There is still time to show your love for Northern Spark - and get some of these great rewards! Any amount raised over our goal will still go directly to cover costs for this year's festival. Thank you to everyone who supports us!
What is Northern Spark?
Northern Spark is an annual, dusk until dawn arts festival that lights up Minneapolis on the second Saturday of June each summer. The festival is presented by Northern Lights.mn, a small but mighty Minneapolis-based non-profit arts organization whose mission is to transform our sense of what’s possible in public space.
On Saturday, June 14th, 2014, tens of thousands of people will gather at sunset to explore over 100 art projects created by nearly 200 fresh, forward-thinking artists working in a wide range of fields—visual art, theater, dance, film, music, technology, and new media. Think giant video projections, amazing temporary sculptures, and breathtaking performances. Friendly crowds, food trucks, surprise encounters, and thrilling late night adventures.
There’s nothing else quite like it in the country. Here’s why we do it:
Experimentation. We believe exciting things happen when you give artists an unusual platform and unfamiliar spaces in which to test their ideas. Silos, bridges, building facades, plazas, alleys, terraces, and forgotten spaces, all become a potential canvas or stage.
Collaboration. We partner with 50+ cultural institutions to keep their doors open and admission-free for special late-night programming. This allows people to take risks on new artforms and experiences.
Access. We provide free public access to 100+ contemporary art projects in one night. So many choices, a choose-your-adventure if you will, and the only limiting factor is your stamina.
Transformation. The city becomes a lively playground for all to explore and investigate. To discover or rediscover. To engage. To spark a conversation or new thinking. To imagine new possibilities.
Our event is free for all to attend, and keeping it accessible for all is important to us. Northern Spark is about community, and that is why we are sharing this opportunity with you on Kickstarter. We are inviting our fans and friends to show support for the event, to get in on the action, and to connect on a deeper level by being a part of making it happen.
Why is funding needed?
An event as big and ambitious as Northern Spark is certainly not free to produce. Northern Spark is presented by NorthernLights.mn, a small, 501(c)3 arts organization based in Minneapolis. Funding the event is an annual puzzle of securing government and private foundation grants, in-kind donations, and gifts from small businesses and individuals like YOU!
Our Kickstarter goal represents the final 7% of the festival budget needed to ensure that basics are in place for festival success on June 14th.
NorthernLights.mn provides the infrastructure and support that participating artists and organizations need, in turn allowing them to focus on the artistic risks they're taking, not logistical ones. Here are some specific and crucial items your support makes possible:
- Artist stipends for 24 Northern Lights' commissioned and open call projects
- Electricity, lighting, signage, audio support, site permissions, volunteer wrangling, and materials support for artist projects and food trucks.
- Festival wayfinding, police permits, public works and transit coordination, food trucks, bathrooms, maps, guidebooks, and more.
It's a big juggling act! But the result is worth it, and the rewards for our communities last well beyond the one stimulating night of the festival.
Be a creative spark. Join us.
Help us continue to energize our vibrant city! If you value Northern Spark, or if you simply like the idea of attending an all-night art party (who doesn’t?), please click the little green button to back Northern Spark. With your support we can continue to encourage artistic exploration and innovation. We can give 200+ local and national artists a new platform for their work. We can provide YOU and tens of thousands of other Minnesotans a chance to engage with art, Minneapolis, and each other, in a most unique and memorable way. It's an all-night art party. It's what makes a city a great place to live. Be a part of making it happen.
Northern Spark 2014: Projecting The City
This year’s theme, “Projecting the City,” challenges artists to project onto the city itself—its architecture, its infrastructure—to inspire us to imagine what the city could be, and maybe what it should be. Projections may be literal or imaginative, in any medium. Here is a couple of majorly ambitious projects you can help fund this year.
We offer our backers many great opportunities to ignite your own creative spark. The full listing is featured in the right sidebar. A selection of the more tangible rewards is pictured below.
LED Billboard Thank You! Everyone who gives $10 or more will be acknowledged on a LED billboard at Block E in Downtown Minneapolis. It's our big, bright, public way of saying thanks!
Northern Spark would not exist without artists, partners, friends, and supporters like you who value and support the festival, by attending, partnering, volunteering, or advocating on our behalf.
Please help us keep Northern Spark and our grand, inclusive vision for the festival alive. Please consider supporting the festival. Please spread the word. Northern Spark is an event for you, and we can't do it without you. Thanks!
To get the latest news on the Northern Spark 2014 festival:
Risks and challenges
Northern Spark is a massive undertaking organized by a small, but dedicated and resourceful team of individuals who share a passion for art events programmed for public engagement. We are supported by a knowledgeable Board, advisory committee, and task force.
Even though Northern Spark is in its fourth year, every project we present is new and therefore has its potential risks. But those risks are also what keep Northern Spark exciting and innovative year after year, so we embrace them! To help navigate those risks, we work hard to make sure that the participating artists and organizations have the infrastructure and support they need in order to focus on the artistic risks they're taking, rather than logistical ones. This means that a lot of the work we do—and the support we need from our community—is about getting the necessary basics in place for 75 simultaneous all-night projects. It's a big juggling act! But we’ve proven we can do it three times now (and on both sides of the Mississippi!). The results have been worth it, and the rewards for our communities last well beyond the one beautiful night of the festival.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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