Visual Artists Present Bold Disobedience Exhibition

From June 23 until September 2, our Visual Artists will be presenting works on resistance and protest in the group exhibition, Bold Disobedience at Weinberg/Newton Gallery! This is the first time our VA scholar-artists are featured in a gallery alongside professional artists. Huge congrats to the seven scholar-artists selected: Thalia Agosto (Class of 2019), Natalie Aparicio (Class of 2017), Evan Calabrese (Class of 2017), Maya Halko (Class of 2018), Josue Herrera (Class of 2019), Zachary Huff (Class of 2019), and Raven Smith (Class of 2018). These emerging artists created pieces using all different types of mediums, reflecting topics such as gentrification in the Pilsen community, police brutality, LGBTQ culture, capitalism, and many more works that exhibit “a call to participate in civic action.” For artist biographies and more information, click here

Bold Disobedience is presented in collaboration with the Mikva Challenge, Weinberg/Newton Gallery, and ChiArts’ Visual Arts Department Head, Whitney Bradshaw.

Opening Reception: June 23, Weinberg/Newton Gallery, 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM.

Exhibition Dates: June 23 – September 2nd, Weinberg/Newton Gallery, open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM.

 

ChiArts Welcomes 2017 Pulitzer Prize Winner, Tyehimba Jess

The Creative Writing Conservatory is thrilled to welcome Tyehimba Jess, a 2017 Pulitzer Prize Winner. On June 19 from 6:00-7:00 PM, a free public reading and talk will be hosted in the ChiArts Black Box Theatre. Jess’s book Olio won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry. He is the 6th African American to have such an honor and does so during the year long celebration of Gwendolyn Brooks 100th birthday, who was the 1st African American to win the Pulitzer prize for her book Annie Allen in 1950. Please join us for this special event.

Want to learn more about Tyehimba Jess? Click here!

University of Michigan–Flint is Conducting a Social Media Audit

This June, graduate students from the University of Michigan–Flint are conducting a social media audit to evaluate our digital communication strategies. At the end of the month, the team of graduates will present a report of their findings to help us communicate effectively online!

Your input is greatly appreciated. Simply take this quick survey by Wednesday, June 14th. Thank you so much for your time!

Not familiar with our social accounts? Follow ChiArts on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

ChiArts Welcomes Annie Calhoun as the New Theatre Department Head

We are thrilled to welcome Annie Calhoun as our new Theatre Department Head. She was a founding teacher at ChiArts and has a deep love for the school’s mission. She will succeed Rob Chambers, our Founding Theatre Department Head, who is moving to Arizona to lead the theatre department at Arizona School for the Arts.

Ms. Calhoun holds degrees in education and theatre. She returns to Chicago after five years teaching, directing and performing in Los Angeles. In LA, Ms. Calhoun taught and directed at the Professional, Collegiate (USC), and High School (LA County HS for the Arts) levels; she also founded an inner city theatre program for middle schoolers in South LA. She is a playwright whose pieces have been performed on stages all over Los Angeles and an actor whose work ranges from theater and film, to improv and stand up comedy.

A Chicago native, she is rooted in our values of play, ensemble, high standards and creative new work. The breadth and depth of her expertise in education and theatre offer a vast array of skills from classroom management and facilitating diversity, equity & inclusion to building ensemble among students and staff, and measuring student growth outcomes. Ms. Calhoun will begin her tenure in the fall for the 2017-18 school year!

Creative Writing Hosts Fatimah Asghar, Franny Choi and Tarfia Faizullah

We started off National Poetry Month with a powerful panel of women writers, performers and teaching artists! Fatimah Asghar (Dark Noise Collective, Helen Zell Writers’ Program), Franny Choi (Dark Noise Collective, Project VOICE) and Tarfia Faizullah (Organic Weapon Arts Publishing, University of Michigan Professor) visited our Creative Writing students for a Q & A session, master class and open mic performance.

 On March 31, students listened, laughed and discussed their personal writing styles and goals with our guests. Our Creative Writers asked about topics ranging from college programs and artistic solitude to self-criticism. Tarfia explained, “I don’t know if I believe in good or bad writing. When I think of “good” or “bad”, I just ask myself… is it alive?” These three writers challenged our students with unfiltered answers, detailed writing exercises and workshops on “how to trust our instincts as writers.” Thank you, Fatimah, Franny and Tarfia for sharing your beautiful words and work with our students! Check out our favorite insights from these incredible women:

ChiArts Senior Visual Artists to exhibit at MANA CONTEMPORARY

For the fourth year in a row, MANA Contemporary will host The Chicago High School for the Arts (ChiArts®) Visual Art Department’s Senior Showcase Exhibition. The special exhibition will include original works made by this year’s graduating students from the Class of 2017, and will be on view from April 21 – April 30, 2017. A public reception will be held on Friday, April 21, 2017 from 6PM-9PM.

The Senior Showcase is the culminating exhibition of a ChiArts visual art student’s high school career. The works on view will include selections from students’ year-long thesis investigations as part of their Major AP Studio Art Course. ChiArts’ Visual Arts Department offers the following majors: Drawing/Painting, Photography, Sculpture, and Visual Communications. Students will also exhibit works made in their elective courses, including Digital Media, Wearable Sculpture, Sequential Art and Contemporary Practices: Performance and Installation.

ChiArts thanks Columbia College Chicago for loaning their exhibition walls for ChiArts’ use in this exhibit and MANA Contemporary for hosting this exhibition. Read the full press release: ChiArts Senior Visual Artists to Exhibit at MANA Contemporary.

ChiArts Visual Arts Department Senior Showcase Exhibition 2017
April 21 – April 30, 2017
Public Reception: April 21st, 6 – 9PM

ChiArts’ Visual Arts Class of 2017:

Kaelyn Andrade
Gabriel Antos
Natalie Aparicio
Sam Barber Kennedy
Gregory Buckner
Evan Calabrese
Guadalupe Campos
Anieya Cauthen
Yasmeen Cisneros
Cameron Collins
Meka Cruz
Seann Dunham
Jordon Eason
Maya Franklin
Srinidi Gopal
Tyler Jackson
Trinitty Jeffries
Steven Jones
Nefertari Louden
Cassandra Magana
Christian Martinez
Alexander Payne
Carri Ponder
Deborah Pozo-Tovar
Andrea Reyes
Ricardo Rivera
Marlina Romero-Saulsberry
Carolina Sandoval
Chyanne Spencer
Molly Sullivan
Pierson Talbott
Cassandra Magana

ChiArts to Celebrate 6th Annual Kerfuffle! Benefit

ChiArts to Celebrate 6th Annual Kerfuffle! Benefit
And release a children’s book to celebrate the “past, present, and future” of ChiArts


Chicago, IL, March 7, 2017 – The Chicago High School for the Arts (ChiArts), along with the school’s Board of Directors and event co-chairs John Hart, Pam Strobel, and Neal Zucker, will host its 6th annual Kerfuffle! benefit from 6-9:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 27, 2017 at the Chicago History Museum, 1601 N. Clark.

About Kerfuffle!
Kerfuffle!, ChiArts’ spring gala and presentation, welcomes supporters, arts partners, and civic leaders. The evening will include a welcome cocktail reception, student performance “exhibits,” a short performance in the theater, dinner buffet by Jewell Catering, and entertainment throughout the museum’s second floor. Guests will be able to interact with students representing each of ChiArts’ five arts conservatories: Creative Writing, Dance, Music, Theatre, and Visual Arts. The Chicago History Museum’s spacious ballroom will be furnished elegantly by Kehoe Designs and guests will enjoy wine generously provided by Hart Davis Hart Wine Company. Funds raised at Kerfuffle! are integral to the operations of ChiArts’ tuition-free arts programs, which serve 600 students each year.

Illustration by Alan Cortes (Class of 2016)

“This year’s Kerfuffle! will celebrate the past, present, and future of ChiArts,” says Executive and Artistic Director José Ochoa. “With the recent launch of ChiArts’ first summer camp and the school’s first class of freshmen scheduled to graduate from four-year universities this spring, the event will celebrate the arc of development ChiArts offers to young, talented, and diverse artists from all of Chicago’s fifty wards.”

This year’s Kerfuffle! will feature the release of an original children’s book sponsored by State Farm Insurance. Anita’s Drum tells the story of diverse, creative children in Chicago seeking a place to learn and practice their art. ChiArts has commissioned Visual Arts alumnus Alan Cortes and current Creative Writing major Ysobel Gallo to provide illustrations and narrative for the book, which will be featured in a presentation during the event.

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About ChiArts
ChiArts is Chicago’s first and only public high school for the arts, providing each student with a pre-professional arts training program paired with a high-quality college-preparatory curriculum. Ranked in the top 6% of high schools by US News and World Report and listed as a 1+ school by the CPS School Quality Rating Policy (SQRP), ChiArts is a citywide institution that aims to reflect the racial, socio-economic, geographic, and artistic diversity of Chicago. For more information, please visit www.chiarts.org.

Mary Elliott of National Museum of African American History and Culture visits ChiArts

On Tuesday, February 28, ChiArts students gathered as a whole school to welcome Mary Elliott, Co-Curator of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture. The museum, which opened in September, aims to tell American history through an African American lens. Over one million people have already visited and there is currently a months-long waiting list for passes. Mary’s visit was a special behind-the-scenes look into the museum’s exhibits, highlighting the human context of African American history throughout the museum’s five floors.

ChiArts is grateful to BMO Harris Bank for bringing this special presentation to our students, and to Mary Elliott and the National Museum of African American History and Culture for an inspiring and transformative morning to close out Black History Month.

 

Justin Gunn and Steven Cooper, students at ChiArts, join Good Day Chicago to talk about their new film “Bound.”

Justin Gunn and Steven Cooper, students at ChiArts, join Good Day Chicago to talk about their new film “Bound.”

The film follows the diverging lives of two African-Americans growing up in Chicago. Cooper and Gunn offer a positive alternative to life on the streets – arts education. As Cooper notes in the interview, “…Simple things like opportunities and exposure to different artistic lifestyles may be something that can get them out.”

 

Music students represent ChiArts at Lyric Opera Chicago Voices Concert

ChiArts vocalists attend Lyric’s Chicago Voices concert.

On February 4, a group of ChiArts vocalists attended the Lyric Opera’s Chicago Voices concert featuring performances and unique collaborations by artistic director Renée Fleming, Shemekia Copeland, Kurt Elling, Lupe Fiasco, The Handsome Family, Jessie Mueller, Matthew Polenzani, John Prine, and Michelle Williams.

ChiArts alumna Noel Price joined the stage with Williams, and the following day, Ms. Fleming coached Class of 2017 vocalist Reever Julian in a special master class.

Special thanks to the Caerus Foundation and Lyric Opera for this amazing opportunity for our scholar-artists!

 

ChiArts vocalist Reever Julian with opera star Renee Fleming

ChiArts Alumna Noel Price at Chicago Voices concert