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Group raises $30,000 for Public Functionary art space in Northeast Arts District

Public Functionary, a new art space coming to the Northeast Minneapolis Arts District, reached its $30,000 fundraising goal this week on Kickstarter.

Tricia Khutoretsky, who heads Public Functionary, explains that the center set its sights high because “We really believed in the potential for validation from the community. We also needed a way in which to build a new community” that goes beyond the typical art scene, she says.

The idea is to make the center as open and inclusive as possible, she adds.

With the help of the Kickstarter funds, Public Functionary will open in January of 2013 in a one-story brick building on Buchanan and Broadway, which is also home to The Lab Digital and the Permanent Art and Design Group. The groups worked together to find the space, according to Khutoretsky.

Over the past five months, Public Functionary has been operating out of makeshift offices in the space. This has afforded people in the 2,500-square-foot center “the time to feel it out and figure out the best floor-plan and updates to make,” she says.

Already, the center has hosted several events in the raw space, which is characterized by high ceilings, lots of natural light, and cement floors.

The fact that a train runs by the building is a plus because it’s “constantly creating movement and energy right outside our windows, which feels classically Northeast,” she says.

In terms of the build-out of the space, walls will be moveable. This will help foster experimentation with every exhibit. “We think the gallery of the future is always changing, always responsive,” she says.  

On a yearly basis, the center will host exhibits corresponding to an overarching theme, with ongoing events that inspire a dialogue on contemporary art. “We’re focused on creating context and connection and using technology and social media,” she says.  

The arts district location is ideal, she says, noting that the entire Public Functionary team lives in the neighborhood. “We're looking forward to becoming a sort of hub or connector to attract more people to the arts activity in the area,” she says.

Source: Tricia Khutoretsky, Public Functionary
Writer: Anna Pratt
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