The St. Louis Young Artist Corps (STLYAC) was a summer youth arts and empowerment program forged from a collaboration between the North Saint Louis Arts Council and Yeyo Arts Collective. Teaching artists included Dail Chambers, Simiya Sudduth, Kevin McCoy and Johnathan McFarland. The curriculum, created by Dail, was designed to engage youth in gaining an understanding of power, social justice and the ‘isms’ (racism, classism, ageism), group centered leadership, community histories, African aesthetics in American art and key figures in social justice and art. It even includes non-traditional sources of information like song lyrics and quotations in addition to book and article references! The curriculum was designed with the understanding that as youth look closely at how society is structured and what ails their immediate communities they can find creative solutions through the creation of visual art. Students chose from classes in photography, painting, recycled/found object art and a leadership council
Classes met at Vashon high school during the month of July and culminated at Gya for a celebration of the completion of classes and projects. Youth shared their accomplishments with each other and wrote descriptions of their projects to be included on signage at the installation sites. Later everyone enjoyed refreshments, and received t-shirts with the STLYAC logo that youth had voted on and selected. Stay tuned for the unveiling of the public art created by STLYAC at various locations in North City!