Special Event: “Visitors” at the Pillsbury Mill Site


Moving Pillsbury Forward is committed to cleaning up the former Pillsbury Mills site and setting the stage for redevelopment of the 18-acres. This includes remediation and demolition of the existing structures at the site. While we await regulatory approval to move ahead with this plan, we are making the best of the situation through a series of community events. 

After opening our Echoes of Pillsbury exhibit in September, we hosted over 500 people for public tours in October. Now, we are pleased to announce the opening for an on-site art installation and exhibit titled “Visitors” on Thursday (Nov. 9th) from 5:30 to 8:00 pm.  Park and enter at the main gate (corner of 16th St. and Phillips Ave.). Admission is free.


A special event will take place at the abandoned Pillsbury Mill factory on Thursday, November 9th. For the last month, graffiti artists have been transforming an entire floor of the emptied “C-Mill” building into a 15,000-square-foot art installation and exhibit titled “Visitors”. 

The project, facilitated and sponsored by Moving Pillsbury Forward, focuses on the work of Minneapolis artists Shock and Static, who were encountered exploring the site at night in September. Moving Pillsbury Forward staff were familiar with their work (made during previous visits), and instead of ushering the artists off the property, they were invited to return to create new work under more ideal conditions. The result is a massive site-specific work, expressed in spray paint and found objects and exploring themes pertinent to the rise and fall of the Pillsbury factory and surrounding community during the 20th century. The installation also includes the work of other graffiti artists and local sculptors.

The project is not only a first for Springfield, but a unique one in the Midwest, representing rare cooperation between landowners, brownfield clean-up objectives, and “street artists”. Curator Robert Mazrim has for the last six months focused on the “aesthetic salvage and recycling” of the artistic potential of the ruined factory, before its scheduled demolition in the coming 18 months.

Access to the installation will be limited. For the November 9th event, visitors will be invited to explore the space, illuminated by improvised lighting, between 5:30 and 8:00 PM.  The building has no heat, visitors should dress accordingly. Sturdy shoes or boots are recommended at this old factory venue. Admission is free.

“Visitors” provides yet another unique opportunity to explore and reconsider the remains of an important piece of Springfield history, and this time, to get a close-up view of an art form that is often fleeting and inaccessible to most residents of the community. 

Thanks for being a part of the Pillsbury Project.

Chris / Polly / Tony

Pillsbury Mill special event Visitors art exhibit November 9 - art number 2.