UrbArts In Old North St. Louis

 In Culture, Feature

The age-old synergy between art and culture is a central theme at this 16-year-old nonprofit. Founder M.K. Stallings put forth the notion that cultural ideas and values can be harnessed to create new visions for the future.

On a practical level, this manifests into events like poetry readings, storytelling sessions and trap yoga (asana movements paired with a hip-hop DJ). Organizations from across the region rent the space for events—and as perceptions of the neighborhood change, these events are becoming more diverse, encouraging connections between attendees of varying backgrounds. It’s just one example of the ways art can change enrich the lives of community members and beyond.

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UrbArts also puts great effort into its youth programming. A highlight is the VerbQuake Youth Poetry Slam, a six-month initiative that teaches writing, performance and leadership skills to neighborhood children. Teens also have the opportunity to join the youth advisory council to experience a challenging leadership role. There’s even a St. Louis Youth Poet Laureate competition—connecting young poets with publishing houses.

2600 N. 14th St.

While you’re in the neighborhood, visit …


Old North Gallery

2700 North 14th St.  

Hosting receptions, workshops and community celebrations, all set against a backdrop of art exhibits.


Zuka Arts Guild Gallery and 14th St. Artist Community

2701 N. 14th St.

A beautiful rehab with ornate tin ceilings that serves as a home base for the Zuka artists.

Central Print and Alpha Beta Club

2624 N. 14th St.

A nonprofit letterpress studio offering classes and studio space.


This story originally appeared in GUIDED: St. Louis’ issue featuring Old North. Pick up your complimentary on newsstands now.

Photo credit: Carmen Troesser

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