Northern Warehouse

Artspace Timeline

A year-by-year history of Artspace

1979 – The Minneapolis City Council and the Minneapolis Arts Commission form Artspace to assist artists in finding space in the Warehouse District of Minneapolis

1986 – Artspace transforms from an advocacy organization to a non-profit real estate organization whose mission is to “create, foster, and preserve affordable space for artists and arts organizations.” Kelley Lindquist is hired as its first President and CEO

1989 – Artspace is the first organization in the country to use the Low Income Housing Tax Credit as the basis for financing of its first affordable live/work project, the Northern Warehouse Artists’ Cooperative in Lowertown St. Paul, Minnesota

1995 – Artspace expands its scope and develops affordable studio-only space with the completion of the Traffic Zone Center for Visual Art in Minneapolis

1996 – Artspace spread its wings to become a statewide developer of affordable live/work space by completing the Washington Studios in Duluth, Minnesota

1998 – Artspace branches out to become a national real estate developer with its project in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the Spinning Plate Artist Lofts

1999 – Artspace embarks on its most ambitious project to date, with the move of the Shubert Theater (the largest building in the world ever moved on rubber tires) and its conversion into a center for Minnesota dance and music excellence to be called The Cowles Center for Dance & the Performing Arts

2000-2004 – Artspace continues its expansion as a national organization, developing live/work projects in Reno, Nevada (Riverside Artist Lofts); Galveston, Texas (National Hotel Artist Lofts); Chicago (Switching Station Artist Lofts); Seattle (Tashiro Kaplan Artist Lofts) and Bridgeport, Connecticut (Read's Artspace)

2004-2008 – Artspace once again stretches into greater Minnesota by completing the Kaddatz Artist Lofts in Fergus Falls and Franklin Arts Center in Brainerd

2005 – Artspace takes over the historic Grain Belt Studios in Minneapolis and restructures them into viable centers of creativity for artists and creative entrepreneurs

2005-2009 – Artspace develops the Mount Rainier Artist Lofts in Mt. Rainier, Maryland; Elder Street Artist Lofts in Houston, Texas; Artspace Buffalo Lofts in Buffalo, New York and Sailboat Bend Artist Lofts in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

2009 – Artspace completes its largest housing development to date, the Artspace Tannery Lofts in Santa Cruz, California, which provides 100 units of affordable live/work space for artists

2010 – Artspace completes the Chicago Avenue Fire Arts Center, a place for art that requires high heat, spark or flame, in South Minneapolis

2010 – 2012 – Artspace develops projects in Everett, Washington; Council Bluffs, Iowa; Patchogue, New York; Washington, D.C.; Elgin, Illinois and Waukegan, Illinois

2011 – Artspace completes construction on The Cowles Center for Dance & the Performing Arts, the project that began with the move of the historic Shubert Theater in 1999. The Cowles is a three-building complex that supports Minnesota dance, music, and various other arts organizations with administrative, rehearsal, education and performance space

2012 - The Digital Media and Creative Arts Center, Phase 2 of the Tannery project, opens in Santa Cruz, representing Artspace's first full "arts campus"

2012 – Within one week in October, Artspace celebrates groundbreakings for the Artspace Minot Lofts in Minot, North Dakota and El Barrio’s Artspace PS109 in New York City

2012 - Artspace breaks ground on their first ever live/work project in Minneapolis - Artspace Jackson Flats

2013 – The Ford Foundation awards Artspace a $2.7 million grant for creative placemaking projects, and a $2 million grant from the Kresge Foundation for the Bell School Arts Campus in New Orleans

2013 – Artspace hosts its first national Celebration at the Cowles Center in Minneapolis. Artists and supporters from around the country tune in via livestream for performances by Native Pride Dancers and the Stepkids

2014 – Artspace celebrates four grand openings, four groundbreakings, three Tax Credit Awards, and two new contracts; for a grand total of 49 projects in development or operation

2014 – The first ever Artspace Awards presented at Breaking Ground - The 2014 Artspace Celebration recognizing the achievements of three individual Artspace resident artists who have shown a commitment to advancing the arts and enriching their communities - Name the artists and list the talent and host

2014 – El Barrio's Artspace PS109 receives 53,000 applications for 89 affordable live/work units in the El Barrio neighborhood in Harlem, New York

2014 – Artspace is awarded a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support Grant

2014 – The first Artspace Green Homes North is purchased by a local artist in Minneapolis, MN.

2014 – Artspace launches The Artspace Distance Collaboration Program (ArtBridge); designed to facilitate a network of organizations using videoconferencing and live streaming technology to further their artistic process, creativity and collaboration


Subscribe to "Artspace Matters"

Our monthly newsletter covering Artspace across the country.