Closing Reception Income Inequality A Cartoon Exhibit
Join URI-EICHEN for our 4th show in a 5 month series about Income Inequality in America.
Closing Reception - September 2, 6-10pm
Panel Discussion with Mike Konopacki and Gary Huck at 730pm.
In 1889, Puck magazine founder Joseph Keppler's cartoon, "The Bosses of the Senate," depicted top-hatted capitalists ruling the U.S. Senate dressed in huge moneybags labeled with every trust from coal to sugar. Above the senate chamber is a sign “This is the Senate: Of the monopolists, by the monopolists, for the monopolists.”
That same year, another Puck cartoonist, Samuel Ehrhardt, compared feudal overlords plundering peasants and serfs to the corporate oligarchs of his day exacting duties from farmers, workers and small businessmen. The title: “History Repeats Itself – The Robber Barons of the Middle Ages and the Robber Barons of Today.”
This was the Gilded Age—a period in the late 19th century when America was a plutocracy dominated by ruthless "robber barons" whose power and wealth left much of nation disenfranchised and impoverished.
History is repeating itself again. As former Labor Secretary Robert Reich recently observed: “In many respects America is back to the same giant concentrations of wealth and economic power that endangered democracy a century ago.” With 400 individuals owning half the country's wealth and politicians in the grip of elites who fill campaign coffers, income inequality has soared, leaving workers behind even as productivity and profits rise.
Cartoonists in the first Gilded Age—Keppler, Ehrhardt, Thomas Nast, Homer Davenport, and others—were relentless in their searing contempt of plutocrats and the economic injustices they visited upon others. But what of cartoonists in this New Gilded Age?
Just as Chicago humorist and muckraker journalist Finley Peter Dunne espoused at the turn of the last century, they too "comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable." They are as creative and committed as ever in holding true to a proud tradition of scorn for greed, corruption, and the sabotage of American democracy.
The evidence is this exhibit.
We Want Freedom!
The Black Panther Party Platform &
Chicago's Rainbow Coalition
The 5th Month in a 5 month series on Income Inequality in America—and fighting back against it!
Uri-Eichen Gallery, 2101 S Halsted, Chicago
Opening September 9th, 6pm to 10pm
Panel Discussion September 9, 730pm: The Rainbow Coalition then and now!
Emphasis on the Serve the People programs: Breakfast for Children, Free Legal Programs and Health Clinic: Featuring photographs, posters, leaflets and newspapers from the Black Panthers, Young Lords, Young Patriots, Rising Up Angry and others who accepted the Panther's assessment of social and economic inequalities and used their "Ten Point Program" as a model in their own communities.
Rainbow Ephemera: A shelf of books the members of the Rainbow read, a loop of movie trailers of the films the Rainbow saw in theaters and a stack of vinyl records the Rainbow listened and danced to.
Open by appointment through October 7. Call for an appointment 312 852 7717
"We Want Freedom!"
The Black Panther Party Ten Point Plan & Chicago's Original Rainbow Coalition
In the period following the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy and the Democratic Convention protests, a coalition emerged among the Black Panthers, Young Lords, Young Patriots, Rising Up Angry. Labeled the Rainbow Coalition by Fred Hampton, Chairman of the IL Black Panther Party, these groups accepted the Panther's assessment of social injustice and economic inequality and used the Panther's "Ten Point Program" as a model in their own communities.
"We Want Freedom" will include photographs, posters, leaflets, buttons and newspapers.
A program of speakers, films and music will accompany the exhibit- look out for more details!
October: The Election
November: Kembrew McLeod
Kembrew’s Critique Boutique
Opening - November 11, 6-10pm
URI-EICHEN Gallery 2101 S Halsted, Chicago IL 60608
Open by appointment through December 2. For an appointment call 312 852 7717
Kembrew’s Critique Boutique, hosted by the Uri-Eichen Gallery in Chicago, is your one-stop outlet for serious fun. This gallery show features solo and collaborative work by Kembrew McLeod, a media scholar and artist whose projects cross several mediums and practices. His multimedia, multimodal body of work explores how dissent can seep through the cracks of the popular culture that provides our lingua franca, a language that is often privatized and fenced off by intellectual property laws. This was underscored in his 1998 piece, Freedom of Expression®, when Kembrew trademarked that iconic phrase and later threatened AT&T with legal action for “using freedom of expression without permission” in an ad. This conceptual pop-up shop showcases an interconnected oeuvre that includes books, zines and other print ephemera, as well as documentaries, audio projects, and politically-charged “pranks” — such as Freedom of Expression®, selling Kembrew’s Soul, and the exploits of his intrepid alter ego, RoboProfessor (who has crossed paths with Bill Clinton, Michele Bachman and others).
Bio: Kembrew McLeod is a Professor of Communication Studies at the University of Iowa. He has published and produced several books, documentaries, and other award-winning work.
December: Human Rights Show - Syria
January: Mike James
Second Fridays of the Month
6PM - 10PM
Richard Berg is the Past President of Teamsters Local 743 where he was an activist in the Teamster reform movement for more than 20 years before being elected president. He was a member and union steward for the Teamsters while working in the Department of Environmental Services at the University of Chicago Medical Center. He has also worked as an Organizer for AFSCME, as a Business Agent for the Teamsters and as a Union Representative for SEIU Local 73. He was also previously the Treasurer of the Chicago Area Labor Support Committee, Executive Board Member of the Chicago Chapter of the Labor Committee for Latin American Advancement, International Steering Committee Member of Teamsters for a Democratic Union, 30th Ward Coordinator for Harold Washington for Mayor in 1987, Staff for James Exum for 48th Ward Democratic Committeeman, Steering Committee Member of the Illinois Chapter of the Labor Party, Wisconsin Chair of the Midwest Coalition Against Registration and the Draft, Co-Chair of the Marquette University Coalition for Divestiture and President of the Marquette University Progressive Student Organization . Richard is currently a Staff Representative for Illinois AFSCME Council 31 and serves on the Steering Committee for the Chicago Labor Speakers Club. He also enjoys fine art whenever possible.
Paul Durica is a teacher, writer, and public historian. Since 2008 he has been producing a series of free and interactive public history programs under the name Pocket Guide to Hell. These talks, walks, and reenactments use costumes, props, music, and audience participation to make the past feel present. Paul has collaborated on programs with a range of cultural institutions from across Chicago including the Jane Addams Hull House Museum, Chicago History Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art, Gallery 400, Smart Museum, and Sullivan Galleries among others. Paul recently received grants from the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events and the Chicago Park District to do a series of public history programs in Chicago parks and is one of seven Chicago artists selected to be part of the citywide People Plaza project. Pocket Guide to Hell has been written about in the New York Times, Chicago Tribune, The Atlantic Cities, and Huffington Post, and Paul has appeared multiple times on WBEZ and WTTW. Paul’s writing on Chicago history and culture has appeared in Poetry, The Chicagoan, Mash Tun, Lumpen, and elsewhere and, with Bill Savage, he is the editor of Chicago By Day and Night: The Pleasure Seeker’s Guide to the Paris of America (Northwestern UP, 2013). In May 2014 at the Logan Center for the Arts, he organized with Leigh Fagin Let’s Get Working: Chicago Celebrates Studs Terkel, a three-day festival of conversations, readings, film screenings, and musical performances celebrating the life and work of the radio personality and oral historian Studs Terkel and those who continue his work in the present. He is currently the Programs Coordinator for The Arts Club of Chicago.
Ruth Needleman, professor emerita in Labor Studies at Indiana University, has taught labor and Latin American studies since the late sixties. After 4 years in Latin American Literature & Studies at the University of California at Santa Cruz, she worked for the United Farm Workers under Cesar Chavez.
Ruth has been awarded honors for excellence in teaching, research and service, for her work, including a book, Black Freedom Fighters in Steel: the struggle for union democracy, and many articles on black history, race, class and gender, leadership development and on movements in Latin America. She contributed to a book on the right-wing in Chile, published by Quimantu, Allende’s publishing house, prior to the fascist coup. She has traveled extensively, presented in Brazil, Canada, Mexico, Cuba, Nigeria, Yugoslavia, Japan, Colombia and more.
She pioneered courses in Labor & the Arts at IU, and established a 15-year college-degree program called Swingshift College, enabling steelworkers to complete college degrees in a customized worker program based on transformational pedagogy. Currently she is writing about this program and the role and character of “pedagogy for liberation” for the 21st century. She is also teaching a course on global social movements at the School of the Arts Institute.
John Pitman Weber is active in community based public art, having co-founded the Chicago Public Art Group almost 45 years ago. His public works in mosaic, paint, cement, and brick are currently found in Chicago, New York City, Minneapolis, Vitoria-Gasteiz, (Spain), Spencer, IA and libraries of Broward Cty, FL. He is also active in the studio with painting and woodcuts. One of his large woodcuts is currently included in the Gulf Labor Coalition’s presence at the Venice Biennale. He is emeritus, retired from Elmhurst College. His home-studio is in Pilsen.
Larry Redmond: I've always had an interest in art. As a child, I used to draw comic book characters. When I entered college, I had hoped to major in art. However, at the time UIC didn't have an art department.
Now, I express myself visually through photography. I love photographing life in the street, especially marches and demonstrations. But my interest is expanding to fine art photography. I hope to do portraits and still lifes within the next year or so.
I graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago, where I majored in Philosophy and minored in English. I later attended the John Marshall Law School, earning a Juris Doctor degree. I studied art and photography at Chicago State University where I developed my passion for Documentary Photography and Photojournalism.
I have recently become a member of the Chicago Alliance of African-American Photographers because I appreciated the organization's dedication of professionalism and excellence in the practice of the art of photography. I am also a member of the Washington Park Camera Club.
I currently live in Chicago with my wife and family.
Kathy Steichen co-founded Uri-Eichen Gallery with her husband, Christopher Urias, in 2011. She has led the programming development and coordination of over 100 visual art and community events at the gallery in the last 4 years. She built an organization that brings thousands of people into the space to enjoy music and participate in discussions on social justice themes. She has been involved in racial justice, anti-war and human rights issues for over 25 years. She is an alumna of several social justice and arts programs at Las Palomas de Taos, housed in the Mable Dodge Luhan House in Taos, New Mexico. She founded and presided over Amnesty International chapters at the University of Iowa, Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She worked as the Student Program Coordinator of Amnesty International in the Mid-west Region. She worked for Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky’s first primary run as the field coordinator of the 48th Ward in Chicago in the first Campaign School. She is a graduate of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and has a M.S. in Union Leadership and Administration from UMASS Amherst. She has worked in the labor movement for more than 17 years as an organizer and union staff representative where she represents private and public sector local unions. She has been a practicing print-maker for over 25 years focused on work related to social justice themes.
Christopher Urias co-founded Uri-Eichen Gallery with his wife, Kathy Steichen, in 2011. He is a Pilsen, Chicago native who loves to live so close to good food. He is a graduate or the School of the Art Institute of Chicago focused on printmaking. He develops all the social media for the gallery and completes all the needed design work. He works at the American Bar Association.