Springfield, MO

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Art Inspired - Shape Something Meaningful

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Art Inspired

Address: 310 S. Campbell Ave. Springfield, MO. 65806
Phone: 417-868-8084
Fax: 417-868-8077
Web Address:
Top Executives: Board of Directors
Crystal Reynolds – President
Monty Montgomery - Vice President
Richard Maltiby
Jonathon Petefish
Alexis Brown
John Taylor
Ellie Widmer
Megan Weaver
Wendy Kuehnel - Director
Year Founded: 2012
Number of Employees: 20
Product or Service: Secure Document Disposal, Creative Rental Space, Retail Store, Art Gallery
According to the EPA, the average office worker in the US uses 10,000 sheets of copy paper each year and generates approximately two pounds of paper and paperboard products every day. In 2010, 63.5% of that paper was shredded and recycled, and earlier this year, some of that local paper waste started being transformed into art, thanks to Art Inspired.

Art Inspired is a new non-profit business concept that provides Springfield businesses with secure document disposal services while also creating employment opportunities to empower individuals with developmental disabilities. Organized a year ago, and open to the public in August, Art Inspired currently employs 20 people, 50% of whom have developmental disabilities.

Jan Jones, the Executive Director of Abilities First, says the agency started working on the idea of giving new employment opportunities to individuals with developmental disabilities ten years ago. Art Inspired is now in business due to the work of Abilities First and their friends and supporters, as well as the Drury University Enactus Team.

“Art Inspired believes that people with developmental disabilities should be able to work side-by-side with people without,” Director Wendy Kuehnel says. “We strive to create an understanding, comfortable environment where everyone is treated respectfully.”

Through the Art Inspired secure paper disposal process, paper is picked up and destroyed then delivered to the storefront, where it is used at the store and turned into other forms of paper. After the recycling process is when the art begins. At Art Inspired, employees make handmade paper directly from the local paper waste, and make products including stationary, note cards, post cards, greeting cards, picture frames, vases, Christmas ornaments, custom centerpieces, crown molding, decorative wall art and even furniture.

“Our system turns normal paper waste into custom, creative and usable pieces of art,” Kuehnel says. “We don't just get rid of the waste, we turn it into something great for the community through art, jobs, and opportunities.”

Visitors are also invited to be a part of the art process and make personalized gifts through the decorate-your-own creation station. Through the station, employees help people of all ages create handmade stationery or greeting cards and invitations, or paint and embellish any Art Inspired home décor product. In addition, the creation station space is also available for parties.

With a full line of secure document disposal services, art gallery space, craft activities for all ages, event space rental and more, along with selling unique art pieces and useful products made from recycled paper products, Art Inspired's innovative, environmentally conscious approach to both businesses and the arts in Springfield is what Kuehnel feels will serve as an example of environmental sustainability and innovative business solutions for years to come. “We are proud to provide opportunities that change people's lives.”[[In-content Ad]]


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