Teen council makes awesome tote bags for After School Matters store!

After learning about stencil street art, the NVAM teen council made stencils and applied them to canvas tote bags that will be sold in the After School Matters storefront on 66 E. Randolph St. All proceeds go directly back into the After School Matters program fund, so the next time you find yourself near Millennium Park swing by the ASM store and support Chicago’s teens!

stencil totes stencil totes total

The Art of Self-Definition: A Graffiti Arts Workshop with Mel L!

Mel is back at the National Veterans Art Museum as a part of the NVAM’s Creative Community workshop series and Chicago Artist Month! Mel L. is a hip hop artist with The Microphone Misfitz and Marine Corps veteran who served in Iraq. Mel L. created “Evolution of War,” a graffiti mural installation, at the National Veterans Art Museum in 2011 and hosted “Identity and Representation,” a graffiti arts workshop in February 2014.

Why the Art of Self-Definition?

Most graffiti artists are self-taught. They came to the medium for self-expression, self-discovery, and the challenge and thrill of publicly expressing themselves as artists. We invite you to join us in this workshop and to claim your own identity as an artist. No prior experience needed; all artists must begin somewhere. Being an artist is a choice: come learn techniques of spray paint art and learn to see yourself as an artist.


Artwork by Jesus R.

These four past weeks at NVAM have thought me a lot about art that I didn’t know, and gave me experiences I have never had. For example, I have never drew about my memories and I have never combined my memories with anyone else’s memories. One thing I learned from talking to veterans and learning from their experiences is that once you shoot a human being it stays with you forever, and before I came to NVAM I thought once you kill a person you never think about it again, and go on with your life.