FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact: Micki Leventhal 312-344-7383
January 23, 2008Columbia College Chicago Beautifies Neighborhood Subway with Harrison HaikuArt Installation Contributes to CTA Adopt-A-Station Program with Text & Graphics
Opening Celebration January 30
CHICAGO, IL -- Moments of awe, radiance and sudden insight in the midst of everyday life, captured in 17 syllables, are the essence of Haiku, Japanese minimalist poetry. A graphic art installation of Haiku, written by poetry students from Columbia College Chicago and Jones College Prep, will be unveiled in a community celebration in and around the Harrison Street Red Line subway station on Wednesday, January 30. The event takes place at 10:30 a.m. and will feature poetry readings and music, as well as comments by Columbia President Warrick L. Carter, Ph.D., Jones Prep Principal Donald Fraynd, Ph.D., Second Ward Alderman Robert Fioretti and a representative from the CTA.
“The spare beauty of the Haiku form paired with the colorful graphics will be a wonderful ‘awakening’ for the South Loop residents and workers, as well as the thousands of Columbia and Jones students, faculty and staff who use the Harrison subway each day,” says Kenneth Daley, chair of the English Department at Columbia, which offers both undergraduate and Master of Fine Arts degrees in Poetry.
Haiku will be read by Columbia MFA/Poetry students Nicole Wilson and Kate Brady, Columbia MFA/Poetry alumni John Franklin Dandridge and Jones students Nat Iosbaker (senior) and Erayna Wright (freshman). Jaman Dunn, first violinist and concert master for the Jones orchestra, will perform a violin piece and a short percussion performance will be provided by members of the Chicago Dragons Athletic Association.
The Harrison Haiku project was conceived as both a means to showcase the creative product of Columbia Poetry students and to contribute to the community. After getting approval from the CTA to adopt the Harrison station, the school’s Office of Campus Environment held a competition with Interior Architecture students to design the physical installation. Through workshops conducted by Poetry faculty and students and teaching artists from Columbia’s Center for Community Arts Partnerships, original Haiku were created by college students from Columbia and high school students from Jones.
Installation of artwork in the mezzanine, escalator/stair and platform levels will begin in January and will be staged over the upcoming months.
The Harrison Haiku art installation is another example of Columbia College Chicago’s innovative efforts to create a vibrant and welcoming environment in the South Loop,” says Alicia Berg, Columbia’s vice president of campus environment. “It will join the public art we have already installed on previously blank building facades and storefronts so that our campus better reflects the creative spirit of our institution. We are thrilled to be able to contribute Harrison Haiku as a beautiful and educational resource for the community.”