MacArthur Fellows Program

‘Toward Common Cause' Shines as Visual Arts Celebration of MacArthur Fellows' 40th Anniversary

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Toward Common Cause is a multi-venue visual arts celebration of the 40th anniversary of the MacArthur Fellows Program, and residents can see the showcase at the Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago.

A MacArthur Fellowship is regarded as one of the nation’s most prestigious awards for intellectual and artistic achievement, and all of the participating artists at the Chicago exhibition are MacArthur Fellows, so the anniversary of the program is especially important to them.

“This is a project that really looks at artists who are engaged in issues of social justice,” says Abigail Winograd, MacArthur Fellows Program 40th Anniversary Exhibition Curator. 

Rick Lowe is one of the featured artists. His installation at the Smart Museum is called Black Wall Street Journey

“It’s an effort to reframe and reshape the narrative of how we talk about the economic conditions of African Americans,” he explained.

Another participating artist, Toba Khedoori, is known for isolating urban spaces in a fashion that encourages contemplation and deep thought.

“She doesn’t give you a whole lot of clues about what exactly you’re looking at, so it give you space to kind of create your own narrative,” says Winograd.

More information regarding participating venues and Toward Common Cause partner organizations can be found on the fellowship's website.

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