Bread & Roses Missouri is a celebration of the arts in the lives of working people and their families. As the labor hymn for which the organization is named reminds us, “Hearts starve as well as bodies…”
Our mission is to organize and participate in arts and humanities events, exhibits, and workshops for and about workers and their families that address the root causes of poverty and inequality and that moves us toward an economic base that benefits the entire community. Bread & Roses believes in equality for all on and off the job. Using an arts lens, we are committed to fighting against racism, sexism, classism and other forms of discrimination and for affirmative action, cultural diversity and a more just society for all.
Bread & Roses Missouri will celebrate its’ second birthday as an independent arts organization in October. Birthed originally fifteen years ago as a project of Jobs With Justice out of discussion about the racial dynamics still pervasive in our own communities, Bread & Roses brought together community activists and union members with art that spurred dialogue about various social justice themes. Sixty artists submitted work for the first art exhibit, many of them union members and community activists that had not shared their artistic talents so publicly before. One of the most exciting parts of the developing the exhibit was the participation of many non-traditional artists – a house painter who takes photos, a postal worker who writes music, single mothers who were facing Medicaid cuts, …victims of police violence, …factory workers who had lost their jobs overseas. It is in that same spirit that Bread & Roses Missouri continues today. To learn more about our current projects click here.