We create community-driven, public art installations and host accompanying events to initiate open, personal, and holistic dialogue about life in South Side communities. For each installation, we collaborate with community organizations and individuals on the South Side of Chicago. Past collaborators have included Imagine Englewood If, the Chinese American Museum of Chicago, and Chicago Youth Programs. To date, we have put together three installations: South Side in Focus, Washington Park Through Our Own Eyes, and As We See It. Every project we undertake is community-driven and follows the model above.

While our first installation gave a more overarching and general snapshot into the diverse experiences of South Siders, we have chosen to focus our more recent projects around specific themes and smaller geographic areas in order to delve deeper. Every project is different and we are very open to change. If you would like to work with us in the future or have recommendations for us please go to our Get Involved tab or email us at ssif.uchicago@gmail.com.   

CONNECT: We partner with local organizations and invite their members to participate in our process.

COLLECT: We ask these community members to share their stories by taking photographs of their daily lives and experiences. Using these photos to start a conversation, we record and transcribe their oral histories.

ENGAGE YOUTH: Meanwhile, we facilitate a youth mentorship arts program that exposes youth to creative forms of story-sharing and expression through videography, poetry and interactive art. 

COLLABORATE & CREATE: We then work with our participants and community partners to put together an artistic installation that displays their photographs and oral histories. 

SHARE & REFLECT: Our hope is that our community arts event provides a welcoming, public space wherein the photos and narratives of our community spark conversation and dialogue.