The Crusader Newspaper Group

Billionaire Michael Bloomberg to visit Gary October 8

Mayor and Chicago artist Theaster Gates to host former New York mayor

Crusader Staff Report

Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson and artist Theaster Gates will host Michael Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies and former Mayor of New York City (2002-2013), on Monday, October 8 at “ArtHouse: A Social Kitchen.” They will meet with local entrepreneurs and discuss community building.

The Bloomberg Philanthropies Public Art Challenge supports cities undertaking temporary public art projects that foster creative collaboration, address civic issues, and support local economies.

In 2015, Bloomberg Philanthropies selected the City of Gary as a winner in the inaugural round of the Public Art Challenge.

The City of Gary collaborated with artist Theaster Gates to create “ArtHouse: A Social Kitchen,” transforming an underutilized downtown building into a civic hub that showcases visual and culinary arts.

Gates, frequently described as a “social practice installation artist,” is a professor in the Department of Visual Arts at the University of Chicago. His practice includes “sculpture, performance and urban interventions.”

Since opening in November 2016, “ArtHouse” has served as a civic center featuring commissioned works of visual art, offering culinary training and business development workshops, and providing cultural programming that uses food as a medium for community engagement.

Born in Boston, Massachusetts, Bloomberg put himself through Johns Hopkins and Harvard and became a partner at the New York investment firm, Salomon Brothers. In 1981, Bloomberg started his own company, Bloomberg, L.P., a financial and media company that includes a news wire service and a television network. The company today has more than 100 offices worldwide.  Michael Bloomberg is worth an estimated $50 billion, according to Forbes.

As one of the wealthiest men in the world, Bloomberg, also a philanthropist, chose to turn his attention to philanthropy, with an emphasis on education, medical research and the arts. His foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies, has committed $101million to support 16 prominent museums in the country, including the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. The foundation has also spearheaded initiatives to combat obesity, pollution and drowning.

In 2002, Bloomberg became mayor of New York City, where he was elected to three terms. In the U.S. presidential race in 2016, he considered running as an Independent against eventual winner, Republican Donald Trump.

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