ArtStart’s Mission
The mission of ArtStart is to inspire artistic creativity and illuminate the connections among people, ideas and the environment through engaging artists, children, families, and communities in quality arts education experiences.

Our Organizational Goals are:
1. To provide integrated arts and education opportunities that engender knowledge and appreciation of art, culture and the environment among teachers and students in schools, internships, and summer programs;

2. To model good stewardship of the environment by recycling materials for creative use throughout the 7-country Metro area;

3. To enable young people and families, especially those without adequate prior access, to participate in art-making using recycled materials through classes, opportunities at community festivals, partnerships with schools and social service agencies; and,

4. To support artists’ creativity and capacity to link art with environmental, cultural and educational issues by providing materials, employment, training and commissions.

5. To maintain and enhance a strong and resilient organization.

Each of ArtStart’s core programs and special projects support the mission and goals, and include a unique blend of human creativity in the arts and reusing materials to contribute to awareness and protection of the environment.

Our Core Programs include:
Artist Residencies in Schools, camps, and other workshops and programs year round – Thousands of children and teens take part in these programs, some of which are theme-based, such as our River EcoJourneys theme.

ArtScraps – A creative reuse store of donated, recycled materials that offers educational activities, information, and displays on site. The facility is a destination for people to obtain materials and ideas for visual art projects with low environmental impact. Over 50,000 pounds of scrap material and discards are reused. Families, college students, K-12 teachers, emerging and experienced artists, writers, daycare providers, pre-school teachers, science and arts specialists shop at ArtScraps and/or attend events.

ScrapMobile – Artful reuse workshops throughout the year transported by a vehicle carrying artists and materials to many partnering organizations. ScrapMobile gives 4-6 art-making workshops weekly for youth and adults at recreation sites, housing complexes, after school programs, libraries and other events in urban and suburban locations.

Children’s EcoArts Festival – a free St. Paul citywide event that serves as a culmination of residencies and provides a showcase for young learners and professional artists, representing diverse cultures, to honor and celebrate the Mississippi River, our greatest natural resource that flows right through our backyard.

Founded in 1988, ArtStart presents a multicultural, interdisciplinary view of the world through art classes and special programs focusing on the connection between humans and their environment.

ArtStart draws on a pool of artists and arts educators who focus on process as well as product. These artist/educators emphasize critical thinking, problem solving, esteem building and citizenship along with learning in and through the arts.

Combine any of these creative offerings and get a start with the arts!

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