Spring Into Chicago Arts With These April Events

Credit: Andy Keats Kenny

With the warmer weather making its presence known, it’s time to shake off your winter routine. Make a date with local artists at these upcoming events.

William Pope.L Artist Talk at MCA: April 17, 6 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (220 E Chicago Ave.) will go the way of the barnyard for this discussion orchestrated by visual and performance-theater artist and University of Chicago Associate Professor William Pope.L.

Speakers dressed in farm yard animal costumes, including artist Zachary Cahill, who will don cow attire, will explore issues of public debate. The Guggenheim Fellow and Joyce Foundation Award recipient, Pope.L’s work is currently on view at Grey Art Gallery NYU and Studio Museum in Harlem.

MCA members $8; Nonmembers $10; Students $6; Buy tickets online

Matthew Woodward Lecture at Lillstreet Art Center: April 22, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m

Chicago-based artist Matthew Woodward
will speak as part of the Lillstreet Artists Lecture Series (4437 N. Ravenswood Ave.). The series, highlighting local emerging and mid-career artists, critics, and curators, is free and open to the public. Woodward was educated at the School of the Art institute of Chicago and the New York Academy of Art, and he teaches Drawing at Dominican University. He has had recent solo exhibitions at Purdue University and the Linda Warren Projects in Chicago.

Hyde Park Arts Center 75th Anniversary Kickoff: April 13, 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Celebrating 75 years of connecting the public to Chicago art, the Hyde Park Arts Center (5020 S Cornell Ave.) begins the year’s anniversary festivities this Sunday. Events include an Open Studio with current resident Paul Mpagi Sepuya, free family art-making workshops, and a performance by artist John Preus’ experimental band New Materials. Archive-A-Palooza, a yearlong initiative to gather memorabilia pertaining to HPAC’s history, will hold open hours from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. to collect public donations and discuss their significance.

Preus, a University of Chicago alum and co-founder of the Southside Hub of Production collective, kicks off his exhibition of “The Beast” with a reception to follow from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Known for his work as the lead fabricator for Theaster Gates, Preus’ first major solo exhibition features a large structure in the form of a dead steer fabricated from materials harvested from recently closed Chicago Public Schools. A diverse programming schedule will be ongoing in the belly of “The Beast,” which seeks to create a dialogue around public space, collective experience, and the development of a better city.