Exciting Times

• A major, rotating collection of regional art now greets visitors on three floors at Des Peres Hospital. It’s an unprecedented local connection between art and healing that’s garnering praise from hospital patients and staff. For this project, ASL has created and is managing the first ever four-way collaboration between our organization and the St. Louis Artists’ Guild, The Foundry Art Centre and VSA Missouri. I invite you to download a visitor guide at ArtAtDesPeresHospital.com and stop by the hospital to enjoy this special exhibit.

• We’re developing a new project to position St. Louis’ visual arts community at the forefront of what appears to be an inevitable next step in the publishing, discovery and sale of art, through a suite of mobile-driven applications to empower and connect artists and buyers. This initiative has the potential to broadly impact the global art industry and was recently awarded a major grant through the Regional Arts Commission’s Innovation Fund, and was a finalist in the 2013 Social Enterprise and Innovation Competition hosted by the Skandalaris Center at Washington University in St. Louis.

But of all these developments and others not listed here, none are of greater importance than the move that is now underway to a new location and new kind of presence downtown.

A NEW DESTINATION

ASL is driven by a fresh vision to further the cultural vitality of downtown St. Louis and the surrounding region we serve. We want to add to our nearly 30 years of service to the community by more effectively developing an audience for contemporary visual art and connecting that audience with the artists of our region through a one-of-a-kind outlet that will be both a cultural and social destination. 

Park Pacific building in downtown St. Louis. Image courtesy of Lawrence Group.Park Pacific building in downtown St. Louis. Image courtesy of Lawrence Group.We found the perfect location for this vision to materialize: the historic Park Pacific building at 1223 Pine Street. The building has been beautifully restored by its new owner, Lawrence Group, a premiere architectural firm that has gone out of its way in showing a sustained interest in ASL's future. Among the advantages we'll enjoy in this new location are plentiful parking, beautiful parks close by and immediate proximity to the newly-renovated St. Louis Public Library, several new restaurants in the building, and the St. Louis University School of Law.

We are working with Mississippi Mud Coffee Roasters to create a gallery/café hybrid, a place our community will repeatedly visit to enjoy dynamic exhibitions of local art and an inviting atmosphere in which to meet, study and relax. The space will include sofas, tables and chairs in the heart of the exhibition areas, free Wi-Fi and a café serving the best locally-roasted coffee. Combined with our year-round schedule of exhibits and events, we anticipate a tremendous increase in the number of gallery visitors, further benefiting artists and the audiences their work impacts.

OUR CHALLENGE

Rendering of the new Art Saint Louis gallery, facing north. Image courtesy of Lawrence Group.Rendering of the new Art Saint Louis gallery, facing north. Image courtesy of Lawrence Group.ASL moved its office and display equipment into the Park Pacific building last month with the help of volunteers. What we now have is a space with tremendous potential but one that is nevertheless raw. Construction and repair work is needed before any programming can take place, including framing, plumbing, electrical, HVAC, drywall and painting. We have worked hard to reduce these costs to what we believe is a minimum necessary expense, which along with moving and transitional operating costs totals $76,000.

Several lead donors have stepped up to bring this fundraising goal within reach for ASL, among them are our Board of Directors, our Campaign Committee, Yvette Drury Dubinsky, Alison Nichols Ferring and Nancy Kranzberg, and the Whitaker Foundation which is supplying a generous project grant. To date, $40,345 has been contributed toward the campaign.


MATCHING GIFT OPPORTUNITY

We’ve now arrived at the key moment for ASL. Having been blessed with critically important seed funding, we are reaching out to our community for the means to cover remaining expenses and move our mission forward. And we do so with the help of an anonymous ASL member who has offered to match campaign contributions up to a total of $10,000.

If you value the work of Art Saint Louis and are in a position to contribute, at any level, now is the time. Our plan is to reopen in the new space in July with our Honor Awards 2013 exhibit. But no such reopening will occur this summer or in the foreseeable future without a strong influx of support. With respect and gratitude I ask, will you please join in sponsoring this project now? The Park Pacific building represents a new era of impact and sustainability for ASL, multiplying our audience while reducing our monthly expenses. We need your help to make this transition possible. Secure online donations can be made via PayPal by clicking here.

Thank you for your consideration and for contributing as generously as you can!


Sincerely,
Chandler Branch
Executive Director

Remember, your contribution will be doubled through the matching gift offer from our lead donor. Please take this opportunity to multiply the impact of your support!   

 

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Art Saint Louis │ 1223 Pine Street │ St. Louis, MO │ 63103 │ p: 314-241-4810 │          

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