Wabash Arts Corridor | Columbia College Chicago Teams Up with Shepard Fairey and “The Provocateurs” on Street Art Installations
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Photo Credit: John Furlong

29 Jul Columbia College Chicago Teams Up with Shepard Fairey and “The Provocateurs” on Street Art Installations

Four new works by acclaimed artists Shepard Fairey, Cleon Peterson, POSE and RETNA to be installed in the Wabash Arts Corridor, Chicago’s “Living Urban Canvas”

MEDIA ALERT: Individual artist interviews by appointment only. B-roll/video and photography of the installations available upon request starting August 1.

CHICAGO (July 28, 2014) – Columbia College Chicago and the Wabash Arts Corridor (WAC) is partnering with Art Alliance: The Provocateurs to install four new works by renowned artists Shepard Fairey, Cleon Peterson, POSE and RETNA. A reception will take place at 916 S. Wabash, the site of Fairey’s mural Thursday (July 31) from 5-6 p.m.

The artists are in town doing installations to help showcase their work for The Provocateurs opening July 31-Aug. 4 at Block 37. The show features work from more than 40 of the biggest names in street and contemporary art today. The outdoor art will remain indefinitely, which includes: Fairey’s latest in his OBEY series; bold-colored, pop-art inspired narrative graphics by Chicago-based POSE; dystopian brutality in black and white by Peterson; and free-hand graffiti/glyphs by RETNA.

“Street art and graffiti are no longer strictly defined as vandalism and deserves to be recognized as a valid and important art genre,” said Shepard Fairey, artist and curator of Provocateurs. “It challenges the notion that public space should be dominated by advertising and government signage. Columbia College and the City of Chicago have enthusiastically supported our outdoor mural project.”

The Wabash Arts Corridor promotes the use of public space as a “living urban canvas” for artists to intersect with the cultural and educational assets of the South Loop – including eight educational institutions, 19 galleries, 14 performance spaces, five major hotels and more than 40 restaurants. The space for Peterson’s mural is made possible by the sponsorship support of the Chicago Cultural Mile Association and the Wabash Arts Corridor partnership of Warehouse Liquors.

“These artists are changing the way we perceive and experience art in urban environments,” said Mark Kelly, WAC co-chair and Columbia College Chicago vice president of student affairs. “We launched the Wabash Arts Corridor a little over a year ago to support such projects like The Provocateurs. These installations are powerful contributions to Chicago’s cultural vitality and urban landscape.”


July 31, 2014, 5-6 p.m. reception, followed by an art walk
916 S. Wabash lobby

WHERE (WAC art walk):

  • 72 E. 11th on the west and north walls, 120’(w) x 25’(h) – artist: POSE
  • 916 S. Wabash, north wall, 44’ x 44’ – artist: Shepard Fairey
  • 634 S. Wabash (Warehouse Liquors), south wall, 40’(w) x 14’(h) – artist: Cleon Peterson
  • 33 E. Congress, south wall of building, 43’(w) x 62’(h) – artist: RETNA


  • Shepard Fairey
  • Cleon Peterson (availability dependent on completion of mural)
  • POSE (availability dependent on completion of mural)
  • RETNA (availability dependent on completion of mural)
  • Dr. Kwang-Wu Kim, President and CEO, Columbia College
  • Mark Kelly, co-chair, Wabash Arts Corridor and VP of student affairs, Columbia College
  • City of Chicago guests TBD

# # #

Columbia College Chicago is an urban institution that offers innovative degree programs in the visual, performing, media and communication arts for more than 10,000 students in more than 120 undergraduate and graduate programs. An arts and media college committed to a rigorous liberal arts curriculum, Columbia is dedicated to opportunity and excellence in higher education. For further information, visit www.colum.edu.

The Wabash Arts Corridor is Chicago’s “living urban canvas.” Founded in 2013, the WAC is one of the city’s major cultural assets comprised of eight educational institutions, 19 galleries, 14 performance spaces, five major hotels and more than 40 restaurants. Connecting local businesses and commerce with education, cultural programming and the visual, performing and media arts, the WAC is an urban lab for creative expression, innovation and excellence in the arts.

Art Alliance: Provocateurs
Assembling one of the largest art shows ever done, Art Alliance: The Provocateurs, features trailblazers of the art world such as Shepard Fairey, Swoon, HAZE, Space Invader, Dzine, Mark Mothersbaugh, FAILE, Ryan McGinness, Winston Smith, RETNA, Stanley Donwood, Monica Canilao, Clare Rojas, Estevan Oriol, Evan Hecox, Gary Panter, Jen Stark, Camille Rose Garcia, Revok, Cleon Peterson, D*Face, WK Interact and many others. The show will be far more than a typical exhibition by combining world-class art with experiential and interactive components such as: music, public art, charities, local community interests, and education.

In 2014, the Art Alliance: The Provocateurs exhibition will take place during, and in partnership with, Lollapalooza, one of the largest music festivals in the world, which draws hundreds of thousands of culturally sophisticated and creatively curious visitors to Chicago each summer. www.artalliance.com

Cara Birch, 312.369.8695, cbirch@colum.edu 
Sandee Fenton, 310.313.7200, sandee@freshcleanmedia.com

Photo Credit:
John Furlong

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