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A more creative eye is being opened in Garfield Park’s empty lots. This unique opportunity is summer Pop-up series featuring local vendors, art exhibitions, creative workshops, and local performances, according to Pascal Sabino.
What was originally a vacant lot is now a place where youth are invited to invent themselves at the end of summer. Titled as the “Da Lynx” pop-up, located at 3525 W. Madison Street in Garfield Park and was only made into a reality by the Kuumba Lynx organization.
Jacinda Bullie, the founder of the organization specially designed for youth development and exploration of the arts. Bullie wanted to use this opportunity to build “a brave space and cultivate a feeling of safety” – especially after the distance created during Covid-19’s quarantine. It is a place to not only fill with activity and creative works but also “where you lay in a hammock and just hang out and watch a musical performance.”
With the help of Kuumba Lynx’s efforts, many young teens and adults have ventured on the path of entrepreneurship during the pandemic. Bullie hopes to continue this trend and have the youth explore their passions and have a way to experiment with turning that into a business.
Now, Da Lynx will be open until August 20 from 1 to 7 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays. And to follow the close of the event, a back-to-school party will be held on August 21 to celebrate.
Many residents of Garfield Park are showcasing their work at Da Lynx. From workshops detailing how to custom make shoes to giving space for emerging artists to sell their products — Da Lynx is growing more and more popular.
Kuumba Lynx is also hosting a traveling event, Chicago Hip Hop Theatre Festival. This summer event will also bring performances, art workshops, and social justice programs to residential neighborhoods across the city.
The chance to perform and exhibit so many young minorities’ artistry and passions is a great opportunity for residents of the West Side.
Saulter-Villegas, a young man premiering at the event with his film “Pretty Boy,” also shares this sentiment. “I went to NYU and created art for years for rich white people, and I didn’t care for them to witness my art in the same way as when people from where I’m from witness it,” he said.
Written by Brielle R. Buford
Edited by Cathy Milne-Ware
Book Club Chicago: A West Side Vacant Lot Has Been Turned Into An Arts Pop-Up With Vendors, Performances And Creative Workshops; by Pascal Sabino
Featured Image Courtesy of Britini R’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Inset Image Courtesy of M. Jeremy Goldman’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License