May 15th 2016

Join us for a special culminating reception and catalog release for APL/CSRPC Crossing Boundaries Artists-in-Residence BRAID/WORK: Fatima Traore and Sarah Beth Woods. BRAID/WORK is a collaboration that crosses over and through the disciplines of performance, sculpture and social engagement. It speaks to the history and aesthetics of handwork and braiding culture as well as possibilities for shaping new conversations and material forms.

Schedule of Events:

1:00 – 1:15: Welcome by Traore and Woods
1:15 – 1:30: BRAID/WORK catalog introductions by Tracie Hall and Cecil Mcdonald Jr.
1:30 – 3:00: Hands-on workshop of African hair braiding techniques and their historical significance led by Traore

Event is free and open to the pubic.

Fatimata Traore is a Malian-American professional hair braider, teacher, and entrepreneur. Traore is president of the Illinois Association of Hair Braiders, a member of the African Political Action Committee and board member of Mali Relief. She has recently participated in Chicago based braiding events at the Gray Center for Arts and Inquiry, Hyde Park Art Center, and the South Side Community Art Center. Traore is a graduate of the National School of Administration Bamako, Mali.

Sarah Beth Woods is a Chicago-based artist who uses the languages of craft, sculpture, and public engagement to explore femininity through material culture, artifice and adornment. Woods received an MFA from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a BFA from Northern Illinois University. Her work has been included in shows at the University of Michigan’s Work:Detroit space, Girls Club, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, A.I.R gallery in Brooklyn, New York, the Bob & Roberta Smith Kunstverein at Coventry University, Coventry England, and in Chicago at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Western Exhibitions, The Franklin, Hyde Park Art Center, and Woman Made Gallery. Her work was recently published in the Chicago Tribune and Newcity magazine, where she was named one of the top 5 Subversively Conceptual Crafters in Chicago.

Supported by Arts + Public Life and the Center for the Study of Race, Politics & Culture, The Crossing Boundaries Prize provides support to Chicago‐based artists seeking to form a unique project‐based collaboration that stretches the boundaries of their work as individuals to date.

Presented by Arts and Public Life, and the Center for the Study of Race, Politics and Culture. The Artists-in-Residence program is supported in part by a generous grant from the UChicago Women’s Board.

This event is wheelchair accessible. Persons with disabilities who need an accommodation in order to participate in these events should contact Arts + Public Life for assistance at 773.702.9724 or

Official Website

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