Nonprofit, independent journalism. Supported by readers.


New murals in St. Paul’s Creative Enterprise Zone, new Community Supported Art from Springboard

ALSO: Magers & Quinn presents Neal Karlen and “This Thing Called Life: Prince’s Odyssey On + Off the Road” online; on Cantus’ website: “There Lies the Home”; and more.

Bird Enterprise Zone by Beatrix*Jar, was created during the 2020 CEZ Summer Mural Project.
Bird Enterprise Zone by Beatrix*Jar, was created during the 2020 CEZ Summer Mural Project.
Courtesy of the Creative Enterprise Zone

COVID put the skids on the 2020 Chroma Zone Mural and Art Festival in St. Paul’s Creative Enterprise Zone. (It will be back, we hope, in September 2021.) But nine new outdoor murals will be complete by Tuesday, Oct. 6, National Night Out, when the CEZ holds its first-ever Outside Open House.

Add the nine to the 12 from the 2019 Chroma Zone Festival and you’ll have plenty to see as you walk, run, bike or drive. The open house is scheduled for 4-7 p.m. Free mural maps (and masks) will be available at the CEZ tent on the corner of Raymond and Charles Avenues. Or you can download a map here.

This year’s artists include Beatrix*Jar, Reggie LeFlore, Xee Reiter, Wes Winship, Wundr and Ryoe, Witt Siasoco, Red Can Graffiti Jam (Biafra, CyFi and WUNDR), Midway Creative and Erik Pearson.

The murals were supported by the Knight Foundation and the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, in-kind partners and private partnerships. They were created during the 2020 CEZ Summer Mural Project, a way to help local artists and businesses affected by the pandemic. Artists were selected with help from Forecast Public Art.

Article continues after advertisement

Community Supported Art (CSA) returns

Wait – doesn’t CSA mean Community Supported Agriculture? Boxes of veggies and other farm-fresh things? It did until 2010, when Springboard for the Arts and Mn Artists teamed up for Community Supported Art.

The idea was similar: People bought “shares,” then received boxes of original art created by a group of artists. The art might include prints, recordings, pots, paintings, flags, collages, letterpress editions of a poem or short story, or even (in 2013) an elaborate laser-cut puppet theater with many pieces and a script.

An image of CSA boxes from 2011.
Courtesy of Springboard for the Arts
An image of CSA boxes from 2011.
CSAs were offered annually through 2014. After that, Springboard created a Community Supported Art Toolkit, a free guide that other organizations could use to start their own CSAs. It launched a capital campaign that led to the purchase of a former Ford dealership on University Avenue in St. Paul, now Springboard HQ. It came up with other ways to support artists selling their work.

Why bring back the CSA now, during a pandemic? Springboard’s Andy Sturdevant is managing the project, and this was his response when we asked: “The U.S. Mail is a wonderful way to be connected to people across space. People are so eager to be connected, and eager to support artists in less traditional ways, especially since so many of the usual formats for supporting artists are difficult or impossible now. The idea of bringing artists into people’s houses via the mail, in the form of artwork that’s specifically formatted and created to be experienced in that way, seemed like a great way to push the CSA model into new territory.”

The contents of the CSA will also be different from before. Springboard is taking proposals for work in three categories: Comfort, Care and Craft. Comfort items are those you might give (or mail) to someone else. Care items are projects for you to complete, designed as kits. Craft pieces are functional items or artworks.

Springboard is accepting proposals from artists through Friday, Oct. 16. Three projects will be chosen in each category. Artists will receive a stipend of $1,000. Each artist must produce 50 pieces of artwork, the number of shares available to buyers. Shares will go on sale in November at $250 each. Go here for all the details.

Will Springboard’s CSA save the post office? It can’t hurt.

The picks

V is for virtual, L is for live and in person

Choreographers Rachel Lieberman and Kelsey Peterson performing "Bone Burden."
Photo by Jessica L. Fredette
Choreographers Rachel Lieberman and Kelsey Peterson performing "Bone Burden."
L Tonight (Thursday, Oct. 1) through Sunday at the Off-Leash Art Box: 3rd Annual INBOX@ARTBOX. Created in collaboration with Hauss Dance, adhering to COVID protocols, this round-robin festival will feature new dance performances by 13 local choreographers. There will be five performance stations (two indoors, three outdoors), with a maximum of eight physically distanced audience members at each station. Don’t worry; you’ll be guided by Inbox staff. The choreographers are Madelyn Burnham, Ann Carlson, Samantha Heggem/John Surber, Gemma Isaacson, Rachel Lieberman/Kelsey Peterson, Maddi Miller, McKayla Murphy, Jennifer Pray, Kayla Schiltgen, Ayumi Schafer and Ray Terrill. 7:30 p.m. all days. Reservations required; tickets are sliding scale ($10-30). These will be the final performances in the Off-Leash Art Box. Given the realities of the pandemic and the economic turndown, Jennifer Ilse and Paul Herwig will close the building and put it up for sale.

V Tonight (Thursday, Oct. 1) on Crowdcast: Jazz Fest Live presents Will Kjeer, Dave King and Charlie Lincoln. King, the longtime drummer of The Bad Plus, will be joined by up-and-comers Kjeer on piano and Lincoln on bass. Sign up here to save your spot for Jazz Fest’s livestream. The trio will perform on the Dakota’s stage with no audience.

V Friday through Sunday (Oct. 2-4) on Cantus’ website: “There Lies the Home.” The first program in Cantus’ 2020-21 season captures in song and emotion the perilous journeys people have taken – and still take – to find a home. The program includes Gordon Lightfoot’s “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.” Available online from 7:30 p.m. Friday through 7:30 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are pay-what-you-can starting at $5.

Article continues after advertisement

V Sunday (Oct. 4) on the Schubert Club’s website, YouTube and Facebook: Lawrence Brownlee, tenor, and Myra Huang, piano. One of the world’s great bel canto tenors and one of the top stars in classical music, Brownlee would likely have opened the Schubert Club’s 2020-21 International Artist Series season before a sold-out crowd. It’s a credit to the Schubert Club’s reputation, and the relationships it forms with its artists, that he and Huang will travel here to perform from the stage of the Ordway Concert Hall to an empty house as a livestream. And what a fine, inspiring, soul-stirring program it will be: arias by Donizetti, Rossini, and Kurt Weill, spirituals arranged by Damien Sneed and Jackie Hairston, and John Carter’s Cantata. 3 p.m. Free. Here’s the program book, if you want to take a look.

This Thing Called Life bookV Monday (Oct. 5) online: Magers & Quinn presents Neal Karlen and “This Thing Called Life: Prince’s Odyssey On + Off the Road.” A former contributing editor for Rolling Stone and a regular contributor to the New York Times, Karlen grew up with Prince in the 1970s and lives in Minneapolis today. For more than a dozen years, he was the only journalist Prince granted in-depth press interviews. After Karlen stopped covering Prince, the two remained friends for the rest of Prince’s life. Karlen will be in conversation with Emily Goldberg, director of the PBS documentary “The Minneapolis Sound” and a Prince fan who moved to Minneapolis in 1981. This should be good. 7 p.m. Register here.

V Monday (Oct. 5) on YouTube or Facebook: The Theater of Public Policy: How to Run a Restaurant in 2020 with Tomme Beevas, owner of Pimento Jamaican Kitchen. Even McDonald’s sales are suffering during the pandemic. How can a small, independent restaurant even hope to survive? Using its trademark combo style of informed-interview-meets-improv-comedy, the clever cast of T2P2 will explore a topic many of us have wondered about. 7 p.m. Free, but donations are welcome.

V Tuesday (Oct. 6) on Crowdcast: Subtext Books presents the launch of “Shelter” by Margaret Hasse and Sharon DeMark. Two friends, one a poet, one a painter, wanted to make something together as a way to connect artistically during COVID. They chose shelter as their theme and created a beautiful, comforting book, exploring and finding new shades of meaning in shelter for people and animals. Prize-winning poet Hasse has written five previous collections of poems; Sharon DeMark celebrated 2019 by painting a watercolor every day, posting it on Instagram, and holding two shows of her work as fundraisers for the Twin Cities Theater of Color Coalition (TCTOCC) and Interfaith Action of Greater St. Paul. 6:30. Free. Register here.