Design Curator Appointed at Milwaukee Art Museum
The Milwaukee Art Museum named Shoshana Resnikoff as its curator of twentieth and twenty-first century design. Resnikoff will be in charge of the institution’s growing design collection, spearheading major exhibitions and publications, and cultivating new opportunities for visitors to engage with the past, present and future of design. Resnikoff comes to Milwaukee with more than a decade of curatorial experience, including as curator for the Wolfsonian-FIU where, over the past five years, she has worked with European and American design and decorative arts. Resnikoff will assume her new position on January 9, 2023, ahead of the Milwaukee opening of “Scandinavian Design and the United States, 1890-1980.” Resnikoff will oversee major exhibitions, produce scholarly publications, and help to create public programs. Harnessing collection strengths in Prairie School, Arts and Crafts, American Art Deco, Machine Age industrial design, Mid-Century Modern, and the sculptural jewelry movement, Resnikoff will regularly rotate and refresh the design gallery installations to showcase new acquisitions and research, and increase visitor engagement with the collection. Resnikoff will also guide ongoing design acquisitions, including the addition of objects made in the twenty-first century.
Times Checks Into Ten Downtowns
“While some downtown areas remain empty and are struggling to bring back workers and tourists at prepandemic levels, many say they have come back even stronger and more resilient—drawing in tourists and new residents, even as many office workers stay home… Their experiences reveal the challenges and possibilities that lie ahead for the country’s cities and towns,” surveys the New York Times. The Chicago passage is by Julie Bosman, with photos by Jamie Kelter Davis: “In this part of the Loop, the heart of Chicago, the scene on Friday afternoons resembles that of the dark, spooky days early in the pandemic, when people rarely ventured out of their homes and office buildings were barely functioning. Restaurants are quiet now, especially on Mondays and Fridays when working from home is most common, and Mr. Bruno said he was constantly watchful for pickpockets who prey on his few customers. Many nearby storefronts are vacant, with real estate brokers’ signs in the windows offering leases… Venture away from the corporate-office parts of the Loop, however, and Chicago starts to look closer to normal… Graham Thompson, a native Chicagoan and the owner of Optimo, a store that sells high-end hats… in the Monadnock Building in the Loop, has seen foot traffic in the area climb steadily… He is optimistic that in the long run, downtown’s purpose is shifting away from a focus on corporate life and more toward the arts, culture and music… ‘The city is so resilient… Chicago’s feeling better.'”
Large Loop Property Goes To Market
“The listing for 171,000-square-foot retail space at the corner of State and Madison streets will test the enthusiasm of investors for a storied but struggling Chicago shopping district,” reports Crain’s. (TJ Maxx and Garrett’s are among its occupants.)
DINING & DRINKING
The Bandit Features Wild West Halloween Party
Fulton Market neighborhood watering hole The Bandit hosts a Wild Wild West Halloween Party on Saturday, October 29. The free event will feature a live DJ and guests are encouraged to dress in costumes. More here.
Living Above A Chicago Restaurant
A question asked more than ever by Chicago apartment hunters: Could I really live above a restaurant? “Urban dwelling comes with an unspoken pact that sensory intrusions will inevitably punctuate your life,” writes Maggie Hennessy at the Tribune. “If you’ve ever lived above a restaurant, these encroachments may even take on rhythms by which to set your days and nights… Fondness was a common theme among the more than half-dozen Chicagoans interviewed who’ve lived above restaurants. It was a landmark, as in, ‘Look for the brown-and-white awning!’ It was the downstairs neighbor whose lights reassuringly always stayed on. For some, it was ‘our place’ or ‘the basement.'”
Bogotá’s Got Chicago Deep-Dish
“For a brief, savory moment, it’s easy to confuse Bogotá, Colombia, with Chicago. But if you happen upon the pocket-sized Quinta Camacho neighborhood tucked into the Chapinero district, you’ll find a taste of the Windy City like no other at Stromboli,” writes Nick Dauk at Chicago magazine. “Delicate in presentation and robust in flavor, each bite held a flavor of something new with a lingering taste reminiscent of the classic deep-dish pies I’d come to know.”
Newspaper Restaurant Star Ratings Persist
“As professional restaurant critics diversify their oeuvre, some argue that comparing food truck nirvana to a top fine dining restaurant is like weighing apples against oranges,” writes Ali Francis at Bon Appétit. “Jonathan Gold, the restaurant critic for the Los Angeles Times until his death in 2018, did away with the paper’s stars way back in 2012. He was ahead of his time in acknowledging the ways these ratings tended to perpetuate Eurocentric dining ideals, and wrote genre-defying reviews that better represented the diversity of his city… Some critics believe that star ratings fail to account for the realities of running a restaurant today… Star ratings are also quick to expire as places evolve, and critics may not return to rereview a restaurant that has changed drastically since they [were] last awarded stars. ‘With the constant turmoil small businesses have endured over the past few years, the shelf life on something as simplistic as a number grade is too fleeting…’ Philadelphia Inquirer critic Craig LaBan wrote about nixing [ratings]. ‘It feels counterproductive to even try.'”
District Brew Yards Goes To Dogs
District Boo Yards! A Halloween Dog Costume Party will bark itself into the District Brew Yards beer garden on Sunday, October 30. “Pups and parents are encouraged to dress up and enjoy brews and boos this Halloween weekend.”Fall beers from Burnt City Brewing, Around the Bend, Casa Humilde, and Twisted Hippo will be available. Located at District Brew Yards, 417 North Ashland, on Sunday, October 30, 1-5pm.
Radio Room Goes To Heaven And Hell
Radio Room, known for a roster of music that induces nostalgic vibes, hosts Heaven & Hell Halloweekend. From Friday, October 28-Sunday, October 30, the party will feature a cocktail list and décor based on a Heaven & Hell theme, with live DJ music and musical performances. Heaven & Hell cocktail specials from Heaven include: Rum Chata shots ($10); White Sangria ($15); and the “Give Me The Loot” cocktail ($15), while Hell brings on Fireball shots ($10); Burning Up cocktail ($15); and Dirty Shirley cocktails ($15). 400 North State. More here.
Spooky Places To Survive Eating And Drinking
Time Out has its own survey of spooky joints to sample over the long Halloweekend.
Senators Warren And Sanders Lead Opposition To Kroger-Albertsons Merger
“Senators Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders sent a letter to Federal Trade Commission Chair Lina Khan,” reports Huffington Post, “asking that the regulator oppose the merger between grocery giants Kroger and Albertsons.” (Kroger owns Mariano’s and many other grocery brands; Albertsons holds Jewel-Osco.) The pair of senators contend “that the proposed $25 billion deal would lead to higher prices and lower wages, hurting shoppers and workers alike. Kroger and Albertsons are two of the largest grocery chains in the country. ‘Kroger’s and Albertsons’ histories of aggressive profiteering during the pandemic present a dangerous roadmap for how a larger and more powerful company would act if this acquisition were allowed to proceed,’ Warren and Sanders wrote. The lawmakers went on to call both companies ‘anticompetitive and antiworker.’ ‘The FTC should, when evaluating the impact of a potential merger, examine Kroger’s and Albertsons’ records of raking in profits and providing massive payouts for executives and big shareholders while putting their frontline employees at risk.’ Warren and Sanders were joined on the letter by Representative Jan Schakowsky, an Illinois Democrat.” Attorneys General of multiple states have joined the chorus, reports Crain’s. “Illinois’ Kwame Raoul and several peers say they want to make sure the proposed merger ‘does not result in higher prices for consumers, suppressed wages for workers or other anticompetitive effects.’”
Mayor Earmarks Half Of City Ad Spend To Community Media
At a press conference Wednesday, the mayor announced “that she will sign an executive order to require that fifty-percent of the city’s annual advertising budget [will be placed] with community media outlets, after a push by the Chicago Independent Media Alliance,” posts Heather Cherone of WTTW News. “It is only right that the city government honors [the city’s] diversity by supporting local media outlets that our communities rely upon every single day. And with due respect to some of the journalists that are in the seats, these are the folks that are making it happen in the neighborhoods. These are the folks that people are increasingly relying upon & we have an interest in making sure that hyperlocal coverage remains vital.” The press release is here: “Chicago’s local media outlets reach all seventy-seven community areas in all of the languages the city’s communities speak… ‘We are so excited Mayor Lightfoot is taking this first big step toward creating a more equitable playing field for the city’s marketing and advertising spending. We urge all city, county and state agencies to follow this lead,’ said CIMA founder and Reader publisher Tracy Baim. ‘This decision will not only ensure that Chicago’s local media can grow and support more voices; it will ensure that Chicago can be a blueprint for other cities.'”
Halloween With Discos La Femme At Thalia Hall
Discos la Femme is a group of Latinx women and non-binary Vinyl DJs and collectors, known for their eclectic selections that include Latin, disco, house, soul and funk. This no-cover event will be their first together as a DJ collective. Thalia Hall’s basement Punch House, October 31.
Mud Morganfield’s “Portrait” Releases November 11
Blues musician Mud Morganfield launches his latest album, “Portrait,” on November 11, with a record release event at The Venue on December 23. “‘Portrait’ offers fourteen powerful numbers by Muddy Waters’ eldest son, including two previously unreleased songs,” his label relays. “Mud appears surrounded by a constellation of first-rate blues musicians, including Rick Kreher (Muddy Waters’ final guitarist), Billy Flynn, Kenny ‘Beedy Eyes’ Smith and Barrelhouse Chuck, along with harmonica from Bob Corritore and Harmonica Hinds. It’s his first album on Delmark Records. Unreleased tracks include a Morganfield original, ‘Praise Him,’ as well as a cover of the iconic tune ‘Good Morning Little School Girl.'” More here.
The Daily Ye
More companies distance themselves from the Chicago-reared Ye on a day when he and a camera crew barged into the California headquarters of Skechers. Skechers security shooed him away. (Skechers is owned and operated by a Jewish family.) In a press release to investors, the company says that “Skechers is not considering and has no intention of working with West. Considering Ye was engaged in unauthorized filming, two Skechers executives escorted him and his party from the building after a brief conversation. We condemn his recent divisive remarks and do not tolerate antisemitism or any other form of hate speech.” (Adidas severed relations with the former billionaire the day before; “without Adidas, he’s allegedly worth just $400 million,” writes Rolling Stone.) TJ Maxx booted Yeezy merch from its shelves, and the YeezyGap.com domain is no more. “At TJX we do not tolerate discrimination, harassment, or hate of any kind. We have instructed our buying teams not to purchase this merchandise for sale in any of our stores globally,” the retailer told CNN.
Christie’s canceled the auction of a prototype of a Yeezy 1 shoe. Asked if his company would cut ties, Spotify boss Daniel Ek criticized Ye, for his “just awful comments,” but said the streaming service would keep his music, as none of the remarks were on Spotify. “It’s really just his music, and his music doesn’t violate our policy. It’s up to his label, if they want to take action or not.” Plus, Madame Tussauds in London removed Ye’s waxwork. (“Ye’s figure has been retired from the attraction floor to our archive.”) And Peloton has removed Ye’s music from programming for its exercise classes. “This means our instructors are no longer using his music in any newly produced classes and we are not suggesting any class that includes his music in our proactive [sic] recommendations to Members.” Ye’s unaccredited private, secretive Christian music school, Donda Academy, has shut down for the school year. A West Loop mural of the artist has been painted over. “Universal Music’s Def Jam Recordings and Sony Music Publishing have parted ways with him, like many of his other business partners, in the wake of his recent behavior and especially his wave of anti-Semitic comments,” reports Variety. Ye also “has a disturbing history of admiring Hitler, sources tell CNN.”
iO Theater Reopens November 3
Closed since 2020, iO Theater returns Thursday, November 3, with more than twenty improv productions featured across the theater’s stages, including favorites like “The Armando,” “Sex and the Windy City,” and “Stir Friday Night.” iO Theater closed in June 2020 during the early pandemic, which “drove many theater and comedy institutions into bankruptcy. One year later, the building, located at 1501 North Kingsbury, was purchased by Chicagoans Scott Gendell, Larry Weiner and Steve Sacks, and has undergone extensive renovations, including upgrades to the building’s mechanical systems, refreshed and enlivened audience spaces and stages, improved bar space and a brand new façade.” Tickets for all productions are here.
“Les Misérables” Tickets On Sale
Tickets for the Cameron Mackintosh production of the sixth-longest-running Broadway show, Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg’s “Les Misérables,” are on sale. The production will play Broadway In Chicago’s Cadillac Palace Theatre for a limited engagement February 15–March 5, 2023. More here.
ARTS & CULTURE & ETC.
Halloween Arts In The Dark Returns
LUMA8 and Mayor Lightfoot announce the return of the Arts in the Dark Halloween Parade, which is free and family-friendly. The Arts in the Dark parade “celebrates Halloween as the ‘artist’s holiday,'” says the city, “and has been called ‘Chicago’s Neighborhood Parade’ because it pulls together cultural organizations and artists from across the city. The Eighth Annual Arts in the Dark is an evening parade that draws together world-renowned institutions like the Art Institute of Chicago, celebrated Chicago organizations like Ballet Folklorico Xochitl, important youth programs like After School Matters, and aspiring artists in every field. It is a dazzling production that delights an audience of 50,000 people with unique floats, spectacle puppets and creative performances—all set against the backdrop of historic State Street.” The parade is Saturday, October 29, 6pm-8pm on State Street, moving south from Lake to Van Buren. “We will bring together over 2,500 performers representing arts organizations, neighborhood cultural groups and creative youth who will animate State Street with their puppets, spectacle, dance, music and theater, lights and fire and a good dose of attitude,” said Mark Kelly, artistic director of the parade and former Commissioner of DCASE. “What a magical way to remind us how important Chicago’s cultural landscape is to its fabric and future.” More here.
North Side School Named After Slaveowner Now Mosaic School of Fine Arts
West Rogers Park’s Daniel Boone Elementary School drops its slaveowner namesake, reports the Sun-Times. “The school becomes the third—and second named after a slaveowner—to change its name since a Chicago Sun-Times review in late 2020 found thirty CPS schools are named after slaveholders.”
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