Free stuff to do this weekend in Chicago, April 5-8

Jodie Carey, In the Eyes of Others, 2009.

Jodie Carey, In the Eyes of Others, 2009. Photograph: Jyoti Srivastava

You can pretend you're as rich as Mitt Romney when you save your money at this weekend's free events!

Thursday 5

Holly Holmes
Holmes fills her outdoor mixed-media sculptures with birdseed, undoubtedly thrilling Oak Park's wildlife along with passersby.
Midnight-11:59pm, Terrain

Gwynne Johnson: This Doubtful Paradise

Irish playwright Brian Friel's work informs Johnson's new photographs, which confront the gaps between emigrants' lived experiences and memories, departures and homecomings.
9am-5pm, Chicago Artists’ Coalition

Ari Marcopoulos: Midway
Marcopoulos, who has spent more than 30 years making photographs and films about various American subcultures, presents recent works about his teenage sons and German artist Joseph Beuys (1921–86).
10am-6pm, Kavi Gupta Gallery

David Leggett: Coco River Fudge Street

Almost 200 of Leggett's funny, disturbing small-scale drawings, prints, collages and paintings on paper riff on pop culture, his personal relationships and overheard conversations.
10am-5pm, Hyde Park Art Center

Smoke the Goat Out of It
On opening day, Cubs fans attempt to reverse the 67-year alleged goat curse by roasting one. The meat is roasted on the grill alongside smoked tacos, burgers and pastramis—all $12 menu items.
1:20pm, Sheffield’s

The Act of Drinking Beer with Friends Is the Highest Form of Art
Tom Marioni's convivial installation, part of the Smart Museum's "Feast" exhibition, welcomes local hip-hop group BBU as guest bartenders.
5:30pm-7:30pm, Smart Museum of Art

Artist Talk: Laylah Ali

Violence shadows Ali's paintings, which evoke comics, current events, American folk art and other sources of inspiration while remaining ambiguous. Her work has been shown at the Museum of Contemporary Art, New York's MoMA, the Whitney Biennial and the Venice Biennale, among other prestigious venues.
6pm, Gallery 400

Visiting Artists Program: Kellie Jones
Jones, a curator and professor in Columbia University's Department of Art History and Archaeology, speaks about and signs her recent book EyeMinded: Living and Writing Contemporary Art.
6pm, SAIC Columbus Auditorium

Critical Lass
The ladies run this mutha, biking up to eight miles. Each ride is capped off with food, beverage and conversation at a local restaurant.
6:30pm-9pm, Welles Park gazebo


A dozen artists, including EC Brown, Catie Olson and Cole Pierce convene in the California Clipper's back room to distribute editioned works involving recorded audio. Elegant attire encouraged.
8:30pm-10:30pm, California Clipper

Maxx Traxx: Shred One
Taking a page from the Danny’s Tavern playbook, the Whistler dons its funk and boogie cap for a night of disco and dusty breaks. But in this instance, the craft cocktail lounge is giving Danny’s bohemian vibe a run for its money with help from West Coast-turned-Chicagoan turntablist Shred One.
8:30pm, The Whistler

Beats in Space: Tim Sweeney + Honeyball

Tastemaker, DJ and radio personality Tim Sweeney has been showcasing the best of underground dance sounds on his Beats in Space radio show for WNYU in New York since 1999. In that time, he welcomed legends and newcomers with equal respect for their output. When he steps into the booth, he leans toward indie dance, disco and deep house, so expect nothing less here. Local nudisco champ Honeyball opens.
9pm, Crimson Lounge

Get Physical with FLOF

Svelte DJ and dance posse the Fabulous Ladies of Fitness work it out from the main stage at Cole's once a month with their patented mix of light rock, ’80s and ’90s sing-along jams, and vintage hip-hop. Each installment has a theme, and for this one spring is in the air, meaning it's yacht-rock time. There's no excuse not to don that sailor cap and jam Hall & Oates style at this night of upbeat R&B and hip-hop jazzercising with special guest Bald E. of Only Children.
9:30pm, Cole’s

Friday 6

Yto Barrada: Riffs
Barrada's installation of photographs and films examines the everyday traces of historical changes in her hometown: Tangier, Morocco. Her work appeared at the 2011 Venice Biennale.
10am-5pm, Renaissance Society

Colombia: Transformed

Five Colombian architects—Bogotá-based Daniel Bonilla and Giancarlo Mazzanti, and Felipe Mesa, Juan Manuel Pelaez and Felipe Uribe of Medellín—present ten designs for day-care centers, schools, a library and other socially conscious projects. Curated by Vladimir Belogolovsky and Fernando Villa, this exhibition is presented in collaboration with Chicago architecture firm MAS Studio.
10am-3pm, Instituto Cervantes Chicago

Not Ready to Make Nice: Guerrilla Girls in the Artworld and Beyond

In the 1980s, a group of anonymous women donned gorilla masks and called on the art world to change its sexist practices. This multimedia exhibition brings together documentary materials and behind-the-scenes photos of the campaigns that the artist-activists carried out in the 1980s and 1990s, as well as their favorite "love letters and hate mail" and an interactive wall installation.
11am-5pm, Glass Curtain Gallery

Carrie Schneider: Burning House

Schneider built a series of identical wooden structures, rowed them to an island in a Wisconsin lake and torched them to create her large-scale photos and video of a house that seems to burn forever.
11am-6pm, moniquemeloche

Patrick Lichty: Ex Nihilo

Lichty, who has specialized in new media since 1989, revisits works from the past ten years, including Casio Wristcam photos in 8 Bits or Less and Jacquard tapestries commissioned to bring his virtual projects into the physical world. In the gallery's project area, "Improbable Objects" highlights 16 artists and makers experimenting with 3-D printing.
Noon-5pm, What It Is

Geoff Farina
The former Karate frontman calls Chicago home now, and we can't think of a cozier place for his signature guitarwork than this Logan Square cocktail lounge.
6pm, The Whistler

Time to Make the Donuts: The Gigposters of Ryan Duggan
Duggan's 130-plus prints include recent commissions for Henry Rollins, Maps & Atlases and Joan of Arc. His humorous works have featured hand-drawn lettering, rebuses and other offbeat elements.
7-10pm, Saki

The Maids
Playwright Jean Genet famously advised that the maids in his 1947 work be portrayed by men, ideally young men. The camp factor here derives more from the quaintness of the psychosexually charged dialogue than from the cross-dressing players. John Arthur Lewis and Rich Logan are effective Kabuki figurines, gliding with stirring dignity and forming deranged tableaux as they seethe and hatch plots. Elizabeth Lammer’s cinematic lighting design creates satisfyingly creepy patches of light and dark. As the maids’ imperious Madame, Sasha Grishkov modernizes and electrifies a play that feels teeteringly close to no longer being avant-garde.
8pm, Oracle Theatre

Ghost Busters

Dir. Ivan Reitman. 1984. 105mins. A high-water mark for basically everyone involved, Reitman's immensely popular supernatural comedy is also, in many ways, the ideal summer movie: a special-effects extravaganza that never allows its eye-popping F/X attractions to upstage its acting talent. Tickets are free and can be obtained at participating Six Corners businesses.
8pm, Portage Theater

Chicago has always maintained a strong connection to its roots in house music and the sounds that helped create it, be it disco, boogie or the techno-pop of acts like Kraftwerk. Celebrating the past and present of this music, Loves Records (a subsidiary of Chicago house label Fresh Meat) and its A&R heads Samone Roberts and Nathan Drew Larsen host and spin this vinyl-centric night with guests from across the house and techno spectrum. For this latest throw-down, disco, techno and house freaker Ross Kelly and deep selector Mantas Steles guest.
9pm, Beauty Bar

grrrit’s Friday

Welcome to bearadise. Sofo wakes up the neighborhood with a smoking-hot night of woof-worthy men.
9pm, SoFo Tap

Sleaze Pleaze

If you ask a househead to rattle off names of Chicago DJs, this night's resident is inevitably on the list. Diz came up as part of the Windy City's second generation of house jocks—sharing bills with names like Derrick Carter and Mark Farina—and can still be found spinning around town weekly. Friday means he's in this basement bar downtown, dropping beats till 4am.
11pm, Underground Wonder Bar

Saturday 7


Mickalene Thomas curates works by Clifford Owens, Malick Sidibé, Hank Willis Thomas (who is no relation) and seven other black artists—including herself—who work in photography and other media.
11am-5:30pm, Rhona Hoffman Gallery

Book Signing and Conversation with Jules Feiffer
Illustrator Jules Feiffer (Phantom Tollbooth) signs books and talks about his career. An exhibit featuring select Feiffer cartoons and drawings is on display inside the gallery.
Noon-3pm, Jean Albano Gallery

Gallery Talk: Morbid Curiosity
Richard Harris discusses this exhibition's art about death, which comes from his unusual collection.
2pm, Chicago Cultural Center

Maps & Atlases + Carbon Tigers

Local faves Maps & Atlases do Chicago's cerebral/visceral legacy proud with whimsical zigzags and intellectualized fits and starts. Get a taste of the group's forthcoming Beware & Be Grateful at this afternoon in-store.
4pm, Saki

Modern Model

Andy Hall and Kaylee Rae Wyant present light fixtures, storage, wall coverings and a table that can't be neatly labeled "art" or "design."
Noon-6pm, Roots & Culture Contemporary Art Center

Katherine Desjardins: Provisional Proposition

Desjardins brings together three meat packers and a 100-foot drawing in this site-specific performance, which acknowledges Chicago's role in industry and agriculture as it pays homage to Brazilian artist Lygia Clark (1920–88).
5pm-7pm, Kasla Kay Art Projects

hArts for Art: 3rd Annual Benefit Silent Auction + Raffle

Fraser Taylor, Hans Peter Sundquist and Magalie Guérin are among the artists who have contributed works to LVL3's fund-raiser. A portion of the proceeds benefits Chicago nonprofit Yollocalli Arts Reach.
6pm-10:30pm, LVL3

Poesía en Abril

At this fifth iteration of the Poesía en Abril festival, celebrating Spanish-language poetry, Miguel Barnet of Cuba and Ana Rossetti of Spain read from their work. The event will be bilingual.
7pm, The Poetry Foundation

Wayne Montana

Mixing up a little modern day Bad Brains and an added world music sensibility, the Eternals are a refreshing reggae-fied change of pace from the in-yer-face indie scene. Band member and DJ, Wayne Montana, takes over this modern Asian-themed and always-packed-with-beautiful-people haunt on Milwaukee for early evening dubby jams to get your Saturday off on the right track.
8pm, Rodan

The Truth

Resident DJ Hiroki hosts every Saturday night, inviting in a rotating lineup of in-the-know selectors like Willy Joy, Zebo, Boy Wonder and more. Like the DJs, the genres stay in a steady flux with a mix of house, hip-hop, Top 40 and classics.
10pm, Empire Liquors

Chances Dances
Accept no substitutes. This mega-inclusive party kicked off a renaissance in indie queer nightlife and is still thriving more than five years later. Always free, always fun.
10pm, Hideout

Sunday 8

Prints and the Pursuit of Knowledge in Early Modern Europe

Prints by Albrecht Dürer and other Northern Renaissance art stars helped shape the history of science, according to this excellent exhibition curated by Harvard Art Museums' Susan Dackerman. Many of the exquisite maps, mathematical diagrams and anatomical illustrations on view disseminated artists’ own research. The show encourages visitors to handle facsimiles of the globes and other devices that these printmakers designed, allowing us to experience cutting-edge 16th-century technology.
10am-5pm, Mary & Leigh Block Museum of Art

Catherine Sullivan and Company: Inaugurals

Sullivan, a U. of Chicago professor, filmed this exhibition's works in Chicago. The show includes a special installation of The Last Days of British Honduras (2012), which she created with artist Farhad Sharmini, and the five-channel work Ice Floes of Franz Joseph Land (2003), a collaboration with Chicago's Trap Door Theatre.
11am-8pm, Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts

15th International Open

Local gallerist Linda Warren juried this annual exhibition of works by women artists from around the world.
Noon-4pm, Woman Made Gallery

Fun For All

Load up on free art making and family fun as Hyde Park Art Center holds its drop-in day of activities, workshops and even a scavenger-hunt gallery guide.
Noon-4pm, Hyde Park Art Center

Andy Warhol: Photographs
These 25 Warhol (1928–87) Polaroids and black-and-white photos of celebrities—as well as the not-so-famous—are part of DPAM's gift from the Andy Warhol Photographic Legacy Program.
Noon-5pm, DePaul Art Museum

Dan Peterman: Archive (Southside)

Peterman fills SHoP's library with one ton of multicolored, post-consumer plastic boards arranged to resemble books. His installation engages both waste management and "garbage collection" in computer science, which uses the term to describe automatic memory management.
Noon-9pm, SHoP (Southside Hub of Production)


Rising out of the South Side in the early ’90s, DJ Terry Hunter has been synonymous with Chicago house ever since. The past few years have seen a lot of action between him and Masters at Work’s Kenny Dope, but at this Sunday residency, it’s all Hunter.
10pm, The Shrine

Sundays at Crocodile
A cadre of stalwart hip-hop DJs, including Shon Dervis, Rude One and Shazam Bangles, finds another outlet for the true-school selections in Wicker Park.
10pm, Crocodile

Snake Pit

Witty MC Hollywood Holt, DJ Matty Boy White and tattoo-artist-turned-party-guy Jason Hoodrich hold it down every Sunday with a potent mix of gangsta rap and hardcore rock. If you're after a relaxing weekend wind-down, this isn't it.
10pm, Three Aces

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