The Collaborative

ArtsLab is a special collaborative project of the Bush, F. R. Bigelow, Mardag, The McKnight, and The Saint Paul foundations, with administrative support provided by Arts Midwest. The collaborative was formed in order to explore new and more holistic ways of supporting smaller, visionary arts organizations. Through ArtsLab the collaborative partners hope to provide promising organizations with a broader context for their work and with specific tools to help them think about organizational dynamics and structure in ways that will best serve their artistic mission.

These five major funders of arts and humanities formed a unique alliance to significantly enhance their opportunity to fulfill many aspects of their promises to the region:

  • Development of strong and effective arts leadership in the Twin Cities and northern Minnesota, and is commitment to working with grantees for a significant period of time to achieve that desired impact.
  • Cultivation of a unique learning opportunity for the foundations as well as for the organizations and communities engaged in the project—a culture of continuous learning.
  • Opportunity to play a significant catalytic role in shaping a vibrant future for not only the arts and cultural sector, but for enhancing the well-being of the region’s people and the communities in which the arts are positioned to not only survive but thrive.

The ArtsLab Collaborative leadership team includes

  • David Fraher, Executive Director, Arts Midwest, which provides administrative support to the program.