Lumpen and Public Media Institute produce this annual festival, now in its fifth year, focusing on radical art, media, technology, and politics, with an emphasis on work generated by underground and activist communities. This year’s festival continues Friday, April 28, through Sunday, May 7, in Bridgeport and scattered other locations and includes neighborhood tours, workshops, numerous public art installations and interventions, barbecues, film/video screenings, music, and performances. The Free University series includes workshops, presentations, demos, and lectures. All events are at the Version Kunsthalle–aka Iron Studios, 3636 S. Iron, first and fourth floors–unless otherwise noted. Participating venues include the Hideout (1354 W. Wabansia), Holy Covenant Methodist Church (925 W. Diversey), Bernice and John’s Place (3238 S. Halsted), Kaplan’s Liquors (aka Maria’s, 960 W. 31st), Red-I (2201 S. Wentworth), Heaven Gallery (1550 N. Milwaukee), South Union Arts (1352 S. Union), Sonotheque (1444 W. Chicago), Skylark (2149 S. Halsted), Happy Dog (1542 N. Milwaukee), Elastic Arts (2830 N. Milwaukee), and McCormick Tribune Student Center (33rd and State). Events are free, unless otherwise noted. An Event Pass allows admission to all screenings and events ($25); a Version Pass includes all that plus meals, the Select 10 DVD, Lumptronic 7 CD, Version posters, Select 9 Agit Prop Poster magazine, and assorted stickers and festival ephemera ($50). The festival also includes the NFO XPO (April 29 and April 30), a series of talks, workshops, and exhibits presented science-fair-style and intended to “facilitate straightforward exchanges about what’s going on locally in various communities, from disparate neighborhoods in Chicago to others from around the world.” Below is a schedule of selected festival events. For updates and additional information, visit or call 773-837-0145.


Parking Space = Party Space

Nonalcoholic cocktail party in various open parking spaces, hosted by Jenny Roberts. Fancy attire encouraged. (Rain date Sat 4/29). Columbus between Jackson and Congress. a 5-7 PM.

DJs Flosstradamus and Logan Bay with video mixing by John Beasley, Paper Rad, E-Rock, Barkley’s Barnyard Critters. Sonotheque. a 8 PM. $10, $5 with flyer.


Opening of NFO XPO.

Noon-2 AM. $10, $5 for students.

Cracks and Maps: Making Some Space

How to find space inside the cluttered urban grid. 31st and Morgan. a 1 to 4 PM.

Understanding the World Through Wonder: Educating Youth on the Magic of Advertising

Discussion of how advertisers perpetuate the idea that goods hold power. Part of the Free University. a 1 PM.


An in-progress project that examines defensible space in U.S. cities–i.e., armrests that make it impossible to sleep on public benches and masonry outcroppings on otherwise skateable retaining walls. Part of the Free University. a 3 PM.

Street Art Walking Tour

Elisa Harkins gives a walking tour of recent street art activity in Bridgeport. Meet at Iron Studios loading dock. a 3 PM.

United States of Disillusion

Longtime Lumpen contributor Diamond Jack presents a workshop on how to turn on, tune in, drop out, and not drop back in. Part of the Free University. a 3 PM.

Possibility Space

Presentation on ways artists and activists can plan for the future. Part of the Free University. a 4 PM.

Opening of New Trends in Chicago Photography

Curated by Greg Stimac and Brian Ulrich. a 7 PM.

Slow Jams Band, Cry Blood Apache, Rich Porter’s Bug Sized Mind, Mudboy, Panicsville, This Is My Condition, Ospreys, Obelisk & MC Cat Genius, Cave, Skarekrau Radio, Freakout, Carpet of Sexy, Mildew, and DJ Liz Armstrong.

9 PM (included in admission to NFO XPO).


How to be Sexually Progressive: Porn, MTV and Metrosexuals

This presentation aims to deconstruct heteronormative sexuality by exploring the political and societal value of Chris Cunningham’s music videos, female-produced porn Web sites, and metrosexuality. Part of the Free University. a 2 PM.

Working Bikes Cooperative

Volunteers from Working Bikes offer a hands-on workshop on bike repair. Part of the Free University. a 2-5 PM.

Art Shanty Projects

An indoor multimedia presentation about the Art Shanty Projects–part art gallery, part residency, and part sculpture park–inspired by ice fishing houses used in the Minnesota winter. Part of the Free University. a 3 PM.

Underground Multiplex

A screening of I, a documentary on the Independent Media Center network, better known as Indymedia. a 6 PM.

Taurus: Second House

Llord Droll & Ophiuchus celebrate Taurus with music by artists born under the sign. Part of a 12-month series. Skylark. a 10 PM.


Underground Multiplex

Screening of La Commune (de Paris, 1871), a nearly six-hour reinterpretation and restaging of the Paris Commune. With a half-hour break. a 1-8 PM. $5 includes dinner.

Bridgeport Pub Crawl

Start at Bernice and John’s Place for performances by J+J+J and Safety Pin, then drag your ass over to Kaplan’s Liquors for performances by Sportsmen Against Hunger, Tim Kaiser, Dan Layne, and DJ Rotten Milk. a 8 PM.


Shopdropping: Chicago 2006

How to covertly place merchandise in a store’s display. a 6 PM.

Underground Multiplex

Screening of The End of Suburbia and a short about peak oil. Heaven. a 7:30 PM.

Bird Names, Dogme95, Drakkar Sauna, Parks & Gardens, and Rolan Vega. Happy Dog. a 9:30 PM.

Professor Love’s House of Wang

Dance party with DJs Cesario and Jamilla. Red-I. a 10 PM. 21+, $3.


Lobisomem and Paul Giallorenzo/Jason Stein/Charles Rumbach Trio. Elastic Arts. a 7 PM. $5.


International Noise Awards Part Two

Presentation of such honors as Best Circuit Bending, Most Authentic Onstage Checking of Email, Worst Tour Itinerary, Most People on Stage at One Time, and Best Feedback. With performances by Bloodyminded, Brotman & Short, Rotten Milk vs. Bubblegum Shitface, Pommel, Spunky Toofers, Metaphysical Playroom, Mr. Fuckhead, Hookworm, and Buttfuck Pussy (see the Treatment). South Union Arts. a 8 PM. $7.


Urban Gardening

Exhibition hours are Sat-Sun, noon-5 PM. Also open during other Kuntshalle programs throughout the festival.

Group Group Show

Exhibition hours are Sat-Sun, noon-5 PM. Also open during other Kuntshalle programs throughout the festival.


Exhibition hours are Sat-Sun, noon to 10 PM. $10, $5 for students.

New Trends in Chicago Photography

Exhibition hours are Saturday, 7-10 PM, and Sunday, noon-10 PM.