Closed Sunday-Monday

1-5 pm Tuesday-Friday 
1-4 pm Saturday  

720 Chicago Ave. 
Oak Park, Illinois 60302 
(708) 386-9853 

The Oak Park Art League is partially funded by grants from the Oak Park Area Arts Council and the Illinois Arts Counci Agency.

©2019 by Oak Park Art League





Professional Artist Series

A monthly meeting covering topics such as pricing artwork and writing artist statements

Lecture: Iconic Pop/Rock Album Covers with Mike Goldstein

March 22, 7-9pm


In conjunction with ARTifact: 33.3 National Exhibition of Record Cover Art, the Oak Park Art League presents a lecture about the artists and stories behind a number of well-known pop/rock album cover designs. Presenter Mike Goldstein is a former music TV programming and production executive and founder of the Album Cover Hall of Fame, a website that recognizes the contributions of those who have had significant impact in the ongoing development and advancement of rock and roll album cover-related design, illustration and photography. In addition to the lecture, Mike will be presenting rare and one-of-a-kind works from his private collection of cover art photos and prints.


Evolution of the Artist's Practice

Thursday, February 1, 2018 – 7:00-9:00 pm  


Panel discussion with OPAL Artist Members Karen Gubitz, Mary Jo O’Hearn, Pam Penney,  Gina Lee Robbins, and Margot McMahon. Join us in the Oak Park Art League’s Carriage House Gallery for a member meetup and an evening  of conversation about the habits of inquiry that inform the artist’s practice. Learn how five OPAL Artist Members have evolved their work through bold experimentation, guided by influences and education.

Chicago Architecture Foundation's Open House Chicago

Oct 14, 15

The Oak Park Art League was pleased to welcome for the second year, more than 1,200 visitors to our historic E.E. Roberts Carriage House Gallery and art studio for Chicago Architecture Foundation's Open House Chicago event this weekend.

3rd Terrain Biennial

Centered in the historic village of Oak Park, Illinois, the 2nd Terrain Biennial was an international exhibition of site specific art made for front yards, balconies and porches. OPAL was a host site for Project Feildings Resistance Architecture structure out in our garden courtyard. Terrain Exhibitions first opened in 2011 and is committed to producing spontaneous interactions between the viewers and artworks by creating opportunities for artists to make site responsive installations that redefine the definition of public art.

Knitted Knockers Workshop

Monday, October 23, 6:30-9:00pm in the OPAL gallery

Knitted Knockers are soft, light weight breast prosthetics that are comfortable for women who have undergone breast cancer surgeries. Knitters are invited to join this workshop to learn the pattern and create Knitted Knockers for breast cancer survivors. $5 material fee.

 Blessings for All

Artist, educator and printmaker, Teresa Parker’s interactive installation of a traditional Madonna figure invites viewers to write a note of healing or leave a blessing for a loved one braving the challenges of cancer. 

Solidarity & Survivorship

In partnership with Keep-a-Breast Foundation, Solidarity & Survivorship presents an exhibit of artist-customized plaster torso casts that express the strength and beauty of survivorship and the esprit de corps of loyal supporters. 


Founded in 2000, Keep-a-Breast Foundation (KABF) located in Los Angeles, California, is a leading youth-focused, global, nonprofit organization that uses art and education programs to raise awareness of methods of prevention and early detection of breast cancer. To reach their target audience of young women, KABF partners with influencers that include celebrities, rock stars, and athletes, who stand in solidarity with breast cancer survivors by lending their torsos to plaster-casting projects. The plaster casts transform the traditional canvas to participatory sculpture, which is then customized by artists and used as conversation starters, awareness builders and fundraising tools for Keep-a-Breast Foundation. KABF castees for Solidarity & Survivorship, include sixOlympic snowboard athletes. Participants from OPAL’s casting workshop include five women from the local community, who boldly come forth to share their stories about survivorship in support of breast cancer awareness.

We are Enough

In this 21st Century digital age of social media and handheld photo editors, we are inundated with images of our friends, family and cultural icons. One would think this proliferation of photographs would generate a greater acceptance of varying body types. But more than ever, images are projected in the gaze of societal norms and conventions of what is beautiful and ideal. The differences and imperfections that make a human body unique reveal much about one's personal narrative and rarely align with the common standard of young, slim, white, able and whole. 


As part of the Oak Park Art League's Art for Social Change initiative, We are Enough calls for art that explores the many facets of body image and its relationship to self-acceptance and love. How is one's body image affected by inherent differences such as race, gender, sexuality, form and disability; or by changes due to aging, illness, or major surgery? We are looking for art of any media that explores issues of body image and self-worth.

Donut Day

Oct 7

The Oak Park Art League is making donuts today at Farmer's Market. Get 'em while they're hot! Many thanks to our volunteers - Bryan Northup, Nathaniel Strayve, Michael Riordan, and Keith J. Taylor - who are up at the crack of dawn to work the fryer! Donut sales benefit the Art League and Sing to Live Community Chorus

Art dans la Rue

Aug 1

The Oak Park Art League has been invited by Downtown Oak Park to curate and host a pop-up European street gallery, providing an elevated art viewing experience for attendees of this year's Art Dans la Rue, Tuesday August 1, 2pm - 9pm.

Located at the corner of Westgate and Marion Streets in Downtown Oak Park, OPAL’s “Salon de Paris” will be a highlight of this Parisian street fair that also features French food, music, and dance and attracts large crowds. Exhibiting Oak Park Art League Atist Members include: Anthony J. Abboreno, Joe Barabe, Linda Beribak, Laurie Schirmer-Carpenter, Ginny Pitre-Hay, Kathy Hirsh, Rob Hogan, Pamela Penney, Kathy Blankley Roman, Will Roy, Fran Sampson, Marion Sirefman, Michele Silvetti-Schmitt, Kristi Sloniger

S. Lloyd Natof Lecture | Reading Wright: Curious Furniture, Compelling Ideas

May 23, 7:00-8:30 pm

Frank Lloyd Wright ushered in Modernism when he turned away from traditional stylistic forms towards geometric abstraction. However, the modern world we live in now lacks the visual energy and expressivity of his designs. S. Lloyd Natof asks, “What happened?”

In Reading Wright: Curious Furniture, Compelling ideas, Natof reveals the design principles underpinning of Wright’s work and explores what was lost when Modernism became shorthand for uniformity and simple organization.

S. Lloyd Natof, furniture designer, woodworker, educator and Wright’s great-grandson, has a unique

perspective on Wright’s furniture. Using models, images and comparisons to contemporary designs, Natof will illustrate the ideas that animates Wright’s work. Natof’s studio is located in Oak Park, Illinois.

ARTifact Invitational: Incisive

OPAL’s ARTifact initiative enables an innovative bridge for connecting history and contextualizing ideas via contemporary artists working with historic artifacts, objects or ideology in traditional and non-traditional ways. Incisive by Oak Park artist and SAIC Professor Rebecca Keller, merges history, art and modern machine through her installation of laser cut oak, taking inspiration from Wright’s authorship about materials, including his 1901 essay and lecture The Art and Craft of the Machine.

Courtyard Exhibition: Resistance Architecture

Courtyard Exhibition: Resistance Architecture

Designed and built by Project Fielding students, Resistance Architecture is an adaptable structure intended for political encampments, designed in reference to student “survival” dorms at Wright’s Taliesin West School of Architecture. Resistance Architecture exhibit runs through the end of October Founded by Sara Black, Billy Dee, Amber Ginsburg, Miriam Stevens and Donesha Thompson and expanded to involve Caroline Robe and Lia Rousset, Project Fielding leads workshops for female identified and gender variant individuals to learn to design and build structures and use woodworking tools competently and confidently. Created from the desire to

break gender-pejorative attitudes and society judgement about gender roles and capabilities in the building trades, Project Fielding creates large-scale projects motivated by social justice concerns, while deflecting unwelcome assumptions and defining new directions in the field of building.

West Suburban Consortium of Young Artists exhibition

OPAL participated again in an art exhibition at the Cheney Mansion for a consortium of schools from local communities. This one-day show, which was open to the public, featured over 500 selected works from young artists, grades 1st - 8th. OPAL Artist Members volunteered their time, engaged with students and offered positive feedback on their artwork. OPAL also presented a figure drawing demonstration, which emphasized the importance of life drawing as skill-building tool for all artists. 

Heads or Tails 3rd Annual Costume Ball Fundraiser

A great time was had by all at the Oak Park Art League’s Heads or Tails fundraiser at Wire nightclub in Berwyn. Decked out from head to tail in creative costume, nearly 150 guests gathered to take part in the dancing, silent auction and highly-entertaining costume contest. View images from the event taken by photographer Eileen Moloney HERE
This year’s epic Lip Sync Battle featured local business owners from Carnivore and Team Blonde, challenged by State Representative Camille Lilly, who rocked the house with her spot-on rendition of Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” to bring home the coveted Lip Sync Battle trophy!  In addition to State Representative Lilly, we were grateful to have the support of Senator Don Harmon and Forest Park Mayor Anthony Calderone.
Through ticket sales, silent auction and sponsorship, Heads or Tails raised more than $17,000 to support Art League programs, education scholarships, and building fund for our historic carriage house.  Many thanks to everyone who contributed to the fun and success of OPAL's biggest fundraising event of the year!

Please reload

Artist Collaboration Workshop

Artist Rita Grendze facilitated a hands-on interactive workshop as a means to introduce artists to new ways of thinking, working and ways to incorporate new practices into their own. Rita lead attendees in exercises that allowed artists to experience mini-collaborations on the spot. She discussed the historical context of collaborative work, methodologies for practice and ways to set parameters with an artistic partner. She discussed ways to work locally or with a silent long distance partner, tips for balanced dialogue and most importantly, how to go about choosing an artistic partner.

Art for Social Change Cairn & Cloud: A Collective Expression of Trauma and Hope

October 14 - November 4

Cairn & Cloud is a collaboration by Corinne Peterson, director of the Cairn Project and workshop participants. The rocks and cloud pieces in Cairn & Cloud were carved and shaped by more than 500 adults, teenagers, and children who participated in 50 Shaping Clay, Shaping Life workshops. They formed the clay rock to incorporate their memories of trauma and created the porcelain tokens to represent their inner light. Viewed together, the dark rocks and white cloud stand for transformation of individual feelings of loss, into a collective expression of healing.

Art for Social Change Storytelling Cafe: Voice Box

October 23

In recognition of Illinois Arts & Humanities Month and Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October, the Oak Park Art League is proud to present Maureen Muldoon and Cathy Richardson of Voice Box for a Storytelling Café that brings stories of light from darkness and raises awareness to issues surrounding domestic violence. Presented in tandem with the Art League’s Art for Social Change gallery exhibition "Behind the Wall", this thought-provoking event features curated storytelling that interplays with artwork to cultivate a deeper understanding of the complex narratives associated with domestic violence.The professional lineup of storytellers includes Muldoon, Nestor Gomez, Alma Castillo, Lisa Ebel and Lette Sullivan. Grammy-nominee Cathy Richardson of Jefferson Starship punctuates each story with a music response, and her powerful voice will stir emotion and motivate action to end violence and build hopeful futures in our community.

Art for Social Change Over The Wall Courtyard sculpture installation in partnership with Thresholds

Oct 14 - Nov 4

This public mural in OPAL's garden courtyard delivers a powerful message about the healing process associated with mental illness, which includes ups and downs, setbacks and progress. Presented in partnership with Thresholds and features the work of local artists William Douglas, Adam Barron, Darrin Dillard, and Kenneth Saez, with Kathy Osler as curator.

Chicago Architecture Foundation's Open House Chicago

October 15 &16

The Oak Park Art League was pleased to welcome more than 1,200 visitors to our historic E.E. Roberts Carriage House Gallery and art studio for Chicago Architecture Foundation's Open House Chicago event this weekend.

Art for Social Change: Behind the Wall exhibition

Oct 14 - Nov 4  

The Oak Park Art League's Art for Social Change: Behind the Wall exhibition was curated by Chuck Gniech. This show raises awareness to issues surrounding domestic violence. Art for Social Change programs are made possible, in part, by the Rotary Club of Oak Park-River Forest, Illinois Humanities, Oak Park Area Arts Council, Riveredge Hospital, and Illinois Arts Council Agency.

ARTifact: Margot McMahon "A Farewell to Arms"

July 8 - Aug 5

The Oak Park Art League’s ARTifact Invitational merges the study of historical artifacts with contemporary art-making practice; the selected artist creating original works that are inspired by and from a dialogue with objects, ornament, or architecture found within the historic Village of Oak Park. Oak Park artist Margot McMahon launches this initiative in conjunction with OPAL’s Hemingway exhibition. Through her body of drawings, paintings and sculpture, Margot creates a non-violence statement in her portrayal of a youthful Ernest Hemingway as he was writing “A Farewell to Arms”. A bond of man and machine, Margot’s Hemingway sculpture engages with a Corona #3 typewriter*, the same model used by the author in the early 1920’s.

A Moveable Feast: Hemingway Events

July 8 - August 5
The Oak Park Art League celebrates Ernest Hemingway with exhibitions, a book discussion and a series of writing events, as our historic Carriage House Gallery doubles as a Writers Salon during the month of July! The Opening Reception on June 8th, kicks off the month long calendar of events in the OPAL gallery. More details in Hemingway archive HERE

Recap of the Hemingway Writers Salon and Chain Story in partnership with the Chicago Literary Hall of Fame HERE

Garden of Good: Sylvia Shaw Judson Sculpture Exhibition

April 8 - Sept 30
Nestled among the foliage of the Oak Park Art League’s garden courtyard, reproductions of Judson’s iconic sculptures interplay with nature and the early 20th century architecture of the Art League’s historic Carriage House Gallery.

Oak Park & River Forest Garden Walk

June 24
OPAL's courtyard garden was a featured stop on the annual OPRF Garden Walk featuring "Garden of Good" an exhibit of Sylvia Shaw Judson's sculptures. Artist Members demonstrated drawing and sculpting in various gardens on the walk.

West Suburban Consortium of Young Artists exhibition

April 23
OPAL participated again in an art exhibition at the Cheney Mansion for a consortium of schools from local communities. This one-day show, which was open to the public, featured over 500 selected works from young artists, grades 1st - 8th. OPAL Artist Members volunteered their time, engaged with students and offered positive feedback on their artwork. OPAL also presented a figure drawing demonstration, which emphasized the importance of life drawing as skill-building tool for all artists.