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Parks & (Re)Creation: Community Arts in the Chicago Park District

February 8, 2020 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Outside view of the CPD ceramic studio and ceramic artwork


Genius of the Spot Artist Talk with artists Ava Carney, Rianna Sprague, and Magritte Emannuel Nankin

The Chicago Park District offers an exciting range of arts programming. Chicago’s forward-thinking model offers an example of what is possible when local governments fund spaces for communal art practices. This presentation offers a brief history and overview of the Park District, with a special focus on the city’s ceramics studios and newly launched residency programs. Chicago based sculptor Ava Carney will also discuss work made for the exhibition A Genius of the Spot, as well as her experience as a resident artist at the Athletic Field Park Ceramics studio.

A Genius of the Spot features figurative sculptures made by Ava Carney during her residency at the Athletic Field Park Ceramic Studio. This year long program was the first of its kind offered by the Chicago Park District. The new A-I-R initiative currently hosts residents at the Athletic Field Park and Tuley Park. See this exhibit in the Fern Room from January 11 – February 9.

Speaker Bios:

Ava Carney studied sculpture and ceramics at the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University (BFA, 2017). She was the Chicago Park District’s first resident artist from 2018-2019. She currently lives in Chicago and develops arts programming for the Teen Services department at the Chicago Public Library.

Rianna Sprague studied ceramics at Knox College (BFA, 2009) and the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University (MFA, 2012). She currently lives in Chicago and teaches fine art and craft for Richard Daley College and the Hyde Park Art Center. She is also the studio manager for the Athletic Field Park Ceramics Studio.

Magritte Emannuel Nankin lives and works in Chicago. As a ceramicist and textile worker Magritte constructs visual thoughtscapes of femininity. Magritte offers a visual language based in the dialogue between material and light, time, wisdom, water and memory. Currently, she is the 2019-2020 Chicago Park District Artist-in-Residence at the Athletic Field Park Ceramics Studio.

This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency.


February 8, 2020
2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
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300 N Central
Chicago, IL 60624 United States