Mission: Artspace's mission is to create, foster, and preserve affordable space for artists and arts organizations.
Programs: Real estate projects - provides properties that are sensitive to the unique needs and environment necessary for artists, arts organizations, and arts venues, through wholly, or partially-owned limited partnerships which own commercial and/or residential properties. These real estate projects provide space for artists to work on their particular means of artistic expression. As an example, a painter or dancer needs space to produce a huge painting, or to practice their dance steps.
development - develops artists' live/work space and cultural facilities with both public agencies and private groups by involvement in real estate projects as project coordinator, developer, co-developer, and general contractor; informs and educates the general public and key decision makers about projects and issues related to artists, space and art facilities.
consulting and strategic partnerships - provides a computerized registry and handout of spaces available for rent or purchase; consulting services to arts organizations and individual artists around the country; support on real estate development projects, community building, diversity in the arts, and neighborhood development and the arts.
asset & property management - asset management oversees and collaborates with artists cooperatives, arts tenants, partners, funders and management companies of the organization's limited partnership holdings, to establish and maintain long-term financially and physically stable assets. Property management provides services for various projects, and is responsible for overseeing and coordinating the daily status of the project including financial, physical and tenant communications, and reporting on the ongoing status of the projects and with regard to issues requiring owner input and decisions.
In the 1980s my wife and I were both heavily involved in the arts scene in Saint Paul, MN in several ways. I first learned of Artspace through her job with the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council and discovered an organization that was transforming warehouse space downtown into work and living spaces for visual artists. I became even more aware of this when I started working for the Saint Paul Department of Planning and Economic Development where one of my colleagues was assigned to helping develop artist spaces. Later, I managed the Saint Paul portion of the Minneapolis-Saint Paul Home Tour, and helped place a new artist housing project created by this organization as a unique stop on the tour. All the while, I was acting in the evenings at Park Square Theatre which consulted with Artspace several times as it gradually expanded its performing space to different venues. I'm amazed and very pleased this organization -- which started as simply a way to help artists through the technical maze of rehabilitating spaces into viable studios and homes -- is now working on a national scale to provide infrastructure for the arts and revitalization for many communities.