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The Floating Museum's first exhibit will sail the Chicago River in August

Zach Long
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Zach Long

Back in May, we learned that a floating museum housed on an industrial barge would be making its way up the Chicago River this summer, bringing art exhibitions and special programming to neighborhoods throughout the city. Today, organizers have announced additional details about the Floating Museum's debut exhibition, which will begin its journey along the city's main waterway on August 2.

Entitled "River Assembly," the exhibit will feature "a monument to Jean Baptiste Du Sable, a moving image program, interdisciplinary performances, programs that activate the river’s edge, and a 'wonder cabinet' that curates the region's artistic activity into a large collective exhibition." A long list of artists are contributing the the exhibition, including Hebru Brantley, Miguel Aguilar and Maria Gaspar. Museums like the DuSable Museum of African American History, Hyde Park Art Center and Intuit: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art are also contributing to the mobile gallery. 

"River Assembly" envisions the city of Chicago as one gigantic museum campus, exploring the ways in which culture can be shared throughout neighborhoods, cities and beyond. The exhibit also addresses the industrial past of the Chicago River and explores the way in which the body of water can become a more important part the day-to-day life of the city's residents.

Floating Museum programming will take place every Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday in August, including live music, discussions and participatory art projects. For insurance purposes, attendees won't be allowed to board the barge that carries the exhibition, but organizers will be unloading components of the exhibition at each stop, transforming the riverfront into a mobile museum.

Take a look at the list of locations the Floating Museum will stop at in August and check out the exhibition's website for a complete schedule of programming.

SkyArt (3026 E 91st St): Aug 2–4
Park 571: Eleanor Boathouse (2754 S Eleanor St): Aug 7–13
Chicago Riverwalk, River Theater (between Clark and LaSalle Streets): Aug 14–27
Polk Bros Park (600 E Grand Ave): Aug 28–TBD

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