Chicago based Bead Town, Inc. is an exciting, interactive art exhibit and educational project that applies innovative teaching methods, when creating art with the community.
Since these community artworks are designed to inspire future Bead Town exhibits, we do not sell them. Today, Bead Town features over 100 mosaics, including two Guinness World Records, all made from recycled Mardi Gras beads, bottle caps and other found materials, highlighting iconic images from previous host communities.
In the past Bead Town exhibits broke visitor attendance records everywhere it was displayed.
More than 25,000 volunteers, tourists and students in the United States and Canada have experienced Bead Town activities and created art since 2010. All participants worked on locally themed artworks that have become part of the larger traveling Bead Town exhibit.
Additionally, Bead Town organizes workshops which are open to the public and designed to entertain, inspire and educate. These workshops teach the value of economic and environmental sustainability and resourcefulness, while demonstrating unique methods of upcycling materials, that are usually discarded.
Bead Town is a community builder that seeks and reaches people of all ages and affects positive change in communities because of the unique experiences gained.
Bead Town serves the community in many important ways:
♦ We make the Bead Town experience available to all people, especially in underserved communities.
♦ We provide an alternative education method to students of all ages and make
boring subjects more exciting.
♦ We give everyone a chance to create inspiring projects regardless of the individual’s age, race, gender, religion, disability, sexual orientation, special needs, circumstances or nationality.
What Bead Town offers is a self contained activity that is not done with the expectation of future benefit, but simply because the doing itself is the reward. Anything else coming from being active and involved at Bead Town is an unexpected but welcome experience.
The Bead Town experience is autotelic, a participant pays attention to the activity for its own sake. When it is not, the attention is focused on its consequences.
Bead Town applies the Socratic Method.
The open setting of Bead Town, and the skills learned, lead into the Socratic Method, which is a form of inquiry and discussion between participants, based on asking and answering questions to stimulate critical thinking and to illuminate new ideas and perhaps new artworks or projects.
Since 2010, Bead Town has taught tourists, locals and over 25,000 students and volunteers in Canada and the United States. The workshops, surrounded by art that previous host cities have created, teach the value of economic and environmental sustainability and demonstrate unique methods of upcycling materials that are too often discarded. Participating visitors can work on locally themed artworks or the next Guinness World Records achievement. Finished artworks become part of the Bead Town exhibit and are an extension of Bead Town’s efforts to foster community sharing.
Creating Art Together – One Recycled Piece at a Time
♦ Environment: Recycling and Upcycling
♦ Tourism Development
♦ Community Building
♦ Self Worth Development/Side by Side Mentorship
♦ Fostering a Global Community
Long Term Goal
Build a permanent interactive Bead Town museum and event facility in Chicago that will:
♦ give everyone a chance to create inspiring projects regardless of the individual’s age, race, gender, religion, disability, sexual orientation, special needs, circumstances or nationality.
♦ promote tourism by highlighting iconic city imagery to entertain and educate locals and tourists.
♦ promote recycling and upcycling of discarded materials.
♦ promote the artworks of current and previous Bead Town host cities to a national and international audience.
♦ increase the use of recycled Mardi Gras beads and other found objects in visual art.
♦ bring a Guinness World Records title to Chicago to officially unveil “Sanctuary City - Radians of Chicagoland” current project name of the mural.
♦ cover necessary costs for the support of Bead Town, including administrative costs, equipment needs, space and other relevant expenses