About Us

About Art on Sedgwick

Created by neighbors, Art on Sedgwick provides an open and welcoming space for arts programming, belonging, and inspiration. Our work draws on Chicago’s diverse, world-class artist community to inspire a shared imagination for a vibrant and equitable neighborhood.


Art on Sedgwick was formed by neighbors to break down barriers between historically disconnected demographic groups on Chicago’s Near North side and to unleash the creative potential of our community. In 2014, we incorporated, obtained 501c3 approval, and kicked off programming with our first community art celebration. Partnering with public and private schools, we exhibited artwork created by diverse neighbors of all ages. The following year, Art on Sedgwick opened a temporary storefront studio at 1429 N Sedgwick while waiting on major renovations of the Marshall Field Garden Apartment Homes. This site became a hub for our programs including artist residencies, public art exhibits, classes, workshops, and field trips.

In April of 2017, we moved into our bright, open, renovated studio space located at 1408 N. Sedgwick. A few months later, we entered into an agreement to lead the programming in the adjacent Community Center, which serves the 628 families residing in the apartment building. In August of 2023, we opened a new gallery space in the adjacent storefront at 1404 N Sedgwick.

This video tells the story of how we built our community arts center:

What We Do

All of our programs share key objectives, including to:

  • create art that will provide shared experiences and spark community dialogue
  • provide a platform for neighbors of all ages to have a voice through their art, and to be agents of their own representation
  • inspire positive activism toward a vibrant, welcoming, and equitable neighborhood

Who We Are


Charlie Branda, President
Jefferey Dagbo, Chair
Maggie VanDerMolen, Secretary
Ana Scales, Treasurer
John Bakker, Artistic Director
Jorge Lucero, Artistic Director
Heather Bowen-Struyk
Tanya Das
Kristen Kopplin
Travis Rejman
Stacy French Reynolds
Sam Struyk
Adell Thomas


Executive Director 
Charlie Branda     

Artistic Directors        
John Bakker
Jorge Lucero

Adell Thomas
Dartrell Phillips

Faculty Artists            
Jacob Boglio
Pierce Cruz

Marketing & Communications       
Susan Santoro