On the Scene
Theaster Gates is heading the art-center project. 0

A call for action at Hyde Park Art Center gala

November 13th, 2016

Artists lean left, so it’s no wonder last week’s presidential election prompted a call to action by Theaster Gates, one of Chicago’s most celebrated artists.

“We need to roll up our f-ckin’ sleeves,” he called out from the stage at the Hyde Park Art Center gala over the weekend.

Cheers followed and paddles flew up a few minutes later during the auction.

Gates credits Hyde Park Art Center with helping him get his start as an artist. He was honored along with Linda Johnson Rice, chairman emeritus and board member of Ebony Media Operations, which publishes Ebony magazine.

The two have collaborated on a project that’s bringing light to the South Side. Gates has transformed a once-crumbling bank into Stony Island Arts Bank–a gallery and library, featuring the massive collection of books from Johnson Publishing.

Gates and Rice brought a crowd of good friends and colleagues to Hyde Park Art Center for the dinner gala. Gates also is professor and director of the visual arts department at University of Chicago.

All of Rice’s besties sat at her table, including business entrepreneurs Neal Zucker and Marko Iglendza, civic leader Nora Daley and GCM Grosvenor’s Sean Conroy, philanthropy consultant Shawn Donnelley, Mesirow Financial’s Les Coney and Willard Jackson of Clear View Group, which acquired Ebony earlier this year.

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