beyond.


Alex Smith


Textiles & Screen Printing Lab Lead

Started at JXTA:

May 2018

What are you most excited for in the coming year at JXTA?

I’m most excited to bring the JXTA clothing line into the world, and to keep furthering our art.



Kristen Murray


Director of Programs

Started at JXTA:


 What are you most excited for in the coming year at JXTA?

I’m excited to dream about and plan for the future of JXTA’s campus with apprentices, staff and community members.


Adrienne Doyle


Development Associate & Tactical Urbanism Lab Lead

Started at JXTA:

2015 (JXTA alum)

What are you most excited for in the coming year at JXTA?

I’m excited to celebrate our 25th year of programming in 2020 with the artists, apprentices, and community members that make JXTA work.


Jared Hanks


Head of Business Development

Started at JXTA:


What are you most excited for in the coming year at JXTA?

I’m most excited for all the cool projects and collaborations that we’ll be a part of in this upcoming year!


Patricio De Lara


Graphic Design Lab Assistant & Communications Assistant

Started at JXTA:

Summer 2017 (JXTA Alum)

What are you most excited for in the coming year at JXTA?

All of us at JXTA are in a mutual space of creative expression, and i’m excited to see what our collective imagination can do to push the envelope, tell meaningful stories, and create a passionate community.


Jahliah Holloman


Outreach and Engagement Assistant

Started at JXTA:

Summer 2012 (JXTA Alum)

What are you most excited for in the coming year at JXTA?

I am excited to see how the campus physically changes and how this will affect our capacity for creation within and around JXTA. I’m also excited to see more time-lapse videos of the Art created at JXTA, like the restoration of the Liberation Wall on the main building.

News // May 30, 2019

Every year, PaCC (Pathways to College and Careers), our in-house personal and professional development program for youth apprentices, hosts a celebration of apprentices graduating from high school or college. This year, our celebration took place on Tuesday, May 21, 2019, and we congratulated 13 graduates from across the labs.

Below are a few words of wisdom and reflection from a panel of our graduates.

Graduates we celebrated with on Tuesday, May 21, 2019. From left to right: Elijah (Graphics), George (Graphics), Kendrix (Contemporary), Lili (Graphics), Egypt (Graphics), Da Shaun (Enviro), and Rashinea (Enviro). Not pictured: Patricio (Graphics), Lanijah (Enviro), Melanie (Enviro), Temesgan (Enviro), Essence (Textiles), Melody (Contemporary).


Name: Elijah
Lab: Graphics
Graduating from: Highland Park High School
What are your next plans? I’m going to St. Paul College to get my generals and then saving up to transfer to the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City.
What are your three keys to success? Be loud, be proud, be bold. I didn’t change my high school by being quiet. I asked why there was a Prom King and Queen; I wanted to be Queen. And you know what, I won it! I won Prom Queen.

Name: Lili
Lab: Graphics
Graduating from: FAIR High School
What are your next plans? Northland College in Ashland, WI, where I’ll be studying Environmental Sciences and keeping my focus broad to get a better idea of what I want from college in order to be the most productive and find a sense of self-fulfillment.
What are your three keys to success? You’re acting like I’ve succeeded…ha! I mean, we’re all still working, and so am I. I feel like maybe that’s a key to success; don’t expect to be able to figure everything out and finish, because that’s not what life is about. You’re always going through transitions, always changing, always learning new things. Be nice to everyone in general, because you don’t know what they’re going through.

During the PaCC graduation celebration, apprentices who went on the New York City research trip last month presented about their experiences.


Name: Rashinea
Lab: Enviro
Graduating from: Hopkins High School
What are your next plans? I’m going to St. Thomas in St. Paul. I’m interested in going into Social Work for kids. When you’re a kid, life can be really hard. Everything in my experience, that I’ve been through, I want to put into them and give them advice.
What are your three keys to success? For high school, I’m going to say: Not giving up. People are always going to try to put their negativity on you. There’s always someone that’s going to be hating on you. Even my teacher at one point made me feel that I wasn’t smart enough to be in an AP class, but I passed that AP class. Just keep it focused, don’t give up, and work hard. Follow through what you want to do. I graduated early!

Name: George
Lab: Graphics
Graduating from: Roosevelt High School
What are your next plans? University of Minnesota, Duluth, College of Biological Sciences (Pre Med) and hopefully transferring to the Twin Cities after that.
What are your three keys to success? My 3 keys to success come from a place of regret because a lot of the time I wish I had thought through some of my choices. Three things I made mistakes in and want to work on are: 1. Procrastination. It only sets you up for failure. If you know you have the time to do it, make sure you get your initiative to get it done. 2. Have a drive: make short-term and long-term goals. Set those things up and make sure you reach those checkpoints to keep your peace of mind. This helps clarify your goals for moving forward in life. 3. Time management. I’m really bad at this, but it’s super important for everyday general things.

At the end of each PaCC session, apprentices fill out an evaluation form and set goals for the next year.


Name: Egypt
Lab: Graphics
Graduating from: Brooklyn Center High School
What are your next plans? Moorhead State University, studying 3D animation. I want to work for a video game production studio. My big goal is to be an art director at a video game production studio.
What are your three keys to success? Just keep pushing forward and make goals for yourself. Second, be careful of the folks you associate with. A lot of times my friends would bring me down and it wasn’t good. They change you in a way and you forget who you are, and you shouldn’t forget who you are. And the third tool I’ve learned is bullshitting…I have ADD and my mind keeps running and running and I forget a lot or get distracted. I don’t mean totally bullshit, but get the information you need to in order to fake it until you make it and it really helps to make it through.


News // May 23, 2019

JXTA is excited to announce the grand opening event for a new skate-able art plaza on the JXTA campus on Saturday, June 15, 2019. Join us for the grand opening and ribbon-cutting before heading to Juneteenth activities at Bethune park from 11:00AM to 6:00PM.

The skate-able art plaza under construction on May 16, 2019.


Saturday, June 15, 2019
RAIN DATE: Saturday, June 22, 2019 (announcement will be made by 8AM Saturday morning)
Skate-able art plaza celebration: 10:00AM–12:00PM
Program: 10:45AM
Location: Corner of West Broadway Avenue and Emerson Avenue North, Minneapolis, MN 55411



JXTA Contemporary Lab will be open for visitors to meet youth artists and peruse artwork for sale. Emerson Gallery will be open for visitors to see current exhibit ‘Live from New York’ by Bronx-based graffiti artists Tats Cru.
Saturday, June 15, 2019
Open hours: 10:00AM–1:00PM
Location: 1108 West Broadway Avenue & 2007 Emerson Avenue North


Planning for the installation of the new plaza began almost two years ago, in partnership with City of Skate (CoS), the West Broadway Business and Area Coalition (WBC), and the City of Minneapolis. Teaching designers and youth apprentices in JXTA’s Environmental Design Lab designed the plaza with the CoS community, and with design support from UMN’s Department of Landscape Architecture. More than 170 people made gifts in support of our new city amenity, and an Action Grant from the Mississippi Watershed Management Organization funded the installation and maintenance of 3 rain gardens to capture and treat stormwater on the site.

Construction began in April 2019, and we are now ready to open this space to our community because we know that youth and families in North Minneapolis and everywhere want and need more public space designed with youth and community in mind. The plaza is wheels-friendly and flexible. Beginning in June 2019, the plaza will be open for multi-use, as well as activation during FLOW, Open Streets, and other community events, art pop-ups, and youth-focused skate programming (hosted by CoS on Saturday mornings). The partners hope the space will support youth, artists, and community members to gather around creativity, innovation, health, and culture.

After tearing down an old building on our campus on the corner of West Broadway Avenue and Emerson Avenue North in 2017, in May 2018 we announced the launch of a momentous capital campaign to raise $14 million for a new, state-of-the-art building on the same lot. The skate-able art plaza will serve as a means to activate this space while we raise these funds and shape the future of our campus. We are also excited to celebrate the brand-new mural by Bronx-based aerosol artists Tats Cru, now on view behind the skate-able art plaza. The 840’ ft. mural, made possible in part by a donation from Wet Paint and a host of individual donations, drew inspiration from community input, and was created during Tats Cru’s recent residency activities between April 26 and May 4, 2019.

Tats Cru in front of the recently-completed mural. Photo by Justin Sengly.


The skate-able art plaza was made possible by the backers of our Kickstarter campaign, a host of other individual donors, an Action Grant from the Mississippi Watershed Management Organization, a partnership with the City of Minneapolis Government, and the generous support of the Superbowl Host Committee, NEA Our Town, and Artplace.