Theaster Gates Unveils Design for Installation at Chicago’s 95th Street Red Line Station

The DJ booth will potentially be equipped with online streaming capabilities. All images courtesy City of Chicago.

Chicago-based artist Theaster Gates has revealed his designs for a forthcoming installation at the 95th Street Red Line station in his hometown. Set to open next year, the station will house a radio station space designed by Gates in place of a former concession area. It is poised to become the largest public art project in the history of the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA).

Conceived as a sacred space devoted to music engrained in African American culture, the radio station installation will amplify music through the transit hub and potentially broadcast playlists online curated by live, in-station DJs. The design will also incorporate a tapestry crafted from fire hoses—a reference to their use as weapons against African Americans marching for equality during the Civil Rights Movement of the mid-20th century. Gates’ design will complement the $280 million 95th Street bus and rail terminal coming to the Far South Side.


Image courtesy City of Chicago.

Upon the completion of the terminal, Gates’ work will become the 72nd art project showcased at a CTA station.