Friday, June 24, 2016

Freedom Lover Films Collected Voices

"Art is Business"

I am a visual anthropologist and ethnographic filmmaker. I work with youth as my students, film crew, and subjects. My work, following women and girls has taken around the world to tell the story of some of the worlds most marginalized people. 

Collected Voices centers around original ethnographic works that explore the intersection of race, age, class, gender, and sexuality within Chicago society. Explored through short and feature length films from Chicago based artists, these stories capture the voices of individuals and communities. 

Thematic screenings held at the Phantom Gallery Chicago loft will create a space for viewing and discussion of narratives from underrepresented ethnic and cultural groups; often excluded from major theatrical & digital release. 

These films are curated to not only highlight the work of Chicago based filmmakers, but expand our understanding of ethnography, and the diverse experiences of Chicago citizens.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Susan Fox Speaks about Participatory PopUp Outside Performance Space

Susan Fox Speaks about Participatory PopUp Outside Performance Space 02/15 by Phantom Gallery Chicago Network | Performing Arts Podcasts:

Susan Fox Culture Coach programmer, curator of Intersections series, and Nonprofit Partnership Developer with the Greater Madison Jazz Consortium. Talks about her vision for the 'The Culture Coach', a traveling pop-up stage, which brings music and hands-on art experiences to parks clustered on the South and West sides of Chicago.

The mission of the Culture Coach is to bring live music and the arts to our city's neighborhoods so that all are able to participate as audience or actors in these activities without regard to economic status or where they live. The Greater Madison Jazz Consortium is a new partnership of nonprofit presenting organizations (Madison Music Collective, Wisconsin Union Theater, Madison Jazz Society, and Midwest Gypsy Swing Festival), educators (UW School of Music, Madison Metropolitan School District Fine Arts Office, and Madison Jazz Jam), and WORT-FM, with additional support from the Jazz Institute of Chicago and local media (Isthmus and Capital City Hues).

Working together, these partners will pursue five common goals aimed at creating a more vibrant and sustainable local jazz scene: This Spring, the Consortium members will also complete a strategic plan that identifies a set of high-priority initiatives to further strengthen Greater Madison's jazz scene in the coming years.

"Art is Business"

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Sankofa for the Earth

"Art is Business"

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Lea Pinsky Mixed Masters Murals-

"Art is Business"

Lea Pinsky
As an artist, my main focus is leading murals in schools and community spaces. Over the past ten years I have created more than two dozen large-scale works for schools, churches, playgrounds, and community centers. Many mural projects are collaborations with my husband, artist Dustin Harris. Together we run the company Mix Masters Murals -- check us out for a full portfolio of projects. 

I am also a sometimes-painter, and hope to fill my site with more canvas work in the upcoming year.

As an arts education specialist, I have founded, managed and taught youth programs with Columbia College Chicago, Urban Gateways, City of Evanston, Chicago Humanities Festival, After School Matters, Steppenwolf Theatre, and Lifeline Theatre. I am currently the Director of Education and Outreach with Art Encounter.

Monday, June 13, 2016

ANNE FARLEY GAINES- Featured Artists

"Art is Business"

ANNE FARLEY GAINES – Artists’ statement

"Treasures of Palos Heights" - Exterior Latex Paint, Ceramic, and Mosaic
Treasures of Palos Heights

I have been an artist for over 40 years.  Having grown up in the country in South Haven, Michigan is most likely why nature was my central theme for a long time. The Pilsen neighborhood of Chicago is where I have lived since 1980, however.  In recent years, imagery and influence from these surrounds has infiltrated my paintings, drawings, mixed-media works and folding screens, even though nature remains predominant.  Some works have included views of my 1875 Victorian home from unusual angles.  In 2006 and 2008 I received CAAP grants to subsequently produce works of two different series – “Lessons from a House” and “Pilsen Homes and Gardens.” I sometimes used a shaped, 3-dimensional surface for surprise, variety, and humor.  Producing these series was a significant way of dealing with the fact that my home has been a money pit and has caused me considerable joy and angst.

 Solidarity Mural for "Slam Dunk for Diabetes" by Anne Farley Gaines Japanese papers, acrylics, modeling paste ~ 48" x 72"

In 2010 I ventured into painting on ceramic tile, and in 2011 incorporated shaped ceramic tile into my mixed-media works. This was concurrent to a large mural commission, “Treasures of Palos Heights,” completed for that city with the assistance of my sculptor-husband, Geoffrey Novelli, in paint, ceramic and mosaic.  Collaborative murals are a large part of what I now do, such as the 72’x26’ mural I completed for San Jose Obrero Mission, a women’s shelter in Little Village, in 2013. Having been in a very trouble marriage earlier in my life, bonding with the shelter participants and painting with them helped me to feel the completion of a circle and to put the past behind.

My most recent mural was completed in several parts in paint and mosaic.  It was titled “Abundance” and I collaborated with eight Public Art students I taught while a visiting faculty member at Principia College during the fall semester of 2014. The subject matter was the nature of the region – birds in particular – plus Mississippi River imagery, livestock, and distant bluffs and fields. The completed panels, all using cement board that I spent endless hours cutting as a substrate that the students could paint and produce detail on in mosaic clusters, were affixed onto a large building in Alton, IL and dedicated by the Mayor.  The doing of this mural coincided with the sad events in Ferguson, Missouri of a police officer shooting a young man multiple times before killing him. One section of the “Abundance” mural was what I termed the “Elijah Lovejoy” section.  He was an Abolitionist journalist whose press was located in Alton in the 1830s at the time Missouri was leaning toward becoming a slave state. Lovejoy was eventually murdered for his unpopular views and his press was destroyed at the same time.  Lives of some of his employees were lost then as well.  I incorporated the Elijah Lovejoy memorial of an angel on top of a pillar in the design with two African-American and two white students at the base of the memorial picking and sorting plums on one side together and picking and sorting apples on the other, a gentle symbol of racial harmony and solidarity.

In addition to exploring the spontaneity of pleine-aire painting whenever I have had a chance to venture out into the light and explore stimulating subject material, portraiture is an important genre to me. It helps to keep my own soul alive as I look into the eyes of another.  This love of portraiture has been very advantageous to my mural projects. I relish painting people I know well, several times painting them non-commissioned for the sake of painting them. 

 In 2002 there was a mass exodus of artists from the East Pilsen neighborhood, as rents were rising.  Being saddened by this, I did a series of portraits of neighbors and friends, several of them artists, and installed the work at a neighborhood cafĂ©.  It helped to fill a growing void. Because of this unstoppable quality of empathy I seem to have, and try to infuse into my artwork, I was very moved to do a portrait of a young male victim of gun violence for the exhibition, “Faces Not Forgotten.”  His name is Tony McCoy. I ultimately hope that it makes a very positive difference in the life of his mother whose loss is unimaginable.

Friday, June 10, 2016

B. Ra-El Ali Speaks on Social Justice, and Urban Activism

"Art is Business"
B Ra-El performed Blood on the Leaves at Genesis Art Gallery on April 16th, 2016 during the Faces Not Forgotten-Chicago opening reception and dedication of victims of gun violence in Chicago. He also assisted in the installation of social justice artworks. B. Ra-El Ali is an exceptional emerging artist who has exhibited his artwork at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale Illinois, South Side Community Art Center, and  he is currently a resident artists and curator at the Hunter International Gallery. 



B. Ra-El Ali                   
Artist Statement                                                     

My title B. Ra-El Ali is an affirmation that I use so that I always remain conscious of my spiritual identity and purpose. My purpose being a creative force sent from the cosmos, a bringer of truth.  I was born on the South Side of Chicago and I have lived much of my life in the urban City. I am a graduate of Southern Illinois University of Carbondale achieving a BFA Painting and Drawing

I am also a spoken word artist. My artwork and poetry are infusions of urban life, history, and social commentary. I believe that knowledge of self is the true answer to anyone’s individual struggles because gaining it has improved my life tremendously. My artwork and poetry serves as a form of education, displaying the lessons and philosophies that help me during my struggles in order to help others through their struggles as well. Art is my language, Art is my way of solving the problems of today in order to create a better future.

Much of my artwork features dancing figures. Dance is the physical cultivation of the Spirit through mental release and rhythmic processes. Dance historically, and contemporary is a large part of African and African American culture being used for ritual purposes, ceremonial, as well as social. My artwork depicts those traditional uses of dance through 2D drawings on paper that are enhanced with acrylic paint and pastels. I use the dancing figure as a creative vessel to express African American culture and issues. Through compositions designed from the figurative image of the dancer, I compose narratives that describe the African American experience, largely addressing identity, reconnecting African Americans to their African ancestry. The collaboration of symbols new and old creates the persona of "Afro-futurism" in my work, allowing my art to become ritual.


 Art Exhibition 

You are invited to participate in "Figures That Speak!" an art exhibition at the Hunter International Gallery at 3800 South Michigan Ave, curated by B. Ra-El Ali and Shahar Caren Weave. Figures that Speak! is an exhibition that focus particularly on figurative artwork that expresses Black life, culture and heritage. Art work submitted range from realistic to conceptual, abstract to the human figure.
More information contact 
 You can listen to his interview on, with Host Najjar Abdul Musawwir as he talks about himself, his background, and his future.. 

<iframe width="512" height="376" src="" frameborder="0" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" scrolling="no" seamless allowfullscreen></iframe>

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Christine Ilewski-Huelsmann Faces Not Forgotten Project- 10/14 by Phantom Gallery Chicago Network | Visual Arts Podcasts

Christine Ilewski-Huelsmann Faces Not Forgotten Project- 10/14 by Phantom Gallery Chicago Network | Visual Arts Podcasts:

Last September 2014, artist Alpha Bruton began networking with artist Christine Ilewski-Huelsmann of St. Louis Missouri, who is the author of the, ?Faces Not Forgotten? project, painting the portraits of children who have died, the victims of gun violence. We have invited families of victims through the Ark of St. Sabina in Chicago, and artists from the Phantom Gallery Chicago Network, to paint a portraits of each child, which is donated to the family.

An acrylic transfer of that image will be used to collage the ?Faces? on small vintage handkerchiefs. The handkerchiefs is symbolic for loss, the ?found? fabric element constant in my work. We plan to exhibit these portraits in various ways: strung together like the memorial funeral banners in South America; connected quilt like; bound into a soft fleshy book; and on websites that further protest gun violence.

During Crime Victims' Rights Week, April 2016, the exhibition will take place at the Phantom Gallery Chicago Loft Gallery, located in the Bronzeville Artist Lofts, Chicago IL. In a cross cultural exchange the art will also travel Genesis Art Gallery, Logan Square, to the Bloomingdale Art Gallery at the ACME Artists Building, sponsored by the Near North West Arts Council (A fiscal agent for the Phantom Gallery Chicago Network).

"Art is Business"

Thursday, June 2, 2016

SAVE THE DATES- BRONZEVILLE ARTS DISTRICT TROLLEY TOUR - Featured Exhibition at the Phantom Gallery Chicago

"Art is Business"  Immediate Release:

The Phantom Gallery Chicago Network has partnered with Faces Not Forgotten Saint Louis, to present the Faces Not Forgotten – Chicago. The Faces project was started by artist, Christine Ilewski. She began painting portraits of children who have died from victims of gun violence in memory of Lorenzo Rosebaugh. It is her hope that by putting a face to these victims, we can raise awareness about gun violence in the USA.

Posting pictures is a powerful way to promote engagement, as pictures tend to garner more views, likes, shares, and comments than text alone. Join us as we present forty-one Chicago artists who responded to the call for artists, to join our social justice movement by painting portraits of Chicago youth who have lost their lives as victims of gun violence.
FNF-Chicago at Bloomingdale Art Gallery- Installation by Alan Emerson Hicks

Featured Artists Who Responded to the Call for Portraits- April - May exhibitions:
Alan Emerson Hicks , Alexa Lebron, Alpha Bruton,  Anne Farley-Gaines , April Dill, B RA-EL ALI , Christine Ilewski-Huelsmann , Cbabi Bayoc  , Cesar Conde, Diane Ponder, Derrell Monegain, George Larson , Jeanine Hill-Soldner, Jeanne Fields, Joyce Lindsey , Kathryn Gauthier, Laura Cerf Dahl, Lauren Pilot,  Leidy Baldwin,  Lucy Li, Melissa Allen , Melisa Halka, Nayda Aurora Cuevas, , Niaz Kausar,  Nicole Laport, Ophelia Adams,  Rahmaan Statik , Raymond A. Thomas, Rob Hogan , Rory T. Morgan, Rylan Thompson, Roger J. Carter, Sandra Bacon, Sarah Kaiser-Amaral, Sarah j Mueller, Sean Culver , Shazia Ilyas , Sophie de la Mar,  Tina Hepworth,  and  Zachary Williams. 

June request and submissions:
Abbigail Peters , Amy Lloyd, Barbara Bell, Katie Androwich, Isabella Vickers, Joan Davis, Lea Pinsky, Nancy Lamm, Taylor Torres

Friday, June 17th, 5-9pm Bronzeville Art District Trolley Tour (Public)
Exhibition June 13th – June 30th
Bronzeville Artist Lofts
440 E. 47th Street, Second Floor, Chicago IL  60653

Black Art in America is the official media sponsor of Faces Not Forgotten - Chicago. All images created for this exhibition will be featured on BAIA, as a continuum of the 2016 exhibition. 

Najee Dorsey, "Don't Shoot Back"

Phantom Gallery Chicago Presents the work of five artists whose art practice responses to Social Justice Issues: 
B RA-EL ALI , Cesar Conde , Everett C. Williams, Najee Dorsey (Columbus, GA), Ti- Rock Moore (New Orleans) and William G. Hill.
Cesar Conde

Ti Rock Moore, "Black Angel Wings"

"Hoody Series" by Cesar Conde


 video by William G. Hill
Everett C. Williams, "Yummi" "Black Lives Matter"

Everett C. Williams, "Black Lives Matter"