Courtesy Creative Reaction Lab.
Courtesy Creative Reaction Lab.

Collective Impact

A Sense of Home

On June 3, CAM launches the second part of Collective Impact, a new partnership with Creative Reaction Lab (CRXLAB). Building on the introduction of CRXLAB’s work through an exhibition of posters from the Artwork for Equity program, the second half of the season reveals an interactive exhibition titled A Sense of Home. Through a youth-led, Equity-Centered Community Design process, Co-Creators from CRXLAB have crafted a dynamic space that evolves with community participation. Visitors to the museum are invited to respond to prompts that encourage reflection and action around shared needs and concerns about our city.

A Sense of Home draws on the rich narratives we live out every day that shape the many ways we understand “home” through three themes: Immigration & Citizenship, Housing & Health, and Abolition & Emancipation. Visitors are invited to participate in every aspect of the galleries, including tracing personal and/or forced migrations, recording the impact of COVID-19, and an invitation to enact CRXLAB’s Redesigners for Justice™ manifesto by redesigning the gallery space in real-time.

Creative Reaction Lab was founded in support of the Uprising in Ferguson. Today, CRXLAB is dedicated to building a youth-led, community-centered movement of a new type of civic leader for racial and health equity: Redesigners for Justice.

Language Setting Guide

Language Setting is the first step in any community- and equity-centered work. In order to work together, we need to have a shared understanding of what various words and phrases mean as a community. We can explore the various ways language is used and understood. Below you will find a list of phrases/words with definitions. Use this guide throughout your journey in the exhibition to deepen your understanding.

Abolition: The action or an act of abolishing a system, practice, or institution.

Emancipation: The fact or process of being set free from legal, social, or political restrictions; liberation.

Equity-Centered Community Design™: Pioneered by Creative Reaction Lab, Equity-Centered Community Design is a unique and award-winning creative problem-solving process based in human equity, (when outcomes are not predictable based on someone’s identities or characteristics, such as race, sexual orientation, gender identity, and ability status). Designers interact with the process of co-creation  through the framework’s eight components: 

  • Building Humility + Empathy 
  • History + Healing 
  • Acknowledging + Dismantling Power Constructs 
  • Defining the Topic/Assessing Community Needs 
  • Inviting Diverse Co-Creators 
  • Ideating Approaches 
  • Rapid Prototyping 
  • Testing + Learning 

By striving for equity, humility-building, integrating history and healing practices, addressing  power dynamics, and co-creating with the community, Equity-Centered Community Design equips designers with the tools needed to dismantle systemic oppression and create a future with equity for all

Redesigners for Justice™: Creative Reaction Lab is training a new type of leader to address the exclusion and inequities in our communities: Redesigners for Justice.™ Redesigners for Justice address exclusion and inequities in their communities with self-awareness by: 

  • Putting people and racial + ethnic equity first 
  • Working through the lens of failure—always iterating, making and improving interventions 
  • Building upon the existing resources available within their organizations/communities to create change 

The role of a Redesigner for Justice is context-dependent; we can be an Equity Designer in one context and a Design Ally in another. 

Equity Designers:  

  • Are embedded within a community and strive toward the improvement of that community, 
  • Have lived experiences with the inequity being addressed. 

  Design Allies: 

  • Might be embedded within a community or are indirectly connected 
  • Work through the lens of failure—always iterating, making, and improving interventions, 
  • Leverage their power and access to benefit Equity Designers.

Collective Impact: A Sense of Home is organized in partnership with Creative Reaction Lab’s Quinton Ward, Co-Creator; Reina Stovall, Co-Creator; Tiana Glass, Project Manager; Sage Youngblood, Design Associate; and Antionette Carroll, Founder, President and CEO, with support from Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis’s Michelle Dezember, Director of Learning and Engagement, and Miriam Ruiz, School and Community Programs Manager.

Audio Guide