The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation has announced the inaugural recipients of the St. Paul Knight Arts Challenge.
Through the challenge, nearly $1.4 million in grants ranging in amount from $4,000 to $125,000 was awarded to forty-two artists and groups to engage and enrich the St. Paul community. The first of three St. Paul Arts Challenge cohorts includes individual artists, small ensembles, community-based businesses, and established arts organizations representing a diverse cross section of the community, and the ideas funded range from a participatory theater workshop designed to help students examine race and racism to light projections on the steam plume of the landmark St. Paul power plant.
The challenge is part of a two-pronged, $8 million Knight Foundation investment in St. Paul that includes $4.5 million over three years to underwrite the challenge and awards totaling $3.5 million to five cultural institutions in the city: the Arts Partnership, Penumbra Theatre, Springboard for the Arts, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, and TU Dance. St. Paul is the fourth city where Knight Foundation has launched an arts challenge, following successful efforts in Detroit, Miami, and Philadelphia.
"We believe Knight Foundation's investment in St. Paul will strengthen the city's burgeoning arts scene and, with it, the fabric of our community," said Polly Talen, St. Paul program director for the Knight Foundation. "We look forward to watching the work of this year's Arts Challenge winners unfold."
For a complete list of grant recipients, visit the Knight Foundation website.