Arts Blitz on The 606
For Immediate Release
Arts Blitz on The 606 Brings Art to Life on the Bloomingdale Trail and Connected Neighborhood Parks
Historic art walks, sculpture and sky — The Trust for Public Land celebrates the arts throughout September
September 8, 2015. Chicago’s new trail and park system, The 606 celebrates the arts throughout September with Arts Blitz on The 606. Presented by The Trust for Public Land, The 606 kicks off the celebration with the dedication of a newly re-imagined “Children are Our Future” mural created by renowned public artists John Pitman Weber, Cathy Cajandig and local youth from the Youth Service Project. Later in September, trail and sky come together for the autumnal equinox at the Ridgeway Trailhead, courtesy of a collaboration with the Adler Planetarium. Visitors can also experience the new artwork installed by Marwen student artists in collaboration with lead artist Marta Garcia and with support from the Exelon Corporation, and participate in “The People’s Promenade: A Walk with Words,” the first end-to-end community procession along The Bloomingdale Trail, with poetry, music and visual art. And in the coming weeks, The 606 will be installing a contemporary sculpture by nationally-acclaimed artist Chakaia Booker.
“Poetry, painting and the arts meet the outdoors like never before during the month of September at The 606,” said Beth White, Chicago Region Director, The Trust for Public Land. “Visitors can engage with a historic mural, learn how to read graffiti, observe the equinox, and experience wordplay and music, all while enjoying this great outdoor space.”
White noted that art has always been integral to the design and development of The 606, with lead artist and School of the art Institute professor Frances Whitehead a part of the design team, alongside the landscape architects and engineers. Arts Blitz on The 606 continues to engage communities and make The 606 a “Living Work of Art.”
Arts Blitz on The 606 activities include:
September 19, 11 am – 12 pm
Dedication of the re-imagined “Children Are Our Future” mural at California and Bloomingdale
In 1979, artists John Pitman Weber and Cathy Cajandig partnered with Youth Service Project for “Children Are Our Future,” a mural created in response to the United Nation’s Year of the Child. The mural included relief work that remained intact during construction of The 606, although the painted images had deteriorated beyond repair years earlier. In collaboration with Chicago Public Art Group (CPAG), The Trust for Public Land commissioned the original artists to reimagine and recreate the mural. The artists once again partnered with Youth Service Project to design and complete the project, and will be joined by the youth and adult artists, local officials, and staff from Moos Elementary School, TPL, YSP and CPAG. The dedication will be followed by Moos Elementary’s school celebration, Sabor de tu Tierra from 12 – 2 pm.
September 23, 6:30 – 8:30 pm
Autumnal Equinox: ‘Scopes in the City at the Ridgeway Trailhead
The Adler Planetarium will set up telescopes at the Ridgeway Trailhead, and astronomers will be on hand to help visitors interpret the sky on the autumnal equinox. Adler Planetarium’s ‘Scopes in the City brings free telescope observing to community gathering spaces.
September 26, 3 – 7 pm
The People’s Promenade: A Walk with Words, part of a series of quarterly celebrations supported by the Reva and David Logan Foundation.
The highlight of the event will be an end-to-end walk of the trail kicking off from Walsh park at 5 pm. Walkers will encounter a variety of visual arts installations that will dot the trail and when they arrive at Ridgeway they will enjoy popcorn, apples and cider. Leading up to the walk there will be a series of activities beginning at 3 pm at the grade level parks. These will include a jazz sextet led by Puerto Rican band leader Roy McGrath and poet Rossana Rodriguez at Julia de Burgos, Chicago Slam Works making poetry to order at Milwaukee/Leavitt, Barrel of Monkeys leading word games and at Churchill, and, Zahra Baker and friends conducting multi-lingual song circle. The Poetry Foundation, Opera-Matic and Sit Stay Read will also provide activities.
At the southwest corner of Bloomingdale Avenue and Humboldt Boulevard, visitors can enjoy an as-yet untitled mural created by student artists at Marwen (an arts education non-profit working with Chicago youth in grades 6-12) in collaboration with lead artist Marta Garcia and with support from the Exelon Corporation. Working out of the Humboldt Park boat house, the artists spent a week photographing the neighborhood (people, architecture, plants, and animals) then assembled the images into an abstract collage.
In the coming weeks, The 606 is planning the installation of sculpture by Chakaia Booker — Brick House 2015. Made entirely of rubber tires, rubber, and stainless steel, this 10.5 x 26 x 13-foot sculpture will be lifted and placed on the Damen Arts Plaza over the course of approximately three days.
About The 606:
The 606 takes Chicago’s legacy of great parks to new heights. This Northwest side project is transforming nearly three miles of unused rail line into the elevated Bloomingdale Trail, linked to six ground-level neighborhood parks, as well as various art installations and other amenities. The park and trail system is named for the 606 zip code prefix all Chicagoans share. Set above city streets, it will serve as both an urban oasis and a new way to explore Chicago on trails for biking, running and strolling. The 606 also connects parks, people, and communities; what once physically separated four neighborhoods now will knit them together and attract visitors from throughout Chicago and beyond. It is yet another Chicago icon that brings together innovative urban planning, green space, and the arts. The 606 will change the way you see our city. For more information about The 606, please visit The606.org.
About The Trust for Public Land:
The Trust for Public Land is the nation’s leading organization focused on creating parks and preserving land, especially in cities, and serves as project manager for The 606 on behalf of the City of Chicago and the Chicago Park District. For more information about The Trust for Public Land, please visit TPL.org.