Category Archives: Uncategorized

Perpich arts High School accepting applications

Perpich Arts High School is accepting applications for the 2020-2021 school year.  Space remains in all six of their art areas:  Dance, Literary Arts, Media Arts, Music, Theater, and Visual Arts. Prospective students/families can connect via email, admissions@pcae.k12.mn.us or anne.johnson@pcae.k12.mn.us

At Perpich Arts High School, students spend 3 hours each day in their art; learning, growing, creating, performing, exhibiting.  Students come to Perpich as artists, and under the guidance of licensed teachers who are also working artists, they develop into thinking artists, prepared to follow any future path they choose to pursue.  Students engage in rigorous college-preparatory academics in the morning, and have each afternoon devoted to deep artistic study.

Perpich is for MN juniors and seniors from across the state, offering a residential dorm for those living too great a distance to commute.  Learn more on their website http://perpich.mn.gov/arts-high-school/ and find the application here http://perpich.mn.gov/arts-high-school/apply-now/

COVID-19 and the NWMAC + Resources for you

We are committed to the health and safety of our staff, the public, and the artists we serve. Thus, we have had to make changes to the way we do business.

Office Closing
The Northwest Minnesota Arts Council office is closed and our staff will work from home until further notice. If you need to come to our office you will need to make an appointment. We are also available by phone or email. Please give us a call at 218-745-9111 and leave a message or email director@nwartscouncil.org. Please stay tuned for any changes or updates!

Routine Grant Activity
We have received some inquiries about grants that had activities during this time. We know that some granted activity will need to be suspended, rescheduled, or canceled. As we field questions and requests from those planning changes to their granted projects and programs, our commitment is to find solutions that will result in the least amount of hardship for all involved. There are amendment forms within all the current grants. We are asking that grantees make amendments — some may be postponements, a few canceled events or outside the box thinking for deliverables. Please know that we will do our best to accommodate during this time. Reach out with questions or concerns.

In addition, we have added to our existing Quick Turn Around grants for artists questions related to COVID-19 disaster relief.  These are for $500.00. 

NW Annual Art Exhibit and Of the Year Awards Reception

At this time we have rescheduled our annual exhibit and reception to mid-July. Please stay tuned for dates and information as it becomes available.

Minnesota State Arts Board Survey

The Minnesota State Arts Board wants to know COVID-19’s impact on the creative community & support needed. A message from the Minnesota State Arts Board: “The Minnesota State Arts Board and Minnesota’s regional arts councils know that people and organizations in our state’s arts and creative sector are being tested and challenged as never before. The physical, emotional, and financial toll that COVID-19 is taking is beyond our ability to measure, at this point. To help us get a handle on what’s happening and guide our immediate and longer-term responses to COVID-19, we need your input.”

Please take FIVE MINUTES to complete a very brief and simple survey. Take the survey here. They will begin reviewing the information on March 25, so please complete the survey by then if possible. However, the situation is evolving every day, so the survey will be kept live and new responses will continue to be reviewed as they are received.

Resources and Sources

The following links provide resources that may be helpful for artists and arts organizations going forward:

Minnesota State Arts Board Guidance to the Arts Community: http://www.arts.state.mn.us/news/COVID-19.htm

Minnesota Citizens for the Arts Corona Virus Resource Center: http://artsmn.org/coronavirus/

Springboard for the Arts Corona Virus resource page for artists, creatives, and organizations: https://springboardforthearts.org/coronavirus/

Minnesota Employment and Economic Development; response for workers and employers: https://mn.gov/deed/newscenter/covid/

Forecast for the Arts: https://forecastpublicart.org/pro-bono-consulting-in-response-to-covid-19/

Forecast has launched pro bono consulting to support public artists and public art program administrators during this pandemic until May 31, 2020. They will provide up to one hour of consultation; where necessary, follow-up consultations may be available FREE of CHARGE. If you don’t need consulting support at this time but have experience, expertise, and time that you are willing to offer to help others, please contact Jen Krava at: consulting@forecastpublicart.org. For questions regarding this initiative: probono@forecastpublicart.org.

They have also launched a toolkit on creative alternatives to in-person arts-based activities, for artists and administrators. The toolkit was created with artists, arts organizations, presenting organizations, and others collaborating with artists in mind. It contains strategies for adapting in-person arts-based activities during the COVID-19 pandemic. They will continue to develop it based on open-source input from you. To download the toolkit visit here.

Minnesota Department of Health:
https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/situation.html

Center for Disease Control: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2Findex.html

Minnesota Council of Non-Profits (for information about unemployment): https://www.minnesotanonprofits.org/about-mcn/news-detail/2020/03/24/unemployment-insurance-information-and-updates.

The Small Business Owner’s Guide to the CARES Act

The programs and initiatives in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act that was just passed by Congress are intended to assist business owners with whatever needs they have right now. Download a document with more info:

Paycheck Protection Program FAQs for Small Businesses:

Good explainers online: “Dear Non-Profits, Small Businesses, Artists, Freelancers, Gig Workers, Self-Employers, Part-Timers, and Solo Shop Warriors Wondering What’s Next: This Money is For You. Please Take It.” https://medium.com/@amandalkool/dear-non-profits-small-businesses-freelancers-etc-this-money-is-for-you-please-take-it-b853196005ce

Arts Leaders, Promoters, and More: Capacity Interactive created a program to inspire and share ideas about ways to produce and promote the arts and art activities during the pandemic. It includes music, dancing, and other performances. The program was created online and recorded. Be warned, it lasts 4 1/2 hours! Watch it here: https://youtu.be/X2VyeLkDNSY

COVID-19 Statement from the Minnesota State Arts Board

As our state responds to the COVID-19 pandemic, we want you to know that the Minnesota State Arts Board is concerned about the health and safety of everyone who works in the arts sector, and the health and safety of the participants, audience, and community members who we serve.


There are many unknowns about COVID-19, and its physical, economic, and emotional impacts are changing rapidly. We wanted to share the best information we have at this moment, and will provide new information as we receive it.


What’s happening in Minnesota

As of today, there are 14 diagnosed cases of COVID-19 in our state. So far, cases have been confined to eight counties: Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Olmsted, Ramsey, Stearns, Wright. Fortunately, there have been no deaths; only 2 of the 14 patients are hospitalized.

Today, Governor Walz announced an executive order that declares a peacetime emergency which he described as opening a tool kit that can be ready if and when needed.

In addition, the Minnesota Department of Health announced a set of recommended community mitigation strategies to prevent the further spread of COVID-19. The strategies should be implemented immediately and stay in effect until further notice.

Two strategies will specifically impact arts activities:
– Postpone or cancel large events where 250 people or more would gather
– Postpone or cancel smaller events (fewer than 250 people) that are held in venues that do not allow social distancing of 6 feet per person
The full list of recommended strategies is available here:
https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/action.html


Rely on trusted sources

The Minnesota Department of Health is the focal point of planning and information in our state. MDH is updating its Web site frequently. The coronavirus section of the site contains helpful information and advice about COVID-19 and precautions you can take.
https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/situation.html

The Centers for Disease Control also has helpful information about the virus and about steps to take to keep homes, workplaces, and commercial establishments safe.
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html

We will post some additional, arts specific resources and links on the Arts Board Web site. If you are an Arts Board applicant, grantee, or grant review panelist, Arts Board staff members are available to respond to your questions. We know that COVID is having an impact on your activities and want to be as helpful as we can be.

Current grant activities – If you need to reschedule or modify Arts Board funded activities, please contact your program officer to discuss your options for a contract amendment or extension.

Information sessions – We have sessions scheduled in Winona and Park Rapids in the coming weeks. At the moment, those will go forward as planned, but we are closely monitoring the situation and will postpone or modify the format, if need be.

FY 20201 grant application review meetings – The Arts Board is scheduled to begin Operating Support, Arts Learning, and Minnesota Festival Support grant application panel review meetings in late April, May, and June. At this point, we haven’t made any changes to the schedule and format for those meetings, but we will be closely monitoring the situation and, if needed, may make changes in the coming weeks.


This situation is new for all of us. Please keep the lines of communication open. Please let us know what your questions and concerns are, and we will do what we can to address them.
Most importantly, please do everything you can to stay healthy, and to help others stay healthy.
Sue Gens
Executive Director

Support the NWMAC on Give To The MAX Day Nov 14

It’s that time again for Minnesota’s Giving Holiday. The Northwest Minnesota Arts Council is raising money though Give to the Max Day. GiveMN links donors with organizations that are working to make Minnesota a better place. Its online giving website, GiveMN.org, enables charitable giving any time and any place, allowing people to donate with ease and enthusiasm. GiveMN brings innovation, energy and fresh ideas to Minnesota generosity.

GiveMN is an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Visit GiveMN.org today to support the Northwest Minnesota Arts Council.

Meet Our New Showcase Specialist

Kelsey Brateng has been hired as the

NWMAC Showcase Specialist

Kelsey Brateng

In addition to coordinating the exhibits at the NWMAC, Kelsey is a professional photographer and owner of Kelsey Brateng Photography.  She was born and raised in Thief River Falls before transferring to MSU in Moorhead to pursue art and photography.  After graduating, she came back and opened her studio in 2005.  She worked at DigiKey for 10 years as a Corporate Photographer and Production Assistant. She’s interested in public art displays and functional public art.  She is married to her husband Kelly, and they have 4 children, Alexia, Tanner, Aubrielle, and Everly. She volunteers as the Art Director of Elevate Youth Center and recently graduated from the Blandin Leadership Program in Grand Rapids. She is active in the Downtown Development Association in Thief River Falls and the local Zehlian’s group. She  loves to upcycle and get creative with a lot of different mediums, but acrylics, oil pastels, and pen and ink are her favorite. This past year Kelsey has  been practicing with watercolor, brush lettering, and delving into the realm of digitizing her artwork. She wants to focus on bringing more artistic expression to the community. Kelsey recently served on the NWMAC Board of Directors. She explained “joining the NWMAC was the best decision! I have learned so much since joining the board. For me personally, art is therapy. I believe that the beauty of our surroundings makes a huge impact on our lives and in the health and well being of our community.”

In her free time she likes to read, play softball and go to CrossFit, write in her bullet journal, date nights with her husband and going out for coffee with a good friend.

Welcome, Kelsey to the NWMAC Team!

If you have ideas for exhibits, please reach out to Kelsey at 218-688-0078 or kelseybphotograpy@live.com.