LOGAN SQUARE — An artist whose work was removed from the Milwaukee Avenue Arts Festival in June said her work has found a new home, several in fact — all in and around the Logan Square community.
Amie Sell’s art display, an installation critical of gentrification and one of Logan Square's largest landlords, Mark Fishman, was pulled from the Milwaukee Avenue Arts Festival after a representative of Fishman objected to the exhibit, which was located in a building where Fishman had donated space, the fest's organizers said.
Since then, Sell said she has received calls of support from several community members and art exhibit curators in the neighborhood, all eager to provide her with a place to present her work this summer and fall.
“For us, the most important thing is that it be shown, because we didn’t like how everything was handled,” said Trevor Schmutz, co-owner of Kitchen Space gallery. “The option was taken from her, so we wanted to give that back.”
Sell's work, "Home Sweet Home," includes photos of buildings owned by M. Fishman & Co. and is set for display at Kitchen Space, 2716 N Monticello Ave., for the month of August.
The photos include descriptions critical of Fishman for raising rents or converting buildings from single-room occupancy units in the booming Logan Square neighborhood. Festival organizers said the installation was taken down at the request of Fishman’s associates.
Fishman did not return multiple calls for comment.
Last week, Sell had four new gallery showings planned in Logan Square. Many of the curators came to her wanting to display the work, she said.
For Dawn Marie Galtieri, co-owner of Voice of the City gallery, reaching out to Sell was not about the “swirl of drama” regarding the removed work. She said she hoped the exhibit would start a community conversation about the issues raised in Sell’s work after the outrage had a chance to settle.
“We’re a Logan Square arts alliance. We extended an invitation to Amie because we want her work to be shown,” she said. “That gives us an opportunity for a different kind of conversation."
Voice of the City will display the work with Sell at "A Day in Avondale" on Sept. 27.
Sell also said she hopes to host a panel discussion about affordable housing at the "A Day in Avondale" exhibit.
Two other showings are still in the works, she said, one at the home of an avid Logan Square arts supporter and another at a local church.
“The outreach from the Logan Square community has been amazing and overwhelmingly positive,” Sell said, adding that she hopes to book more venues for her exhibition.
“My intentions are to keep the conversation about affordable housing open and focused toward action,” she added.
For more neighborhood news, listen to DNAinfo Radio here: