Sharing the Findings of the EVOKE Process

Regional Arts Commission St. Louis

After more than a year of conversations, interviews, open forums and more, the results of the EVOKE process have been compiled into a Creative Vision for St. Louis. This vision was informed by you and will be revealed at community celebration of the arts at the RAC headquarters in The Loop.

Join us on September 13 from 6:00-8:00pm for a Big Reveal event!

EVOKE was commissioned by RAC as a precursor to engaging in its own in-depth strategic planning process to guide its actions in the coming years. Through EVOKE, RAC sought to gain a clear and current understanding of what the citizens in St. Louis City and County who are concerned about the arts want from the arts.

This process was our way to evoke what is powerful and special about the arts in the minds of the people we spoke to, in hopes of creating even more of that, for more people, in the future. Through these intimate, often intense conversations, we sought to explore art’s role in evoking change.

After this intensive investigation and deep listening, after all of this honest reflection and acknowledgement of hard truths, what happens next?

What’s Next for RAC

The next steps for RAC are to ask ourselves and our stakeholders the tough questions about how we shift from who we have been to the organization St. Louis needs us to be, and how we evolve from doing things the way we have done them in the past to doing things in a way that informs the future. This sort of work isn’t glamorous, but you can’t skip it. Those day-by-day steps we need to take are necessary to transform what we learned from all of you and turn it into practice. We are committed to doing that hard work.

During the first two years, RAC Board of Commissioners and staff will:

  • Continue the deep public involvement that was at the heart of the visioning process
  • Develop a strategic plan for RAC to closely align resources with community priorities
  • Receive necessary anti-bias/anti-racism training
  • Form new alliances and partnerships with community groups aligned with the priorities

What’s Next for You

Throughout the EVOKE process, we heard from St. Louisans that they envision and desire a future in which, everyone – regardless of the background they come from or neighborhood where they live – shares in the region’s extraordinary cultural inheritance, and communities are strengthened, uplifted, and connected through arts and cultural experiences.

Our Creative Vision attempts to equip you with the ideas, knowledge, and inspiration you need to start building that future for St. Louis. When you attend our community celebration on September 13, you will be able to read the Creative Vision in full. If you can’t attend, the Creative Vision will be available here on this website beginning September 13.

Here’s how you can use the Creative Vision to make a difference:

  • Read the document and encourage others to do so
  • Choose a priority that aligns with your values and make it your own
  • Explore a neighborhood you have never visited and participate in a cultural activity
  • Demand more arts in your local school
  • Sign yourself or your children up for art classes
  • Share your church with local artists who need affordable space
  • Purchase the work of a local artist
  • Tell your elected officials that you want more art in your neighborhood
  • Join a committee or board of a community arts organization
  • Get creative – sing in a choir, play an instrument, write poetry, dance
  • Attend community planning meetings and advocate for public art in your neighborhood

We hope you will gain as much from EVOKE as a citizen of St. Louis as we at RAC have, and that you will join us in making St. Louis a better place to live through the arts.