Field News – April 2022

By April 13, 2022May 19th, 2022Field News

Artwork and images from Richard Tran, Field’s Arts Program Officer. Left: Operation Ranch Hand // A History of Agent Orange. What began as an inquiry of the human rights violations during the US occupation in Vietnam resulted in an exploratory and interactive experience of screen-printed wartime archives+balloons+turmeric. Right: Richard (left) and Kofi (right) working collaboratively on a set of handmade pottery while Richard was an artist-in-residence in Nungua, Ghana, studying community craft arts & the ability to form community through object and occupation versus place and space.

Field Foundation News

Welcome to the April issue of Field News. In this issue, you will find:

  • A message from Richard Tran, our new Arts Program Officer. Meet Richard and learn more about his background, as well as what he brings to Field as an artist and Chicagoan.
  • Our list of January/Winter 2022 Grantees representing 24 organizations across Chicago.
  • A reminder that Field Foundation’s Letter of Inquiry portal will open on April 15 for Fall 2022 grant considerations.
  • Links to follow Field Foundation on social media.

Hello from Richard Tran, Field’s Arts Program Officer

Hi folks. Thank you so much for taking the time to read this blurb. I know you all have busy lives, so I’m full of gratitude that we’re able to connect through this shared virtual space. How very meta.

As a locally grown artist and Chicagoan, it’s truly an honor to be the Arts Program Officer at Field—and I’ll tell you why!

I grew up in Uptown, right off the Argyle Redline stop where many Vietnamese migrants first settled as they started to form new diasporic communities. It was there my parents ran a small “ma and pa” shop where they worked, grinded, hustled, and then worked some more. Eventually, this looked like 12-hour days, seven days per week, for just under three decades before their bodies said, “no more.” And it wasn’t always just the two of them. Although I didn’t realize it at the time, my parents’ restaurant became my after-school program. It’s where I learned how to write to take orders from customers, and where my mom grilled me with problem sets so that my mental accounting mathematics were quicker than a cash register.

Over the years, their restaurant became a community center of sorts, and it’s where I learned what it meant to be “in community.” Despite operating a business, my parents used a trust-based credit system for community members to pay off their tabs at the end of each month.

Community members also used the space as a mutual aid and food exchange to give, trade, sell, and barter. It was a place to scratch off lotto tickets and complain about taxes…a safe haven to talk about the underground economy and where to find your next gig. It was a daycare…a space for elders to watch the Vietnamese news…and so much more. And what was happening, all the people and pieces coming together… I can only best describe as the most beautiful artistic social practice I could imagine.

As for what’s ahead for me, I look forward to the opportunity to learn as a young artist working in philanthropy—and to continue Field’s grant-making with community empowerment top of mind. For the Art portfolio, this means supporting artists, arts organizations and collectives doing culturally anchored, community-centered, and justice-driven work.

In my prior “office” work, I’ve supported fundraising initiatives for community-based organizations, and it’s a whirlwind to be at this end of the table. You have my word that I will always strive to hold myself accountable and that I will always welcome your input—because it not only helps me grow and do better, but it will also push the philanthropic sector to continue doing better.

Let me close by sharing my personal commitment and reinforcing Field’s commitment to ALAANA and South- and West-Side organizations. I am honored to be in the position to build on the progress of this journey Field started just a handful of years ago. While I’m not a carbon copy of Field’s previous Arts Program Officer, Tempestt Hazel, I had the privilege of working alongside her for over a year as a Field Fellow. So, while it may be a new chapter for the Art portfolio, it’s the same book.

Thank you, again, for your time and for sharing this space with me. If we haven’t already met, I am undeniably excited to meet you one day soon.

Until then,
Richard

Celebrating our January/Winter 2022 Field Grantees

ART

The Firehouse Community Arts Center The mission of the Firehouse Community Arts Center of Chicago is to interrupt the cycle of violence in the lives of youth and young adults through the power of the arts.
Lorde, Rustin & Bates (LRB) LRB’s mission is to address systemic and structural level bias by organizing communities to serve as the changemaker, working to fuse social justice and the arts. LRB centers Black and Brown lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans/gender nonconforming, queer and questioning/same gender loving (LGBTQ/SGL) communities and other historically marginalized groups.
PullmanArts proudly supports Chicago’s far South Side artists and community with exhibitions, classes, and performances in our Block House Gallery and area venues; promoting diversity, inclusion, and access for all to unique and inspiring cultural programming in the historic Pullman area and beyond.
South Shore Drill Team uses performing arts to engage youth from underserved South Side neighborhoods throughout their critical teenage years, mitigating the dangers of gangs, drugs, and violence, while guiding members towards completing their educational and career goals.

JUSTICE

BYP100 is a national, member-based organization of Black 18- to 35-year-old activists and organizers, dedicated to creating justice and freedom for all Black people. We do this through building a network focused on transformative leadership development, direct action organizing, advocacy, and political education using a Black queer feminist lens.
Chicago Area Fair Housing Alliance (CAFHA) CAFHA's mission is to combat housing discrimination; reverse historic, intentional patterns of disinvestment in Black and Latinx communities; and promote equitable place-based opportunity through education, advocacy, and collaborative action.
Community Renewal Society informs and brings people of faith and congregations together, in partnership with communities, coalitions, interfaith organizations and civic leaders, to intentionally and decisively transform society toward greater social justice at the intersection of racism and poverty.
Dissenters is leading a new generation of young people to reclaim our resources from the war industry, re-invest in life-giving services, and repair collaborative relationships with the earth and people around the world.
HANA Center HANA Center’s mission is to empower Korean American and multi-ethnic immigrant communities through social services, education, culture, and community organizing to advance human rights.
Kenwood Oakland Community Organization (KOCO) Through the sustained engagement of low-income and working families, KOCO develops multi-generational leaders who impact decision-making processes and public policies, improving the quality of life in our local communities.
Little Village Environmental Justice Organization (LVEJO) The mission of LVEJO is to organize with our community to accomplish environmental justice in Little Village and achieve the self-determination of immigrant, low-income, and working-class families.
Mamas Activating Movements for Abolition & Solidarity (MAMAS) is a collective of people conducting the labor of mothering among Black, indigenous, and people of color-based communities.
Southside Together Organizing for Power (STOP) Our mission is to advance economic and social human rights by organizing and developing leadership among people most affected by economic and racial oppression.
Sex Workers Outreach Project-Chicago (SWOP-Chicago) is a grassroots organization dedicated to improving the lives of current and former sex workers in the Chicago area, on and off of the job. We support the rights and wellbeing of sex workers and their communities, with a focus on ending violence and stigma through education, advocacy, outreach, and peer support.
Working Family Solidarity unites low and moderate-wage workers and their families, primarily African American and Latinx, to fight for equitable development. We focus primarily on the areas of jobs/labor rights and affordable housing/housing rights.

MEDIA & STORYTELLING

Black Researchers Collective The mission of the Black Researchers Collective is to train and equip communities with research tools to be more civically engaged and policy informed.
Chicago South Side Film Festival The two-fold mission of the Chicago South Side Film Festival (“CSSFF”) is to provide South Side filmmakers with opportunities to screen their work in their own communities, and to use film as a tool for collective intellectual and community engagement.
Guild Literary Complex is a 30-year-old grassroots literary arts organization creating performance-based events in and around the Chicagoland area. We partner and collaborate with other community groups on social and restorative justice issues, providing arts and advocacy programming for marginalized voices.
Honey Pot Performance enlists modes of creative expressivity to examine the nuances of human relationships, including the ways we negotiate identity, belonging, and difference in our lives and cultural memberships.
Invisible Institute We are a journalism production company on the South Side of Chicago. We work to enhance the capacity of citizens to hold public institutions accountable.
Public Narrative delights in their mission to uphold equity within the public narrative of media. The organization actively diversifies the voices participating in the news through training & connecting community members to media outlets to further reinforce the importance of representation.
Reader Institute for Community Journalism The Chicago Reader creates and curates political and cultural coverage by and for Chicago, including highlighting underrepresented communities and stories. We reinvest all of our profits to achieve sustainability, grow our reach, and ensure the fulfillment of our mission.
Urban Prescriptives helps organizations develop brilliant ideas and viable strategies and works to put them into action. Our focus is on project execution that is targeted, efficient, and innovative, led by a team of experienced practitioners and change agents.
Watched Films LLC was created in 2015 by journalist and filmmaker Assia Boundaoui to support the development, production, and distribution of the documentary film THE FEELING OF BEING WATCHED (2019), the film's ensuing impact campaign and the INVERSE SURVEILLANCE PROJECT.

Apply for Fall Grant Considerations

On April 15, Field’s Letter of Inquiry portal will open for Fall 2022 grant considerations in the areas of ArtJusticeLeadership Investment and Media & Storytelling. Complete our short, online form by Monday, May 16, to tell us about your work. Apply here: fieldfoundation.org/how-to-apply/ and feel free to share this link with people or organizations who may be interested.

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