Announcing 2nd Floor Rear 2016: We Are Here

punk house for 2FR2016

2nd Floor Rear 2016: We Are Here

2nd Floor Rear 2016: We Are Here is a meditation and open-ended discourse on the meaning(s) of being somewhere.

It’s 2nd Floor Rear’s 5th anniversary. To celebrate, we’re inviting Pilsen to join the party. (Actually, we’re dropping in like an uninvited guest, hoping to make our visit worth Pilsen’s while.) This move got us thinking about the social and cultural politics of being and acting in a specific space. If what Heraclitus said is true, that you can never step in the same river twice, so too with the city street—its cultural landscape is constantly in flux. And like the bright red arrow that pinpoints our location on a map, the creative output of a place is the pulsing beacon that heralds and gives form to our cohabitation. It’s a way to let people and history know that we are breathing, living, thinking, working, making, and dreaming, here.

In anticipation of 2nd Floor Rear 2016: We Are Here, we’re thinking about some of art historian David Summers’ observations:  that architectural placesenclosuresunite groups as groups, that such enclosures exclude as well as include, and that specific spatial relations and social relations arise together. We’re also thinking about spaces as binding and normative (who, exactly, is this “we”?), or potentially liberating. We’re thinking of temporary autonomous zones, of the beach beneath the paving stones, of walking the city, of strategies and tactics. We’re thinking about space in relation to bodies and bodies that shape place. We’re thinking about who gets to be where, and why.

We’re thinking about places driven or defined by people, power, people in power, gentrification, migration, dis/placement, urbanization and ecology, peripheries and centers (why do we DIY?), productive hangouts (parties as form), productive callouts (protest as form), and productive dropouts (like the the USC seven, we’re “devising new spaces for collective weirdness and joy”). We’re thinking about dots, pins and beacons as metaphor—about the implications of visibility, of assertion, of marking time when your time has come. We’re thinking about place as movement, as nowhere, as imaginary or ideological. We’re thinking about psychogeography, pirate utopias, places forged by ritual, transitoriness, visiting, placemaking, homemaking, histories, historicizing, supermodernity, pop-ups, squats, dreamworlds, cyberspace, publics and privates, order and entropy. We’re wondering what it means to be “based,” “from,” or “of” a place. Where is “here”? Where are we? Who is “we”? What is happening here and now? How did it get that way? Where is it all going? And most importantly, why does this matter?

Open this post to see the 2016 call for proposals and other opportunities, listed below.


Call for Proposals

2nd Floor Rear is an annual, multidisciplinary arts festival that celebrates Chicago’s vibrant community of alternative art spaces and DIY creative practices. Each February, 2nd Floor Rear connects artists with new audiences, helps underfunded and under-appreciated alternative spaces get some exposure, and enlivens a dreary winter weekend at the peak of Chicago’s bleakest season.

We are currently seeking organizations, artists, curators, and creative folks of all stripes to produce events that will take place on February 6-7, 2016.

Essential details:

  • Events may include, but are not limited to: pop-up galleries and exhibition openings, installations, performances, happenings, concerts, film screenings, sing-alongs, dance parties, feasts, storytelling, interactive performance games, sewing circles, public sleepovers, and/or conceptual puppet shows. The imaginative, the unusual, and the radically hospitable are encouraged.
  • Events may take place just about anywhere—in official 501c3 alternative gallery spaces, apartments, bars, storefronts, hallways, bathrooms, etc. Only commercial galleries are not eligible.
  • Locations for events taking place on Saturday, February 6 will be restricted to the near northwest neighborhoods of Chicago (Logan Square, Humboldt Park, Wicker Park, Ukrainian Village, Bucktown, etc.), OR locations a 15-minute walk or less from any blue line train station. This eases the strain of travel for the audience and prevents audience dispersal.
  • Locations for events taking place on Sunday, February 7 will be restricted to lower west side neighborhoods of Chicago (Pilsen, Little Village), OR locations a 15-minute walk or less from any pink line train station. Again, this eases the strain of travel for the audience and prevents audience dispersal.
  • If your proposal is accepted, you will be required to pay a one-time $15 entry fee. You will also be expected to work collaboratively on fundraising and marketing efforts (This is usually pretty simple, like inviting friends on Facebook or donating ephemera to fundraising campaigns.)
  • To submit your proposal:
    • In a single document (Word or PDF only), please send:
      • a proposal (250-500 words) describing your event and location
      •   brief (100-250 words) answers to the following questions:
        • Given this year’s curatorial premise, how do you see your proposed project contributing to the overall conversation about “the meaning(s) of being somewhere”?
        • Describe your event/project and the experience you hope the audience will have. Ultimately, what do you want people to walk away with?
        • Producing public events in the middle of winter can be challenging. How or to what extent do you anticipate being able to adapt your project in the event of unforeseen circumstances?
      •   a brief (250 words max) artist’s statement, curatorial statement, or bio
      •   a Resume/CV

…to  info@2ndfloorear.org no later than 11:59 PM on Sunday, November 15. Relevant images & video (may be linked or attached as separate files), and links to artist or project websites are strongly recommended.

Confused? Take a look at our FAQ page. Want to know more about last year’s festival? Check us out at: 2ndfloorrear.org

Questions? Comments? Email info@2ndfloorrear.org.

Click for a PDF of the 2016 call for proposals: 2FR 2016 Call for Proposals


 

Call for Proposals: Special Projects: Corner

Due 11:59 PM, CST on Sunday, November 15

2nd Floor Rear is pleased to announce a special project location for the 2016 edition of the festival: Corner, a storefront project space located at 2912 N. Milwaukee Ave.

The Corner
Corner is a storefront project space run by Avondale artist Lynn Basa.

2nd Floor Rear and Corner currently seek proposals for an installation that will remain in the storefront gallery for the entire month of February, with a live, participatory component to take place in or around the space for any length of time on Saturday, February 6, 2016.

 Installation Specs

  • Corner is a white-walled gallery space with large, street-facing windows. Download the complete specs here: 2FR 2016 Call for Proposals_Corner
  • The proposed installation should address the entire space and be visible from the street.

 Participatory Event

  • In addition to an installation, the proposed project should include a live participatory component. This must take place in or around the gallery space sometime during 2nd Floor Rear 2016 (Saturday, Feb. 6).
  • Ideally, the participatory component will draw local residents and pedestrians to the space during the festival.
  • All types of work will be reviewed, but preference will be given to projects with participatory components that incorporate storytelling, food, or gatherings, and that engage 2nd Floor Rear 2016’s curatorial premise.

Additional Details

  • If selected, the installation component of the proposed project will remain in the gallery space for the entire month of February.
  • The proposer will work closely with Grace Needlman and Lynn Basa to ensure successful execution of the installation and participatory component.
  • The artist(s) must be ready to install by the last week of January.
  • Proposals by groups and individuals will be considered.

 To Apply

Send the following to info@2ndfloorrear.org no later than 11:59 PM, CST, on Sunday, November 15:

  • Written description of project—both the installation and participatory component (250-500 words)
  • Brief (100-250 words) answers to the following questions:
    • Given this year’s curatorial premise, how do you see your proposed project contributing to the overall conversation about “the meaning(s) of being somewhere”?
    • Describe the experience you hope the audience will have. Ultimately, what do you want people to walk away with?
  • Examples of previous work- link to an online portfolio preferable. Alternately, attachments of no more than 5 examples (tif, jpeg, psd, pdf) will be accepted.
  • Artist Statement or Bio
  • A Resume/C.V.
  • Visual mock-up of project– ( jpeg, psd, pdf) strongly encouraged

 


 

2nd Floor Rear 2016 Curatorial Fellowship

Deadline to apply: 11:59 PM, CST on Sunday, November 22

2nd Floor Rear is an annual, multidisciplinary arts festival that celebrates Chicago’s vibrant community of alternative art spaces and DIY creative practices. Each February, 2nd Floor Rear connects artists with new audiences, helps underfunded and under-appreciated alternative spaces get some exposure, and enlivens a dreary winter weekend at the peak of Chicago’s bleakest season.

 We are currently seeking a cultural producer who lives, works, or is otherwise intimately familiar with Chicago’s Lower West Side neighborhoods to curate and administer South Side programming for 2nd Floor Rear 2016.

  • The ideal candidate will be able to engage creatively and intellectually with this year’s curatorial premise, and will also demonstrate the organizational skills and strategic thinking necessary to coordinate multiple site-specific events. The ideal candidate will also be reliable and committed, enthusiastic, and able to learn and adapt to change quickly.
  • The Curatorial Fellow must commit an average of 10 hours of work per week from early December to late March, and will receive a $1,500 honorarium upon completion.
  • Emerging curators/creative organizers, advanced post-secondary and graduate students, and small curatorial teams of three people or less are welcome to apply.

Essential duties:

Event curation:

  • Under the direction of the Executive Director, the 2016 Curatorial Fellow will conduct outreach to and select participants for 2nd Floor Rear 2016.
    • “Participants” act as independent event producers and are responsible for the successful execution of their respective events. The events produced by participants may be any discipline or genre, and can be ongoing or time-specific.
    • Locations for events under the Curatorial Fellow’s purview will be restricted to lower west side neighborhoods of Chicago (Pilsen, Little Village), OR locations a 15-minute walk or less from any pink line train station.
  • The Curatorial Fellow may select participants from our open call for proposals, and may also invite specific artists, spaces, or organizations to pitch a proposal.

Event planning, coordination, and administration:

  • Under the direction of the Executive Director, the Curatorial Fellow will schedule all events taking place on Sunday, February 7th.
    • The Curatorial Fellow will work closely with participants to advise them of and ultimately determine the order and duration of events.
    • The Curatorial Fellow will strive to maximize accessibility and minimize gaps in programming, direct conflicts, or excessive overlap.
    • Whenever possible, the Curatorial Fellow will conduct site visits to anticipate audience experience and potential needs.
  • The Curatorial Fellow will act as the first point of contact for all South Side participants, and will communicate clearly and effectively with participants, the Executive Director, 2nd Floor Rear board, staff, and volunteers.
    • With guidance from the Executive Director, the Curatorial Fellow will conduct studio visits and/or in-person meetings with participants to facilitate paperwork completion and inform them of festival procedures and policies.
    • While not required to attend all South Side events, the Curatorial Fellow will remain on-call for the duration of February 7th festivities.

Other duties:

  • The Curatorial Fellow will contribute to all outreach, promotion, and development efforts.
    • This may include media outreach, event and crowdfunding promotion on social media, requesting in-kind donations, assisting with and attending auxiliary events related to fundraising, community outreach, and participant hospitality.
  • The Curatorial Fellow will release a curatorial statement about the South Side events before the first week of February, and may opt to contribute additional texts to the 2nd Floor Rear 2016 blog.

 Qualifications:

  • Demonstrated experience producing and/or coordinating complex cultural or community events such as exhibitions, theatrical productions, festivals, block parties, fundraising events, or community organizing
  • Strong curatorial sensibilities, creative voice, and/or intellectual standpoint
  • Familiarity with arts, culture, and other neighborhood features specific to the festival’s South Side geographical footprint
  • Demonstrated interest in and aptitude for the ideas and themes surrounding this year’s curatorial premise
  • Cultural sensitivity and desire to work with diverse populations
  • Strong sense of initiative
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Excellent planning and creative problem-solving skills
  • Flexibility and grace under pressure
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently and collaboratively
  • Computer and social media literacy
  • Special consideration will be given to candidates with Spanish language skills and fundraising/outreach experience.

To apply:

Please send the following to info@2ndfloorrear.org by 11:59 PM on Sunday, November 22:

  • Letter of interest addressing the following: What excites you about this fellowship? What is your connection to the Pilsen/Little Village area and its respective communities? What experiences have prepared you for this role? What unique qualities or qualifications will you bring to our team?
  • Resume or CV
  • Links to professional or project website, OR work samples (five images or five minutes of a sound recording or video, and/or no more than 500 words of text)

Download a PDF of the fellowship description here: 2FR 2016 Call for Curatorial Fellow

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