Sunday, September 25, 2011

Project #20: BLUEPRINTstl

Nat Zorach plans to make "cool things happen in abandoned buildings. Think of it as a hybrid of a collaborative arts project, a community engagement exercise, and a marketing campaign for vacant and city-owned real estate. Architectural charette mixed with real estate venture mixed with dance party. It is about using abandoned buildings as a forum for dialogue and cultural engagement. And figuring out how to renovate those buildings.

BLUEPRINTstl develops a figurative road map as well as physical, architectural drawings to essentially market underappreciated buildings and show how dope they could be with a little love. We are not a real estate developer but we aim to encourage development.

We have the blessing of the SLDC and the LRA, whom we met with earlier this year about this (after the Open/Closed vacant property summit) and who own about 3,000 buildings and think it would be really cool to get some of them moving. Plus those folks, there are thousands more privately owned homes with owners waiting for the right moment to do something cool with the spaces. We’ve got the organizational/building part of it, now we just need some creative minds who want some serious license. Who’s in?

WHO: Me and a couple of architect-designer-carpenter-artist-musician-St. Louis enthusiast friends. Any and all residents who want to join in. Oh, and you. Hit me up.

WHAT THE MONEY WILL BE USED FOR: A small marketing and events programming budget, starting with our kickoff event, hosted in a semi-finished space to assemble some preliminary ideas about the project. We want to inspire and to be inspired, engaging new ideas and energy from community members and creative minds. This is about integrating integrating individual creative product with a collaborative, community endeavor. Our first event will outline some specific goals and sketch out some potential first projects, and the building arts part of the project will detail some renovation plans being worked on by our collaborators."

To get in touch with Nat with questions or thoughts about his project, you can email him at Also, please check out our proposal archive to see who else proposed this month and feel free to send ideas and energy their way too! (The archive suffers from a huge-ish gap, which we plan to remedy soon soon.)

This was our smallest Sloup ever!! 10 folks, 100 dollars. After recalibrating, we could feel the hugeness of 10. And it felt cozy to hang out with John Perkins in a gorgeous space (Thanks CAM!) while eating many bowls of the smoothest most warmingest tomato soup imaginable. We like making the most $$$ we can for the brave folks who propose, but we also like learning from the unique character of each event. And since we're starting to strategize for making Sloup in 2012 stronger and stranger, shoot your ideas to We're also going to be putting out a big time call for collaboration in the next month or so, please keep checking back.

NEXT SLOUPS (mark yr calendars plzzz, these soups will be steamy):
October 30: Halloween Sloup at Fort Gondo Compound for the Arts (wanna make the soup?)
November 27: Caravan to Moonlight Farm in Arnold, MO for a Farm Sloup (pear cider!)


Sloup number twenty is going to happen at the Contemporary this afternoon. This very two o'clock. It is so so sunny on their patio, and the little silver chairs and tables are positioned for maximum sun on your sweet soft face. John Perkins just whipped the richest butter into the last tomato soup of summer. He'll drive it over here in a few minutes. I bet his windows will be rolled down. There are three artist's proposals in a cozy packet for you to read and love, and they are all so well written. They are all such charmers. We are all so charmed. So charmed we're a little sleepy. Come on over. It's nice out.