Illinois artist of the month: Rachel BrisboisRachel Brisbois is a self-taught artist born in Chicago, IL. She inherited much of her creativity from her family’s diverse and long artistic history. Rachel’s aim is to paint thought provoking subjects that beautify an otherwise transparent world.

Although she dabbles in various mediums, her paintbrush finds comfort in acrylic paint and ink. The artist prefers the fast drying nature of acrylic but enjoys the diluted blending power ink renders.

Rachel has shown her work at the Ottawa Art League Gallery, August Hill Winery, The Paint Box Gallery and more. Rachel is also a member of the Ottawa Art League. She lives in Wenona, IL.

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Illinois to be well represented in Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction FridayFans throughout Illinois will be pleased Friday when Cheap Trick, the musical pride and joy of Rockford, is inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Count Illinois State Senator Don Harmon among them.

Harmon, an attorney and longtime guitar player from Oak Park, started playing Cheap Trick covers when he was a teenager in the early 1980s. His band, Wet Paint, played a variety of cover songs, from Cheap Trick and The Cars to The Beatles and The Rolling Stones. (Click here for a recording of "Surrender" from Wet Paint)

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MacArthurFoundationCount the Chicago-based MacArthur Foundation among those who are investing in Illinois.

In February, all 14 of the foundation’s awards for creative and effective institutions went to Chicago organizations. The awards, which groups all over the world vie for, totaled more than $6 million.

The MacArthur Foundation, known for its “genius” fellowships, supports more than 300 arts and culture groups in Chicago and has invested nearly $1.1 billion in the city since 1978.

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DuSable Museum The Chicago DuSable Museum of African American History, which celebrates the lives and works of African Americans, has been granted Smithsonian affiliation.

The museum houses a number of works and exhibits that promote understanding and inspire appreciation of the achievements, contributions, and experiences of African Americans, and is one of only two in Chicago that has been given this prestigious affiliation.

With the new affiliation between the DuSable and the Smithsonian comes a brand new partnership that will allow the DuSable access to the Smithsonian’s archives, and vice-versa. This partnership will likely bring the works housed at the Chicago institution onto the international scene.

For more information visit: http://www.dusablemuseum.org

Illinois artist of the month: Rossana ReformadoAward-winning Chicago-based photographer Rossana Reformado specializes in Polaroid SX-70 manipulations and digital infrared photography. Reformado’s images can be made into prints of various sizes, coasters, wood blocks, magnets, ornaments or pendants upon request.

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