Stony Island Arts Bank

The Stony Island Arts Bank is a hybrid gallery, media archive, library and community center – and a home for Rebuild’s archives and collections. Designed by William Gibbons Uffendell and built in 1923, the bank at 68th Street and Stony Island Avenue was once a vibrant community savings and loan. By the eighties, the branch had closed and the building remained vacant and deteriorating for decades. Reopened in October 2015, the radically restored building serves as a space for neighborhood residents to preserve, access, reimagine and share their heritage – and a destination for artists, scholars, curators, and collectors to research and engage with South Side history.

The Arts Bank collections include:

Johnson Publishing Archive + Collections: books and periodicals donated by the Johnson Publishing Company, publisher of Ebony and Jet magazine

University of Chicago Glass Lantern Slides: over 60,000 slides of art and architectural history from the Paleolithic to Modern eras

Edward J. Williams Collection: 4,000 objects of “negrobilia” – mass cultural objects and artifacts that feature stereotypical images of black people

Frankie Knuckles Records: “Godfather of House Music,” Frankie Knuckles’ vinyl collection

Our collections are in various states of accessibility. Please direct all inquiries and research requests to info@rebuild-foundation.org. We are currently seeking volunteers to help with collections management and programs at the Arts Bank. Apply here.

Information for your visit:

Stony Island Arts Bank public hours for winter are Sunday, 12PM – 7PM, public tours take place at 12:15pm.

Access to the Johnson Library is only guaranteed during public tours. Photo shoots in the Johnson Library during public hours are not permitted. You can learn more about our photography policies and book a private shoot here.

Public programs take place at the Bank and other sites regularly. View our full calendar here

Upcoming Events

Hours & Location

Exhibitions

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In The Absence of Light: Gesture, Humor and Resistance in The Black Aesthetic

In partnership with EXPO CHICAGO, Art in America, and the Beth Rudin DeWoody Collection, Rebuild Foundation is proud to present the exhibition In The Absence of Light: Gesture, Humor and Resistance in The Black Aesthetic at Stony Island Arts Bank. Organized by Theaster Gates, in collaboration with Beth Rudin DeWoody and Laura Dvorkin, this exhibition…

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Residencies

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BRAVEMONK

Daniel “BRAVEMONK” Haywood Co-Founder/Co-Artistic Director of BraveSoul Movement and a cultural ambassador and leader in the Hip-Hop community, has served both nationally and internationally as an artist, performer, educator, choreographer, host, judge and competitor over the last 18 years.

Recent Blog Posts

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Community Offerings

These are unprecedented times, and our community of neighbors, friends, artists, and creatives are all impacted. The temporary closure of Rebuild Foundation’s sites is devastating for us, as we know they are spaces of creative expression, spiritual refuge, joy, and solace for so many. It is with this in mind that we dedicate this virtual… Learn More

Announcing Rebuild’s 2020 Youth Literary Fellowship

Applications due Sunday, May 10th at 6:00PM CST The Reading the Black Library Youth Fellowship is a youth-centered writing residency activating the historic Johnson Publishing and Ed J Williams artifacts in the Stony Island Arts Bank’s collections. Four Chicago poets between the ages of 16-24 years will be selected for a summer fellowship. Under the mentorship and guidance… Learn More

5 things getting me through this Corona lock-down

((( in my Nina Simone voice}}} You can’t help it. An artist’s duty, as far as I’m concerned, is to reflect the times … Steam Treatments.  And I do them old school too.  Pot of water on stove.  Add orange peel.  Add sea salt.  Add ginger and onion, if I choose (this morning I added… Learn More

2019 Recap: Soul Power Cypher Vol. 3

On September 7, 2019, Rebuild Foundation hosted Soul Power Cypher Vol. 3 in collaboration with BraveSoul Movement at the Stony Island Arts Bank. This all ages street dance jam was the culmination of a summer of youth programming hosted by BraveSoul Movement at Dorchester Art & Housing Collaborative. We are so grateful to BRAVEMONK and Kelsa Robinson, the Founders of BraveSoul, and to all of the artists, performers, and participants who make this program so special. Read on for Brave’s recap.

All Rebuild sites are temporarily closed to the public due to COVID-19.We miss you! Click here for our virtual community offerings.