Chicago Calling: A Live Storytelling Event

Saturday, February 9, 2019
6-7:30 p.m.
Tickets: $10 General | $8 Intuit Members
Advanced registration required | Limited seats available
Intuit, 756 N. Milwaukee Ave, Chicago
Main Gallery (seated event)

Everybody has a story…

Some of us are still around to tell our own, but many of Chicago’s great outsider artists are no longer here to share theirs.

Did you ever cross paths with these artists during their lifetimes? Maybe you exchanged a head bump with Wesley Willis at Quenchers, or bought a painting from Lee Godie on the Art Institute steps. We want to preserve memories like these to make sure the world remembers the big impact these artists made on the self-taught art genre, and even more than that, on the friends (and strangers) they met during their time in Chicago.  

To celebrate the run of its exhibition, Chicago Calling: Art Against the Flow, and to help build an oral history of these remarkable visionaries, Intuit is thrilled to host Chicago Calling: A Live Storytelling Event!

This public program invites you, the community, to share your first-hand stories, memorable experiences or favorite interactions with the 10 beloved self-taught artists on view in the exhibition—Henry Darger, William Dawson, Lee Godie, Mr. Imagination, Aldo Piacenza, Pauline Simon, Drossos Skyllas, Dr. Charles Smith, Wesley Willis and Joseph Yoakum.

To present a kaleidoscope of stories, Intuit is seeking written story submissions representing each of the 10 exhibition artists. Submit your story (see submission information below) and you may be selected to give a live reading at the event!

Don’t have a story to share?  Join us in the audience! Enjoy learning more about the artists who helped shape the Chicago art scene by hearing from those who knew them.

This seated event will take place in Intuit’s Main Gallery. A limited number of seats are available. Early ticket reservation is encouraged.

Intuit invites you to contribute your very own story!

  • To have your story considered for the live storytelling program, please submit your story (500 words or less) through the online form below or send your story via email to

  • Please include your full name as well as the best phone number and email for contacting you.

  • Only one entry per person will be considered for the live program.

  • You will be notified prior to the event if your story has been selected to be shared during the live program. Further event details will be sent to you upon acceptance. Complimentary seats will be reserved for those whose stories are selected to be shared at the event.

  • If your story is selected but you are unable to attend the event, you may opt to have your story read aloud by an Intuit representative.

  • All stories shared with Intuit will be kept on file for possible inclusion in a future collected stories project. Should another opportunity arise for the sharing of your story, you will be notified, and permission will be requested for such use.

  • Questions? Email

Name *
Can you be present on February 9 to read your story aloud? *

To learn more about the Chicago Calling: Art Against the Flow exhibition, visit

Chicago Calling: Art Against the Flow is part of Art Design Chicago, an exploration of Chicago's art and design legacy, an initiative of the Terra Foundation for American Art with presenting partner The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation.

Chicago Calling: Art Against the Flow is funded by the Terra Foundation for American Art and The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation.

This event is documented by Free Spirit Media

Free Spirit Media transforms media and society by providing opportunities for emerging creators, primarily from communities of color, to produce and distribute original content and to pursue artistic, personal and professional aspirations. This mission is fulfilled by providing an engaging learning environment that stimulates meaningful media creation, fosters an entrepreneurial and visionary culture and understands that social transformation most viable when individuals promote and practice equality, inclusion, and solidarity. 

Free Spirit Media offers an incremental line up of community-based programs for teens and young adults ages 14-25 interested in the film, media, and journalism industries to advance from emerging creators to productive, connected, and civically engaged adults. Our 3 categories of programming are: In-School Media Arts Education, After School and Summer Digital Media Programs, and Creative Workforce Development. Free Spirit Media offers accessible education, training, and professional development that helps young people access creative careers and makes them competitive candidates for advanced roles in the media industry. Providing our participants with stipends, paid internships, and industry pathways (through mentorship matching, career advising, networking opportunities and apprenticeships) activates their aspirations and galvanizes their creative and professional potential. Our programming affirms the value of simultaneously investing in the next generation, working towards racial equity, and building economic mobility that leads to sustainable and a well developed workforce in emerging communities.