Arts + Public Life invites you to grab a seat at our virtual table for Chop It Up, a monthly dinner series where we sit down with two notable practitioners–artists, designers, and entrepreneurs, to host an hour-long conversation. Over home-cooked meals or dinner ordered in from local favorites, practitioners will serve up aspects of their practice or craft while exploring the intersections of their work.
Just as a conversation around the dinner table can take unexpected turns, Chop It Up encourages featured guests to share a range of experiences–technical aspects of their profession, current preoccupations or trends in their industry, and personal anecdotes. Gather around our virtual table for 60 shared minutes of candid dinner conversation with practitioners Amanda Williams, artist, and Olalekan Jeyifous, artist.
Join our virtual table via Zoom:
Friday July 10 Chop It Up Dinner Guests:
Amanda Williams, Artist
Amanda Williams is a visual artist who trained as an architect. Her creative practice employs color as a way to draw attention to the complexities of how race shapes how we assign value to space in cities. The landscapes in which she operates are the visual residue of the invisible policies and forces that have misshapen most major US cities. Williams’ installations, paintings and works on paper seek to inspire new ways of looking at the familiar and in the process, raise questions about the state of urban space and ownership in America. Amanda has exhibited widely, including the MoMA (NY), the Venice Architecture Biennale, the MCA Chicago, and a public commission at the Pulitzer Arts Foundation in St. Louis. She recently won the commission to design a permanent monument to Shirley Chisholm in Brooklyn NY. Amanda has been recognized as a Joan Mitchell Foundation grantee, a USA Ford Fellow, an Efroymson Arts Fellow and a Leadership Greater Chicago Fellow. Amanda is also a member of the Obama Presidential Center’s Museum Design Team and sits on the boards of the Graham Foundation, Garfield Park Conservatory and Hyde Park Art Center. Her work is in several permanent collections including the Art Institute of Chicago and the MoMA (NY). Williams lives and works on the south side of Chicago.
Olalekan Jeyifous, Artist
Olalekan Jeyifous received a BArch from Cornell University and is a visual artist whose work has been exhibited at venues such as the Studio Museum in Harlem, the MoMA, the Vitra Design Museum and the Guggenheim in Bilbao, Spain. He has received a number of grants for his artwork such as a fellowship from the New York Foundation of the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts and the Brooklyn Arts Council. He has recently completed artist residencies with the Headlands Center for the Arts, Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, the Drawing Center’s Open Sessions program, and he was a Wilder Green Fellow at the MacDowell Colony.
In addition to his extensive exhibition history, he has spent over a decade creating large-scale artwork for a variety of public spaces. He created award-winning installations for Starbucks located in the Barclays Arena in Brooklyn and their Flagship store located in Chicago’s Gold Coast neighborhood. Most recently, he has completed commissions for the Durham SmART Vision Plan, a 50ft-tall sculpture for the 2017 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, and 4 large sculptures for Public Square in downtown Cleveland, OH.