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  • Fernando Ribeiro’s Effort

Joseph Ravens received a lot of attention in summer 2010 when his full-frontal performance piece got him kicked out of Pop-Up Art Loop, Chicago Loop Alliance’s project to bring activity to empty storefronts in the Loop. While Ravens describes the event as demoralizing, it also caused him to find his own performance space.

And so he did. Defibrillator is dedicated to performance work. “At first I thought it’d be my studio,” says Ravens. “But almost immediately, I was overwhelmed by people wanting to present work. Defibrillator quickly became a venue with programming. It filled a niche that I didn’t even recognize was missing until the penis scandal.”