This sprawling art mecca takes its name from the building’s former tenant, the National Purity Soap Company, which called the space home from 1920 to the mid-80s.
Now, it’s one of the city’s oldest - and coolest - independent non-profit art galleries. The raw wood-and-beam galleries are strung together through a labyrinthine maze, replete with mysterious nooks and crannies, old factory equipment peep holes, 25 foot high ceilings, and borderline dangerous floor boards.
What better to complement such historic industrial charm than with some of the most daring and subversive installation-based art exhibits in the state? From massive light sculptures to quirky video installations to mazes made of inflated garbage bags to 24 hour performance art parties and haunted basement tours, the Soap Factory is not only a beautiful, historic piece of Minneapolis architecture, but it’s also one of the most progressive galleries in town.
Update as of May 2019: The Soap Factory is closed while it reorganizes its finances.
Update as of October 2019: The Soap Factory is planning to close its doors for good December 31, 2019.