The Hyde Park Art Center is proud to present Multiples and Multitudes, the first-ever solo exhibition by Chicago-based artist and educator William Estrada. Estrada’s socially-engaged practice has been rooted in Chicago neighborhoods for the last twenty years. Through collaborations with youth, community members, teachers, and other artists, and through his multifaceted art practice, Estrada aims to reimagine public and educational spaces to unite people and amplify local voices. Estrada’s work in the studio and the classroom create space literally and metaphorically for others to express themselves artistically and politically. Multiples and Multitudes will feature artworks in print, photography, performance, and video, as well as works that blur disciplinary boundaries to highlight the diversity of approaches within his practice and his unwavering commitment to political activism through art.
Public projects like Estrada’s RADICAL Printshop, a pop-up print shop that takes residency in communal spaces; Mobile Street Art Cart, a printing studio on wheels designed to offer art workshops anywhere; and Arte with Maestro William, a bilingual YouTube channel where Estrada teaches art lessons for families to follow from home, will be included in the exhibition. These projects have been designed as invitations for others to create, venues for the artist’s performative community interventions, and visual artworks in their own right. Taking the form of video works, prints, installations, and sculptures, these artworks will be activated by the artist during impromptu and planned performative events throughout the run of the exhibition that invite community members to participate and make art.
Drawing inspiration from the Chicano Art Movement in the United States and Taller de Grafica Popular in Mexico City –two movements that were committed to making art accessible and using it as a tool to circulate relevant sociopolitical messages– Estrada’s work is radically accessible to communities. His work lives in schools, public parks, and community centers, can be reproduced inexpensively or be found online, and is made by, with, and for community members.
The title of the exhibition, Multiples and Multitudes speaks to the values of accessibility and collectivity that are ingrained in Estrada’s work. Collective making is a core value of his practice. Estrada’s prints often leave space for participants to intervene in their own voice, as in “Mad Libs.” Allowing for the work to be completed and owned by participants. To recognize the collaborative spirit of Estrada’s work, the exhibition will bring together works by the artist, his collaborators, and students.
This exhibition is the outcome of Estrada’s participation as a Radicle Resident Artist in the Jackman Goldwasser Residency at Hyde Park Art Center. Multiples and Multitudes is curated by Mariela Acuña, Exhibitions & Residency Manager, in collaboration with the artist.
About William Estrada
William Estrada is an arts educator and multidisciplinary artist. His art and teaching are a collaborative discourse that critically re-examines public and private spaces with people to engage in radical imagination. He has presented in various panels regarding community programming, arts integration, and social justice curricula. He is currently a faculty member at the UIC School of Art and Art History and a teaching artist at Telpochcalli Elementary School. William is engaging in collaborative work with the Mobilize Creative Collaborative, Chicago ACT Collective, and Justseeds Artists’ Cooperative. His current research is focused on developing community based and culturally relevant projects that center power structures of race, economy, and cultural access in contested spaces that provide a space to collectively imagine just futures.