South Shore Arts presents Urban Legends

South Shore Arts presents Urban Legends

More About South Shore Arts presents Urban Legends

Urban Legends is a two-part series of exhibits that showcase artists whose work is sparking new life in old places. The exhibits will be presented at the Center for Visual and Performing Arts over a six-month period beginning this fall and in multiple venues in Gary next spring. Lead underwriting for the series has been provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Legacy Foundation and Peoples Bank.

Urban blight and the subsequent need for regeneration are not unique to Lake County communities, which are increasingly taking cues from similar sites across America, where art and artists have been utilized as means to stimulate new life. By documenting the public artwork that Northwest Indiana artists have executed throughout our sprawling metropolitan region and elsewhere, viewers will better understand how this artwork is being used to create new environments. The images that photographers have captured among urban ruins, including Gary’s City Methodist Church, will shed light on the exciting possibilities that lie ahead for redeveloping seemingly barren places.

Older cities often suffer from abandonment. Concerning this issue, public art projects are seen as a good strategy for regeneration. Public art can create a sense of identity or place, address community needs, tackle social exclusion, possess educational value, promote social change, and encourage economic development. Artists young and old in urban settings are creating artistic opportunities in areas where art can make a significant contribution to urban reuse and renewal. These exhibits will explore, document and promote the work being done as it transforms what has been into what can be.

By viewing the exhibits that comprise the Urban Legends series, it is hoped that the general public will gain an increased awareness and understanding of how public art by local artists is improving communities, transforming blighted areas and specific sites into oases of rebirth for people to use and enjoy. Similarly, artists and community leaders will be provided with encouragement to further utilize art and culture in innovative ways.

Indy Windy: A Love Story, running November 13, 2018 through January 29, 2019, will feature artists from Indiana and Chicago who execute large public artworks to create new environments in aging urban and manufacturing areas, while also documenting their experiences and creating new work in their private studios. The exhibit will be curated by Ish Muhammad, a self-taught artist from Indiana who maintains a studio at the Zhou B Art Center in Chicago’s Bridgeport community on the south side. The exhibit will present an overview of creative activity currently underway by a community of Midwest artists, some of whom have been working together for nearly 30 years.

Muhammad states, “The inspiration for the exhibition is tied to the hustle of being an artist in Northwest Indiana and the relationships built along the way. What started out with artists building professional networks has evolved into true friendships with wedding invitations, graduations, and rent parties. Each has served as mentors, mentees, participated in exhibitions, organized events and collaborated with each other. This exhibit presents artists who respect each other and sincerely desire success for their peers.”

Indy Windy: A Love Story will capture the relationship that Northwest Indiana artists maintain with the creative community in Chicago. Informational didactics will help viewers understand the diversity throughout this sprawling metropolitan region and how the artwork is being used to create new environments. The exhibit will showcase a dozen artists, along with two crews and a collective. Among the artworks on display will be selections from the Indiana State Museum’s Still Crazy: 30th Anniversary of CISA, an exhibition of artifacts and paintings covering the history of Crazy Indiana Style Artists, Indiana’s first Latino artist collective formed in East Chicago in 1986.

Although Indy Windy: A Love Story will include the grit of the graffiti writing movement, it is not intended to be a graffiti-only show, nor will it be a response to whether graffiti is art or vandalism. The exhibit will include the polished work of veteran muralists, fine artists, sculptors, and woodworkers in an environment where the viewer can experience the excitement of urban communities and make connections to the creative energy embodied by the artists’ work.

Artists featured in Indy Windy: A Love Story include Ruben Aguirre, members of the Crazy Indiana Style Artists (CISA), FAB Crew, graffiti writer Mario ZORE Gonzalez, self-taught artist Tyrue SLANG Jones, Emmet Kerrigan, Felix FLEX Maldonado, Liz Mares, Brian Presnell, Tom Torluemke, members of the artist collective The Unwonted, former steel worker Roman Villarreal, and Chicago-based street artist Zor Zor Zor.

A Friendsgiving Party and Artist Reception will be held on November 16, 2018, 6-9pm.

The second half of the series, Urban Ruins: Haunts, will run February 8 through April 21, 2019, with an Artist Reception on Sunday, March 3, 2019, from 1-3pm. Curated by John Cain, this exhibit will feature the work of guerilla photographers who have been lured to Gary and other cities to capture the haunting beauty of architectural ruins on the verge of being repurposed as gardens and other public spaces.

The exhibit will feature the photography of Decay Devils Tyrell Anderson and Lori Gonzalez, along with Dennis Crane, Ashley Diener, Joel Henderson, Thomas Hocker, Eric Holubow, Matthew Kaplan, Mike Kinsch, Joey Lax-Salinas, Jamie Link, Larry D. Mickow, Jr., Bob Palmieri, and Guy Rhodes.

“Gary’s haunts lie dormant near Lake Michigan and steel mills responsible for their creation, sometimes inhabited by the homeless and visited by curiosity seekers and photographers fascinated by urban ruins,” states James B. Lane, co-director of the Calumet Regional Archives at Indiana University Northwest, in the exhibit catalogue. “Still eerily beautiful, they are representative of the grand illusions of early 20th-century city builders and symptomatic of a throw-away society with a short historical memory.”

A combined exhibit catalogue, which will document the work of artists featured in both shows, will be more than just a record of the work on display. It will also serve as a primer on public art and opportunities for urban renewal through the arts within and beyond the Calumet Region.

Urban Legends is the third exhibit collaboration prese­­nted by South Shore Arts and the Calumet Heritage Partnership, a diverse, bi-state partnership of environmental, cultural and historical organizations, individuals and other entities committed to celebrating, preserving and protecting the unique heritage of the Calumet region of Illinois and Indiana.

The Urban Legends series has been made possible by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Legacy Foundation, Lake County’s Community Foundation. Additional funding has been provided by Peoples Bank, Hammond Machine Works, Indiana University Northwest, NIPSCO, and the TIMES Media Company. South Shore Arts programs are provided with support from the Indiana Arts Commission, a state agency, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Thanks to a special grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Fund at Legacy Foundation, both of the exhibits under the heading of Urban Legends will travel to multiple venues in Gary after they have been presented in Munster. Indy Windy: A Love Story will be presented simultaneously from February 8 through March 10, 2019, at ArtHouse: A Social Kitchen, 411 E. 5th Avenue; the Gary Public Library and Cultural Center, 220 W. 5th Avenue; and the Miller Beach Arts & Creative District’s Marshall J. Gardner Center for the Arts, 540 S. Lake Street. Urban Legends: Haunts will be presented simultaneously from May 31 through July 7, 2019, at the same locations.

Tags: local events, urban legends, south shore arts, art, exhibits

Posted By: Town Planner



Event Details

Date: June 26, 2019




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(219) 836-1839


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  • Visit Website
    Breakfast & Lunch Cafe
    *****FIRST PLACE******
    *Best Place for Brunch*
    *Best Place for Breakfast*
    *Best Family Restaurant*
    by "The Times Best of the Region"
    (219) 769-0000

  • Visit Website
    10701 Olcott Avenue, St. John
    Masses: Sat 5:00pm
    Sun 7:30 | 9:30 | 11:30am
    www.stjohnparish.org
    (219) 365-5678

  • Visit Website
    Horseshoe Casino Hammond has been voted as one of the Best Places to Work in Indiana since 2011, making our team legendary!
    Apply today! www.caesarsjobs.com
    *location: Hammond

  • Visit Website
    Change a Medicare Advantage Plan or a Medicare Part D
    Prescription Drug Plan.
    ***Click HERE for Details***

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