Around the Coyote, a 501(c)3 non-profit, supports, promotes and makes accessible Chicago's multidisciplinary arts community. Our activities enhance public discourse and provide creative outlets for emerging artists. Year-round programming includes multi-media arts festivals featuring visual art, theater, dance, film, music, video and poetry in the spring and fall; art exhibitions in the Around the Coyote gallery; an artist-in-residence program; membership opportunities for artists and art aficionados; educational outreach for all ages through multi-media art workshops, lectures, collaborations with local schools and agencies, and career development workshops for artists. Programming is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency, and the CityArts Program 2 grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs.
History of Around the Coyote
ATC was founded by Cameroon-born Parisian gallery owner Jim Happy-Delpech in 1989. When Happy-Delpech first arrived in Chicago in 1989, he discovered a contemporary and experimental art community that was extremely rich, diverse and innovative, but also largely unknown, even to the people of Chicago. While Chicago was an internationally recognized center for the arts, there was no developed, local forum for emerging or experimental artists. Paradoxically, Chicago's old factories and warehouse lofts housed hundreds of artists who were busy creating art. Delpech decided to create an organization which would form a bridge between these artists and the greater Chicago public.
In 1990 he joined forces with writer Elizabeth Burke and gallery directors Sam Johnson and Kevin Freitas to establish an annual festival modeled after the bohemian art fairs held in Paris, combining an artists' studio walk, art exhibition and performing arts festival, to showcase the work of Chicago's emerging artists of all disciplines. This festival, the first of its kind in Chicago, was held in the historic Bucktown/Wicker Park neighborhoods and was centered around the landmark 1930s skyscraper, The Northwest Tower, nicknamed the Coyote Tower by local artists.
Today the organization has become an established part of Chicago's cultural landscape and has expanded its programming to include two multi-media art festivals each year, as well as educational programs for children and adults, a membership program for artists, and an emerging art gallery holding monthly exhibitions of visual art, theatre, music and film.