Guggenheim Produces Nick Cave Introduction Video
“The ‘Nick Cave: Forothermore’ exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City covers the entire breadth of the artist’s career, and features sculpture, installation, video and rarely seen early works,” the museum posts along with an eight-and-a-half-minute introductory video on YouTube. “The exhibition title is a neologism, a new word that reflects the artist’s lifelong commitment to creating space for those who feel marginalized by dominant society and culture—especially working class communities and queer people of color.” More on the Guggenheim Museum exhibition here.
Ed Paschke’s Art Lives On As Murals
“Ed Paschke has been dead for nearly twenty years, but the famed Chicago artist still is a strong presence on the Northwest Side. That can be seen on a stretch of Lawrence Avenue in Jefferson Park, where a viaduct is filled with murals that are replicas of his paintings,” reports the Sun-Times in the Murals And Mosaics column.
Walker Art Center Acquires Three Pieces By Chris Larson
ENGAGE Projects has announced that the Walker Art Center has acquired three works by Chris Larson. A part of his most recent body of work, “The Residue of Labor,” the acquisition includes his centerpiece film “The Stillness of Labor,” “Pattern Drawing #3” and “Timecards #10.” Larson’s work is the culmination of three years of research of an abandoned, rural American garment factory that once sewed for brands such as Ralph Lauren and Burberry. “Exploring the convergence of body and machine, Larson contemplates a history of human labor using forgotten objects that tell stories of life and abandonment. In this way, he destabilizes the idea that ‘progress’ is as simple as forward-movement, instead focusing on the moments of dilapidation that occur in spaces of heavy repetition.” More here.
Latham Zearfoss Artist-In-Residence At Tiger Strikes Asteroid
Tiger Strikes Asteroid announces Latham Zearfoss as artist-in-residence, whose residency will allow them “the opportunity to execute a new iteration of the ongoing ‘Stalagmite Creamsicles’ project, a seasonally iterative body of work comprised of ice sculptures dyed with natural dyes that contain seeds for a native garden that will bloom where they are left to melt,” Tiger Strikes Asteroid says in a release. “Zearfoss produces time-based images and objects about selfhood and otherness. Zearfoss’ work is anchored in the belief that identity is a cumulative, political effect, inherited through a kind of collective bargaining. These themes find evocative, sensual resonances through dramatic shifts in color and light, reverberating soundscapes populated by disembodied voices, queer iterations of the not-noticed and everyday, and ‘soft borders’—spatial markings of undetermined significance that invite participation, transgression and even penetration.” More here.
Architect Arthur Shigeo Takeuchi, Ninety-One, Designer Of Richard J. Daley Center
Arthur Shigeo Takeuchi, architect, pupil of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and former faculty member of the College of Architecture of the Illinois Institute of Technology, died October 28, reports Hyde Park Herald. His life and career, including internment during World War II, is outlined in the obit. “For Chicagoans, Takeuchi’s most familiar work is probably the Chicago Civic Center, now known as the Richard J. Daley Center. Takeuchi represented Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) as Assistant Chief Architect on that project.”
Lollapalooza Backers Give Half-Million To Park District For Pickleball Courts In Grant Park
C3 Presents is “donating $500,000 to the Chicago Park District that will be used to build new pickleball courts and refurbish existing tennis courts in the south end of Grant Park,” reports the Sun-Times. Eight to sixteen pickleball courts are envisioned. “The pickleball courts will be designed for only pickleball use… The spot is just west of Columbus Drive and about a block south of Balbo Drive.”
With 66,000 Vehicles, USPS Will Have One Of Largest Electric Fleets By 2028
The United States Postal Service has announced that it expects to acquire at least 66,000 battery electric delivery vehicles as part of its 106,000-vehicle acquisition plan between now and 2028, the USPS relays in a release. “The vehicles purchased as part of this anticipated plan will begin to replace the Postal Service’s aging delivery fleet of over 220,000 vehicles. The Postal Service anticipates at least 60,000 Next Generation Delivery Vehicles, of which at least seventy-five-percent (45,000) will be battery electric… A total of 21,000 additional commercial off-the-shelf vehicles are also expected to be battery electric, depending on market availability and operational feasibility. The Postal Service also anticipates including internal combustion vehicles necessary to meet immediate vehicle replacement needs.”
Why Personal Images From Roombas Showed Up On Facebook
“Robot vacuum companies say your images are safe, but a sprawling global supply chain for data from our devices creates risk,” reports Eileen Guo at MIT Technology Review. “While the images shared with us did not come from iRobot customers, consumers regularly consent to having our data monitored to varying degrees on devices ranging from iPhones to washing machines. It’s a practice that has only grown more common over the past decade, as data-hungry artificial intelligence has been increasingly integrated into a whole new array of products and services. Much of this technology is based on machine learning, a technique that uses large troves of data—including our voices, faces, homes and other personal information—to train algorithms to recognize patterns… Often, we opt in simply by using the product, as noted in privacy policies with vague language that gives companies broad discretion in how they disseminate and analyze consumer information.”
DINING & DRINKING
Chicago Media’s Favorite Restaurants Of 2023
Eater Chicago is counting and taking notes from local taste-takers: Obelix and Sueños tied for the most mentions.
CO2 Shortage Is Changing Brewing
Carbon dioxide is an essential component of beer, reports Serious Eats. “Carbon dioxide is the byproduct of many natural processes: It’s created when organic matter decays or combusts, and during fermentation when yeasts feed on sugars to produce alcohol. The amount of CO2 a beer produces is directly linked to alcohol by volume: The more sugar the yeast consumes, the higher the ABV and carbon dioxide levels… The beginning of the CO2 shortage started with pandemic-related shutdowns in 2020, when ethanol production came to a halt. Two years later, production levels still haven’t returned to normal. With the supply of carbon dioxide from the Jackson Dome [the remnants of a defunct sixty-six-million-year-old volcano under Jackson, Mississippi] jeopardized, brewers are looking for alternative sources of the gas—and even attempting to capture it themselves.” For instance, “Sierra Nevada Brewing Company has strapped what looks like a huge blimp to their ceiling. The balloon collects the CO2 that’s normally released during the natural fermentation of beer. Once the carbon dioxide is in the balloon, any water-soluble contaminants like ethanol are removed and the gas goes into a storage tank for usage throughout the brewery, including the process of force-carbonating beer.”
Sanfilippo Buys Just The Cheese
“Elgin-based John B. Sanfilippo & Son Inc. said it has purchased substantially all of the assets of the Just the Cheese brand business from Specialty Cheese Co. Inc. in Reeseville, Wisconsin,” reports the Daily Herald.
Waukegan Carnegie Library $13.5 Million Restoration Underway
Ray Bradbury, a Waukegan native, “spent his childhood and was inspired to become a writer” at the long-closed local library, reports the Daily Herald. “Now, about ninety years after Bradbury roamed the shelves, a buzz of discovery and anticipation has returned. Propelled by a $5 million anonymous gift and complemented with two $3 million grants from state and federal sources, a $13.5 million restoration and repurposing of the city’s first free public library as the Waukegan History Museum at the Carnegie is in full swing.”
Federal Investigation Opened Into Removal Of LGBTQ Books
“The Education Department has opened what appears to be the first-of-its-kind investigation into Texas’ Granbury Independent School District after it pulled library books dealing with sexuality and gender,” reports NBC News, ProPublica and the Texas Tribune. “Education and legal experts say the federal probe of the Granbury Independent School District — which stemmed from a complaint by the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas and reporting…— appears to be the first such investigation explicitly tied to the nationwide movement to ban school library books dealing with sexuality and gender.”
A Summer Of Documenting Street Takeovers
Sun-Times photographer Ashlee Rezin looks back on the reporting she and Manny Ramos did this summer: “After a video of drivers doing doughnuts in the middle of a West Loop intersection went viral, reporter Manny Ramos and I spent several nights trying to find out who was behind the ‘drifting’ events that had become the talk of Chicago… As a photojournalist who’s covered some of the biggest news events in the city in my nearly ten years at the Sun-Times, I’m not one to shy away from a challenge. I walked with the girl into the center of the spectacle, joining about a dozen other people—all whom appeared to be several years younger than me and having the time of their lives while recording everything on their cellphones. I started filming as a silver Dodge Charger Scat Pack did doughnuts at dangerously high speeds in a tight circle around us, at some points coming within just a few feet of the group. After less than thirty seconds, I decided getting photos and video from that vantage point was not worth losing a limb—or my life. When the Charger driver took a short break, I hightailed it back to the outskirts.”
Chicago Defender Parent Company Names President
“Hiram E. Jackson, chief executive officer of Real Times Media, announced veteran marketing executive Cathy Nedd will join the company as president of the Real Times Media News Group, a division of Real Times Media’s conglomerate that oversees the organization’s news brands in Michigan, Illinois, Georgia and Pennsylvania, including the nation’s most iconic nameplates, the Michigan Chronicle, Chicago Defender, Atlanta Daily World, Atlanta Tribune and the New Pittsburgh Courier,” Real Times Media announces in a release.
Dance Magazine’s “25 To Watch” Includes South Chicago Dance Theatre’s Elijah Richardson
“With quirky charisma and an infectious smile, Elijah Richardson burst onto Chicago’s dance scene in 2018. But it was last year that he made an indelible mark, delivering a masterful performance in South Chicago Dance Theatre’s smash hit, five-year anniversary concert at the Harris Theater—just two years and a pandemic after he worked there as an usher,” writes Lauren Warnecke at Dance Magazine. “The San Jose native has long been insatiable, training in everything from figure skating to musical theater, ballet to Gaga. He booked a ticket to the Windy City the moment he graduated from Chapman University with a dance degree. Three seasons with DanceWorks Chicago solidified Richardson’s command of physical theater, but this dancer is as multifaceted as his interests: He pulls off impassioned lyricism and pinpoint precision as easily as slapstick comedy. Others outside Chicago have taken notice too: He recently guested with Memphis’ Collage Dance Collective and has had his work selected four times for the 92Y Mobile Dance Film Festival.”
Chicago Shakespeare Slam Returns To Courtyard Stage
Chicago Shakespeare Theater brings together students from twenty-six high schools across the region to celebrate the power of Shakespeare’s language—and their own voices—in the sixth annual Chicago Shakespeare Slam. Saturday workshops and regional preliminary bouts throughout the fall will culminate in a Final Bout on Thursday, January 19 on the stage of the Courtyard Theater at Chicago Shakespeare. “Emcees warm up the crowd and an onstage DJ drops beats as teams perform, cheered on by a full house of fellow participants, classmates and friends.” More here.
Raven Theatre Announces Take Flight Summer Camp
Raven Theatre has announced dates for its Take Flight Summer Camp 2023, featuring two training sessions in theater arts for kids ages six to fourteen. Raven’s team of professional teaching artists “help kids feel the confidence to contribute to the artistic process and the courage to try something new,” Raven says in a release. “Over the course of two or three weeks, campers will create their own theatrical adaptations inspired by classic and popular children’s stories. Their original work will be performed for family and friends on the final day of camp.” The sessions are Monday-Friday from 9am–3pm at Raven Theatre, 6157 North Clark in Edgewater. Raven requires masking indoors for all campers. Tuition is $900, with some early bird discounts until April. Registration here.
Drabinsky Extends “Paradise Square” Lawsuit
“This summer, Actors’ Equity Association filed lawsuits against a ‘Paradise Square’ producing entity in both state and federal court,” reports Broadway World. “Producer Garth Drabinsky sued AEA for defamation and related claims. This past week, he filed an amended complaint in that suit, adding antitrust claims… The Amended Complaint alleges that AEA putting Drabinsky on its ‘Do Not Work’ list has made it impossible for him to work in part because AEA monopolizes the theater market… Drabinsky is alleging that AEA has essentially partnered with other unions to ban him from working in other entertainment fields.”
ARTS & CULTURE & ETC.
Talk About The Weather
Coming up on Christmas, whiteout conditions are predicted for Thursday and Friday, reports the Sun-Times, with six inches of snow. “The worst conditions will develop Thursday evening and continue into Friday evening, with a full-fledged blizzard possible accompanied by dangerously cold temperatures,” says the National Weather Service. “The bitterly cold temperatures will continue through the weekend.” The Chicago NWS is updating with maps and more on Twitter. ComEd’s getting ready, and describes preparations for the blizzard in a release. So are O’Hare and Midway, reports CBS Chicago, “where the Chicago Department of Aviation expects nearly three million passengers for the Christmas weekend… ‘We have 500 staff members who are ready to work 24/7, and 350 pieces of snow removing equipment. Lots of salt and lots of deicer for the roadways,’ said Chicago Department of Aviation spokeswoman Karen Pride.”
A travel observer tells NBC 5 that if airlines “are offering you a travel waiver where they will change your ticket for free, no charge, and put you on a couple of days later after the storm, get on it now while there are still seats available, if there are still seats available.” American and Southwest aren’t charging to change scheduled flights between December 21-23; for United, there’s no change fee for scheduled flights December 22-25. Reports the Trib, “snow and subfreezing winds… could remind residents of the 2011 Groundhog Day blizzard.”
Venture Capital Fund Set On Smaller, Low-Margin Industries
“The 81 Collection,” with the tagline “A Founders Fund For Hard Industries,” is set to take on smaller businesses, reports Bloomberg. Backed by the Pritzker family office, the state of Illinois and early backers of GrubHub and Cameo, the group has “raised $41 million for an inaugural fund to back what it calls ‘hard industries.’ The Chicago-based firm aims to invest locally in sectors including manufacturing, real estate, retail and construction, using automation, artificial intelligence and smart hardware,” founding partner Vijen Patel told Bloomberg. “The goal, he said, is to disrupt the traditionally low-margin, capital intensive industries that make up eighty-one-percent of the U.S. economy…The 81 Collection, was founded in 2021 and has a full-time team of five staff, which makes initial investments of $500,000 to $1.5 million. The firm has made nine investments to date, including in car-care subscription service CarmaCare and home maintenance automation provider Mezo.”
Patel threads his plans on Twitter: “That’s right, nineteen-percent of GDP attracts more than fifty-percent of venture activity. Software is a picky eater, and it’s time to expand our diet. We will back pre-seed and seed companies in low-margin or capital-intensive industries, from brick-and-mortar to manufacturing to forestry. Yes, start-ups in the 81 are especially hard, but they are the right kind of businesses financially and socially. We were undersubscribed early, but oversubscribed later. Our loyal employees who once made $20 per hour now make $100,000 annually. The 81 just requires a long-term horizon and a community willing to help un-knot an industry. That’s why I’m forever thankful to my fellow founders, supporters, and LPs who came together to lighten the load for the next generation of entrepreneurs in the 81.” Patel to Bloomberg: “It would normally take four years to create the flywheel and we know that if we come together we can help shortcut that to three years and improve the odds of success.”
Lincoln Park’s Got The Most Coyote Sightings
“Lincoln Park has logged the most coyote interactions this year by far–with 124. Interactions can be anything from sightings to reported issues,” reports CBS Chicago. Coyotes come out when it’s cold. “We’ve tracked 1,359 coyote interactions in Chicago, up from 1,137 last year, that were reported to 311. There have been seventy-nine interactions so far in the month of December.”
Evanston’s $500 Monthly Basic Income Program To 150 Residents
“Evanston sent out its first Guaranteed Income Pilot Program payments earlier this month that will provide 150 randomly selected Evanstonians with $500 a month for twelve months,” reports Evanston Review (via the Tribune). “The 150 residents receiving funds will have their $500 loaded onto a prepaid debit card each month. The residents were randomly selected but had to be at or below 250% of the federal poverty line and fall into one of three demographic categories—a young adult between eighteen and twenty-four years old, adults sixty-two years old and older and undocumented community members. Fifty people in each of these categories made the 150 total recipients.”
Choose Chicago’s Lynn Osmond On Tourism Rebound
“According to Choose Chicago, more than sixty million tourists visited the city in 2019. That fell to fewer than seventeen million in 2020. As we wrap up 2022, we’re looking at how those numbers are rebounding and what’s ahead for 2023,” reports ABC 7 Chicago. “Well, we had a fabulous summer. We had about a ninety-percent recovery rate in the summer,” president and CEO of Choose Chicago Lynn Osmond tells the station. “The hotels were packed, the streets were full, the attractions were busy. And this fall we’re actually doing very well. We’ll probably end the year somewhere around eighty-two-percent of 2019, and 2019 was the most successful year that we’d ever had.”
Thomas Meagher, Ninety-Two, Led Chicago Tourism Efforts Under First Mayor Daley
“Thomas Meagher was a Chicago transportation executive who led bus operator Continental Air Transport and later was chairman of Trans World Airlines,” reports the Tribune. Then he “was tapped by Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley to be president of the Chicago Convention and Tourism Bureau… As president and chief operating officer of the new entity, Meagher was the public face and booster of the group, and he worked to elevate Chicago as a tourist attraction, including publicizing the idea of Chicago as a destination location for ‘mini-holidays’… ‘When I first came in here, we were mostly selling the lakefront… Then we started pushing the [Magnificent] Mile and the Loop, and that’s pretty well paid off.'”
Shedd Shark “Virgin Birth”
The birth of a zebra shark, reports the Sun-Times, “known in science as parthenogenesis, did not involve a father shark—even though two eligible suitors were in the same giant tank at the Shedd.” The event happened in 2016, but a paper was just published. “It happens most of the time when a female is never with a male or when a male has been removed from the habitat,” Kevin Feldheim, lab manager at the Field Museum, told the paper. “What’s interesting about this case is the presence of the two male sharks… Mate selection preferences… Some females just may not be receptive to some males.”
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