Holiday pop-up shop showcases art crafted by north Minneapolis teens

Juxtaposition Arts hosts a holiday pop-up to showcase artwork by north Minneapolis teens.

Through Tuesday afternoon, shoppers are invited to check out a holiday pop-up shop featuring designs and crafts made by north Minneapolis youth.

All of the items are crafted by young people who hope to become professional artists, with help from local nonprofit Juxtaposition Arts, or “Juxta.”

It's a teen-staffed art and design center featuring a gallery, retail shop and a studio space that gives young people on the north side an opportunity to get creative. There, Essense Enwere designs her unique t-shirts. The 19-year-old wants to run her own design firm and clothing brand some day.

While in high school, she got the opportunity to work in Juxta Arts textile labs, and she's been working on her craft ever since.

“I want the people who wear it to take their own inspiration and their own ideas and thoughts and what it means to them. I like to make art that’s open for conversation,” she said.

The nonprofit just celebrated its 25th anniversary in north Minneapolis. Juxtaposition Arts started out as an after-school program, but now employs around 70 youth apprentices and about 20 professional artists. It's now evolved into an art and design development company that invests in both its community and its kids.

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Juxtaposition Arts hosts a holiday pop-up to showcase artwork by north Minneapolis teens.

“Another part of Juxta’s mission is to create the narrative that the north side being both an economic and creative hub for things that are coming out of the north side of Minneapolis,” said Jared Hanks, head of business development at Juxtaposition Arts.

All of the youth apprentices’ work is displayed in the pop-up shop near the corner of Emerson and Broadway Avenue North.

“These skateboards are really unique and nice, so if you want to get something for Christmas, this is the best place to be,” said artist Rashaunea Ambers-Winston.

Ambers-Winston took a canoe trip on the Mississippi River to get an idea of how she wanted to collaborate on the design of these skateboards. She would write phrases down like, "each wave speaks, the current sings." Environmental design isn’t something she thought she would be passionate about, but she loves what each skateboard represents and loves the connection to her community.

“This one right here talks about the river and tells a story…the bubbles are like water, there are just so many different techniques that we have,” she said.