June 18-20, 2021.
This festival was formed in 1993 by a group of Rogers Park neighbors in an effort to combat gang graffiti along the 600-foot stretch of seawall bordering Lake Michigan. The idea was that the seawall would be painted by the community with art that everyone could enjoy. Every year the previous year's art is painted over by volunteers, and the community gets to enjoy some fresh new art. This year's theme was Poetic Painting. It included, among other acts, poetic performance and music.
Sponsored by the Loyola Park Advisory Council, this annual event happens on Fathers Day Weekend, which this year also included Juneteenth and the Summer Solstice. It's a brilliant solution to eliminate gang graffiti while simultaneously bringing the community together. And this was the venue for my first local show of the year in Chicago. Being a resident of Rogers Park, it was a beautiful way to get to know my neighbors and other artists.
A grand huzzah! goes to Andrea for booking me for this ridiculously fun event and all the hard work she put into it. And to Maddy, Roman and Phil who volunteered their time for three days to run sound. This is yet another reason in a growing crescendo of joy-bloomed whatfors that have cemented my belief that I live in the most awesome, supportive ward of Chicago—Rogers Park.
If you would like to check out all to cool new art painted on the wall this past weekend, take a stroll down the beach from Morse Avenue to Farwell.
Michael, et al.