All posts tagged: Bronzeville

From the South Side to the South and Back: An Interview with Nichole Carter of Bright Star

Creating the right recipe of offerings for the families in your community isn’t an easy task, but that’s what Bright Star Community Outreach works to do everyday in Bronzeville. Providing everything from family service and parent education to workforce development, trauma counseling, and advocacy opportunities, Bright Star takes a holistic approach to their work and wraps their arms all the way around those who walk through their doors for support or service.  A born-and-raised Chicagoan, Bright Star’s Nichole Carter moved to Knoxville, Tennessee as a teenager, then, after acceptance into Spelman she moved to Atlanta. After graduation she spent time working in property management, specifically in mixed-income housing. Eventually, what she learned during her studies and work in the South would make its way to the South Side of Chicago through a position as the Director of Community Strategy and Development at Bright Star.   As the person at the helm of Bright Star’s community programs, she was the one who took a leadership role when Bright Star became one of seven community hubs for Envisioning Justice, a program initiated by Illinois Humanities …

Three Things You Need to Know About Bright Star Community Outreach

Bright Star Community Outreach (BSCO) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that has focused on improving the Bronzeville Community for over 9 years. Born out of Bright Star Community Church, they have a strategy which includes developing impactful community development initiatives. Their plan of action targets violence, poor economic opportunities, child safety, drug abuse, inadequate mental health services, and homelessness. BSCO has a mission to strengthen local families and communities as well as empower residents to work collectively, establish relationships, and share the responsibility of building the community. They particularly target the South side of Chicago’s third and fourth ward. There they see an extensive need for more violence prevention measures to be taken and to get the community more involved in being there for one another. The importance of an organization like BSCO is to shed light in all of the dark places and to make sure the voices of minorities are not just heard but taken seriously. There is a need for something different in our communities, and BSCO definitely brings different to the table on …

Hidden Gems in the Paul V. Galvin Library of the Illinois Institute of Technology

Last summer on a research visit with a colleague, I entered the Special Collections Archive of the Paul V. Galvin Library at the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT). In this space, I was looking through visual materials produced by students in the Design School made from the 1960s to the 1980s. This gallery holds works by many artists who are not seen in the public sphere today. This essay aims to provide crucial biographical information on several of artists and the contexts from which they produce their work. I begin by exploring the works made by Jose Williams who is responding to his experiences as a Black man in Chicago’s Bronzeville context. I then turn to the work of an undernoted woman represented the archive named Valeerat Burapavong. I hope to provide contextual insights and visual analysis on the works produced by these artists. I argue that the works produced in this period (1960s-1980s) challenge notions of race, ethnicity, and gender. Jose Williams: Constructing a Black Chicago in Serigraphy Featured in this archive are works …

BIFORA | Carlo LoCascio Exhibition at Blanc Gallery

“Living isn’t space or time; living is only many moments, the sum of which is also but a moment.” – Carlo LoCascio   When you step inside of Blanc Gallery you quickly realize just that–it’s a blanc gallery. As you probably know or deduced, Blanc means ‘white’ in French and describes the gallery from floor to ceiling. It is the glowing definition of a white cube. This just might be to the benefit of their most recent exhibition, Bifora: Portrait of a Moment with the work of Italian-born, now Chicago-based artist, Carlo LoCascio. The blank canvas that the space provides mimics what happens on LoCascio’s canvases–guiding the viewer’s eye to a specific place within a given space. The loose laying of charcoal, paint and fabric, which in some cases almost swallows the more tightly rendered subject studies, work together to keep your eye moving until it is given a moment to rest on a carefully-crafted face, hand or object. LoCascio’s work does exactly what he sets out for it to do. It asks that as you …

Hair Politics: A Studio Visit with Rhonda Gray

Hair and all that it signifies has appeared in the work of artists in many different ways. One of my favorite cases involves David Hammons who for pieces such as Esquire (Or John Henry) (1990) went to New York barber shops to collect the cut hair he would later use in his sculptures and other installations. For women, hair has always been a tricky subject. As I sat down with artist Rhonda Gray in her studio this summer, she explained just how this topic has informed her latest body of work. In the studio with Rhonda Gray from Tempestt Hazel on Vimeo.