First Round of Interviews Are Up!

Never the Same: Conversations About Art Transforming Politics & Community in Chicago & BeyondNow online at never-the-same.orgNever the Same’s web project has launched with an initial publication of ten interviews (with Kelan Phil Cohran, Jorge Felix, Emily Forman and Josh MacPhee, Dara Greenwald, Aaron Hughes, Jae and Wadsworth Jarrell, Mary Jane Jacob, Ladyfest Midwest, Patric McCoy, and Christina Obregón and Jose David).

The ten conversations, transcribed and edited and presented with short video clips and related images, span generations of Chicago artists and organizers representing many different communities and neighborhoods and a range of media.

  • “We were pretty focused. Maybe not politically, but in terms of what we were trying to—we were going to do dance routines.”  (Dara Greenwald)
  • “So we weren’t that far apart, except that they came about through violence and I came about through enlightenment. But we were on the same path with the same purpose.” (Cohran)
  • “As diverse a city as Chicago is, there are a lot of divisions in it, and I think we have an acute awareness of that, maybe some of us more than others, at the time, because there were some of us who were very new to the city, but I think our political mindset was to make sure that it was inclusive, culturally and medium-wise, and on all fronts.” (Ladyfest)
  • “The school of thought that is common in the United States is capitalist and individualistic, ‘what am I going to get out of it?’ Our school of thought is different. We don’t think about those things. We do things because they’re things that are necessary. We feel like this is what I want to do.” (Christina Obregón and Jose David)
  • “It needs space for things to be abstract and for things to not fit” (Aaron Hughes)
  • “When you saw our black families together it was a community within a room, just like that, and it had a very powerful impact.” (Jarrells)

Never the Same documents how art can create political, personal, and and social change. This collection of materials, both digital and material, provides tools for reflection, discussion, and research on this topic, specifically in the context of Chicago’s rich history of socially and politically engaged art practices. Along with interviews, the project includes a physical archive of related books, graphics, and ephemera that will be viewable by appointment. Donations of archival materials that fall within the topic area will be accepted.Contact Organizers Daniel Tucker & Rebecca Zorach:


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