Tag Archives: Chicago

Chicago Art

In anticipation of Chicago Artists Month

 

From the streets to the galleries, Chicago has never lacked passion, expression and innovation. To honor Chicago’s commitment to culture, let’s talk about art. From the days of hosting one of the most successful World’s Fairs in 1893, Chicago has permanently stamped its mark as a city of culture and expression. Today that mark has touched all corners of the city’s society.

At the heart of art in this vibrant city is The Art Institute of Chicago, where numerous exhibits grace gallery floors and invite locals and tourists to experience the creative genius of artists from across time. The institute holds numerous exhibits such as the galleries of Greek, Roman and Byzantine Art and galleries of modern art. The latest exhibit that will swing through the Institute in July will be the painted tapestries of Édouard Vuillard. exh_vuillard_window_overlooking_the_woods_480The exhibit will bring together two halves of Vuillard’s earliest pieces. First Fruits is a two-part tapestry done by Vuillard in 1899. This is the first time since 1950 that the pieces will be reunited, after being sold into separate private collections over 50 years ago.  The exhibit will open July 11 and will stay until October 6: http://www.artic.edu/exhibition/painted-tapestries-reuniting-two-decorative-paintings-douard-vuillard.

If older century tapestries are not your style, Chicago brings current issues to the spotlight as well. An art exhibit by Ti-Rock Moore has been displayed in the Gallery Guichard since July 9. Moore’s piece is controversial, as it infuses the events of last year’s Ferguson shooting with a raw display of expression. Her piece is said to display the Statue of Liberty, a noose and Michael Brown all in the same context. She makes an argument for privilege in America with this impactful and controversial exhibit. The exhibit will last through August 10: http://www.galleryguichard.com/#!blank/ckje.

Art truly begins with the artist, and their inspiration by people and events. As Moore is inspired by Michael Brown, spectators will be inspired by the lush forest that Vuillard brings to the fabric. A young designer was inspired by another aspect of Chicago–the homeless population. Ian Todd decided to use his efforts as a design student to help the plight of homeless people on the streets of Chicago by redesigning the cardboard signs that are often seen with the homeless community in any city. Todd turned the typical handwritten sign into an appealing advertisement. Homeless Signs - ChicagoUsing several elaborate fonts, Todd wrote the messages of homeless people on cardboard signs to help them stand out. Todd, a California native, proved that using art in the smallest way can bring attention to the big issues.  He brought the stories of the city’s homeless to the news, as they highlighted his cause as a demonstration of community in downtown Chicago: http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-homeless-signs-typography-met-20150705-story.html.

Artists in Chicago are making big waves, whether it be Moore with dramatic exhibits, or Todd with writing fonts on cardboard signs, the city pulls together to appreciate the passion behind the acts that drive these artists.

And if Chicago brings out the artist in you, share your work with the numerous art competitions around the city. The Chicago Artists Month competition invites people to submit their work as a chance to participate in the 20th anniversary of Chicago Artists Month that will take place in early October to mid-November: http://chicagoartistsmonth.org/

Artists bring history, style and culture to Chicago. The culture of Chicago made even Frank Sinatra swoon. After all is it not he that sang it best?

Musicians and Their Hometowns

Famous Musicians' Home Cities

Do you know of any great musicians from your hometown? Newcomer’s Handbooks can name a few, and we want to share them with you!

Cee-Lo GreenCeeLo Green (born Thomas DeCarlo Calloway) reigns from Atlanta, GA. The five-time Grammy winner is best known for his song “Forget You,” released in 2010. After being a judge on The Voice, Green started his own show called The Good Life, where he and a group of friends, Big Gipp, Khujo and T-Mo, work together. Green also works with The Greenhouse Foundationin Atlanta, which he and his sister founded to help educate children in disadvantaged areas as well as to follow a family tradition of philanthropy.

Fall Out BoyFall Out Boy, the band consisting of Patrick Stump, Pete Wentz, Joe Trohman, and Andy Hurley, formed in Chicago in 2001. Songs like “My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark,” “Thks fr th Mmrs,” and “Dance, Dance” have helped to maintain the band’s popularity even after a hiatus from 2010 to 2012. After releasing their comeback album Save Rock and Roll in 2013, the band conducted an expansive tour and performed with the other popular rock bands such as New Politics and Panic! At the Disco.

Sara BareillesSara Bareilles, whom you probably recognize from one of her big hit’s “Love Song,” hails from Los Angeles, where she went to the University of California. The five-time Grammy nominee taught herself to play the piano, and she started her career with Epic Records in 2005 after years of singing for acapella groups. Bareilles is currently in the midst of her “Little Black Dress” tour to promote her most recent album, The Blessed Unrest, released in 2013.

Fun.Many musicians call New York City home, but Fun. has been one particularly-popular band. The band consists of Nate Ruess, Andrew Dost, and Jack Antonoff, and they made it big in 2012 with their songs “Some Nights” and “We Are Young.” Besides creating catchy music, the band takes on a variety of charity projects: Andrew paints pies with all profits going to animal shelters in Detroit, and the band as a whole supports a variety of LGBT organizations such as Free & Equal and The Ally Coalition.

Macklemore & Ryan LewisLastly, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis call Seattle home. Macklemore, whose given name is Ben Haggerty, released the top-hit song “Thrift Shop,” which won two Grammys for best rap performance and song. During the 2014 Grammys, Macklemore preformed his song “Same Love” while the host, Queen Latifah, read out marriage vows from a mix of couples in support of equal marriage rights. Macklemore is also a big sports fan, and he dedicates songs to his Seattle teams; for instance, “My Oh My” is dedicated to the Seattle Mariners.

Written by: Kristin Monteith

Moving to College

Learning About Your New College Town

CollegeIt’s that time of year when all the high school graduates are starting to enjoy their final summer before college. However, before you even realize, it will be time to leave for college, and our Newcomer’s Handbooks are here to assist you!

Let’s begin with New York City, home to the prestigious New York University. The big city can be intimidating, especially to a freshman who does not know what to expect. However, our Newcomer’s Handbook for Moving to and Living in New York City can be your guide to Manhattan, Queens, and more. It looks closely at various neighborhoods just in case you need (or want) to live off campus. Our handbooks also offer information on performing arts theaters such as the New York Philharmonic and Carnegie Hall, both of which sell tickets to students at a discounted rate.

Chicago houses many colleges, one of which being Chicago State University. Chicago State University offers 36 diverse undergraduate programs and 29 focused graduate programs. Our handbook explores the amazing activities the city has to offer: from Broadway shows to the Bean– a public sculpture in Millennium Park. Our Newcomer’s Handbook for Moving to and Living in Chicago also includes a section for shopping, so that you know where to go to fill up the dorm room.

HarvardHarvard, located in Boston, is one of America’s most beloved universities. America’s first university is surrounded with history and pubs. Our Newcomer’s Handbook for Moving to and Living in Boston takes a brief look at some of the local lingo as well as how to navigate the busy streets and take advantage of public transportation. We also include a section regarding where to become involved in the community, from places to volunteer, like Pine Street Inn— a homeless shelter— to places of worship, using the National Council of Churches. Our handbook will surely make any college student in Boston feel like a part of the city.

The University of California, Los Angeles is the largest of the nine UC campuses. Whether it’s the promise of fame in the big city or the fabulously warm weather, this University has grown to educate more than 35,000 students, which has also increased the difficulty of being accepted. UCLA may be known for its college football and basketball team, but if you’re also a fan of professional sports, our books offer a list of stadiums and arenas, such as the Staples Center and Dodger Stadium, so you can watch your favorite game.

If you’re already packing your boxes for college, be sure to refer to one of our handbooks to best prepare for your move!

Written by: Kristin Monteith

Newcomer’s Handbooks Explores its LGBT Communities – Part 2

Minnesota, Illinois, Washington DC, Massachusetts, and New York

ID-100256432In celebration of LGBT Month, Newcomer’s Handbooks can help you find out which states support marriage equality and help you move with the assistance of our relocation books, all of which include a section on LGBT life in the city. Last week we looked at LGBT-friendly cities on the west coast.

Newcomer's Handbook for Minneapolis–St. PaulThis week, we start in Minnesota with Minneapolis and St. Paul, two very LGBT-community friendly cities. The Twin Cities’ neighborhood of Loring Park is considered the center of gay life and is home to many gay bars. The neighborhood of East Hennepin also has more than a few gay-owned pubs. There is an info line called OutFront Minnesota which helps to find LGBT centers and other information as well as publishing a biweekly magazine called Lavender.

Newcomer's Chicago 6th EditionNow on to the Windy City– Newcomer’s has your guide to Chicago and its surrounding cities of Evanston, Oak Park, Schaumburg, Wheaton, and Naperville. No matter what you like to do, Chicago’s got it all, from the 600 parks to the theater district to the Magnificent Mile of designer outlets and mall. And it also has quite the night life, with Boys Town being the center of gay bars and Andersonville the center of lesbian bars. The Andersonville neighborhood also has Chicago’s largest LGBT population, while Edgewood has the largest community of gay couples. But whether or not you choose to live in one of these areas, you can still keep up to date with Windy City Queercast, a radio broadcast focused on LGBT news.

Newcomer's Handbook for the USANewcomer’s Handbooks offers a guide to our nations’ capital, Washington DC, and though the handbook includes Northern Virginia, you might want to wait as marriage equality is still in court there. However, the book also offers some advice for suburban LGBT-friendly Maryland as well. DC has the 6th largest LGBT city population, and most of the gay bars can be found in the Dupont Circle area along with other LGBT friendly neighborhoods, like Takoma Park and Shirlington. Along with public acceptance, DC’s police department also has a Gay and Lesbian Liaisons Unit in order to prevent and prosecute hate crimes. The “Metro Weekly” also provides lists of religious groups that are open to the LGBT community.

Newcomer's Handbook for BostonNext up is Boston and some of its surrounding areas, like Cambridge, Brookline, and Somerville, in Massachusetts. Boston is very LGBT-friendly, especially the neighborhood of South End. From “Bay Windows,” New England’s leading gay and lesbian newspaper, to the Pink Pages the LGBT New England Yellow Pages–there is always a way to reach out and get connected to the community. There are multiple activist and support groups as well, like GLASS: Boston Gay and Lesbian Adolescent Social Services Center and many more.

Newcomer's Handbook for New York CityLast but not least, we take a look at the Big Apple, New York City. The city that never sleeps certainly has its appeals. Between the shopping and Broadway, there’s never a dull moment. Rent may be daunting, so if you’re thinking of moving there and are looking for roommate, you can check out Rainbow Roommates. The LGBT community in New York has become so widespread that it becomes hard to limit it down, but there is one center that stands out. The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered Community Service Center provides a multitude of classes on subjects like HIV/AIDs and adopting. They also have welcome baskets full of guides to the city that specifically mark the LGBT community.

Hopefully these brief glimpses into the LGBT communities of some of our nation’s greatest cities were helpful, and of course, if you’ve decided to move to any of these cities or their surrounding areas, be sure to check out Newcomer’s Handbooks to get a more detailed look at your new home.

Written by: Kristin Monteith

Moving to Chicago

Introduction

Thinking about making the move to Chicago? Have you already made the decision? Our Newcomer’s Handbook for Moving to and Living in Chicago can help make your transition smoother and give you the information needed to settle into your neighborhood quicker.

Here is a sample from our Newcomer’s Handbook for Chicago and a quick overview of what the great city of Chicago has to offer:

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We could keep going, but we don’t want to give away all of our secrets! There are a lot of great things about Chicago, but you will have to buy our book to find out all about the great neighborhoods and greenspaces the city has to offer. 

Our Newcomer’s guide includes six geographic maps delineating each section of the city and suburbs as well as photographs of typical housing in each community. With detailed profiles on dozens of neighborhoods and communities, this comprehensive and detailed book includes helpful chapters on Neighborhoods, Finding a Place to Live, Moving and Storage, Money Matters, Getting Settled, Helpful Services, Childcare and Education, Green Living, Shopping for the Home, Cultural Life, Higher Education, Sports and Recreation, Greenspace and Beaches, Weather, Getting Involved (which includes volunteering, places of worship, and meeting people), Transportation, Temporary Lodgings, Quick Getaways, A Chicago Year, Chicago Reading List, and Useful Phone Numbers and Web Sites.

We hope to help make your move and relocation to Chicago as easy as possible!