The Elastic Arts Foundation (EAF) was founded in 2002, but has been informally operating since 1998, and is focused on nurturing the Logan Square community of art and culture through “developing, hosting and producing creative, non-commercial performances, exhibitions, and art events.” The foundation supports a range of arts and art forms, specifically they offer space and programing in theater, visual arts, film, and music as well as other arts practices. At first, EAF was located on the Chicago River between Pilsen and Chinatown, and then moved to the Humboldt Park neighborhood before moving to their current Logan Square location. They produce about two to four performances each week and one or two month-long visual art exhibitions. EAF is also a partner with Umbrella Music and is involved in producing the Umbrella Music Festival, which brings together European jazz musicians with Chicago jazz musicians. Since 2006, this festival offers concerts and collaborative opportunities for improvising musicians throughout Chicago. Currently, EAF has three sound series and one visual series. The sound series, comprised of Hip-Hop, Elastro Electro-Acoustic, and Homeroom Singer/Songwriter, showcases the range of EAF’s musical support. By creating non-commercial performances, Elastic is able to foster innovative and non-conventional artists and art forms without the pressure of market success and highly successful performance revenue. Visual artists that are interested in exhibiting art at EAF can submit a gallery proposal, and the organization welcomes artists at all levels of their career. The exhibition recently welcomed a curator into their staff, who is dedicated to creating the visual exhibitions in the gallery space. The Elastic exhibition space in Logan Square, which is located on the second floor of a two story building along Milwaukee, was renovated in Fall 2012, and the new renovations offer an expanded gallery exhibition space compared to their previous building’s structure. The foundation also has a recording studio, which can be rented for $35 an hour. Operating as a not for profit foundation, Elastic relies on individual giving and grants from organizations for fiscal support. Right now, the Illinois Arts Council, the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs, and the Logan Square Neighborhood Association, along with other organizations, financially support EAF. The foundation was founded by five individuals, each of whom are either musicians or in the music industry, and their dedication to fostering Chicago’s music and art scene is more than evident through their individual careers and collective dedication to the organization.
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