There’s an election coming up this weekend, but no politicians are on the ballot. Instead, you will get to vote for the artistic murals you would most like to see grace our 49th Ward viaducts.
This is all a part of my 49th Ward Participatory Budgeting process. The “Mass Underpass Murals Project” was one of the funding proposals that received voter approval in the Participatory Budgeting Election last April in which I gave 49th Ward residents the power to determine how I would spend the ward’s capital budget allocation.
The proposal called for artistic murals at 12 CTA and Metra/Union Pacific underpasses, each painted by a different artist, with the final selection of artists determined by a vote of 49th Ward residents.
I am pleased to announce 24 finalists have been selected and the final vote is this weekend at the Glenwood Avenue Arts Festival. The 12 proposals winning the most votes will be selected for the underpass murals project. If you live in the 49th Ward and are at least 16 years of age, you are invited to vote for up to 12 of your favorite murals:
UNDERPASS MURAL ELECTION
Saturday, August 21st, 12 Noon to 9:00 PM
Sunday, August 22nd, 12 Noon to 5:00 PM
No Exit Café
6970 N Glenwood Ave (between Morse and Lunt)
(You must present a driver’s license or state ID with your current address, or two forms of identification, one of which must show proof of your current address. Note: if you are under 20, you must also show proof of your age.)
The proposed designs also are on public display in storefront windows at the Center for New Possibilities, 1505 W. Morse (just west of Greenview), and the Howard Theater building, 1643 W. Howard (at Paulina).
The 24 finalists were among over 200 proposed mural designs that were submitted to the Arts and Other Projects Committee of the 49th Ward Participatory Budgeting Project. A panel of experts experienced in art administration and public art reviewed the submissions and selected the 24 finalists. The final selections were based on a number of criteria, including feasibility, viability, artistic merit, originality, appropriateness for public presentation, and completeness and timeliness of the applications.
All the finalists either live in Chicago or have a studio located in Chicago, and nine of the finalists are Rogers Park or Edgewater artists.
Each winning artist will receive a stipend of $5,500 to execute the mural regardless of its size and location. The artists will be responsible for purchasing their own primer, paint and other supplies.
The following underpasses are slated to receive a mural:
Union Pacific (Metra) Underpasses
If more than one artist wishes to paint the same underpass, the artist whose proposal received the most votes will be given preference.
After the final voting on August 21st and 22nd, I will work closely with the CTA and Union Pacific, with the goal of seeing all 12 winning muralists complete their work before the end of this year.
I look forward to the election results. Please come out and vote!
P.S. For a progress report on the other projects that received voter approval in the Participatory Budgeting Election, CLICK HERE.