Kansas’ Salina Art Center Hires Jefferson Godard as Curator
Salina Art Center hired a new curator starting June 1: Chicago’s Jefferson Godard, who was director at Aspect/Ratio Projects. “The Art Center involved a wide range of people in the national search for a new curator. Former directors, Board members, patrons, artists, and community collaborators were engaged in the process,” Misty Serene, the center’s executive director says in a release. “Jefferson stood out to us as someone who was very knowledgeable, and who would make contemporary art engaging and accessible to all audiences.” Godard founded Aspect/Ratio Projects in 2012, which focused on video and performance art, exhibiting artists including Guy Ben-Ner, Alejandro Figueredo Díaz-Perera, Kate Gilmore, Sabina Ott, Casilda Sánchez and Derrick Woods-Morrow. He also curated video-based exhibitions such as “Overkill,” at The Mission Chicago with artists Manon de Boer, Candice Breitz, EJ Hill, Diego Leclery and Casilda Sánchez. Trained as an architect, Godard served as adjunct faculty in Art & Art History at Columbia College Chicago and has lectured at the MCA, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Northwestern University. “I’m honored to join the Salina Art Center and continue the legacy for championing Great Plains based artists as well as introducing new voices to the Salina arts community. I also look forward to sharing video-art-based programming at the Art Center Cinema,” says Godard.
A Second Coney Family Fund Award Announced
Chicago Artists Coalition will grant an additional $5,000 award to a second Chicago visual artist, made possible by sponsors Chanel and Lester N. Coney. Since 2017, the award has supported a more inclusive arts community and creative economy in Chicago. (Previous awardees include Brittney Leeanne Williams, Shani Crowe, Cecil McDonald Jr. and Rhonda Wheatley). The award is an unrestricted grant of $5,000 to an outstanding visual artist in the city of Chicago who identifies as Black or African-American. CAC will announce the awardees during their virtual benefit, “Work in Progress,” on June 9. Applications for the program open April 26. Application information is here.
Kansas City Arts Philanthropist And Daughter of Hallmark Cards’ Founding Family Was 97
Barbara Marshall, longtime supporter of Kansas City’s arts and daughter of the iconic Hallmark Card company’s founding family, was 97, reports the Kansas City Star. “Marshall was one of three children born to Hallmark founder Joyce C. Hall and his wife Elizabeth Hall. She spent more than fifty years working with the greeting card company through several roles, including helping its product review committee. Beyond her family name, Marshall became a well-recognized philanthropist among Kansas City’s arts community. She contributed to The Kansas City Art Institute financially and as a member of its board of trustees for decades, Tony Jones, the institute’s president,” said in a statement.
Windows on the Art World
The Sun-Times’ Maudlyne Ihejirika looks at how the Sheraton Grand Chicago, one of Chicago’s largest convention hotels, stayed connected with the community by using its massive windows overlooking the Riverwalk: “Forced to close when the pandemic halted travel, the Sheraton Grand Chicago used its massive windows as an art canvas. Team members spent the past year flipping room light switches on to display different designs on the exterior of the hotel now set to reopen in June.”
DINING & DRINKING
Lincoln Park Fears Rowdiness At Expanded Wiener’s Circle
The Wiener’s Circle wants to expand its patio and add a bar menu, reports Block Club Chicago, but neighbors worry about “late night rowdy” atmosphere. When the stand reopens late this summer, “The front will be the same with the roast comedy… but our exception is that won’t occur in the back patio.”
Michelin’s Chicago Return Adds Ten Bib Gourmands
Fifty-eight honorees for the year include ten new neighbors in Michelin’s return to Chicago ratings, reports Eater Chicago. “The criteria for the list is value driven — inspectors say customers could spend around $40 for two courses, plus a glass of wine or dessert. Additions include Tzuco, River North; Kasama, Ukrainian Village; Perilla, River West; Vajra, West Town; Mama Delia, Wicker Park; Chef’s Special Cocktail Bar, Bucktown. “Also of note is the addition of the list’s only restaurant owned by a Black woman: Bridgette Flagg’s Soulé has made a name for itself since 2017 with modern soul food in West Town.”
Epicurious’ Eschewy Beef
Former Time Out Chicago foodie David Tamarkin is a co-writer of Epicurious’ beef banishment announcement. “We’ve cut out beef. Beef won’t appear in new Epicurious recipes, articles, or newsletters. It will not show up on our homepage. It will be absent from our Instagram feed. We know that some people might assume that this decision signals some sort of vendetta against cows—or the people who eat them. But this decision was not made because we hate hamburgers (we don’t!). Instead, our shift is solely about sustainability, about not giving airtime to one of the world’s worst climate offenders. We think of this decision as not anti-beef but rather pro-planet.”
Day Drinking For High Tea Downtown
At Kostali, chef Carrie Nahabedian brings new ideas to high tea at her coastal-themed Mediterranean restaurant inside the Gwen hotel, reports Eater Chicago. “Kostali patrons will find a smattering of sweet and savory snacks like brioche with caviar cream cheese and radish, saffron cake with huckleberry jam, and candied beet with pistachio,” they write “Though the boozy tea concoctions are served in quaint floral teapots… options include the Barely Functioning (Japanese whisky, matcha, honey liqueur) and High Maintenance (masala chai, spiced rum, frothed coconut milk, cinnamon syrup). There are bottles of bubbly a la carte, plus a menu for customers who’d rather sip sans alcohol, in more traditional flavors like English Breakfast and Earl Grey.”
Suburbs, and Soon Chicago, Get Secret Sauce “Ghost Kitchen”
Bottleneck Management, with thirteen years of experience owning and operating brick-and- mortar restaurants, launches its first ghost kitchen concept in Illinois, Secret Sauce Barbecue, on May 18, delivery-only out of the kitchens at City Works Eatery & Pour House in Vernon Hills and Wheeling. Additional locations will launch out of Old Town Pour House in Naperville and City Works Eatery & Pour House in Schaumburg on May 19, Old Town Pour House in Chicago on May 20, and Old Town Pour House in Oak Brook on June 2. “Secret Sauce is a barbecue-focused takeout restaurant featuring Baby Back Ribs, Pulled BBQ Chicken Sandwich, Hot Links, Crispy Fried Wings and Southern Mac & Cheese,” the company says in a release. “Secret Sauce is a tribute to our love for smoked meats and barbecue. The barbecue concept also lends itself to a versatile menu, large portions for families and travels well in a takeout format. There are so many nuances that go into pick-up or delivery, and barbecue allows us to execute the food at a high level each and every time we take an order for Secret Sauce. We intend to offer catering options later in 2021.’”
Chicago French Market Makes USA TODAY Top 10 Readers Choice
“The Chicago French Market was founded in 2009 as a way to bring a European-inspired market to the city while supporting the local food movement,” USA TODAY’s 10Best writes as its readers rank the top 10 U. S. public markets. “The market features a collection of more than 30 vendors selling fresh ingredients, grab-and-go meals and artisan foods from around the globe.”
FILM & TV
The Chicago Origins Of Liam Neeson’s Latest Revenge
Tracy Swartz reports at the Tribune on the Chicago roots of current release “The Marksman,” the latest Liam Neeson thriller, on digital platforms today, co-written by Columbia College Screenwriting II instructor Danny Kravitz and star pupil Chris Charles. “Kravitz, who continues to teach at Columbia, and Charles, who was born in Arlington Heights, said much care was taken to make the Cleveland area look and feel like Chicago. Neeson’s character discusses the proper way to dress a Chicago hot dog (‘no ketchup… mustard, pickles, that sort of thing’). There’s a glimpse of a neighborhood hot dog cart, which is very popular in fictional Chicago but less so on real city streets. ‘The hot dog scene was actually a nice little touch from our director, Rob, who of course has deep Chicago ties as well and knows the power of the Chicago hot dog,’ Charles said. Robert Lorenz grew up in Rolling Meadows and attended Fremd High School in Palatine.”
Chicago Independent Producers Lab Names Five Producers
Full Spectrum Features, the Chicago-based non-profit committed to driving equity into the film industry, announced five producers for its second annual Chicago Independent Producers Lab, reports Reel Chicago, a yearlong project incubator designed to cultivate Chicago’s independent film industry. “In partnership with the Chicago Film Office’s Independent Film Initiative, the Lab offers one-on-one customized mentorship from industry professionals along with hands-on project development delivered through immersive workshops held on a quarterly basis” and other benefits. The five producers are Bridget Botchway Bradley, Peter Lyngso, Eseoghene Obrimah, Anuradha Rana (2017 and 2019 Film 50) and Christina Shaver.
Hearing Naysayers of Cinespace Space Race
Block Club Chicago surveys a few neighbors of North Lawndale’s Cinespace Chicago Film Studios who hope that the burgeoning film factory will be conscious neighbors.
Chicago Critics Film Festival Returns
The Chicago Critics Film Festival will return to the Music Box Theatre after skipping a year, on November 12 through 14. “Like every movie fan, we’ve sorely missed being in theaters for over a year,” CFCA President Brian Tallerico says in a release. “With the safety of our guests and audiences top of mind and with the help of our longtime hosts at the Music Box, we can’t wait to gather again to share these stories on the big screen.” Founded in 1990, the CFCA is the region’s largest association of film journalists, broadcasters, critics and media personalities.
Shooting Soon in Lemont: An HBO-Duplass Brothers Comedy
HBO will shoot a comedy series, “Somebody Somewhere,” in Lockport, Lemont and Naperville, starring and executive-produced by the star of little-seen “Patti Cake$,” Bridget Everett, SCREEN reports. Other executive producers include the Duplass brothers, Mark and Jay; Jay directed the pilot for the series in 2019, when the show was called “Emporia.”
Content provider John Kass is inspiring fusillades over his late-era lathering at the Trib. Rob Feder reports on the response of Greg Pratt, president of the Chicago Tribune Guild, to the highly compensated opinion columnist retweeting a hard-rightwing operation that called the press “the enemy of the people.” “I expect better from @John_Kass than to elevate ‘enemy of the people’ rhetoric about journalists,” Pratt tweeted, “but I guess I shouldn’t. It is language that puts reporters, editors and photographers in actual danger and diminishes newsrooms everywhere, including the Tribune.” Sun-Times columnist Neil Steinberg checks in: “Pratt’s heart is in the right place. But to say you ‘expect better’ from John Kass is like saying you expect a Woolworth’s on N. Michigan Ave. A journalist must be up on current events, and being a vile troglodyte peddling idiotic venom to cave dwellers has long been Kass’ brand.”
Of Kass’ long, bulletproof reign, Reader writer Leor Galil observes, “It’s almost as if his continued employment by a news outlet is a pox upon journalism. Say what you will about the division between opinions sections and the rest of a newspaper, readers don’t get that distinction and this guy thrives off of it.” The indie journalist and Chicagoist alum who posts as @AaronCynic, adds that “We definitely don’t talk enough about how pundits/opinion pieces are (and have been for decades) conflated with news, and the effect that’s had on media itself and people’s perception of it. Related: we definitely don’t talk enough about how the right-wing opinion ecosystem is designed to amplify culture war nonsense based on outright lies (Biden is coming to take your meat, Harris is forcing her books on kids, etc).”
Where Ist Chicagoist?
The redesign and relaunch of LAist out west prompts – what’s become of Chance the Rapper’s still-parked Chicagoist site, which he acquired from New York Public Radio’s WNYC in July of 2018? Chance announced the purchase in a cut with the prophetic lyric, “I bought the Chicagoist just to run you racist bitches outta business.”
Chosen Few Remains Virtual
For the second year, Jackson Park’s The Chosen Few Picnic & House Music Festival, has postponed its in-person activities, reports the Sun-Times, in favor of a July 3 online event: “The group wants to wait until it can hold the actual picnic and festival local house heads know and love.”
Your Daily Kanye
Kanye West’s Nike Air Yeezy 1 prototype sneakers, worn on the 2008 Grammys, fetch $1.8 million at a private sale, NBC News reports, the first footwear to receive more than a million dollars at a public sale.
ARTS & CULTURE
Donnelly Foundation Expedites $3 Million In Arts Funding
A year after its April 2020 announcement of nearly $3 million in expedited funding, the Chicago-based Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation announces a second wave of support, expediting an additional $3 million. In a release, the Foundation lists $1.4 million that includes general operating funds to its current roster of 175 arts grantees in the Chicago region and forty in the Lowcountry of South Carolina; $705,000 to grantees who want to renew multi-year grants; and $75,000 to five regional arts service organizations including the Chicago-based institutions Arts Alliance Illinois, Lawyers for the Creative Arts and League of Chicago Theatres. The expedited funding includes $750,000 to be designated to the Foundation’s Broadening Narratives Collections strategy to amplify underrepresented narratives told in museums, libraries and other collecting organizations; and $75,000 to be granted to the five advisory groups involved with the new initiative, including the Chicago-based Black Metropolis Research Consortium, Chicago Collections Consortium, and Chicago Cultural Alliance. “Over a year after Chicago’s stay at home order, there is still much uncertainty surrounding when our community will be able to fully engage with neighborhood cultural treasures once again, and the arts and culture sector are still the most uniquely affected among non-profits,” David Farren, executive director of the foundation says in the release. “It is incumbent upon our Foundation to redouble our efforts to assist our grantees immediately, and encourage our community to do the same whether it is through donations or purchasing tickets to programs.”