Funded! This project was successfully funded on January 22, 2012.


Our home, office, public works, historical archives, town apothecary, performance space and more for the Art Shanty Projects.

The Art Shanty Projects on Medicine Lake in Minnesota is a temporary comunity on a frozen lake. Artists create small structures to house a wide range of creative, interactive public art projects. In 2012 the project runs from January 14th to February 5th. There will be 20 art shanties and 4 official shanties, one of which is home to the on-ice coordinators (that's us). We have taken our role as the go-to people on the ice beyond just a job and into an interactive, engaging shanty in its own right: The Department of Everything Else.

Keep reading to learn about the Department. You can also check out our blog and the Art Shanty Projects site.

The Department is home to the Proctor of Public Works, Cora Cabinski and The Commisionar of Cultural Affiars, Henrietta Hovelton. Abandoning their former lives as overworked, underappreciated file clerks, Cabinski and Hovelton arrived on the ice looking for something new. They built a shanty and as their love of Shanty Town grew, they began taking on more and more official (or not so official) roles to serve the community. Their small home has become the Public Works, Historical Archives, the town's Apothecary, a performance and community space, inn, and more. Homegrown systems of cataloging and documenting have collided with a snug winter home: bursting files, tottering piles of forms, newspaper clippings, herbal tincures, pots and pans, woolens and typewriters fill the shanty.

We at the Department are commited to preserving the unique culture of Shanty Town which we all work together to create daily. New arrivals in the village are encourged to stop by the Department to get a citizenship card or apply for some permits, help stock the town's Aporthcary or share their folk remedies, try their hand at portriture in our Facebook, peruse our collection of Shanty artifacts and add their own shanty-stories.

Unfortunately for Cabinski and Hovelton, their enthusiasm has outstriped their funding. The town's tax base is non-existant, and goverment cuts are taking their toll. Please help us in our mission to serve Shanty Town's residents and visitors.


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    A postcard from the Department employees

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    9 backers

    A letter from the Department employees and a patch with our logo

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    4 backers

    A letter and a patch, plus a button and a "Shanty-scapes" CD

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    all of $25 level, plus an extra patch and button and a small container of homemade balm or tincture from the apothecary.

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    all of $50 level, plus honorary Shanty-town citizenship, a folk remdies zne from the apothecary and a piece of "shanty ephemera"

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    a fully customized surpirse package including a hand made shanty-craft.

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- (25 days)