TRY IT! MAKE IT! SHARE IT!

                                          LEARNING IS A LIFESTYLE



Chicago Art Department (CAD) cultivates new and emerging artists.

CAD began in 2004 as a small group of artists and educators with a mission to Try It, Make It and Share It.  Built around ideas of learning and participation, CAD artists were encouraged to not only create work and concepts but also collaborate with their peers, lead workshops/programs, facilitate exhibitions and events in order to provide regular opportunities for other artists to share their work.

Since then, CAD has grown and evolved to become a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization, with two residency programs for 20+ artists per year, 3 gallery spaces and a collection of individual shared studio spaces. Housed in the historic Fountainhead Studio building of Pilsen, CAD has roughly 15000 square feet where artists are challenged to develop new works, participate in exhibitions as artists or curators, engage in monthly dialogues with peers, and connect with other creative individuals and institutions outside of CAD. With an eclectic calendar of exhibitions and monthly programming, CAD also partners with local artists, not-for-profit groups, and institutions to host cultural events, professional development workshops, exhibitions, fundraisers and events. The hosting of outside events is part of an explicit goal to support Chicago organizations while connecting our Resident Artists to other professionals in the field.  

Try it, Make It and Share It as the core of Chicago Art Department’s mission serves the real-world needs of young artists seeking to establish their personal practice while providing a productive ground for creative collaboration and exploration.


Birdie Soti (Chair)
Art Kuyakanon
Erika Dudley
Gary Kuzminski
Hilesh Patel
Maggie Litgen
Patric McCoy
Nat Soti
Mike Nourse (CAD Director)

Chicago Art Department is generously supported by
The Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events, The Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation and The Reva and David Logan Foundation.