The NWMAC is currently awarding Quick Turn Around grants for COVID-19-related relief for artists in northwest Minnesota. These grants are for $500 for missed gigs and income due to the pandemic. Use the Quick Turn Around application in the Individual Artist grants.
Who is eligible? Performing artists, writers, media artists, fine craft artists, and visual artists can apply if they are a permanent resident of our seven county service area of Northwest Minnesota.
Please contact us with any questions at 218-745-9111 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
First Friday is an arts-related event held each month on the first Friday of the month. These recurring local cultural and social events promote artists and arts events throughout the country for the purpose of showcasing and exhibiting art, introducing residents and visitors to artists and the arts in your area and the opportunity to sell or purchase and collect art. These self-guided events may also feature promotions at individual businesses who may extend their hours of operation. First Fridays may be as simple as individual artist studios opening up for a Friday evening or a coordinated city-wide art crawl.
The NWMAC would like to help promote any First Friday events in our region. We will do this by adding your event to a region-wide map and sharing the information on our website, Facebook, Instagram, Explore Minnesota website, and in our newsletters. Are you interested in participating? Or do you have questions? Contact our Promotions Specialist, Kristin Eggerling at email@example.com.
At this time, we are planning to begin our promotions for the May 1, 2020 First Friday. The Entry Due Date is the first Friday of the prior month. So, to be included in the May 1 map you will need to let NWMAC know that you are participating ASAP.
When are First Fridays in 2020? Dates include May 1, June 5, July 3, August 7, September 4, October 2, November 6, and December 4. (these are also the dates to let us know your plans for the next month)
Do I have to commit to each First Friday? No. You may be interested in holding a First Friday event only once, periodically, or every first Friday. It’s your choice.
What if I want to open my studio for a First Friday, but no one else in my community wants to hold events? The NWMAC will promote all First Friday events in our region. One event in a community is fine.
Is there a cost to participate? There is no cost to be listed on our map or for our promotions.
Coronavirus is impacting every aspect of our lives. Are you creating art that speaks directly to what is happening in the world today — social distancing, shelter in place or anxiety around a new virus?
For example, artistic photographs of families playing games; paintings related to events not occurring; or journaling on coronavirus and then creating poetry, writing songs, painting, drawing, or capturing photos specifically based on your journal entry.
This can be a time to create art directly related to your feelings during this time of hardship, anxiety, sickness, isolation, or very challenging change. Stay tuned — if this creates a body of work to show, the NWMAC may create a future exhibit around this theme — and stay safe!
The Northwest Minnesota Arts Council is sponsoring an Impact of Technology Art Exhibit at the NWMAC Art Gallery at Northland Community and Technical College in Thief River Falls. Because of COVID-19, it may not be possible to view this exhibit in person. To experience the exhibit virtually, visit https://youtu.be/Cho2V0f7O-k.
Nothing impacts our daily lives more than technology. It connects us to people across the globe, makes life easier, improves efficiency, and aids communication. But we can’t ignore the negative effects on our society, as well. The following artists are showcasing their digital art. Some use the juxtaposition of diving into the deeper meaning of technology, while still using traditional methods.
Artists with work in this exhibit include:
Chris Kirchner of Warren, has created a sculpture series, which includes everyday technological devices that have been modified or contain concealed toy weapons. “These odd juxtapositions and larger than life size scale serves as playful metaphors, drawing attention to the absurdity of our often unfounded and irrational fears.”
Andrew Youngblom of Thief River Falls said that many of his pieces “investigates psychological states and exploring the digital frontier and finding one’s identity in the Information Age.” Andrew is the art teacher at Lincoln High School. Some of his students with pieces in the exhibition include: Devan Wagner – Unknown Statu(r)e & The Panoptical Maturation of Young Girls, Jadeann Forsberg – Absent Mind, Avery Highness – Cry About It, Can You?, & G.I.R.L.
Janet Swenson, a teacher from Kittson Central in Hallock, and her Advanced Computer Apps class are showcasing student videos where the objective of the assignment was to choose a poem that demonstrated their feelings about something important to them; to incorporate music, video & background into a short movie. Her students include: Kaitlin Driscoll – Hometown Forever, Mitchel Docken – Deer Hunting Time Is Here Again, Alex Lindegard – The Way Through the Woods,Grace Lamberson – The Joy of Cooking, Nick Gjerde – Winter’s Coldest Wintery Wind, and Matthew Stewart – Christmas Time. To view a compilation of clips from these videos, visit: https://youtu.be/-J0kkp2-4tE.
The NWMAC Gallery hours are Monday–Friday, 8:30-5:00 P.M. and at other times when events are held at the college. To visit the gallery, enter through Door B near the library. Visitor parking is free in front of the business office. Please check if the college or gallery is open before visiting. For more information about the exhibit or our other exhibits look to our website at www.NWArtsCouncil.org, call our office at (218)-745-9111 or contact Kelsey at (218) 688-0078 or email NWArtsCouncil@gmail.com.
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 firstname.lastname@example.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:
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: email@example.com. For questions regarding this initiative: firstname.lastname@example.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 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:
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