Bank of America Awards $1 Million Grant to Juxtaposition Arts
Bank of America announced today that it has provided a $1 million anchor grant to Juxtaposition Arts (JXTA)—the only Black-led art and design organization in Minnesota—in support of its four-year capital and legacy campaign to construct a new headquarters, restore two existing facilities and acquire public space to better support its creative workforce development and arts programming.
Bank of America’s donation toward JXTA’s $14 million fundraising campaign puts the effort within $400,000 of completion and helped JXTA close on the financing needed to break ground on the new Arts Center headquarters, located at 2007 N Emerson Ave. A community groundbreaking celebration is scheduled to take place on September 17, 2021 from 4-6 p.m. CT at the Art Center building site.
“We set out three years ago on an ambitious capital and legacy campaign -- to become the only arts organization in the state, led and rooted by people of color, that owns its buildings,” said Roger Cummings, Chief Cultural Producer and Co-founder of JXTA. “We couldn’t have nearly reached that goal without the generous support of our community, including Bank of America. The bank’s funding will help JXTA continue to embrace, support and provide resources for the creativity and entrepreneurial spirit that exists in our city and build a legacy of Black leadership for years to come.”
Bank of America’s support will help JXTA invest in their physical infrastructure, and comes at a critical time in the organization’s and region’s history as it expands its acclaimed education and creative workforce development programming. The development will include a 17,000 sq. ft. building to house a gallery, program spaces, fabrication shop, community gathering spaces, and an archive. The organization will also renovate existing buildings, facilitating the expansion of JXTA's workforce efforts and create retail space to sell products created by JXTA students and staff.
“Juxtaposition Arts knows that exposure to and engagement with the arts has the potential to transform a community,” said Katie Simpson, Bank of America Twin Cities president. “With this new construction, JXTA is helping to create a stronger regional economy by nurturing creativity and building assets for future generations. We are proud to contribute to this effort.”
Construction of the new building and renovation of campus buildings (including four newly acquired lots on Emerson and Broadway) will begin in early September and is slated to be complete by fall 2022. The new state-of-the-art headquarters plants the seeds for new and expanded programming and will serve as a hub for creative training, economic justice, and youth development in North Minneapolis.
JXTA offers free, year-round arts learning programs for youth, community events and jobs for teens in the core program, JXTALabs. After completing the rigorous 12-week Visual Arts Literacy Training (VALT), youth aged 14-21 are eligible to apply for an apprenticeship in one of the JXTALab micro businesses. JXTA employs 70 young artists and 30 adult artists and staff annually.
“Juxtaposition Arts was founded with the idea of building something in Minneapolis’ Northside that didn’t already exist,” said Gabrielle Grier, Managing Director of JXTA. “Our hope is for JXTA to set an example for other organizations and show them the endless possibilities of investing in the creative genius of our city's youth.”
Over the events of the past 19 months, JXTA’s campus and community engagement work has grown to become a public health imperative and some of the most important assets in the community, particularly on West Broadway, where there is little dedicated public space. Part of the capital campaign also raised funds for JXTA to acquire parcels adjacent to the Skateable Plaza, which has now been made a permanent fixture, and the entire area will become a community-owned “parkable” plaza which will be used for community events and gatherings.
This grant complements Bank of America’s five-year, $1.25 billion commitment to advancing racial equality and economic opportunity for people and communities of color by supporting nonprofit organizations working to improve health, jobs and re-skilling, and affordable housing, as well as providing support for minority-owned small businesses in local communities. Bank of America previously named Juxtaposition Arts as one of its Neighborhood Builder awardees in 2019.
Founded in 1995 by Roger and DeAnna Cummings as an afterschool program, Juxtaposition Arts (JXTA) develops community by engaging and employing young urban artists in hands-on education initiatives that create pathways to self-sufficiency while actualizing creative power. JXTA’s work builds North Minneapolis’ cultural, financial and social capital by training the local youth workforce in creative industries and investing in the equitable development of North Minneapolis and the West Broadway commercial corridor. For more information, please visit www.juxtapositionarts.org.
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Britney Sheehan, Bank of America
Gabrielle Grier, Juxtaposition Arts