Word Weekend


“Step High, Stoop Low, Leave Your Dignity Outside:” Entrance to the Dill Pickle Club, 18 Tooker Alley, n.d Courtesy of the Newberry Library: Dill Pickle Club Records

MCA Chicago presents Word Weekend, an event that showcases Chicago’s active and diverse communities of authors, hip-hop artists, spoken-word poets, songwriters, and visual artists who explore the complexities and pleasures of words, text, and language. The weekend includes activities for every age, whether you’re 9 or 90.

Find out what’s happening with contemporary underground publishing in a small-press book fair copresented by Printer’s Ball. Enjoy readings, storytelling, and live literature performances by Write Club, The Encyclopedia Show, Red Rover Series, and 1,001 Chicago Afternoons and Anthology of Chicago. Take part in word-related activities including letterpress, zine writing, and graffiti workshops.

Listen to a full reading of This Is Modern Art, a world preview commissioned for Steppenwolf for Young Adults and written by acclaimed playwright Idris Goodwin and Louder Than A Bomb founder Kevin Coval. Explore Chicago’s storied literary history with Pocket Guide to Hell’s reenactment of the legendary Dil Pickle Club. Engage in interactive installations such as Jeffrey and Matt Austin’s From Downtown (We Got This), which invites visitors to shoot baskets in the museum using crumpled pieces of paper that contain the simple but encouraging phrase, “I got this.” Experience Chicago’s emerging hip-hop stars Saint Millie, Psalm One, and the Boy Illinois in a program cocurated by Fake Shore Drive, Chicago’s premiere hip-hop website, consider the words we use to talk about race and racism in a stand-up comedy art show featuring Suey Park, Rebecca O’Neal, and Tim Barnes, presented by the informal lecture series Homeroom 101; and sit under the stars in an outdoor film screening in the museum’s sculpture garden.

Connect with us: #WordWeekend

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