Theaster Gates Is Bringing A DJ Booth To The New 95th Street Red Line Stop

By Stephen Gossett in News on Jul 13, 2017 6:11PM

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Rendering of Theaster Gates' performance Studio/Radio Station / City of Chicago

The under-construction upgrades to the 95th Red Line Red Line stop are getting on board with some arts-and-culture additions. Renowned Chicago-based artist Theaster Gates on Wednesday unveiled renderings of his twin contribution to the South Side station, including a DJ booth—and potential radio station.

More CTA stops should have (properly manned) DJ booths.

The CTA will pipe the jams from the steel wheels through the station's PA system—with the possibility kept open to also broadcast the music via Internet radio in the future.

The second aspect of Gates' 95th work will incorporate decommissioned firehoses, sewn together, into a large-scale tapestry. It's intended to echo the black civil-rights movement, when citizens were blasted with high-pressure hoses.

“This is an historic opportunity to create world-class artwork and promote community engagement in a once-in-a-generation project on Chicago’s South Side," Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a release. “This initiative combines the talents of an internationally recognized artist with a program that creates jobs and provides on-the-job training and skills development to both workers and students." The project is expected to create ten jobs art-production jobs, including an apprenticeship program for students, according to the city.

Gates—who's well known for working the intersection of art and community building—is also involved in the city's plan to refurbish the Green Line's historic Garfield station house—which was built during the World’s Columbian Exposition and stands among the oldest surviving transit stations in the country.

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Rendering of Theaster Gates' tapestries

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95th Street terminal design