WBEZ | Chicago Cultural Plan http://www.wbez.org/tags/chicago-cultural-plan Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Morning Shift: Tracking the path of guns into kids' hands http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-11-14/morning-shift-tracking-path-guns-kids-hands-109150 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/Flickr kcdsTM_0.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>DNAInfo reporter Mark Konkol discusses gun violence among juveniles and how the justice system can exacerbate the issue. Plus, we get an update on the Chicago Cultural Plan. And, 60&#39;s psychedelia with Os Mutantes. (Photo: Flickr/kcdsTM)</p><div class="storify"><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="no" height="750" src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-kids-with-guns/embed?header=false" width="100%"></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-kids-with-guns.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-kids-with-guns" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: Tracking the path of guns into kids' hands" on Storify</a>]</noscript></div></p> Thu, 14 Nov 2013 08:40:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-11-14/morning-shift-tracking-path-guns-kids-hands-109150 Can Chicago's Cultural Plan really deliver? http://www.wbez.org/blogs/onstagebackstage/2012-08/can-chicagos-cultural-plan-really-deliver-101554 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/millennium%20park%20fountain%20flickr%20vincent%20desjardins.jpg" title="(Flickr/Vincent Desjardins)" /></div><p>The story behind the story of the much-discussed Chicago Cultural Plan is this: For the past ten years, at least since Richard Florida wrote his book <em><a href="http://www.creativeclass.com/richard_florida/books/the_rise_of_the_creative_class">The Rise of the Creative Class</a></em> (<a href="http://www.chicagoreader.com/chicago/guys-like-me/Content?oid=909948">reviewed here by a proto-Dueling Critic</a>), cities and their governments have taken it on faith that the best way to create urban prosperity is to be hospitable to &ldquo;the arts.&rdquo; (The idea has to be taken on faith because it contains so many unexamined assumptions.) These days this cluster of wishes, dreams and guesses goes under the name of &ldquo;vibrancy.&rdquo;<br /><br /><a href="http://www.thebaffler.com/past/dead_end_on_shakin_street/">Tom Frank of <em>The Baffler</em> recently wrote a piece disemboweling the concept</a>, arguing that the arts flower as a result of vibrancy rather than as its cause. Frank&#39;s critique produced a flood of counter-critiques and counter-counter critiques among critics and artists with too much time on our hands, and forced me to articulate my own view of &quot;What&#39;s Wrong With Cultural Plans?&quot; My own claim is a bit more modest: I&#39;m prepared to concede that &quot;the arts&quot; and artists may be the solution to some urban problems &mdash; just not the ones to which we should be paying the most attention. &nbsp;&nbsp;<br /><br />If you want a community that&rsquo;s cleaner and greener and brighter and whiter than the one you have now, artists can certainly serve as catalysts to that transformation. They are a very unusual species of poor people that attract rich people instead of repelling them. So if your goal is to remove regular poor people from your community, poor <em>artists</em> are just the thing. (And if black&nbsp;and brown people are being replaced by white people in the process, that&rsquo;s just a coincidence, right?)<br /><br />And if you want to make your community an attractive place for well-educated wealthy people to spend money, art galleries, theaters and the ancillary businesses they attract (coffee shops, restaurants) may well do the trick. At a certain point, these businesses will take off on their own, producing feet on the street day and night and enhancing public safety thereby. Some or all of this is what urban planners means by &ldquo;vibrancy,&rdquo; and it&#39;s by no means a bad thing.<br /><br />But if you want to solve the problems of the community that&rsquo;s already there, fostering the arts is the long way &lsquo;round. The direct method of reducing the number and misery of poor people is to concentrate on providing them with jobs and affordable housing. So if a city like Chicago decides instead to advocate &ldquo;affordable live/work space for artists,&rdquo; it&rsquo;s trying to solve poverty on&nbsp;the cheap. Either it&rsquo;s genuinely concerned with alleviating artists&rsquo; poverty, in which case it&rsquo;s chosen to address the most easily solvable problem (&ldquo;These poor people are educated; give them teaching jobs.&rdquo;); or it&rsquo;s interested only in slapping a layer of glittery paint on poverty in general (&ldquo;These poor people are educated; see, poverty is a choice.&rdquo;) Either way, it&rsquo;s an approach unworthy of the &ldquo;world-class city&rdquo; we&rsquo;re always claiming we plan to be.<br /><br />If the Cultural Plan makes Chicago &ldquo;vibrant,&rdquo; that must make the Plan itself a vibrator. But our arts community doesn&#39;t actually need artificial stimulation. What it/we/they really need is genuine appreciation, support and love.</p></p> Thu, 09 Aug 2012 08:40:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/onstagebackstage/2012-08/can-chicagos-cultural-plan-really-deliver-101554 Chicago seeks public input for 2012 Cultural Plan http://www.wbez.org/blog/alison-cuddy/2012-02-15/chicago-seeks-public-input-2012-cultural-plan-96422 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2012-February/2012-02-15/cultural plan 4.jpg" alt="" /><p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2012-February/2012-02-15/cultural plan 4.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 400px; " title="Millennium Park (Photo by Joshua Mellin)"></p><p>If you are a fan, creator or purveyor of arts and culture in Chicago (or even a neutral bystander) get thee to a series of public gatherings coming soon to a neighborhood near you.<br> <br> <a href="http://www.cityofchicago.org/city/en/depts/dca.html">The Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events </a>(DCASE) tonight kicks off a series of community forums to collect ideas for the <a href="http://www.chicagoculturalplan2012.com/">2012 Chicago Cultural Plan.</a></p><div class="inset"><p><span style="font-size:10px;">Listen to Alison Cuddy and Michelle Boone on <em>848</em></span></p><p><audio class="mejs mediaelement-formatter-identified-1332734843-1" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/sites/default/files/848 120215 culture plan.mp3">&nbsp;</audio></p></div><p>The first (and only) Chicago Cultural Plan was crafted in the late 1980s, during the administration of then Mayor Harold Washington. <a href="http://www.adlmb.com/site/epage/57776_706.htm">Michael Dorf</a>, the Director of the original plan, claims not only was it the first comprehensive cultural plan undertaken by a major city, it was also&nbsp; "the first time any city had...used the tools of grassroots organization to do a cultural plan".<br> <br> His group spent 18 months talking to "everyone" - across Chicago's neighborhoods, artistic disciplines, ethnic groups and major institutions, including the Archdiocese of Chicago and art museums. Now over 25 years later we have a new Mayor who has called for both a new Plan and new input from the public.<br> <br> So, does your voice count? During the initial go-round Dorf clashed with Fred Fine, Chicago's first commissioner of cultural affairs (and <a href="http://web3.colum.edu/press_releases/archives/005284.php">former communist</a>). Fine warned Dorf against "raising expectations." Dorf says he felt the opposite - that if Chicagoans "didn't get what <em>they</em> wanted I wanted them pounding on the doors [of the City] demanding it".<br> <br> Well then, why wait? What do you demand to see included in Chicago's next Cultural Plan? For an inspirational kick in the pants check out suggestions from WBEZ theatre critic <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blog/onstagebackstage/2011-11-17/cityarts-program-open-letter-dcase-94126">Jonathan Abarbanel</a> and <a href="http://www.myfoxchicago.com/dpp/news/opinion/bob-sirott-one-more-thing-chicago-cultural-plan-chess-records-20120208">Fox Chicago's Bob Sirrott</a>.<br> <br> Leave your comments below, then join me and <em>Eight Forty Eight</em> host Tony Sarabia for a conversation with DCASE Commissioner Michelle Boone at 9 am. Conversating about the arts - great way to start the morning!</p></p> Wed, 15 Feb 2012 13:59:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blog/alison-cuddy/2012-02-15/chicago-seeks-public-input-2012-cultural-plan-96422