Sampling Of Frida Kahlo Photo Collection At National Museum Of Mexican Art
“While Frida Kahlo is not widely known as a photographer, she was an avid collector, having amassed nearly 6,000 photographs, some purchased, some gifts, some inherited,” reports the Sun-Times. “Some of those images belonged to her family, others to her husband, painter Diego Rivera, but it was Kahlo who treasured the photographs and curated the collection… 204 photographs are featured in ‘Frida Kahlo: Her Photos,’ a traveling exhibit on display in Pilsen at the National Museum of Mexican Art.” More from the museum here.
Thompson Center Sale Finalized
“Less than four months after Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced a development team would take over the beleaguered James R. Thompson Center in the Loop, the governor’s office on Thursday announced a purchase and sale agreement has been finalized,” reports Tina Sfondeles at the Sun-Times.
Gas Cards And Ventra Cards Coming From Chicago And Federal Funds
“Mayor Lori Lightfoot alongside city leaders on Thursday announced that [$12.5 million worth of] prepaid gas and CTA cards would be made available to qualifying Chicagoans amid rising gas prices,” beginning April 27, pending City Council approval, reports WGN-TV. “Up to 50,000 of the gas cards will be distributed to eligible applicants in a lottery that begins in May, 10,000 cards per month, for five months,” reports the Sun-Times. “The cards will be good for one year and can be used only for fuel, and only at gas stations located within Chicago.” She takes a dig at the multimillionaire expected to oppose her in the upcoming mayoral race, reports Block Club’s Kelly Bauer. “She takes a dig at Wilson without naming him, saying people won’t have to get up at 4am or sit in a long line for gas.” Lightfoot also says, “We think escalated gas prices will continue into summer months. We want to make sure we’re giving people relief through the summer.” Funding will come from “the city’s corporate fund” and the American Rescue Plan, reports WTTW’s Heather Cherone.
Road Repair Season Begins
“In 2020, City Council approved the first installment of a five-year, $3.7-billion plan to invest in infrastructure,” reports WGN-TV. “Chicago’s Department of Transportation will replace and repair traditional infrastructure, including roads, bridges and sidewalks in all seventy-seven neighborhoods.”
BlackRock Honcho Says It’s About Time Americans Suffer
BlackRock president Rob Kapito has warned of inflation’s dramatic effects, with an “entitled generation” now learning what it means to suffer from shortages, reports Bloomberg. “‘For the first time, this generation is going to go into a store and not be able to get what they want,’ Kapito said at a conference held in Austin by the Texas Independent Producers and Royalty Owners Association. ‘And we have a very entitled generation that has never had to sacrifice.’ The economy is reckoning with what he dubbed ‘scarcity inflation,’ or the fallout from a shortage of workers, agricultural supplies and housing, and of oil in some regions.” Replies Gravity Payments CEO and gadfly Dan Price, “This is especially rich considering this ‘entitled generation’ hasn’t been able to buy homes largely because BlackRock buys up all the homes and jacks up rents (which is also the biggest source of inflation).”
Etsy Seller Strike Looms
“In February, Etsy CEO Josh Silverman had good news to share with investors: sales and revenue were at an all-time high, sending Etsy stock soaring. At the same time, Silverman had less welcome news for sellers, delivered via email: transaction fees were going up, from five percent to six-point-five percent, or a thirty-percent increase, beginning April 11,” reports The Verge. “Thousands of Etsy shops have committed to going into vacation mode [on that day] suspending sales for a little over a week in protest of recent changes on the platform. They’re also asking shoppers to refrain from buying on Etsy, and a campaign in support of the strike has received over 15,000 signatures in just over a week. More than 5,000 sellers have signed on to strike.”
Native Hawaiian Hula Teacher Featured On Future Quarters
“The late Native Hawaiian hula teacher Edith Kanaka’ole is among five women who will be individually featured on a U.S. quarter next year as part of a program that depicts notable women on the flip side of the coin,” reports the Sun-Times. The U.S. Mint “described Kanaka’ole, who died in 1978, as a composer, chanter, dancer, teacher and entertainer.”
As Many As Ten Thousand More Apartments Coming To West Loop
Reports Crain’s: “Developers plan 9,065 new units, more than the total planned for all other downtown neighborhoods combined.”
DINING & DRINKING
Cheez-It Workers Get Fifteen-And-A-Half Percent Raise
“Five-hundred-seventy Kellogg’s workers at the Cheez-It factory in Kansas won an unprecedented fifteen-and-a-half percent wage increase over a three-year contract plus a $500 bonus,” reports Motherboard labor correspondent Lauren Kaori Gurley. “Cheez-It factory workers are members of RWDSU, the union organizing Amazon warehouse workers in Alabama and REI workers in New York City.” (A menu of sturdy benefits is here.)
Dat Donut Is Back
Twenty-eight-year-old South Side doughnut shop Dat Donut is open after a two-week city-mandated shutdown, reports Block Club Chicago. “Co-owner Darryl Townson said it was business as usual as customers poured into the restaurant. ‘The crowd is back. People are back… People were excited and glad to see us back open.’ Dat Donut closed March 15 after the city’s Building Department ‘noted dangerous and hazardous conditions that posed an imminent threat to public safety,’ a business department spokesperson said. City officials found eleven violations, ranging from open and exposed electrical wiring to insufficient fire separation in storage areas.”
FILM & TELEVISION
Chicago Film Office Director Kwame Amoaku Attacked
Chicago Film Office director Kwame Amoaku posted on Facebook very early Thursday about a Wednesday night attack, including a picture of himself in the ICU. Posts Amoaku: “This am I was attacked beaten and my car stolen by three kids. Thanks to all who have reached out. I’m in the ICU I’m going to be ok”
Modern Bookselling As Seen From The Seminary Co-op
“The good bookstore’s product is not, in fact, the book itself, but the browsing experience that a great collection of books creates,” Jeff Deutsch, director of the Seminary Co-op writes at BookBrunch in the wake of Amazon’s failure at brick-and-mortar stores. “Readers want to go to bookstores, and not only to buy books. The good bookstore’s product is not, in fact, the book itself, but the browsing experience that a great collection of books creates – the thoughts, conversations, and discoveries that time spent browsing evokes. Sixty percent of the 28,000 books our bookstore, the Seminary Co-op, sold during the last full year we were open for browsing were single copies. In other words, nearly 17,000 books only sold one copy to one customer in our location. Bookstores thrive on a wise inefficiency. While there is a friction that impedes progress, there is also a friction that ignites.”
Georgia Legislature Provides Tools For Parents To Demand Book Removals
“Georgia lawmakers gave final approval to legislation that would change the process for removing books from schools due to parent complaints about obscenity,” reports the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Senate Bill 226 now goes to Governor Brian Kemp for his signature. It would expedite the process for removing books and other content seen as ‘harmful to minors.’”
As Late Fees End, Treasures Find Their Way Back To Libraries
The decision by the New York Public Library to eliminate fines set off a wave of returns, accompanied by bashful notes of apology and gratitude, reports the New York Times.
Zorn On Kass, Newsroom Union And Soros
Eric Zorn hopes to settle further misinformation from his former Chicago Tribune colleague John Kass. Posted Kass: “The woke [sic] newspaper guild—which I had politely and repeatedly declined to join—used the (financier George) Soros-(Cook County State’s Attorney Kim) Foxx column to falsely defame me for reporting the truth. A defamatory public letter was leaked and media gossips feasted.” Zorn replies: “I like to think that the support of veteran columnists and critics gave the union movement credibility and courage. I don’t know why Kass ‘politely and repeatedly’ refused to stand in solidarity with the vast majority of his colleagues, though that was certainly his right. It was not, however, Kass’ right to decline to ‘join’ the union once the company recognized it. Illinois is not one of those ‘right to freeload’ states where employees in unionized shops can refuse to join the union while still enjoying the protections and benefits afforded by collective bargaining. Once the Tribune recognized the union, all of us were in.” Kass found a workaround involving an apparent “ghost” position on the Chicago Tribune editorial board, which Zorn outlines as having “the whiff of ‘fuckery.'” “Whose idea it was—Kass’ or the bosses’—doesn’t matter now, but since Kass keeps smugly distorting what actually happened I thought I’d bury his misrepresentation with a shovelful of truth.”
Collaboraction’s Live Talkshow For April: “Pay Equity 101: Case Studies in Fair Pay”
Collaboraction’s live monthly talk show, “Becoming” will cover “Pay Equity 101 – Case Studies in Fair Pay and Why it is Important,” this month, with three theater industry guests: Elsa Hiltner, Chicago costume designer, Collaboraction staff member and co-founder of On Our Team, a national trade organization advocating for pay equity and transparency in the live theater industry; Karla Estela Rivera, executive director, Free Street Theater; and Lauren Sivak, Managing Director, 2nd Story Theatre. The conversation is Tuesday, April 5, 7pm. Register here.
ARTS & CULTURE
157-Year-Old Lincoln College Closing
“Lincoln College has survived many difficult and challenging times—the economic crisis of 1887, a major campus fire in 1912, the Spanish flu of 1918, the Great Depression, World War II, the 2008 global financial crisis, and more, but this is different,” the 157-year-old college said in a statement. The college, reports Inside Higher Ed, “was a victim of a cyberattack in December 2021 that thwarted admissions activities and hindered access to all institutional data, creating an unclear picture of fall 2022 enrollment projections.” COVID was also a factor in suppressing enrollment. “It is a small private college, with most recent enrollment figures of about 1,000.”
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