Aug 6th 2021

Letters to Chicago

@ Co-Prosperity

3219 S Morgan St, Chicago IL 60608

Opening Friday, August 6th, from 12PM - 7PM

On view through Sunday, August 8th

Letters to Chicago by Almighty & Insane Books

On view August 6 – August 8, Fri/Sat 12-7pm and Sun 12-5pm

In 2019, Sir Charles and Almighty & Insane Books collaborated with risograph printer Flatlands Press to create the book Letters To Chicago. Within its pages Sir Charles’s lettering work is paired with mid-20th century photographs from the archives of Chicago’s Urban Renewal Department. Documenting the process of identifying “blighted” buildings/neighborhoods and targeting them for destruction/replacement, these photos preserve images of bygone structures in the oldest parts of the city. This initiative displaced many from their homes for the sake of municipal infrastructure projects, a new university campus, public housing, and private real estate developments. With a mind to current parallels, Sir Charles’s letters, symbols, and messages ghost through this history demonstrating a new lettering mode combining calligraphy with graffiti handstyles that is both deeply indebted to and an integral product of his native city of Chicago.

This exhibition celebrates Letters To Chicago through a display of its individual pages on the walls of Co-Prosperity to continue a conversation around this history and related subjects of identity, displacement, and community. To support and deepen the historical context, ephemera from the archive of Almighty & Insane Books will be on view, including a small selection of social athletic club dance cards from 1901 to 1930 and gang compliment cards from the 1960 to 1980, along with house music flyers from the 1980s courtesy of DJ Mario “Liv It Up” Luna. There will also be an archive of Made In Chi-Town With Love apparel designs on display, representing a contemporary small creative business from Chicago manifesting the aesthetics of their culture with their own twist. Sir Charles and Michelle Vega teamed up to create a brand to continue the dialogue of inner city challenges many of our youth continue to face. Their brand has grown widely and their story has now reached international levels, but has never lost their focus or message.

Finally, there will be new works on canvas by Sir Charles, following in and expanding on a series of “scrolls” he made in 2020. These commission-based scrolls incorporated messages of unity, love, forgiveness, and growth, hand-lettered in ink over patches of paint and other pigments on loose canvas. The new work will reflect an evolution of this process, and a movement forward from the original Letters To Chicago project in which the exhibition is rooted.

Friday, August 6:
Gallery hours, 12-7pm

Saturday, August 7:
Gallery hours, 12-7pm
Sir Charles book signing & exhibition reception, 5-8pm

Sunday, August 8:
Gallery hours, 12-5pm
Mario “Liv It Up” Luna book signing & afternoon of house music, 1-4pm

More info at

Official Website

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