Art | Arts Issue 2019 | Bridgeport

Catalyzing a New Renaissance in the Backyard

The Backyard Series provides new platforms for art and hip-hop

Rod Sawyer

Three years ago, Zoe Nyman started organizing successful open mics and backyard events in Bridgeport, but it was only last October that the Backyard Series took shape. That was when Nyman collaborated with musician and designer Landon Tate to bring around two hundred people to an open mic, poetry, and music event titled “The Backyard Series” located in Nyman’s backyard in Bridgeport. The project grew quickly since its launch in the fall, expanding to institutional venues such as the Experimental Station in Woodlawn. Over coffee at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Nyman sat down with the Weekly to talk about the project’s origins, accomplishments, and ambitions for the future.

Bridgeport | Education | Visual Arts

Bridgeport Elementary Schoolers Map Their Neighborhood

Educators with the Hull-House Museum work with Armour students to consider their community

Jie Wang's map (Jason Schumer)

On Wednesday, June 13, the 8th grade class from Philip D. Armour Elementary gathered in the backroom of Bridgeport Coffee, five blocks north on Morgan Street from their school building, to celebrate the maps they had created of Bridgeport. For eight weeks, in collaboration with the Jane Addams Hull-House Museum at the University of Illinois at Chicago, the students had perused archival collections of Bridgeport and other neighborhoods and learned about the ways in which maps represent communities. “Mapping the Neighborhood,” the name of their exhibition, featured maps of varying scale, focus, and artistic style in an attempt to answer a question: how is Bridgeport changing?

Best of the South Side 2017 | Bridgeport | McKinley Park

Best of Bridgeport & McKinley Park 2017

Jason Schumer

What can I say that hasn’t already been said about Bridgeport? From its immigrant beginnings producing the nation’s sausages, or its dichotomy of old-school born-here, die-here types rubbing shoulders with the constant tide of artisans and students floating around, it’s the most Chicago neighborhood. Bridgeport has sordid histories; it has promising futures.

Bridgeport | Features | Food | Food Issue 2017

Journey to the West: Chinese Restaurants in Bridgeport

New eateries redefine ‘Chinese food’ in Chicago with regional offerings

Jack Chen & Wang Chen Hai, Northern City (Luke Sironski-White)

When Jimmy Li first moved to Bridgeport in 1984, he was one of the few Asian immigrants to live in the neighborhood. Over seventy-six percent of residents at the time were white, twenty percent identified as Hispanic or Latino, and less than one percent were African-American. The Asian population was all but unaccounted for by authorities until the 1990 census, which reported that they constituted 16 percent of the population.

Bridgeport | Community

Who Owns Benton House?

Chicago’s last settlement house struggles to define its identity

Photos Courtesy of Benton House Office

A cold wind blew down South Gratten Street on a chilly November afternoon while Bridgeport residents outside stood in line for Benton House’s food pantry, donning jackets, scarves, gloves, and all. Seniors sat on plastic lawn chairs on the sidewalk with personal shopping carts in tow. Inside, toddlers bounced around the stairs while their mothers monitored them with hawk-like vision.

Art | Bridgeport

Some Darkness, Some Light

Steve Badauskas, owner of Bernice’s, gets a solo show

Justin Honra

On the first floor of the Lacuna Artists Lofts, near the abstract floating reclaimed wood sculpture, past the neon Converse All-Stars wall hanging, around the eleven-foot-tall vintage cowhide couch-swing with USB port armrests, you enter a narrow room.