Photos by Sandra Steinbrecher
During the summer of 2019, Overton was opened up for a series of Activation Days during which architects, artists, and community members were welcomed into the space to learn about the space and work on installations around the premises. After three activations (June-August), their collaborations were showcased in a Community Day that drew people from around the world and across the street. Upbeat tunes from DJ Sadie Woods and La Spacer and the whiff of Ms. Lee's Good Food wafted through the hallways of the former school, bringing the building to life again for a day. Each classroom became a space for teams to reconcile with and re-imagine the imprint a school closure leaves on a place and a people. By bringing people together with different personal, academic and artistic backgrounds, the projects generated conversations and spaces that reflected the complexity of the site’s context. Some projects were focused on the school’s legacy, while others concentrated on the present urban context of Bronzeville. As with any collaborative endeavor, each person and team brought a different concern to the table, some grappling with race and equity, and others exploring environmental possibilities.
Explore different projects here: