Northeast Minneapolis is experiencing a fantastic revitalization as old warehouses and once-empty factories are put to new use as artist studios and art-related businesses. Artists have been moving into the area since the 1980’s. To date, over 400 independent artists live and/or work here. They have become an integral part of the community.
Beginning in 2001, the Northeast Minneapolis Arts Association (NEMAA) – a member-based organization well-established in the area – coordinated a study that resulted in the 15-year “Arts Action Plan for Northeast.” The study, funded by McKnight Foundation, Hillcrest Development, Wells Fargo Bank, General Mills and Shamrock Properties, proved that every stakeholder in the area was eager to maintain a commitment to the arts and their new neighbors, the local artists. Recognizing the significant impact the arts were having on this part of the city, in 2003, the city of Minneapolis officially designated a sizeable geographic area as the official “Northeast Minneapolis Arts District.”
The geographic boundaries of the Northeast Minneapolis Arts District are the Mississippi River on the West, 26th Avenue on the North, Central Avenue on the East and Broadway on the South. The district contains a diverse mix of businesses, restaurants, parks, art galleries and studios as well as industrial and residential property. Warehouses and rail yards are interspersed with homes, churches and family-run businesses. Artists populate many of the historic and formerly-industrial buildings, which have been re-purposed and renovated into studios, galleries and performance spaces. Independent galleries have sprung up throughout Northeast, with a concentration along the district’s 13th Avenue.
Regular art events also characterize the ‘scene’ in and around the Northeast Minneapolis Arts District. NEMAA works year-round to host “Art-A-Whirl” each spring – the region’s largest 3-day open studio and gallery tour. NEMAA also organizes shows such as the Fall Fine Arts Show, where Northeast artists who are NEMAA members get a chance to show together in one location annually. Art Attack is an open studio event that is held for three days each November at the Northrup King Building – the district’s largest and most-populated artist studio complex. In addition, each month the public can visit numerous galleries and studios during First Thursdays in the Arts District, where from 5 to 9pm much of this working district opens its doors. For more on these and other arts events scheduled in the Northeast Minneapolis Arts District, visit our calendar.
Currently managed by the Northeast Community Development Corporation , the Arts District Committee is comprised of Northeast CDC staff, NEMAA staff, and interested community members. Additional support has been provided by Clay Squared to Infinity, Altered Esthetics, and the Northeast Chamber of Commerce .
For more information about these initiatives, please contact the Northeast CDC at email@example.com.
Arts Action Plan
Read the Arts Action Plan, the document that made this site and the district a reality.
Download Arts Action Plan (pdf, 400k)