Meet Chicago artists at the Bluebird Salons

January 11, 2010 There's more to these exhibitions at The Bluebird than just displaying the paintings. Art lovers meet the artists while sharing four-course dinners with them. Artist John Coyle Steinbrunner and bar owner Tom MacDonald call the Sunday night gatherings "The Bluebird Salon Series." The next dinner will be this Sunday, January 17 and feature paintings by Steinbrunner and charcoal drawings by Mary Livon (

"Through this series, The Bluebird becomes more than just another bar on a street of bars. It introduces and promotes Chicago's cultural production, and it's a way for Mary and JC to directly engage their audiences, to put a voice behind the work," explains MacDonald.

The Salon Series was inspired by the fashionable gatherings of 17th Century France and motivated by the current recession and how we communicate today, Steinbrunner adds.

"Intellectuals, artists and social luminaries of the Belle Epoque would gather to discuss topics of culture, politics and art," Steinbrunner says. "We wanted to recreate that intimate community and get away from faceless Facebook, YouTube, texting and email. In addition, the current recession forced us to find new ways to present our art and wines and food to a cost-conscious audience. The result is a lively and engaging discussion about art, food, and politics over a good meal with interesting people."

You can meet the artists at the Bluebird located at 1749 N. Damen Ave., Chicago starting at 7 p.m. with aperitifs. The $40 tab includes family-style food/wine/beer pairings. On Sunday, January 17, the topic of the artwork and discussion is "Picture This Like This: Depicting a World in Recession." Artwork by Leslie Baum was featured at the Bluebird Salon on Sunday, January 28.

Salons are held on Sundays and are ongoing. For a list of dates, please visit Reservations can also be made at

Schedule for each night: 7- 7:30 pm - mingling and aperitifs 7:30- 8:15 pm -- shared dinner 8:15- 8:45 pm -- artist discussions 8:45 pm -- floor opens to a public discussion

Also check out John Coyle Steinbrunner's website, and The Bluebird's website,

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