The Propeller Group, <em>Fusion (After a Universe of Collisions)</em>, installation view, Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, January 15–April 3, 2016. Photo: David Johnson.
The Propeller Group, Fusion (After a Universe of Collisions), installation view, Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, January 15–April 3, 2016. Photo: David Johnson.

Mission + Impact

The Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis works to enrich lives and inspire curiosity, creativity, and learning through experiences with contemporary art. Our mission is to create meaningful engagement with the most relevant and innovative art being made today. We are a welcome space, free to all.

  • We showcase work being made today for today’s audiences—art that reflects the world around us, and helps connect us to the most salient issues of our time. Not having a permanent collection allows us to be nimble, adaptive, and responsive—both to the global art world and our local community. CAM is a launch pad for artists—many of whom go on to critical acclaim—as well as a venue for St. Louisans to experience figures of international recognition. A site for discovery, CAM is a gathering place in which to view and enjoy contemporary visual culture.
  • Inspired by the work on view, we engage thousands of people inside and outside the Museum’s walls through a wide array of activities for people of all ages, including artist talks, hands-on ArtReach workshops in schools and neighborhoods, stroller tours, a monthly neighborhood art crawl, and city-wide Open Studios STL. We provide more than eighty public programs per year—the majority of which are free—and maintain a deep relationship with St. Louis Public Schools, especially those within our one-mile radius.
  • CAM nurtures the creative minds of our city’s young people through free, in-depth art education. In New Art in the Neighborhood, our nationally acclaimed studio art program for teens, and LEAP Middle School Initiative, students work with artists to become immersed in contemporary art issues and practices. In Teen Museum Studies, an innovative career-based training program, participants experience the inner workings of the Museum as they organize an exhibition from start to finish. These programs have proven long-lasting impact—developing better students, better citizens, and better artists and art audiences for the future.

Read Mesh for an annual review of the Museum’s exhibitions, programs, and impact.