Celebrating Chicagoan, African American Painter Charles White

On April 2, we celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth of African American painter and graphic designer Charles White. According to Roosevelt University professor Erik Gellman in The Black Chicago Renaissance, White not only “applied his art as a weapon in Chicago,” but he discovered a unique appreciation and love for African American history…
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Top Picks: Art Books for Kids

From writing code to making sculptures out of trash, there are so many ways to make art. Think you've got what it takes to be a great artist? Why don't you step into my studio and give it a try? Let's start at the very beginning. Before you can paint a picture, you need something…
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Happy 50th to the Chicago Picasso!

In the early 1960s, the architectural firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill was working on designs for Daley Plaza. Architect William Hartmann helped convince Spanish artist Pablo Picasso to design a sculpture for the space. Picasso would not accept payment, making this artwork a gift to the people of Chicago. Constructed from the same Cor-Ten steel used in…
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Save The Books!

It is said that those who burn books have no problem burning people, and that has certainly been true over the past century. Whether Hitler, Stalin, Mao, or Pol Pot, tyrants have tried to control people by controlling culture and the past. Fortunately, there are people like those documented in The Monuments Men (read my blog post on that here…
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Chicago Murals Speak Volumes

Street art has been around for decades and some of Chicago's murals and sticker decals (e.g. You are Beautiful) have become world-famous. I was pretty thrilled to see Chance the Rapper's Angels video inspired by Hebru Brantley's famous mural, Fly-boy, located on Wabash in the South Loop; the combination of these two artists seems so Chicago and Chance literally…
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