Meet the New
Director of Artistic Programming,
Ellina Kevorkian
The Soap Factory is pleased to announce Ellina Kevorkian has been hired as the Director of Artistic Programs. Kevorkian brings an interdisciplinary interest in the scholarship and exhibition of both visual and performance arts; sincere advocacy for the artist process; and a commitment to the Soap Factory as a socially responsive hub for the Twin Cities and beyond. Kevorkian has more than 18 years of artistic leadership experience and in her new position, will be responsible for the development and implementation of relevant programming and overall vision at the Soap Factory.

“Ellina Kevorkian brings tremendous creativity, experience, and insight to her new role with us,” said Rosemary Williams, Soap Factory Board Member who led the search for the Director of Artistic Programming. “It was our goal to ensure the search process was highly inclusive. We worked with artists and arts professionals from a range of organizations in the Twin Cities to help us make this important decision. Input from a wide and diverse array of voices who could speak to the hopes of the community for the Soap was a vital part of the process.” Williams continued, “In the end, we were extremely impressed with Ellina’s dedication to artists and their work. She impressed us greatly and will be an exceptional fit in our ongoing commitment to help artists realize their most ambitious visions. We look forward to her collaborative spirit, intelligence, and energy in as we define this next exciting stage of the Soap Factory’s development.”

As former Artistic director for residency programs at the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts in Omaha, NE. Kevorkian built innovative artistic programs including residencies and exhibitions that gave Bemis a leading voice among international artist communities and regional art centers. Kevorkian worked actively to diversify the program, bring professionals from around the world, as well as introduce important discourse that challenged the definitions of contemporary art, artist residency need, and community. At Bemis, Kevorkian reimagined the residency experience as a curatorial platform spotlighting dialogue across disciplines; she is also responsible for initiating a “Curator-in-Residence” role; the first of its kind in the region. Kevorkian holds an MFA from Claremont Graduate University and an MA in curatorial studies, performance, from Wesleyan University.

“I am thrilled to join the Twin Cities’ vibrant art community and to take the Soap Factory's support of experimental art and organizational partnerships to its next level—it's an ideal organization for building further critical discourse and space around art and social response."

“The Board is elated to have Ellina Kevorkian join the Soap Factory as its new Director of Artistic Programs,” said Soap Factory Board Chair Roy M. Close. “Kudos to Rosemary Williams and the task force for working effectively and for keeping the process moving forward in a timely fashion and recommending a candidate whose experience and skill set look to be a terrific match for the organization."

Kevorkian will join the current staff including; Bill Mague, Executive Director; Kate Arford, Gallery and Residency Director; Joni Van Bockel, Community Outreach Coordinator; and Colin Marx, Building Manager. Kevorkian will officially begin her position on June 1st.
"Look! A product who can talk." by 2018 artist-in-residence, Åsa Jungelius
Host an Artist
As part of the Soap Factory's renovations, we are building new studios and gallery space for a brand new-year-round residency program. The Soap Factory Artists-in-Residence Program will support emerging, to mid-career artists and curators, working across all disciplines and is open to local, regional, national, and internationally-based artists.

To house artists from out of town we are asking our friends and neighbors (that means you!) to host an artist for a period of time while they work at the Soap Factory. If you are interested in hosting an artist please fill out the below form:
Image of work by Joshua McGarvey from AoV 7 photo by Rik Sferra
Save the Date:
Art(ists) on the Verge 9
May 5th, 2018 from 7pm -11pm

May 5th - June 10th

Art(ists) on the Verge 9 features new work from five Minnesota-based artists. Created over the course of a year during an intensive fellowship, the practices represented here often falls outside of and in between the traditional notions of media or disciplines. Supporting work such as this is one of the fundamental concepts that defines the mission of the Art(ists) on the Verge Fellowship for emerging artists. 

This exhibition is also the inaugural show in The Soap Factory’s new gallery space and marks the 6th year of collaboration between Northern and The Soap Factory to present Art(ists) on the Verge.

Construction Update
We are thrilled with the progress of the Soap Factory renovation project! In this past month, RJM construction removed the old water boiler; we are especially excited about this because this space will operate as our new main entrance as well as an exciting new exhibition space. The upstairs floors have been finished, and RJM has started the framework for studios upstairs and for the residency program in the lower level.

Read more about the renovations here.
 The  Soap Factory  
 514 2nd St. SE
Minneapolis MN 55414