Today in Culture, November 18, 2021: New Curatorial Leadership at MCA | Is Bill Murray an artist? | Acting Artistic Director at 16th Street Theater

Soif Wine Fair


MCA Chicago announces new conservation leadership
The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago has announced the appointment of two new leaders to its curatorial team, René Morales as Chief Curator James W. Alsdorf and Jamillah James as Senior Curator of Manilow. Morales and James will both assume their roles at the MCA in January 2022. “We are putting together a team of curators for the next chapter of the MCA, a team that is committed to telling an inclusive art story, to s ” engage with our community and expand the breadth and diversity of experience in the team. René and Jamillah are both passionate about investing in the Chicago community of artists, cultural actors and audiences, and their collaborative practice and open and authentic approach will be transformative for the MCA, ”said the director of the MCA, Madeleine Grynsztejn, in a press release.

Born in Cienfuegos, Cuba, and raised in Miami, René Morales brings more than 25 years of curatorial experience, having previously served as Director of Curatorial Affairs and Chief Curator at the Pérez Art Museum Miami. James, an art history graduate from Columbia College Chicago in 2005, was previously senior curator at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles (ICA LA). She is also co-curator of Soft Water Hard Stone, the 2021 edition of the New MuseumTriennial and prior to that she was Assistant Curator at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles.


Sterling Bay adds 1,000 apartments to Fulton Market flour mill site

“After demolishing a 19th-century flour mill at the western end of the Fulton Market district, Sterling Bay unveiled plans to redevelop the site with nearly 1,000 apartments and new large office blocks in the district. hottest in town. ” Crain’s reports. “In one of its most ambitious projects to date in the former meat-packing district, the Chicago developer aims to build a pair of mixed-use buildings on the site of the former Archer Daniels Midland mill. at 1300 West Carroll. ” Times of the sun: “The approximately two-acre site is vacant, but housed a former Archer Daniels Midland grain mill and elevators that Sterling Bay demolished earlier this year. The Preservation Chicago group criticized the destruction of a building it said dated back to 1897, but locals did not object to the loss of a relic of Fulton Market history in food production … Damone Richardson, president of the West Loop Community Organization, said he had not seen the details of the Sterling Bay plan. “We know it happens. We know he’s tall. As of now, the community has accepted that this is a new reality for the West Loop. There is a will for this to happen.

Darlene Hightower, new head of the Metropolitan Planning Council

“The Metropolitan Planning Council, a non-profit organization that advises communities on equitable and healthy growth, has appointed Darlene Hightower as President and CEO. ” reports the Sun-Times. “Hightower, with more than two decades of civic activism, will be the first black person to lead the council, which dates back to 1934. She succeeds MarySue Barrett, who resigned after 25 years as head of the council. A lawyer, Hightower will be leaving Rush University Medical Center where she was vice president of community health equity. Hightower was involved in social justice initiatives in Rush and helped organize West Side United, a coalition that promotes health and economic growth.


Chicago Fire Department proves fried turkey went wrong

CFD tweets seventeen second video warning: “If a fried turkey is on the Thanksgiving menu, please apply some safety tips to protect yourself, your family and your property. Don’t overfill; never put a frozen turkey in hot oil; always cook outdoors away from any structures. Be careful and have a good vacation.

Devil Dawgs opens Gold Coast hot dog stand

Devil Dawgs is opening a new lunch-only location with a limited menu of favorites at 804 North Rush today, Nov. 18, one block west of the Magnificent Mile, the local restaurant chain advises. Hours of operation will be Tuesday through Saturday from 11 am to 3 pm and “will expand pending the shortage of personnel in the city”. Devil Dawgs has also added three new menu items to its Wicker Park location at 1431 North Milwaukee. The group “will also soon be launching their new Friend of the Devil menu collaboration with chef Matthias Merges at the Wicker Park site. Details on the Yusho-themed, Friend of the Devil collaboration are to come. ” High point of the wicker park: the “Icelandic Dawg”, a spicy quarter pound “Devil Dawg” sausage, Dijon mustard, ketchup, remoulade, fried maui onion and fried shallot on a steamed bun for $ 6.95.

The Soif Wine Lounge opens in Logan Square

The Soif Wine Lounge, a French speakeasy-inspired wine bar located under the Roman-style Testaccio restaurant in Logan Square, is now open for service. Idea of ​​local restaurateur and nationally renowned wine expert Aldo Zaninotto (Osteria Langhe), Soif will use Zaninotto’s more than two decades in the international wine trade to present classic expressions like Chablis, Bordeaux and Côtes de Nuits, options of natural wines, natural sparkling wines, orange wines and champagnes from the new cellar of French winegrowers. Thirst will transport guests to the back alleys of Parisian streets, where barely marked doors lead to dimly lit refuges for the nighttime crowd. The menu also includes traditional French spirits and classic cocktails, “wine-friendly bites and elegant caviar service set to eclectic sounds by a rotating roster of local DJs,” Soif said in a statement. “To create the intimate interior of the thirty-four seat space, the team brought in Chicago restaurant designer Erin Boone of Boone Interiors (Elske, The Dawson, Chef’s Special Cocktail Bar) and incorporated reused elements from the French institution of Chicago La Sardine. “We wanted to create a space where wine lovers and novices can come together and discover something new, so that the wine list represents the classics as well as the super energetic varieties of the new guard of French producers”, explains Zaninotto. in the press release. “After running wineries for so many years, I am delighted to work with these winemakers again and source some of their most adventurous, limited-production bottles. We want our guests to be able to come here to discuss wine. ‘ “

Alinea adds proof of vaccination policy

“Chicago’s only three-Michelin-starred restaurant, Alinea, has started requiring adult customers to be fully vaccinated.” Eater Chicago reports. “The policy extends to Alinea’s three siblings – Roister, Next and The Aviary – who are joining a growing number of restaurants and bars in need of vaccines. “


Chicago Film Society Cogent Calendar

Chicago Film Society Exhibitors report on the nascent programming quarter: “It’s that time of year again when we argue over which movies to show next season and can only agree on Popeye cartoons and weird educational shorts on libraries. ” Another clue: Jane Campion’s dark and loving gem “In The Cut” is under study.

Bill Murray philosophizes life

Bill Murray speaks at The Talks on life and being an artist: “You know, I was talking earlier with a man who said to me: ‘You have reached your blue period’, which I found very funny, it made me laugh a lot! … But do I consider myself an artist? No, but I aspire to be. And I can be like that, I can be artistic from time to time. I think there are things that are artistic, or things that an artist would do, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you are an artist. You can have art history moments, but not necessarily be an artist… Being a real artist, I think, is really the art of living. Guys who are real artists are people who understand the art of living, and that their art is art because they live. They have made an art of life, they have made an art of living. And that they are constantly introducing life instead of expressing life. It is more input than output.


CHF presents Alan Cumming at the music box

Tony Award-winning actor and bon vivant and versatile storyteller Alan Cumming is presented by the Chicago Humanities Festival at the Music Box Theater to talk about his latest memoir, “Tales From A Fully Packed Life,” this Sunday, November 21 at La Boîte à Music at 6 p.m. Following here.

Nikole Hannah-Jones talks about “Project 1619” at the Symphony Center

The Chicago Humanities Festival has another big talk this weekend, with Nikole Hannah-Jones discussing “Project 1619”. Saturday, November 20 at the Symphony Center. Following here.


LION Publishers Local Journalism Awards Note Block Club

LION Editors have awarded Block Club Chicago its Editor of the Year gong (medium to large). “This nonprofit news organization is dedicated to providing reliable, non-partisan and essential coverage to various neighborhoods in Chicago,” they note.


G. Thomas Allen wins Sarah Vaughan International Vocal Jazz Competition

“G. Thomas Allen of Chicago is the winner of the 10th Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition as part of the NJPAC’s TD James Moody Jazz Festival,” the group reports. “Allen is currently a professor of contemporary jazz and vocal at ChiArts and the Faculty of Vocal at Columbia College in Chicago. This is the first time that a male singer has won the competition.


16th Street Theater hires interim artistic director

Jean Gottlieb has been hired as acting artistic director of the 16th Street Theater. “Ann Filmer decided to leave the 16th Street Theater at the end of the summer. She will always be the founder of 16th Street, and we will do our best to honor her legacy by bringing you exciting new plays and introducing you to the latest playwrights, ”the group relays in their newsletter. Learn more about Gottlieb here.


ZooLights returns to Lincoln Park Zoo

“ZooLights, the annual exhibit that turns the Lincoln Park Zoo into a winter wonderland, returns Saturday, and this year it’s going green” Block Club Chicago reports. “This year’s light show only uses energy-saving LEDs powered by wind power.”

Send cultural news and tips to [email protected]

Joshua B. Speller