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Artistic billboards urge Missourians to vote

By Maria Hickey, KWMU

St. Louis, MO. – A movement called Art the Vote is taking a unique approach to getting out the vote this November.

Friday the group will unveil 70 billboards across Missouri.

The billboards will include the artwork of seven nationally-known artists and a simple message Vote: Your Future Depends on It.

Each artist also takes on a different social issue in their work.

Committee member and University of Missouri St. Louis art professor Susan Cahen says the billboards are high impact.

"Artists have the ability to render and communicate complex ideas in very direct and visual ways, and that's why I think the billboard medium is a very good medium for getting these messages out," Cahen said.

One of the group's founders, Sue McCollum, says the goal to get young people to register and vote.

"Young voters vote the least, and yet, when you look at their age, they have the longest lifespan to live with the decisions that are made today," McCollum said. "In 2006 only 22% of people ages 18 to 24 registered to vote. We'd like to increase that number."

The deadline to register to vote in Missouri is October 8th.

McCollum says the Art to Vote effort began in January and is the first of its kind in the nation.

To see the artwork go to www.artthevote.com.

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