Community Events to engage the head, heart, & hands

Archive for May, 2011

Support CWS

Please Help Sustain and Nurture Our Vibrant Community With Your Giving

Our heartfelt thanks to the many donors who have generously offered their support for the school. The Annual Fund is an essential component of our operating budget and helps the school achieve its institutional initiatives. Time is running out to make your support count for this fiscal year.

Help keep our school vibrant and active with your contribution to Annual Fund!

Click Here to donate securely to Annual Fund

Or you may contact Jackie Johnson, CWS Development Director at 773.828.8458 or

Note: Donations through our website are protected by paypal security encryption procedures.


Sharing Some Words of Appreciation

Thank You to All Who Supported the 12th Grade Play

Many thanks to all who attended the senior play, You Can’t Take It With You. It was wonderful to see so many of you supporting the work of our seniors in one of the culminating moments of their Waldorf education. I also wanted to thank those who contributed so much our production:

set . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
music & sound effects . .
props . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
lighting . . . . . . . . . . . . .
costumes . . . . . . . . . . .
choreography . . . . . . . . .
photos . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
hair and make-up . . . . . .
mural . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
cameo appearances . . .

Rick Paul
Jeff Spade
Iris Pavelic and Talia Adams
Chris Chapin
Nancy Melvin and Caitlin Laingen
Melissa Reesh
Liz Heavenrich
Michele Preysler and Ali Lindquist
Frances Vig
David Massie and Jim Kotz

…and to the families of the seniors, and the faculty & staff at Chicago Waldorf School.

I also wanted to thank everyone who donated and bought refreshments at the play. Your support helped make the senior’s service learning trip to Mexico possible. As you read this, they’re working in an orphanage in the Yucatan and learning about the culture of the Mayan people.

Colleen Everhart, Chicago Waldorf School High School Theatre Faculty

Silks are the Ultimate Imaginative Play Toy

Don’t Miss the CARE TO SHARE Summer Silk Sale
Wednesday and Thursday, June 8th & 9th

Don’t start your summer without all of your play silks in good working order! Every birthday needs a rainbow silk. Every fairy needs a scarf and every pirate needs a sash. Play silks can be anything.

Care to Share can help you to have your birthday presents ready for summer and all of your children wrapped in hand dyed silk. We will be offering solid play cloths and rainbows, even a few capes and probably some surprises. All proceeds will go to the ongoing Care to Share projects. Read more about Care To Share‘s philanthropic initiatives in an article slated for next weeks bulletin!

Prices- 1 yard silk squares $5, 3 yard rainbow silks $30. All hand-dyed.

If you have questions or want to pre-order contact, Dru Muskovin at
We thank you for your continued support of our international Waldorf based philanthropic work through Care to Share.

Look for the silks table outside of the Early Childhood entrance doors on Wednesday & Thursday.

Profiling Our Seniors’ Next Moves

Class of 2011 Senior Plans

Oliver Beirne plans to attend the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign because it is so well-known for the fields he would like to explore: architecture, business and engineering. He also found it to be a friendly campus with a wide array of intramural sports activities. In fact, Oliver joined a basketball game with college students when he visited the campus, and highly encourages informal interaction like that as a way to evaluate a school. Oliver will also keep Drexel University in the back of his mind as he found its internship program very appealing, and loved its location in Philadelphia.

Elodie Betend beams when she talks about attending the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) next year. SAIC does not require students to declare a concentration at the outset of their education, and so, Elodie will be able to sample classes in metals, photography and textiles, among others. SAIC even offers a culinary class, a field which Elodie has considered. Staying in Chicago will allow Elodie to stay connected to the arts scene in Chicago while maintaining ties to friends in the city.

Seth Brav-McCabe plans a year of exploration as well as continued employment. He will likely take classes at a community college and/or the Vitruvian Art School. His goal is to assemble an art portfolio encompassing his interests in drawing, illustration and 3-D modeling. From there Seth may head to art school, or find that a portfolio will lead him directly to an internship or work. He also hopes to travel to Germany to see friends, and to Ireland to see family.

Jackson Hallman will take a year off and enter the job market in order to gain work experience, earn money and determine his career goals. Following that, he anticipates that he will take classes at one of the City Colleges of Chicago. Since his 3-week internship at a Chicago Fire Department station, he has had thoughts about becoming a paramedic or EMT and would like to investigate that possibility. He also anticipates that he will continue to sketch and paint in his free time.

Laura Holdrege will attend St. Olaf College in Minnesota, a selective liberal arts school which ranks #15 in the nation among all colleges and universities by Princeton Review for best quality of life. She was impressed with the strong sense of community and trust among students and faculty members. Laura looks forward to exploring the fields of psychology and accounting, among others. In addition, she will continue to play the violin and will look into the possibility of trying out for the volleyball team. A great study abroad program at St. Olaf sealed the deal for Laura.

Olivia Juarez will attend Alfred University in New York as an art student. She has commented many times about the amazing art department and facilities, and the endless variety of art sub-specialties to delve into. She is especially interested in ceramics, digital art, sonic art, video art, sculpture, neon art and glass-blowing. She expects that the small class sizes will engage her both artistically and intellectually. Alfred also has a strong business program and Olivia will be able to take classes that will help prepare her for the practical considerations of working in the art world. The possibility of studying abroad in Australia intrigues her as well.

Michael Moratto will head toward warmer weather next year when he enrolls at Eckerd College in Florida. He describes the campus as having a familial and friendly atmosphere, a future home away from home. Michael’s current interests are psychology and perhaps anthropology, and he looks forward to taking a wide variety of classes. He notes that there are 100+ club/organizations at Eckerd, offering many opportunities to get involved in student life. Michael is already keeping in touch with another “first-year” who was on the same campus tour with him when he visited Eckerd. And, he already has plans to travel to England during his first holiday break!

Naomi Muskovin has chosen Wheaton College in Massachusetts for many reasons: a strong music department, highly regarded science department, new science center, a unique major in psychobiology, and a truly diverse community which welcomes both liberal and conservative viewpoints. Wheaton’s location among several small towns offers many community service opportunities. Because it is not too far from Boston or Providence, there are many internship possibilities as well. Naomi is also interested in ethno-musicology and would love to be able to study abroad in Africa and immerse herself in a foreign culture. Another “plus” is that students at Wheaton are able to take courses not offered at their college at nearby Brown University.

Rachel Osran is very excited to attend the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC)! Her senior internship in the biology department and labs at UIC helped her to see the many opportunities available there. Rachel will live on campus and would like to reside on the dorm floor which is reserved for women in science and math so that she can make friends with students of similar interest. Her major will be biology, but her choice of UIC is related more to the intangible “feel” of the campus. Rachel loved the energy and diversity there; in fact, UIC is known as one of the most diverse schools in the nation. In addition, she found student engagement to be high with many organizations and ways to get involved.

Blake Palder will attend Hobart & William Smith, a selective liberal arts college in the scenic Finger Lakes Region of New York. Blake was especially impressed by the sense of community and support at HWS; it is more than simple friendliness and is something that is promoted by the structure of its programs. Like many schools, HWS offers freshman orientation and seminars. However, Blake will also live in a “learning center” with the participants of her seminar class, a practice which has been found to promote bonding among students and faculty. Blake likes the fact that it is in a somewhat remote location. This strengthens community participation since students do not leave the campus on the weekends. Blake is looking forward to exploring a variety of classes and majors.

Silvana Poole is approaching her college years with a sense of adventure, and will attend Bennington College in Vermont. She is happy to go to a school which has a strong emphasis in the arts and a wide array of arts classes to choose from. She is similarly enthusiastic about the academic classes, as she has already heard from someone that she knows who is attending there, that classes are “mind-blowing”. Indeed, Bennington ranks very highly among all colleges and universities for student engagement in the classroom, in part due to its emphasis on experiential learning. Silvana is undecided about a major, but is definitely planning to take courses in ceramics and education. But mostly, she is greatly looking forward to the unknown.

Nick Park-Reynolds has officially chosen to attend the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and has applied for a one year deferment. Unofficially, he is contemplating something much more fluid for his future. He would like to live in a different locale and to work for awhile, perhaps in construction. Nick also envisions travel, particularly to Germany where he has relatives. Higher education plans in the future may include studies in music or art. However, this doesn’t really capture the essence of adventure that he is hoping to experience in the near future: that of one thing leading to another, living in an unplanned way which allows unexpected opportunities to arise, and the exploration of a meandering life path.

Hannah Prinz will enroll at Loyola University in Chicago in the fall. She wants very much to stay in Chicago, and to be close to family and friends. However, Loyola can also nurture her adventurous side as the school has a campus in Rome, which allows both U.S. and Italian students to move seamlessly between the two locations. She will live in a dorm on campus and will take classes in education, philosophy, theology and art. Education holds a special interest for Hannah as she has experienced both Waldorf and conventional school settings. Who knows – someday we may see her in Arcturus classes!

Lena Smith will attend Luther College, a selective liberal arts college in Iowa. Lena is an outdoor girl, and was immediately intrigued by Luther’s beautiful campus and many nearby outdoor pursuits, including canoeing, rock climbing, bike trails and hiking trails. A double major in biology and psychology is currently under consideration by Lena. Her top interest right now is marine biology, but she is open to other sub-specialties of biology. Interestingly, good marine biology programs can be found away from coastal areas as marine biology also encompasses river and lake habitats. The music program at Luther is renowned and Lena will continue to play the violin there.

Mike Wright will attend Eckerd College in Florida in the fall. He visited the campus twice and found the learning environment to be wonderfully similar to Waldorf. “Think outside” is the school motto, and this is reflected in the physical layout of the campus. There are no interior hallways in the buildings and most classrooms are directly connected to the outdoors. Mike plans to study environmental science or marine biology, two majors for which Eckerd is highly regarded. The chance to take a scuba diving class makes Eckerd all the more appealing to Mike.

Submitted by CWS College Counselor, Diane Meinke

Attend CWS Parent/Staff Member’s Book Signing

Tunnel into Morning, a Newly Published Poetry Book
Release Party- Wednesday, June 8th at 7:00pm

In the Chicago Waldorf School Lower Eurythmy Room

Join award winning poet Maureen Flannery for a poetry reading, book signing and celebration of her new book, Tunnel into Morning.

This latest book pulls together decades of her work on such diverse topics as child-rearing, love, aging, Ireland, farm life, western land, art, humus, and, of course, death. (Billy Collins says death is what inspires poets to get out of bed in the morning)

Maureen is one of Chicago’s most widely published poets, having had over five hundred poems accepted in several hundred literary publications and anthologies. Her other books include Destiny Whispers to the Beloved, Ancestors in the Landscape (nominated for a Pulitzer Prize), A Fine Line, Remembered into Life, and the anthology Knowing Stones.

Come hear the acclaimed singer and conductor of The Lakeside Singers perform Maureen’s poems (which he has set to music). Enjoy refreshments (chocolate is promised), and hear our own office manager transform into the poet that she is. Children welcome. Inspire the budding writers composers, and singers in your family.

Creating a Rich, Conducive and Protected Space for a Child’s Development

Kim John Payne’s Perspective on Raising Children with Awareness for Age-Appropriate Exposure

How does the growing child interact with society’s ever increasing complexity? As consumerism, media, advertising and communication networks get faster and more fragmented, the onslaught of information can have a strong detrimental effect on a child’s development.

Kim John Payne offers an essential model of how parents can reclaim rich and productive space for childhood experience by simplifying and reducing the amount of toys, books and clutter; establishing rhythms and rituals for family experience and interactions; care-taking the space for attention and connection within families; and limiting the distractions and complications of mainstream media that often lead to over-stimulation and anxiety. His book Simplicity Parenting has been an influential cornerstone for many families trying to strengthen and streamline their children’s lives and protect the developmental focus and needs of kids as they grow.

Here Kim John Payne reflects on the question “What is appropriate exposure for my child?”

A consultant and trainer to over 110 U.S. independent and public schools, Kim John Payne, M.ED, has been a school counselor, adult educator, consultant, researcher, educator and a private family counselor for twenty seven years. He regularly gives key note addresses at international conferences for educators, parents, and therapists and runs workshops and training’s around the world. In each role, he has been helping children, adolescents and families explore issues such as social difficulties with siblings and classmates, attention and behavioral issues at home and school, emotional issues such as defiance, aggression, addiction and self-esteem and the vital role living a balanced simple life brings.

Congratulations to the Snyder Family

Announcement: Welcome Their Newest Addition

Congratulations to Ava Snyder (EC5) and her parents, Marne and Jeremy on the arrival of Owen Blake Snyder. Their beautiful baby boy was born on May 20th at 5:59am weighing 8lbs, 15 oz. Marne and Owen (and the whole family) are doing fine.

Wish them well and ask Ava about her new experiences as a big sister…

Submitted by EC5 Room Parent, Gail Jarrett

CWS Honors Marilyn Keane in Memoriam

Our Heartfelt Sympathies go out to her family, including daughter (& New Leaf owner), Karen Keane

Marilyn a. Keane of Chicago Heights passed away on May 11th, 2011 at St. James Hospital. She was 83 years old, born in Chicago and resided in Hyde Park and South Shore. She was the eldest of seven beloved children of Albert and Harriet Doherty. Marilyn is survived by her three sisters: Jean (Bill) Taaffe, Alice (Jim) Rooney and Eileen Doherty, and her three brothers: Dan, Tim (Barb), and Jim (Cathy) Doherty. She is the beloved mother of Karen, Kevin (Geri) and Brian (Kerry) Kean and the adored grandmother of Michael (Whitney), Jason, Alexandra, and Kaitlyn, as well as great-grandmother to Cole and Brooklyn.

She will be loved and missed by numerous relatives, life-long friends and neighbors. Marilyn’s funeral was held in a Catholic Mass in Chicago Heights on Monday May 16th. Her body will be interred at Assumption Cemetery, Glenwood, IL. In lieu of flowers please make donations to Catholic Charities (info at (708) 754-0016.

We send our support and condolences to her daughter, Karen, who is an important member of the CWS community, the Rogers Park neighborhood, and a good friend to the school.

CWS Community Outreach Takes On Many Forms

L-R: Lucien Lazar, Naomi Muskovin, Claudia King, Malcolm Collins, Michael Moratto, Wilny Wilkerson, Torii Maysonet. Not Pictured: Elodie Betend, Sarah Lavin-Burgher, Jeremy Marder & Fiona Masterton.

Dedicated Individuals Represent Our School

As 2011-12 enrollment season winds down, we would like to extend our deepest appreciation to the many students, teachers and parents who welcomed and supported our prospective families this year. Each of us plays a unique role in describing the value of Waldorf education, and we find that building enrollment in CWS is best achieved through the enthusiastic and collective efforts of the community. This year was a fine example of this work.

First and foremost, we thank our inspiring and dedicated high school student ambassadors: Elodie Betend, Malcolm Collins, Claudia King, Sarah Lavin-Burgher, Lucien Lazar, Jeremy Marder, Fiona Masterton, Torii Maysonet, Michael Moratto, Naomi Muskovin, and Wilny Wilkerson. Together, with the help of Talia Adams, Eden Finer, Matthew Kane, Rebecca Lavin-Burgher, Claire Matthews, Iris Pavelic, Sarah Price, Mercy Randolph, and Cole Ruscitti, they hosted more than 40 visitors as well as our own 7th and 8th grade students. Many thanks also to Alice Blehart, Camille Dozier, Rosie Fitz, Laura Holdrege, Olivia Juarez, Liam Lundy, Blake Palder, Jasmine Pearman, Lena Smith and Mike Wright for joining the student ambassadors in supporting the six tours and orientations.

“I really appreciated the students input, and the teachers also made a great impression. They clearly have a ‘burning’ passion for their school.”

We are also very grateful to the Enrollment Committee, especially Susan Mudd, Clifton Muhammad, Katherine Rogers, and Josephine Ryan for their generous leadership and support throughout the year. Improved tours and orientations and the Class of 2015 scholarship are just two examples of their many contributions. Lastly, we appreciate the efforts of all the parent volunteers who provided support for the tour and orientations, and yield and outreach events: Stephanie Arnett, Karen Brennan, Jill & Mike Cruz, Linda Finer, Maria Gale, Christy Galyon, Cheryl Henley, Corey Hirsch, Rebeca Itzkowitz, Andrea Lee, Valerie Colis & Peter Livaditis, Robin Lewis, Mark McIntosh, Hema Pillalamarri, Sue Smock-Lawson, Andrea Regan McNaughton, Norman Teague, Sarah Wellington, and Amy & Chad Willetts.

“The opportunity to speak with current parents and current students was priceless.”

The fruits of this good work are best expressed in the words of prospective parents:

I was most impressed with the classroom tours. It is one thing to read about the goals of a Waldorf education and another to witness it.

I LOOOOVED the early childhood program. I wish I could have been a Waldorf Early Childhood student. I would love for my future children to go here.

I came away totally inspired as a teacher to finally see classes taught in a way that is interesting, intuitive, full of critical thinking and fully integrated with the ARTS.

Thank you all outreach volunteers for your generosity and commitment to Chicago Waldorf School!

Submitted by the Admissions Committee:
Susan Bruck, Barbara Huckabay, Lisa Payton, Lauri Sullivan and Jennifer Zielinski

Explore the City on Bike

Bike The Drive- Sunday May 29th
Join CWS for a Special Bike Ride and Social Outing!

For the past several years, Chicago Waldorf School families have joined thousands of Chicagoans in participating in Bike the Drive, a fun-filled outdoor city-wide event.

Take advantage of an entire morning of car-free biking on Chicago’s famous Lake Shore Drive. Ride in safety and community while exploring the city. Then have a picnic and play-time in the park.

Bike the Drive is a family-friendly event that is a great way to see the most scenic aspects of our city’s waterfront by biking down Lake Shore Drive–without cars! Families can choose to bike any length of the two 15- and 30-mile course options and can use one of the many turnaround points for a more leisurely ride. For the last five years Chicago Waldorf families have biked the event at their own pace and distance and then met at around 10:30am for a social outing & picnic near Montrose Hill in Lincoln Park after Bike The Drive concludes.

Bike the Drive is a fundraising event for the nonprofit Active Transportation Alliance. Registration supports their advocacy efforts and gives you hours of uninterrupted bicycling, volunteer support, access to rest stops and a fun-filled post-ride festival. The CWS After-Ride Outing is free and all community members and friends are welcome to join us.

Catch the view from behind your handlebars! Ride with us Memorial Day weekend and join CWS families for picnic and fun in the afternoon.

If you’d like to join in the Waldorf Families After-Ride Festivities, please contact CWS Communications Director, Jason Greenberg at for more details.

Sign up today! Click here for their event registration webpage. It supports a great cause.

Students Raise Funds for Humanitarian Outreach

The CWS 8th graders were able to raise enough money to purchase these gifts: a Water Buffalo, Llama, Goat, Sheep, Honeybees and Flock of Chicks.

As part of the global awareness and outreach elements of the curriculum, the 8th grade developed and promoted a fundraising drive that culminated this year in earning approximately $700.00 that they then donated to Heifer International to help efforts to alleviate hunger and poverty.

Heifer International is a global nonprofit humanitarian assistance organization working to help end hunger and poverty and at the same time protect the environment and care for the Earth. Heifer provides living gifts of area-appropriate livestock and training in environmentally sound agricultural practices to families in need to help lift themselves out of poverty to become self-reliant.

For more than 65 years, Heifer has worked to help improve livelihoods for families that struggle daily for reliable sources of food and income. Since 1944, Heifer has helped more than 12 million families—62 million men, women and children—more than 1.5 million families in 2008-09.

Additional 8th Grade Efforts Raised 210 pairs of shoes.

Last year the 8th Grade held a bake sale to benefit the people of Haiti after the devastating earthquake. This year they decided to donate the money to Soles 4 Souls which provides a pair of shoes for every dollar raised to those in need. The 8th graders raised $175.00 and collected 35 pairs of shoes which enabled them to provide 210 pairs of shoes to the people of Haiti.

The students offered services like shoveling snow, babysitting and bake sales to raise money for their class project. Thanks to the 8th Grade students for spearheading this initiative and raising generous funds for these worthy causes!

From the Board of Trustees

Report of the April 26th Board Meeting

Trustees heard reports on―and discussed―a number of noteworthy items including:

Trustees were pleased to hear the encouraging results of a philanthropic feasibility study conducted by an outside professional firm and heartened to hear that CWS is capable of conducting a $10 million capital campaign in the near future. (The Board had approved in fall 2010 the retention of a fundraising consultant to assess and report on the school’s philanthropic capability for a permanent home capital campaign in response to the AWSNA/ISACS accrediting recommendations.)

Trustees noted that the report makes clear the school must make philanthropy a greater organizational priority in line with the recommendations contained within the report. The school should make changes and invest the resources necessary to increase its fundraising results over the next two years as it moves toward implementing a campaign. The recommendations contained within the report will be taken up by the Permanent Campus Committee, administration and Board. (Questions regarding the feasibility study should be directed to Luke Goodwin and Jackie Johnson.)

…the report makes clear the school must make philanthropy a greater organizational priority…

The Finance Committee had several pieces of good news:

• The school’s line of credit will not have to be drawn upon at all this year, marking a significant accomplishment in the management of school funds. A small surplus this year will be carried into next year’s budget.

• The top priority for next year’s baseline budget will be salary and benefits reinstatement for faculty and staff. Our ability to add these items back into the budget will be based on this year’s Annual Fund revenue and next year’s tuition revenue.

• The Gala raised in excess of $100,000, which will be designated exclusively for faculty and staff professional development this year and over the next two school years.

• The Finance Committee will host an annual community financial forum each fall, prior to the Board’s deliberations and decision on tuition-setting.

Administrative reports to the board included updates on human resource matters; enrollment for next year (overall projected at about the same as this year); progress on the upcoming renovation of the EC5 classroom; the Admissions Office forthcoming 5-year Exit Interview Study that will give valuable insight into our school’s strengths and continuing challenges; and crisis management recommendations completed this year.

PTO leadership will continue to discuss and consider how best to coordinate with room parent leadership to efficiently and effectively facilitate volunteer activity in the school, and to emphasize community building now that the school is easing the fund-raising expectations surrounding many events and festivals.

The Board will hold its next meeting on Tuesday, May 24, 7:00 pm.

Submitted by Sylvie Desouches, Board Secretary on May 19th, 2011

Minutes from the April Board meeting will be available at the front desk after approval on May 24. All prior 2010-2011 Board meeting minutes are already available for viewing at the front desk.

Remaining 2010-2011 Board of Trustee Meetings
May 24 – Approve baseline budget, approve trustee slate
June 14 – General, Strategic Planning

Interested parents, faculty and staff may request to attend by notifying the Board Chair (Mike Motyka at at least 48 hours in advance of the meeting (by May 22).

NOTE: While the Board has an open Board policy, certain confidential or sensitive information may need to be discussed under closed door session, per best practices for non-profit boards. The Board Chair may ask guests to leave the room at such times and may limit the number of guests attending a meeting. Guests may or may not be invited to speak.

Memories Now Available…

Get your personal copy of The Loop,
the CWS 2010-2011 Yearbook

Filled with memories, class pictures, event photos and more, the yearbook makes a great keepsake and is a great way to remember all the students, faculty and staff in our school. Relive your fond memories of school by leafing through the pages.

Yearbooks are available for $60 each. We offer a special multiples price for families to purchase copies at $45 each when ordering two or more at once.

Drop by the Main Office to pick up your yearbook or you may mail in payment to Chicago Waldorf School / 1300 W Loyola Avenue / Chicago, IL 60626.

Come by the Main Office window to get your copy today!

Congratulations to CWS Student Liam Gorzen

Chicago Fire Department Awards Student Scholarship

8th grade student, Liam Gorzen, was very excited when he learned that he is to be a recipient of this year’s Chicago Fire Department’s Gold Badge Society’s High School Scholarship. The Gold Badge Society advocates for firefighters and paramedics, offering financial, emotional and operational support for members of the Chicago Fire Department as well as offering outreach to families on the national level.

This specific monetary award supports High School and College scholarships for children of active, retired, and disabled or deceased firefighters and paramedics from the Chicago Fire Department. Scholarship recipients had to be nominated by community members and demonstrate academic achievement supported with institutional documentation.

Liam attended the recent awards ceremony on Sunday, May 15th at the Chicago Fire Department’s Monthly Mass at Holy Family Church on Roosevelt Road.

Congratulations Liam, on a job well done!

CWS Parent Executes High Profile Public Art Project

Thomas Melvin’s Art Extends To Many Areas

The Melvin family have been active members of the Chicago Waldorf Community for many years. In fact artist Thomas Melvins’ creativity has been on display at CWS before. His work has been profiled in the Sound of Thunder’s Community Artist Profile, and suites of his woodblock carved Valentines collaborations with his wife, Nancy Melvin, are on display in the school’s Main Office (and also available for purchase as elegant artist proof cards and gift sets). But in this past few weeks Thomas’ art skills have taken on a whole new dimension, as he is executing a massive mural project in the Loop. His efforts were recently documented in a Chicago Tribune article on this Art Loop 2011 Project.

Here is an excerpt of the article in the Tribune:

Writing on the Wall for Art Loop Project: Artist Rosen to Bring Wordplay to Empty Spaces in the Loop

The newly stenciled lines on the vast wall above Old Navy in the Loop suggest there’s a large-scale advertisement in the works. But those who’ve been anticipating the location of this summer’s Chicago Loop Alliance-sponsored public art installation are the wiser.

The north wall of the Stevens building at 17-25 N. State Street — of which approximately nine stories serve as a white brick canvas looming over a pedestrian-heavy intersection — is the newly tapped site for Midwestern artist Kay Rosen’s as-yet untitled Art Loop 2011 installation. A secondary site, along the paneling covering the north and south exterior walls of the State/Lake “L” platform, will serve as backdrop to a related installation, and banners lining State Street between the two sites will tie them together. All of the installation work will be completed in time for the project’s grand unveiling, scheduled for May 24. The complete installation will be on view through August.

Though a light rain put an end to Saturday’s preliminary preparation, Sunday’s mild temperatures offered ideal conditions for work on the Stevens building site, which is largely being carried out by a team of local painters headed by Thomas Melvin, with whom Rosen has collaborated multiple times over the course of nearly three decades. Because Loop regulations limit painting to weekends only, weather plays a major factor in the timely completion of the project….(Click here to continue reading the article at its source).

This article (originally posted, May 8, 2011) is excerpted from The Chicago Tribune
By Lauren Viera, Tribune reporter