Rooted in the Settlement House tradition of its parent organization, Pillsbury House + Theatre has been using arts and creativity to build community for over 135 years. With the recent surge of investment in Arts Based Community Development and the emergence of Creative Placemaking as a field, PH+T has been able to deepen and expand its work in this area. Our overarching goal has been to work in partnership with artists to integrate art into four surrounding neighborhoods such that it creates a web of connections, strengthening the fabric of the community for all. We wanted to know what impact our Creative Placemaking work was having on people’s Access (I feel welcome here), Attachment (I feel like I fit here) and Agency (I feel like I can make good things happen here).
ADDING IT UP tells the story of the impacts of 52 projects led by 30+ artists working in collaboration with thousands of community members in 4 neighborhoods. Written by Anne Gadwa Nicodemus, who helped define the field of Creative Placemaking, and her Metris Arts Consulting team, ADDING IT UP is an in-depth analysis of all of the evaluation data we collected in our Arts on Chicago and Art Blocks programs between 2012 and 2014.
ADDING IT UP captures the perspectives of artists, neighborhood residents and other civic stakeholders. Using the extensive data collected by PH+T as well as implementing additional methods to address specific research questions, Metris not only illuminates progress toward Access, Attachment and Agency, but identifies which evaluation strategies were most effective.
We are very excited to share ADDING IT UP with you. We are committed to holding ourselves accountable to everyone who partnered with PH+T in the work. And our hope is that our learning may be of value to other organizations, artists, researchers and community members taking an arts based approach to neighborhood revitalization and community building. We’d love to share these findings far and wide, so please reach out to us if you see an opportunity to present at a conference, webinar or convening with which you are involved.
Download the ADDING IT UP Full Report>> (PDF, 2408K)
Download the ADDING IT UP Executive Summary>> (PDF, 970k)
Download the ADDING IT UP Technical Appendix>> (PDF, 900K)