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South Side Community Center


South Side Community Arts has been a part of the Black community since 1941. Community leaders decided an institution should be developed where African American artists could develop and display their talents and train and teach Black youth. A civic-minded group purchased this old mansion and the center opened with a staff paid by the WPA (Work Progress Administration). Eleanor Roosevelt and Mary McLeod Bethune were present at the dedication ceremonies. In 1942, the WPA funding ended; since then, the Center has supported itself through membership and contributions of the black community.
Throughout the Center's history, it has presented over 500 art exhibits. Many internationally known artists have been associated with the Center. Noted sculptor, Richard Hunt; author and photographer, Gordon Parks; artist Archibald Motley; and poet laureate Gwendolyn Brooks.

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