Equity & Inclusion

June 2, 2020

We are with you

To the Art Center Family:

We are with you in heartbreak, anger, fatigue and grief. We feel the pain of our community, especially our Black community. We at Hyde Park Art Center strive to be a place where people, particularly those who are surviving oppression every day, can be safe to process the world around them, to share their stories, to create and to live. While we are not able to physically be together, we are with you.

Today we take time to check in with ourselves. Today we take time to check in with our neighbors, friends, and families.

Tomorrow we will mobilize again as a community to heal, learn, provoke thought, create and thrive. We can look to art to give us space, fuel, and ideas; art reminds us that we are human in the face of inhumanity. The work may seem insurmountable, but tomorrow we will pick it back up together.

Here are a few organizations, of many, who are bravely doing the work:

Chicago Regional Organizing for Antiracism (CROAR)

My Block, My Hood, My City

Assata’s Daughters

Chicago Freedom School

Black Lives Matter Chicago

Southside Community Art Center

Chicago Alliance Against Racist & Political Repression

Brave Space Alliance


In solidarity and with respect,

Hyde Park Art Center staff

Creative Citizenship is the model we use to ensure equity, access, and inclusion.

Our community is made up of people from every walk of life working side by side to create, discuss, and support cutting edge, intriguing, and relevant work. Together we ensure that everyone, from all identities and backgrounds, have the opportunity to utilize our resources available for the pursuit of growth, creativity, and social engagement.

Chicago ACT Collective, Sanctuary poster, 2017, Screen print, 11 x 17 inches

What is Creative Citizenship?

Creative Citizenship is the practice of deepening our understanding of social issues through the arts and mobilizing that enriched consciousness into action.

We Believe:

We have the RESPONSIBILITY to actively and explicitly work to dismantle inequities such as racial, economic, and gender within our field and the communities we serve

We have the POWER to develop and invest a civically engaged and socially resilient city, ready to lead positive change

ARTISTS are uniquely positioned to frame conversations and provoke reflection around humanity and our challenges

Our strengths are our people

We know that the key to effectively nurturing the development of contemporary arts is by increasing equity within our organization and within the arts landscape. Working in Chicago, a city rich in cultural diversity but notoriously segregated, requires us to think outside the box and evaluate our internal structures while collaborating and engaging with community leaders to increase our success.

This means:

  • Recognizing that a diverse and inclusive organization is foundational to developing and engaging all our artists and surrounding communities.  Our artists, volunteers, members, program participants, families, leaders, staff, vendors, suppliers, faculty, donors, partners, and the community at large all contribute to our efforts to make contemporary arts a vital part of positive, lasting personal and social change.
  • Believing that strength and excellence comes from the unique contributions and voices of diversity amongst our staff, faculty, interns, and volunteers.
  • Partnering with and inviting a broad range of communities, individuals, and institutions for dialogue, collaborations and exchanges, and solution brainstorming.

Equity and inclusion practices at Hyde Park Art Center foster a high-performing learning environment where staff, students, artists, and volunteers are engaged, valued and encouraged to collaborate, generate ideas and contribute at the highest level.  We are passionate about our mission and know that our ability to achieve it begins with reflecting and partnering with all people and communities.

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