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Open Engagement 2017

April 21, 2017 @ 10:00 am - April 23, 2017 @ 11:00 pm

The largest artist-led conference on socially-engaged art returns for its 9th year! OE 2017 will highlight the resilient city of Chicago, and center on the theme of JUSTICE. Guided by the curatorial vision of Romi Crawford and Lisa Yun Lee, Open Engagement 2017 will feature presenters including Theaster Gates, Maria Gaspar, Maria Varela, Ai-jen Poo, Marisa Jahn and Laurie Jo Reynolds.

Please join us, along with hundreds of artists, activists, educators, students, institutions, and thinkers to explore this year’s theme of JUSTICE. The conference aims to be a site of care – a dialogic space where we can take stock of the field of socially engaged practices, and highlight creative endeavors toward equity and social justice. This year’s program will feature local, national and international presenters with more than 100 workshops, presentations, panels, conversations, tours, parties and projects. OE 2017 will feature a selection of focused trainings to provide attendees with skills and tools to help better address creative work at the complex intersection of art and social justice, as well as opportunities for intimate discussion during our Conversation Series. In the evenings, queer-inclusive nightlife organizers will host celebrations, guided by the belief that transformative acts of change are deeply indebted to these marginal spaces of collective joy.

OE is working with partners spanning the breadth of Chicago’s neighborhoods to represent the work being done at the intersection of art and activism across the city. Current partners include 3Arts, 6018NORTH, ACRE, The Art Institute of Chicago, Bad at Sports, Block Museum, Co-Prosperity Sphere/Lumpen Radio, Columbia College Chicago/Glass Curtain Gallery/Wabash Arts Corridor, Gallery 400/Threewalls/Propeller Fund, Hyde Park Art Center, Jane Addams Hull-House Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, National Museum of Mexican Art, Party Noire, Rebuild Foundation, Reunion Chicago, Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, Roots and Culture, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Smart Museum of Art, Stockyard Institute, TRQPiTECA, and Weinberg/Newton Gallery.

Registration fees are on a self-selecting sliding scale, from $40 to $1000.

OE welcomes families and young folks and aims to be inclusive of all. ADA compliance and non-ADA compliant accessibility info will be listed for each venue and event. If you have particular needs, please do email us at We will have gender inclusive bathrooms.

We hope to see you this year!

Our full schedule will be available shortly. Check for updates on our website at


April 21, 2017 @ 10:00 am
April 23, 2017 @ 11:00 pm
Event Category:


Open Engagement


Gallery 400
400 S Peoria St
Chicago, IL 60607 United States
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