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Today In Culture, July 21, 2023: Chicago Underground Film Fest Heads to Hyde Park | Sueños Team Launches Diego | Graham Foundation Grants

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Interior restaurant space with beige booths and artwork on walls and shelves.

Diego interior/Photo: Sueños

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DESIGN

The Graham Foundation Announces 2023 Grants

Thirty-eight projects worldwide will receive a total of $501,500 to organizations from the Graham Foundation, including exhibitions, publications, and other public presentations—that foster the development and exchange of ideas about architecture and its role in the arts, culture and society, furthering the mission of the Foundation. Collectively, these projects explore different issues, methods, and platforms of contemporary architecture discourse and feature work by architects, archivists, artists, curators, designers, educators, and other professionals working with organizations around the world in cities such as Beirut, Los Angeles, Richmond, Tijuana, and Chicago, where the Graham Foundation is based. The grantees join a global network of organizations and individuals that the Graham Foundation has supported since its founding in 1956. The Foundation has awarded more than $43 million in direct support to over 5,000 projects by organizations and individuals.

Among this year’s grantees is the fifth edition of the Chicago Architecture Biennial, “CAB 5: This is a Rehearsal,” curated by the interdisciplinary arts collective the Floating Museum, “which takes an expansive view of design as an iterative rehearsal process to explore architecture, cities, and the social, ecological, economic and political forces that shape them. The practitioners represented in CAB 5 collectively set the stage for the cross-pollination of ideas in order to challenge and envision alternatives for the following: how we understand and address the needs of a city, who plays a role in imagining and making the city, and how our potential solutions attend to the overlapping crises that now inform our everyday lives.”

Also: Chicago Architecture Center for the exhibition “Our Changing Downtown: International Residency” with ChartierDalix, Paris, fall 2023. And Soberscove Press for “In the Horizontal Plane: taisha paggett performance works”; University of Illinois at Chicago—School of Architecture for The UIC/SoArch Journal; The Renaissance Society for “Dala Nasser”; and Association of Architecture Organizations for the 2024 Design Matters Conference. The complete list of grantees is here.

Chicago Vintage Signs Get Stronger Protection

Chicago City Council “backed a preservation ordinance to preserve the city’s vintage signs as historic landmarks,” reports Block Club. “The City Council voted Wednesday in favor of the measure to protect commercial signs that are at least thirty years old and have ‘significant iconic or cultural value,’ subject to a city review. Previously, such signs were vulnerable to being torn down or whitewashed if the property owner let their city permit expire.”

Randolph Street Market Continues Twentieth Anniversary

Randolph Street Market is returning to the West Loop next weekend to continue their twentieth season, Saturday, July 29-Sunday, July 30. The event will bring together 200 of the top independent vendors, makers, dealers and designers from across North America to the West Loop at 1341 West Randolph. Tickets and more here.

 

DINING & DRINKING

Sueños Team Launches Diego, Bar And Street Food Concept

After a successful year at Soho House, the team behind Sueños—the mariscos concept from executive chef Stephen Sandoval—will launch its newest concept, Diego. Located at 459 North Ogden, the former G&O space, the upcoming restaurant and bar is named after Chef Sandoval’s hometown of San Diego and will offer a nod to the bordering Tijuana, where his love for street food was born. Having used their time at Soho House to test menus, the food menu will include some of Chef Stephen’s favorite street food dishes and regional specialties. “The menu is separated by Mar (mariscos-inspired fare) and Calle (baja street food). Expect signature seafood items from Sueños x Soho, as well as other street favorites like tacos de canasta and a Tijuana-inspired burger.” Menu, cocktails and more here.

White Sox Hang Ketchup Bell Of Shame 

The White Sox have placed a “Ketchup Bell of Shame” at their ballpark that will get rung if anyone puts ketchup on their Chicago hot dog, posts MLB Life.

Marie’s Salad Dressing And Dean’s Dip Move Offices To Illinois

Investment firm Brynwood Partners is establishing its third company in the Chicago area, reports the Sun-Times. “The firm is buying the Marie’s salad dressing line and Dean’s Dip, products made in Thornton, from Ventura Foods.” The products will be part of West Madison Foods, a new company with offices at 500 West Madison. The Thornton factory “employs eighty-four full-time workers and about twenty-five will be hired for support downtown.”

Billionaire GOP Presidential Aspirant Vivek Ramaswamy Strikes At McDonald’s Over Diversity And Equity

“An Ohio-based asset management firm co-founded by Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy is urging McDonald’s to do away with some of its diversity policies,” reports Crain’s. His firm “wrote on behalf of its clients who are shareholders and expressed concern that some of McDonald’s diversity policies are illegal following the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision that Harvard and the University of North Carolina’s affirmative-action admissions policies are unconstitutional.” Ramaswamy’s Strive “has a history of attacking corporate ‘wokeness.’ It has also sent such letters to Disney and Salesforce.”

 

FILM & TELEVISION

Chicago Underground Film Fest Will Turn Thirty In Hyde Park

The thirtieth edition of the Chicago Underground Film Festival, the longest-running underground film festival in the world, is moving to the South Side Harper Theater, September 13-17, with opening night held at The Gene Siskel Film Center. A global champion of the underground scene, CUFF “showcases and celebrates some of the most original films and video art being made today all supplemented through screenings, panels and nightly afterparties.” Highlights this year include three locally produced world premieres, an afterparty at The Promontory curated by Eric Williams of the Silver Room, and an underground art market at The Kulture Museum. Curated panels and parties, new films from festival alumni and other genre-bending features and shorts are on tap as well.

The move to the South Side and CUFF’s transition “into an independent 501(c)3 organization mark transformative milestones in our journey,” artistic director Bryan Wendorf says in a release. “By embracing Hyde Park’s rich cultural mosaic, we ignite a vibrant tapestry of diversity, inviting artists and audiences from all walks of life to experience our boundary-pushing cinematic offerings. This pivotal moment empowers us to create a more inclusive festival where stories transcend boundaries, challenge perceptions, and empower underrepresented voices. As a nonprofit entity, we amplify our commitment to alternative filmmaking, cultivating a vibrant community of filmmakers, cinephiles, and artists who push boundaries and provoke meaningful dialogues. Together, we revolutionize the way we perceive the world, harnessing the power of underground cinema to inspire and foster artistic freedom.” Tickets and more here.

 

MEDIA

Stanford Student Paper Follows Daily Northwestern

“The president of Stanford and the head football coach at Northwestern left their positions after being scrutinized in campus newspapers,” reports The New York Times. Stanford University’s president will “resign from his position and retract three decades-old research papers, after an independent review of his scientific work was prompted by coverage in the campus newspaper, The Stanford Daily. Last week, Northwestern University fired its head football coach… after its student newspaper, The Daily Northwestern, reported that his players had engaged in hazing rituals. The back-to-back revelations have highlighted the important role of college newspapers in holding to account the powerful institutions that house them.”

 

MUSIC

Hideout Looking For Venue Manager

The Hideout’s looking for a new venue manager, who will have “the primary duty of managing the Hideout’s daily operations and ensuring that the venue is operated smoothly; safely; consistently with the Hideout’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion; and in accordance with applicable liquor licensing and other legal requirements. The Venue Manager customarily and regularly directs the work of non-managerial employees, in multiple job titles, in the Hideout’s Operations Division including all bar staff, and for the joint supervision of employees who have duties in both the Operation’s Division and Programming Division. The Venue Manager works closely with the Program Director, whose primary duties relate to artistic programming, sound production, and door staff… We’re committed to open hiring and to broadening the path into one of Chicago’s most cherished spaces for music, comedy, and community… We’re looking for qualified and experienced individuals, no matter where those qualifications and experiences come from, who are passionate about upholding the values the Hideout has set forth, and who care about making this a good place to perform, work, and gather at.” Full job description here. Application here.

 

STAGE

Actor Jeffrey Carlson Was Forty-Eight

The Chicago stage actor, who played a trans role on the soap opera “All My Children,” was found dead in his Andersonville apartment earlier this month, according to the Sun-Times. Before taping episodes of the soap opera in New York, “Carlson would call a close friend from his time at the Chicago Shakespeare Theater and read through his script. Carlson, a stage actor at heart who’d starred on Broadway, gave extra special attention to a challenging storyline he’d taken on. He was playing the first transgender character to appear on daytime television… Carlson, who was not transgender himself, wanted to get the role right, recalled Chicago-based actress Susan Hart. ‘He realized he was representing a group of people he was proud to get to know and represent,’ she said. ‘He had hundreds and hundreds of fans who not only wrote to him but sent him gifts, teddy bears and trinkets.’”

 

ARTS & CULTURE & ETC.

Al Gore Under The Heat Dome; Bill McKibben Looking Up

Sentence of the morning: “‘Every night on the TV news is like taking a nature hike through the Book of Revelation,’ Gore said” newsletters the New York Times, getting a take from environmentalist Al Gore on the hot summer. “A rapid end to burning fossil fuel would arrest the heating that has caused extreme damage in recent weeks; and that rapid end is possible,” writes the positive-thinking Bill McKibben at The New Yorker: “Fossil-fuel companies were already aware of the risks, but they decided to deny the science of climate change through three decades, when we could have been doing preventive work. There’s always been a reason for oil companies to stand in the way of action… But solar lights that can shine all night charged with just four hours of sunlight can be had for a dollar, and Bangladesh is a world leader in small-scale solar… A rapid end to burning fossil fuel would arrest the heating; and that rapid end is possible, because solar and wind power and batteries to store it are now cheap and available. Texas got through an epic heat wave in the past few weeks largely because it has increased its solar and wind capacity, which kept air-conditioners running even as conventional power plants faltered.”

 

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