Perched on the grassy lawns of Chicago's Humboldt Park, the National Museum of Puerto Rican Art (NMPRAC), is a centerpiece of the city's Puerto Rican community, Paseo Boricua. Under the building's arresting red-tiled roof hangs an array of work by artists from the Puerto Rican diaspora.
Generations of Ukrainian immigrants have called Chicago’s Ukrainian Village home. An explosion of avant garde creativity in the area in the ‘60s and ‘70s gave birth to an art museum whose mission seems prescient today. Now, the art that hangs in the Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art's galleries serves as a small but mighty protest against Russia’s attempts to erase Ukrainian culture.
Everyone loves a movie musical. In the last few years, it seems, to me, there’s been somewhat of a surge of movie musical adaptations. Critics praised “West Side Story” (2021) just as much as they reviled “Dear Evan Hansen” (2021). Even the Academy Award Winner for Best Picture this year, “CODA,” has at least two singing scenes integral to the movie.
The drive-in is an icon of twentieth-century American entertainment. Since the height of their popularity in the ‘50s and subsequent decline as real estate costs rose and technology advanced, drive-in theaters have gotten creative — and even made a brief comeback as a socially-distanced, open-air pandemic pastime.
In a dark room sit clusters of circular wooden tables and chairs while a handful of vintage lamps radiate warm light. A red upholstered banquette runs along a dark wall, reminiscent of a century ago. But the focus of the room is a gleaming, black piano on a stage enveloped with red curtains, a platform designed to transport audiences to Toledo, Ohio’s golden era — and envision its next one.
In the early 20th century, Americans were infatuated with international (read: European) art, as people clamored to buy pieces by famous artists like Renoir and Monet. It wasn’t until 1919 that the first institute dedicated solely to American art opened in Youngstown, OH. The Butler Institute of Art is still one of Ohio’s most popular museums today, and the rich history of its founder, Joseph G. Butler Jr., led to the Institute’s focus on representation and access for all Americans.
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