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In The Pursuit of Happiness
Esther Ouray, The Third Place Gallery, and Arts on Chicago
Thursday, May 8

The Third Place Gallery and Arts on Chicago invite you to participate in the project In the Pursuit of Happiness. With the advance of global warming, gun violence, and an increasing disparity between the wealthy and the poor, ever feel like you just need a good laugh? In the Pursuit of Happiness aims to bring an infusion of laughter, the best medicine, into the community. In the Pursuit of Happiness promotes wellness, connection, and joy. Artist Esther Ouray will offer a guided “laughter exercise,” which will release endorphins, provide a cardiovascular workout, relieve stress, and provide communal fun. Sharing the common language of laughter is appropriate for all ages- children, teens, adults, seniors- and all abilities. The event will be followed by ping-pong at the gallery.
The Third Place is excited to help kick-off this excellent project, which will include laughter exercises throughout the neighborhood in May and June, involving laughter flash mobs choreographed by Hanna Kuluvar and culminating in a public laugh-in in June.

Esther Ouray (above, left) is a neighborhood independent performing and teaching artist and lives in Central neighborhood. She is also an associate artist with in the Heart of the Beast Theatre. Additionally, Esther is a yoga instructor and massage therapist. Hanna Kuluvar is a neighborhood dancer and choreographer and lives in Powderhorn. She also works with youth at Powderhorn Park. Hanna is bilingual Spanish/English.
The Arts on Chicago initiative is an arts-based community development project in Minneapolis, MN, led by Pillsbury House + Theatre, Upstream Arts, the Powderhorn Park Neighborhood Association, The Third Place, and MCAD Professor Natasha Pestich with support from the Ward 8 Council Office of Elizabeth Glidden. Arts on Chicago is funded in part by Artplace, a collaboration of twelve of the nation’s leading foundations, eight government agencies including the National Endowment for the Arts, and six financial institutions across the U.S. Additional funding for this project is provided in part by the Center for Prevention at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota.

Arts on Chicago implements arts projects to knit together existing creative assets in the Central, Powderhorn, Bancroft, Bryant communities along Chicago Avenue from 32nd Street to 42nd Street, using the process to build a framework for the ongoing support of a vibrant arts and cultural district.

Photo of Esther Ouray (far left) by Nick Lethert. All other photos by Wing Young Huie.