Thursday, July 27, 2023

This blog is an archive

While I led Cabrini  Connections from 1993 to 2011 I encouraged volunteers, staff and students to write blogs.  This is one of them.  Google has indicated that sites not updated in the past two years will be deleted. Thus, I'm posting this update. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Special Event at the MCA: April 20, 2011

Mark your calendars for an upcoming special event!

Jan Tichy's 'Project Cabrini Green' will be showcased on April 20 at the Museum of Contemporary Art.

Time: 6:30 to 8:00 pm
Date: April 20, 2011
Location: MCA
220 East Chicago Avenue

Read more about this exhibition at the MCA.

Also, check out this recent article from Time Out Chicago - which quotes Savon Clark from Cabrini Connections.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Art Project shines "light" on Cabrini Green


Artist Jan Tichy leads community art project to “light” the last high-rise at Cabrini-Green in Chicago March 28 - April 24, 2011

Beginning on the evening of March 28, the last high-rise building at the Cabrini-Green housing projects (1230 N. Burling St., Chicago) will be lit up in the form of 134 LED lights, one for each apartment in the building. The light installation will be visible in the evenings during the four-week demolition period. As the building is razed, the lights will be demolished along with the building.

The public light art installation, titled *Project Cabrini Green*, is a community-based art project conceived by artist and educator Jan Tichy. *Project Cabrini Green* involved over 200 people to realize, from Cabrini-Green and the wider city. Jan Tichy is represented by Richard Gray Gallery.

From January to March 2011, together with over 20 students from the *School of the Art Institute of Chicago*, Tichy held two and three-day workshops with local youth at *Cabrini Connections*, *Marwen*, *After School Matters Creative Writing Program at Gallery 37* and *ThaBrigade Stamps – Cabrini Green Marching Band*.

In the workshops, students were introduced to public art and light art, and brainstorming sessions and group activities were held on the concepts of Home, Public Housing, Community and Demolition. The youth were then charged with the task of writing poems or texts that addressed the concepts above. Employing a computer program developed by SAIC students that translates sound into light, the youth performed their texts for recording, creating unique light patterns. These light patterns define each of the 134 LED lights at the high-rise. Thus, the youth’s voices literally “tell” their stories through light.

As a component of *Project Cabrini Green*, live-feed footage from the site will be projected at the Museum of Contemporary Art at street-level, on the corner of Pearson and Mies Van der Rohe streets behind the museum’s glass facade, thereby rendering it visible at night. A voice/light-activated model of the high-rise will accompany the installation, and the youth participant’s written texts and audio content will be available. Tricia Van Eck, Associate Curator, is the organizing curator of the installation at the Museum of Contemporary Art.

The youth’s texts, the audio content, and the live-feed video will also be available on the project website.

For more information please visit the website (live March 23, 2011): or follow us on Facebook by searching “Project Cabrini Green”

For more information contact:
Erin Fowler - Richard Gray Gallery
(312) 642.8877


About Jan Tichy:
Jan Tichy is a contemporary artist and educator who works with video, sculpture, architecture, and photography. Born in Prague in 1974, Tichy studied in Israel before moving to Chicago in 2007, where he earned his MFA at the School of the Art Institute (2009) and where he now teaches. Tichy has had solo exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; the Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art; Richard Gray Gallery, Chicago; and the Center for Contemporary Art in Tel Aviv. Over the past years his work has been included in exhibitions in Barcelona, Basel, Berlin, Frankfurt, Helsinki, Jerusalem, New York, Paris, Prague, Stockholm, Tel Aviv, Venice, and Washington, D.C. His work, *Bats* (2007), was recently acquired by the Museum of Modern Art, New York. He has been nominated for Gottesdiener Prize of the Tel Aviv Museum of Art for 2011. In March 2011, the publication Art Review named Tichy one of the *Future Greats*.

About Cabrini Connections:
Cabrini Connections is a one-on-one tutoring and mentoring program for youth in grades 7-12 who live or go to school in and around the Cabrini-Green neighborhood of Chicago. In addition to weekly tutoring and mentoring sessions, the program also offers learning and enrichment clubs (art, video, tech, and writing), field trips to colleges and workplaces, a college application assistance program, and more.

Does this project signal end of poor families in Cabrini Green and less need for Cabrini Connections? Read this article showing number of families still in Cabrini Green and projected for the future.

About Marwen:
Founded in 1987, Marwen is a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting the development of Chicago's under-served youth in grades 6-12 through free visual arts, college planning, and career preparation programs. In a typical year, students from 54 of the city's 57 zip codes and from more than 220 schools travel to Marwen, where they take classes designed and taught by practicing artists.

About After School Matters:
After School Matters® is a nonprofit organization that offers Chicago teens innovative out-of-school activities through its science37, sports37, tech37, words37 and nationally recognized gallery37 programs. Programs are provided through a network of public and private partnerships that include the Chicago Public Schools, Chicago Park District, Chicago Public Library and community organizations across the city. Hands-on, project-based programs introduce teens to rewarding careers and help them develop marketable job skills.

About ThaBrigade Stamps - Cabrini Green Marching Band:
ThaBrigade Stamps Marching Band program is a growing program designed to give youth of the Near North/Cabrini Green community training in the arts with a concentration in music education. It is a comprehensive music program encompassing the goals and objectives for music education outlined in the “No Child Left Behind Act” enabling youth to expand their artistic horizons through educational and social outlets while building their resume of accomplishments leading to a bright outlook on life.

About the Chicago Housing Authority:
CHA was created in 1937 to create and expand affordable housing opportunities for low-income families and seniors. Today CHA assists more than 50,000 Chicagoans living in public housing and participating in the Housing Choice Voucher Program. Currently, CHA is carrying out the Plan for Transformation, an ambitious revitalization effort that will deliver 25,000 units of new, affordable housing by 2015.

About the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC):
A leader in educating artists, designers, and scholars since 1866, SAIC offers nationally accredited degree programs to nearly 3,200 students from around the globe. Located in the heart of Chicago, SAIC has an educational philosophy built upon an interdisciplinary approach to art and design, giving students unparalleled opportunities to develop their creative and critical abilities, while working with renowned faculty who include many of the leading practitioners in their fields.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Students bring light to Cabrini Green

On Sunday, January 16th, and Monday, January 17th (MLK Day), Cabrini Connections students took part in a public light art workshop with the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. They created stories and poems which, based on the rhythms of their recordings, were turned into blinking LED lights. These lights will be placed in each of the 134 windows of the last remaining high-rise building of Cabrini Green as part of Project Cabrini Green. A lighting event is expected to take place in March. Stay tuned for more details!

You can read more about this project and see pictures on Facebook here.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Calling All Sculptors, Architects, Painters & Dreamers

For those who like designing sculptures, building things and making up complex models, Monday evening's art club was quite a hit. We used a few boxes of flat toothpicks to build our designs, then we glued the pieces together, and combined sets to create some intricate 3D sculptures. A sample is pictured above.

Project Inspiration:
Credit: Cyndi Koppelman, Saline High School, Saline, Michigan

Stay tuned for next week's exciting project! We'll be drawing, painting and cutting up our work to create non-objective works of art--using the abstract paintings of Gunther Gerszo (1915-2000) as our inspiration.

The Art Club has many more fun projects planned. Drop by on Monday night to learn more!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Exciting New School Year!!

We are really looking forward to this school year and excited about the projects we have lined up. So far we have done three projects beginning with an exercise in black and white sketches to capture light and dark, points of view, and understand shading techniques. There was an assortment of fruits and vegetables of various shapes, sizes, and textures. Once they had a good grasp and a few sketches completed, we introduced color in the form of dry pastels as they had never worked with this medium before. With the next project the kids created their own silk screened t-shirts with templates donated to us by Candie Cooper. Each student made at least 2 t-shirts and they turned out amazing! The colors they created were extraordinary and some overlapped each other really giving 3-D like impressions. The last project was a bit more on the creative side as we instructed the students create a CD cover and track listing as if they were the musical artist and were promoting their own album. The finished product would then be placed into a CD jewel case to complete the look. Stay tuned for next weeks blog update as we will be starting a new project!