Free Art workshops in Chicago

Taught by some pretty big names in Chicago’s art world, these no-cost courses in July and August are sure to fill up fast.

Lisa Lee, director of art and art history at the University of Chicago Illinois Photo: Anna Dworzecka

Although it’s a public university, tuition in the University of Illinois at Chicago’s School of Art and Art History is about $13, 400 per year—that’s $53, 600 for a four-year bachelor’s degree (for in-state students). But free education is part of the school’s director Lisa Lee’s new mandate for accessible art education.

Lee’s first step in seeing this vision through is a new program funded by the National Endowment for the Arts called the UIC Free Art School. It will offer free art classes this summer, July 6 through August 10, taught by some of Chicago’s leading contemporary artists: Theaster Gates, Riva Lehrer, Jason Lazarus, Dan Peterman, and Jennifer Reeder, to name a few.

Admission is free and open to everyone on a first-come, first-serve basis. There is no lengthy application process and no entrance exam. (You can bet these will fill up fast.) To register:

The UIC Free Art School is continuing to add courses, but here’s a current sample of what’s available:

Alberto Aguilar

An Extraordinary Family Art Adventure with a Surprise
August 2 or August 3, 2:00 p.m. to 5:00
400 South Peoria at UIC Art & Exhibition Hall

Christine Sun Kim

A Choir of Glances
July 15 and 16 at 3p.m. to 5, each workshop followed by a public performance at 5:30
Chicago Cultural Center, Garland Room

Dan Peterman

City Mouse Country Mouse
July 19th, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Convene at 8 a.m. in Millennium Park, and take the train from Millennium Station to Manilow Sculpture Park

Theaster Gates

Soul Music and Soul Sculpture
August 4 at 7 p.m. to 10
Theaster Gates Studio (address will be given to attendees)

Krista Franklin

Afro-Surrealism and the Contemporary Cultural Production
August 2 at 2 p.m. to 5
106 Henry Hall, 929 West Harrison Street

Faheem Majeed

“Seat of Power” Sculpture Class
July 19 and 20, 2 p.m. to 5
400 South Peoria, Sculpture Studio, Floor 4

Elise Archias

“What the Hell is Contemporary Art Right Now?”
July 6th at 2 p.m. to 3 or July 8th at 6 p.m. to 7

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Popular Q&A

Workshop conducted by celebrity stylist tanya ghavri ?

it is to be held on december 11 from 12noon to 5pm at the art loft in bandra, you guyz know anything about the workshop......we have to pay fees for that or its free ???????

plz reply

Hi. My name is Pooja and I am hosting this session as part of my Company - Extra Mile. I can mail the agenda to you with all details on the same if you can share with me your email id. Or you can mail me on for more details.

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