From our humble beginnings in 2001, the South Chicago Art Center began with just 18 students and was open only two days per week.
Today, we are open five to days per week and reach more than 3,504 young people and their families. We have grown from one employee to three, from 1 teaching artist to 24, from no paid interns to 12. We offer an oasis where youth can learn, explore, and be a kid. Our students come here—many of them multiple times per week—because they want to, not because they have to. In addition to learning visual arts practices, they find friendship, solidarity and peace in a community troubled by poverty, crime and racial tension.
“The Art Center is more than a place where youth can come and just hang around, more than a buildingin a bad neighborhood. It's a place where dreams, love and inspiration are established.” –Alanna Garth, former student