Creating ACW Community

The Heartbeat of ACW =  The People

Candy and Craig’s installation multi-media performance, Legacy Dream Space at Owatonna Center for the Arts in Owatonna, MN. Opening show September 17th.


Phakamani Picnic Fundraiser at Rhoda Olsen’s September 10th

Club Crit with Layl McDill at her studio May 10th.

Emma Norton’s Opening Doors Gala at the Intercontinental Hotel in St. Paul April 27th. ACW sponsored a table and gave over 17 works of art to their auction for bids. Was a fun night!

On Location Drawing Co-op April 15th at the MIA


Art is My Weapon show at the Hennepin Central Library. Barbara had a piece in the show called, X2. “Own a gun? You are 2 times more likely to die by one.”

Earth Day at Solar Arts April 22nd


Noble Truths: Susan Wagner studio talk at the Casket Arts Building April 8th. From realism to abstract landscape painting.

Mississippi River Pearl workshop art experience at MWMO April 5th. Full class size for the fun-filled and educational art workshops that we offer with our amazing Mississippi River Pearl art made of trash collected on the Mississippi River and assembled by ten artists! See more on our project page.

Art Battle at the Mall of America Rotunda March 31st. Assistant Director, Kelly Frankenberg, competing in an art battle where after 20 minutes of painting the public votes who gets to go to the next round. To join an art battle or bid on paintings, go to

ACW members out and about seeing Laura Mann Hill’s play, “Inspired by Claudette & Rosa.” Youth Performance Company presented this entertaining play performed by youth, set in modern day, educating us about a 15-year-old hero who should have been as famous as Rosa Parks but the history books left her out. We were very impressed not only because it was a great performance, but because this show inspired action to be taken on social justice issues, which is what ACW is all about!  Professional performance photos by Jenna Poff

Moving Pearl to its next location at MWMO and an upcoming April 5th workshop. Check out more on our project page.



Watch Assistant Director, Kelly Frankenberg, compete painting live in Art Battle 2404, the first one in Minnesota! (her round is the second one which starts around 2:02:00. It was January 26th in Inver Grove Heights at Jersey’s Bar and Grill. There are events all over the world and there will be more in Minnesota, the next being Rochester and the Mall of America.



January Fun!

On Location Drawing January 14th at Theo Wirth Park Trailhead and Kelly and Layl visit “The Moth” on January 25th.

Candy Kuehn’s critique at Club Critique at the California Building. January 18th. This critique included her friends.

Charles Caldwell studio visit.


Installing Mississippi Pearl at Homewood Studios for November.  Installed at the Mississippi River Management Organization on February 6, 2023.


Solar Arts Building Light up the Night! Dec 2-4th


Noble Truths: Layl’s Clay Squared Studio! Layl McDill showed us how she creates her designs in polymer clay and how she got started as an artist.


Zoe Album Release! Dave Dvorak Album Release Party at 12 Cider



Maker’s Space Teacher’s dinner hosted by Lynette.


Noble Truths studio visit in June at Greg Volker’s studio. California Building.



Layl and Madalina working together on the Age of Age project.


Layl and Madalina at the Homewood Studio Show and working on sock monsters at Layl’s studio while discussing ideas for the Age of Age show.


Kelly at a gallery opening at Art Works Eagan with her work, “Daily Progression of a Black Eye.” 



Nina at an encaustic paint class taught by Jodi Reeb. If you haven’t tried encaustic, you should!



Hola! Barbara and Layl soaking up art and sun in the Barra de Potosi Paradise in Mexico this winter!




On Location Drawing at the Como Conservatory January 23rd





Layl’s Solo Show January 13th-February 10th




The Art Shoppe featured artists Rebecca David with Susan Gainen. And Fox Den’s 100 works under $100

Video links below

Orientation Day Testimonies
Take away:  Enthusiasm and excitement.  It was great meeting everyone in person, and everyone gives off a great energy (what do you expect from an ArtToSaveTheWorld function).  I am excited to see what these young artists do, specifically the team I’m on.  I’m enthused to be working with these kind people able to view things from multiple sides.


The Coaching Project kickoff was such a fun event!  I was so impressed by all the people involved in this project—so much creativity and positivity.  And I was especially excited to meet my team members and get a more concrete grasp of how we’ll work to gather to support Ashley’s Blood on the Pavement project.  The flow of activities and sharing at the orientation did a great job at bringing us all together and jump starting our work.


“I had a fantastic time at the Orientation for this project. It was great to finally meet my teammates and the other project managers and coaches. Everyone was so welcoming and friendly and I cannot wait to start creating with these people.”



The Coaching Project Orientation was so much fun! It was a great way to learn more about ACW and other team projects, as well as the expectations for this grant period. Most importantly, it was a great way to connect and build a solid foundation with teammates. During a time when the pandemic has shifted our daily interactions and the world has become so virtual, I found that having this first meeting in-person was invaluable.


Ari has a Critique
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Aristoteles Carbajal <> is our youngest ACW member.  They have a unique style and voice.  Listen:

Pop Up Palette Party   Arts District Palette: Where Neighbors and Artists Meet
Sociable Cider Werks
Read More about the Project


Photography by Natalie McGuire

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Photography  by Barbara Bridges


Photography by Devin Larkins

Photographs by Ngange&Themasses <>



Photos by JoAnnKirkman

Preparing for the Lobster Chowdah  Thank You party for our major donors.  Seafood flown in from Maine from Mclauglin’s  Seafood located in my birthplace of Bangor, Maine.
Great Thanks to Deb and Natalie.  It took us almost 4 hours to shuck, pick and chop. You can do the math… I would have been sitting there for 12 hours! They look a little intimidated by the crustaceans!

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Lobster Chowdah  Event 2021 for Major Donors
Photography by Natalie McGuire

Click to Enlarge pictures