E(art)H Chicago

E(art)H Chicago is a citywide community-based art initiative to raise awareness, create dialogue, and inspire action on climate change, natural resource use, and environmental justice. The program will highlight communities and artists innovating around these critical issues by engaging residents in Chicago neighborhoods, while centering voices left out of the climate conversation.

The Illinois Science and Energy Innovation Foundation (ISEIF) is the primary funder of this project, and supports organizations and initiatives that educate Illinoisans on the new tools, programs and behaviors that are needed in a smarter and cleaner energy landscape.

Development of the E(art)H Chicago program plan included over 30 meetings with leaders in the environmental, art and community development fields and input from over 75 Chicagoans of all ages and backgrounds. Artists, environmentalists, community leaders and organizers, scientists, and other Chicago residents participated in three project design sessions held in July and August 2021 to collectively co-create parameters (the how and the what including values, vision, form) around the project with partners and stakeholders. These sessions employed interactive techniques via an expert facilitator, which fostered creative thinking and collective decision-making.

Honorary Co-Chairs:

+ State of Illinois Governor JB Pritzker
+ City of Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot
+ Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle


Steering Committee


Advisory Team

Jacob Campbell
Environmental Anthropologist, Field Museum

Jacob Campbell is an Environmental Anthropologist with the Keller Science Action Center, where he leads the social science team for the Chicago region, and Adjunct Curator of Anthropology in the Negaunee Integrated Research Center. His applied research, pedagogy, and partnership building has focused on cultural connections to the natural world in urban and peri-urban areas. He works collaboratively across Chicago to create more equitable city institutions and green spaces that help communities thrive. He specializes in participatory research that informs decision-making about biodiversity conservation, community-centered land management, and public space design.

Along with museum colleagues, Jacob established and sustains the Roots & Routes initiative with the Chicago Park District and a network of community leaders, artists, and organizations.

Jacob serves on the board of the Chicago Cultural Alliance as the Field Museum liaison. He is adjunct professor of environmental science at DePaul University and a fellow with Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Cortney Lederer
Art Consultant, CNL Projects

Cortney Lederer is an art advisor, project manager and educator with over twenty years of experience managing an array of artistic programming for organizations and businesses. From 2011–14 she served as the Director of Exhibitions and Residencies at the Chicago Artists Coalition (CAC). In June 2014, Cortney launched CNL Projects (CNL) to provide artists and organizations with a platform to creatively produce impactful art experiences. CNL’s work is deeply centered on her unique, collaborative approach to working with artists, clients, businesses and organizations to advocate for the value of art and culture in our daily lives.

At the onset of the pandemic, CNL launched ART-IN-PLACE where 400 artists from around the world activated their homes with works of art to share with their neighbors and through a virtual platform. Continuing her work in pandemic relief for artists, she served as Project Manager for Walder Foundation’s Chicago Takes Ten to support performing arts organizations and artists during the pandemic. Cortney is Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Arts Administration and Policy department at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago where she has been teaching for the last seven years.

Manwah Lee
Executive Director, Architreasures

Manwah Lee is the Executive Director of Architreasures, an arts-based community development organization that activates communities through art and design. At Architreasures, Manwah facilitates partnerships with artists, designers, and local partners to transform neighborhood spaces in low-income communities.

For more than 22+ years, Architreasures’ collaborative art and design process has produced more than 150+ projects across 35 Chicago communities, resulting in tangible neighborhood improvements that highlight the cultural identity and aspirations of residents, while promoting civic engagement and social connections among participants.

As a cultural strategist and arts administrator, Manwah has been committed to developing organizations, programs, and projects at the intersection of art and social change for the past 15 years.

Review Committee

E(art)H Chicago’s Review Committee is integral to the program’s application review process. Learn about the committee’s role and see a list of the committee members.

Contact Us

If you’re interested in becoming a partner or sponsor, have a public venue available for artworks, or have any questions — please contact us.