Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Wabash Arts Corridor Crawl

The Wabash Arts Corridor (WAC) Crawl will take place during EXPO ART WEEK, a showcase of the
city’s visual, performing and culinary arts September 16-22, presented in conjunction with EXPO CHICAGO, the International Exposition of Contemporary and Modern Art at Navy Pier, September 19-22.

The WAC Crawl is a free public event, open Wednesday, Sept. 18, from 5–8 p.m., and located along Wabash Avenue from Congress to Roosevelt. The WAC Crawl will feature gallery openings, concerts, dance and street performances, multimedia demonstrations, chalk art, sidewalk sales, discounts to area restaurants and pubs, the unveiling of the Columbia College’s Papermaker’s Garden and a Joffrey Ballet rehearsal performance in the storied Auditorium Theatre.

The WAC Crawl is the latest development of the Wabash Arts Corridor, a long-term partnership between the city and local business community to transform empty storefronts, parking lots, walls and vacant land in the South Loop into a dynamic, creative community that will serve as a gateway to the South Loop. Recent developments include an installation of large-scale fashion photography on the exterior of the Hilton Chicago; a mural project on George’s Lounge (650 S. Wabash); the Harrison Gateway, a collaboration with the Chicago Transit Authority to install images and haikus on the El Track support beams on Harrison Ave; expansion of the Papermaker’s Garden across from the Hilton Chicago; and updating the façade of 619 S. Wabash.

“The WAC Crawl is going to be a dynamic celebration of the cultural and educational life of the South Loop,” said Mark Kelly vice president of student affairs at Columbia College, and one of the driving forces behind the WAC Initiative. “This area is home to more than 30,000 students, 17 major cultural organizations and a thriving business community. The WAC Crawl is going to unleash the creative energy and assets of this community and use it to transform the South Loop into a major tourist destination.”

Organizations participating in the WAC Crawl include Columbia College Chicago, Roosevelt University; DePaul University; East-West University; Jones College Prep High School; The Harold Washington Library; Greater South Loop Association, Hilton Chicago; The Blackstone Hotel; The Elephant Room Gallery, Buddy Guy’s and the Near South Planning Board among others. For more information on WAC Crawl events, contact Norman Alexandroff at 312.369.7416.

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