Artist Talk: Sharon Gilmore | Whispering Branches and Dark Dark Dirt
Nov
8
6:30 PM18:30

Artist Talk: Sharon Gilmore | Whispering Branches and Dark Dark Dirt

Join us for an Artist Talk with our Featured Artist Sharon Gilmore | Whispering Branches and Dark Dark Dirt. 

Sharon describes her sculptures as containers for the soul that dwells within. 

Using branches, mud and materials salvaged from industry, she builds forms from the inside out that provide space and protection for the soul to live . Some of the sculptures have solid dark exteriors while others appear fragile and open meshed. They reference the human body, tools, and objects that may have been used in spiritual practices. 

Gilmore's experiences as a nurse profoundly influenced her artistic life. In the early 1970's she volunteered as a public health nurse in the altiplano of Peru. During these two years, she witnessed many sacred ceremonies and learned about symbols incorporated into weavings and pottery. It was in Peru that she started making art. She continues to be drawn to cultures vastly different from her own. 

She completed her BFA in Montreal in 1976, and her MFA at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1985. Simultaneously she worked part time as a nurse in various specialties including the rehabilitation after spinal cord injuries, mother and newborn care, and lastly Hospice/ Palliative Care. Repeatedly she witnessed the human spirit emerge, struggle, glow and then depart. She no longer practices nursing but describes those experiences as indelible.

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Terrarium Workshop: Halloween Edition (Always BYOB)
Oct
7
2:00 PM14:00

Terrarium Workshop: Halloween Edition (Always BYOB)

Join Cultivate for an All Hallow's Eve-themed terrarium class! Special Halloween figurines (some even glow in the dark!), tricks and treats, and spooky tunes provided. Costumes encouraged but not required!

Spark a brand-new passion: Learn how to design, build, and care for your very own terrarium. Do you get to take your new terrarium home with you? You betcha! Not only do you get to learn how to create boo-tiful treasures- you get to take them home, too! You'll have gained new knowledge and insight, and possibly a favorite new hobby! All materials are provided. BYOB if you feel like sipping while you create!

We also create private workshops and parties for your terrarium-themed gathering needs! Just ask... connect@cultivateurbanrainforest.com

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Opening Reception: Sharon Gilmore | Whispering Branches and Dark Dark Dirt
Sep
29
6:30 PM18:30
Art

Opening Reception: Sharon Gilmore | Whispering Branches and Dark Dark Dirt

Join Cultivate Urban Rainforest & Gallery for the Opening Reception of Whispering Branches and Dark Dark Dirt by Evanston-based artist Sharon Gilmore. 

Sharon describes her sculptures as containers for the soul that dwells within. 

Using branches, mud and materials salvaged from industry, she builds forms from the inside out that provide space and protection for the soul to live . Some of the sculptures have solid dark exteriors while others appear fragile and open meshed. They reference the human body, tools, and objects that may have been used in spiritual practices. 

Gilmore's experiences as a nurse profoundly influenced her artistic life. In the early 1970's she volunteered as a public health nurse in the altiplano of Peru. During these two years, she witnessed many sacred ceremonies and learned about symbols incorporated into weavings and pottery. It was in Peru that she started making art. She continues to be drawn to cultures vastly different from her own. 

She completed her BFA in Montreal in 1976, and her MFA at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1985. Simultaneously she worked part time as a nurse in various specialties including the rehabilitation after spinal cord injuries, mother and newborn care, and lastly Hospice/ Palliative Care. Repeatedly she witnessed the human spirit emerge, struggle, glow and then depart. She no longer practices nursing but describes those experiences as indelible.

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Book Event: Author Liam Heneghan | Beasts at Bedtime
Sep
20
6:30 PM18:30

Book Event: Author Liam Heneghan | Beasts at Bedtime

Talking lions, philosophical bears, very hungry caterpillars, wise spiders, altruistic trees, companionable moles, urbane elephants: this is the magnificent menagerie that delights our children at bedtime. Within the entertaining pages of many children’s books, however, also lie profound teachings about the natural world that can help children develop an educated and engaged appreciation of the dynamic environment they inhabit.

In Beasts at Bedtime, scientist (and father) Liam Heneghan examines the environmental underpinnings of children’s stories. From Beatrix Potter to Harry Potter, Heneghan unearths the universal insights into our inextricable relationship with nature that underlie so many classic children’s stories. Some of the largest environmental challenges in coming years—from climate instability, the extinction crisis, freshwater depletion, and deforestation—are likely to become even more severe as this generation of children grows up. Though today’s young readers will bear the brunt of these environmental calamities, they will also be able to contribute to environmental solutions if prepared properly. And all it takes is an attentive eye: Heneghan shows how the nature curriculum is already embedded in bedtime stories, from the earliest board books like The Rainbow Fish to contemporary young adult classics like The Hunger Games.

Beasts at Bedtime is an awakening to the vital environmental education children’s stories can provide—from the misadventures of The Runaway Bunny to more overt tales like The Lorax. Heneghan serves as our guide, drawing richly upon his own adolescent and parental experiences, as well as his travels in landscapes both experienced and imagined. Organized into thematic sections, the work winds its way through literary forests, colorful characters, and global environments.

This book enthralls as it engages. Heneghan as a guide is as charming as he is insightful, showing how kids (and adults) can start to experience the natural world in incredible ways from the comfort of their own rooms. Beasts at Bedtimewill help parents, teachers, and guardians extend those cozy times curled up together with a good book into a lifetime of caring for our planet.

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Upended Productions Presents 'Alice'
Sep
16
to Oct 21

Upended Productions Presents 'Alice'

Cultivate will become one of the many stages for Upended Production’s Alice – an immersive theatrical experience traveling the Main-Dempster Mile. Follow the rabbit Saturdays & Sundays starting with preview performances on September 16th and running September 22nd-Oct 21st.


Alice is an ambulatory, multi-disciplinary theatrical experience. The audience, traveling in groups of 15, follows a white rabbit to various locations throughout the Main-Dempster Mile in Evanston. Ducking into storerooms and back patios, traipsing through stores and taverns and galleries, the audience IS Alice and the Main-Dempster Mile shopping district becomes a wonderland. Chapters of the book are divided amongst Evanston and Chicago theater companies, visual artists, and filmmakers, and performed in the various locations throughout the neighborhood.

With original work by The Factory TheaterMudlark Theater CompanyThe Fleetwood-Jourdain TheaterShowParty!Naomi Ashley, Laura McKenzie, David Kodeski, Corrbette PaskoEmmy BeanJosh Zagoren, Dina Walters, Logan Kibens, John Randle and many more.

This show takes place both indoors and out and will commence rain or shine.  There are no refunds unless the show is officially cancelled—because Alice isn’t scared of a little water.

This performance of Alice is supported in part by the Evanston Arts Council and lots of generous help from the Main-Dempster Mile SSA.

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Plant Parenthood Workshop Series: Elements - Light & Water
Sep
16
2:00 PM14:00

Plant Parenthood Workshop Series: Elements - Light & Water

Increase your plant parenting skills in a friendly non-judgemental atmosphere. What you'll be learning: How to identify the light & water needs of your plant, allowing it to thrive. Our goal is to take the guesswork out of your plant-owning journey.

We believe that any person can develop a green thumb. You can keep a plant alive, and not only that, you can keep a plant healthy!

The class fee includes a demonstration and hands-on guided practice. 

Not included: Plants. Purchase your new plant friend for the class at 15% off retail price!

BYOB and BYOF (Bring your own friends!)

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Terrarium Workshop (Always BYOB)
Sep
16
2:00 PM14:00

Terrarium Workshop (Always BYOB)

Spark a brand-new passion: Learn how to design, build, and care for your very own terrarium. Do you get to take your new terrarium home with you? You betcha! Not only do you get to learn how to create beautiful treasures- you get to take them home, too! You'll have gainednew knowledge and insight, and possibly a favorite new hobby! All materials are provided. BYOB if you feel like sipping while you create!


We also create private workshops and parties for your terrarium-themed gathering needs! Just ask... connect@cultivateurbanrainforest.com

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Evanston Wine Walk (South Route)
Sep
13
5:00 PM17:00

Evanston Wine Walk (South Route)

Cultivate will be participating in the Evanston Wine Walk - South Route

Stroll along the Main-Dempster Mile, stopping and sipping at shops along the way. Profits from the Wine Walk will benefit the installation of the Chicago Avenue Mural. 

Regular ticket includes wine samplings at 25+ shops on your route. NEW THIS YEAR: You must choose either the "North" or "South" route, or pay a little extra to visit stops on both routes. North route is all stops north of Greenleaf. South route is all stops south of Greenleaf. 

VIP tickets include all the benefits of regular tickets (BOTH ROUTES INCLUDED), plus souvenir wine glass, entertainment and premium pour. NOTE: Available at Vinic Wine (North Route) and Firehouse Grill (South Route) check-in entrance only.

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Evanston Streets Alive | Green Living Festival
Sep
9
1:00 PM13:00

Evanston Streets Alive | Green Living Festival

Stop by our nature-themed stamp crafting table during the Evanston Streets Alive Green Living Festival!

The Evanston Green Living Festival is a fun and educational annual event that is presented by the EEA in partnership with Citizens' Greener Evanston and the City of Evanston. 

The green fest is held to provide an opportunity for businesses and organizations to present products, services and ideas that will help festival attendees lead more sustainable lives.. 

This year's green fest will once again take place as an integral part of Streets Alive, Evanston's pro-walk, pro-bike, and pro-place event that takes place on one mile of Main Street in Evanston. 

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Plant Parenthood Workshop Series: Elements - Light & Water
Aug
22
3:00 PM15:00

Plant Parenthood Workshop Series: Elements - Light & Water

Increase your plant parenting skills in a friendly non-judgemental atmosphere. What you'll be learning: How to identify the light & water needs of your plant, allowing it to thrive. Our goal is to take the guesswork out of your plant-owning journey.

We believe that any person can develop a green thumb. You can keep a plant alive, and not only that, you can keep a plant healthy!

The class fee includes a demonstration and hands-on guided practice. 

Not included: Plants. Purchase your new plant friend for the class at 15% off retail price!

BYOB and BYOF (Bring your own friends!)

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Terrarium Workshop (Always BYOB)
Aug
19
2:00 PM14:00

Terrarium Workshop (Always BYOB)

Spark a brand-new passion: Learn how to design, build, and care for your very own terrarium. Do you get to take your new terrarium home with you? You betcha! Not only do you get to learn how to create beautiful treasures- you get to take them home, too! You'll have gained new knowledge and insight, and possibly a favorite new hobby! All materials are provided. BYOB if you feel like sipping while you create!
We also create private workshops and parties for your terrarium-themed gathering needs! Just ask... connect@cultivateurbanrainforest.com

View Event →
Terrarium Workshop (Always BYOB)
Aug
9
6:30 PM18:30

Terrarium Workshop (Always BYOB)

Spark a brand-new passion: Learn how to design, build, and care for your very own terrarium. Do you get to take your new terrarium home with you? You betcha! Not only do you get to learn how to create beautiful treasures- you get to take them home, too! You'll have gained new knowledge and insight, and possibly a favorite new hobby! All materials are provided. BYOB if you feel like sipping while you create!
We also create private workshops and parties for your terrarium-themed gathering needs! Just ask... connect@cultivateurbanrainforest.com

View Event →
Terrarium Workshop (Always BYOB)
Aug
5
2:00 PM14:00

Terrarium Workshop (Always BYOB)

Spark a brand-new passion: Learn how to design, build, and care for your very own terrarium. Do you get to take your new terrarium home with you? You betcha! Not only do you get to learn how to create beautiful treasures- you get to take them home, too! You'll have gained new knowledge and insight, and possibly a favorite new hobby! All materials are provided. BYOB if you feel like sipping while you create!
We also create private workshops and parties for your terrarium-themed gathering needs! Just ask... connect@cultivateurbanrainforest.com

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Benefit for Project Amazonas with Sharon Bladholm
Jul
28
7:30 PM19:30
Art

Benefit for Project Amazonas with Sharon Bladholm

  • Cultivate Urban Rainforest & Gallery (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Join Cultivate Urban Rainforest & Gallery and Artist Sharon Bladholm for a special benefit party to raise money for Project Amazonas. The night will feature Sharon's art, some of which was inspired by the Amazon. All ticket sales, along with a percentage of art sales, will go to Project Amazonas.

A beer tasting will be served by Evanston's very own Sketchbook Brewing Compan. Nosh on tasty bites, including a delicious corn & cheese salad provided by our Main Street neighbors, La Principa. Yummy dessert will be on hand courtesy of Foodstuffs Gourmet Foods & Caterin. 

Project Amazonas was founded in 1994 to serve the people of the Amazon and conserve the rainforest. They are a non-political, non-sectarian NGO that strives to help provide the people of the Peruvian Amazon with adequate modern health care and health education, supply them with necessary tools and education to sustainably use and conserve the natural environment of the Amazon rainforest, and encourage self-reliance and self-sufficiency where possible. You can find more about this organization here.

Sharon Bladholmʼs work has been profoundly influenced by her participation as artist, on scientific expeditions to remote and biologically diverse ecosystems of the Peruvian and Brazilian Amazon on expeditions with the Field Museum, Conservation International and Andes to Amazon Biodiversity Program. She has long explored the interfaces of art, science, conservation and nature in her many series of artworks in diverse mediums including glass, bronze and ceramic, as well as works on paper.

Verdant Passion becomes a biophiliac message of her love for the many aspects of nature it all its resplendent forms, whether it be interior organs sprouting foliage,fungi, or seeds. Earth Stars and seeds are represented in stunning diversity, both temperate and tropical. The ORGAN-ic Inflorescence series opens our hearts and minds with verdant growth and germinating brains speaking to new ways of perceiving and interacting with the natural world that ultimately sustains us. Lungs and trachea morph into foliage reminding us trees, plants and the whole earth respires as we do, allowing us our next breath.

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Jimmy Bennington & Steve Cohn International Record Release | With special guest Mike Harmon on bass
Jul
22
7:00 PM19:00

Jimmy Bennington & Steve Cohn International Record Release | With special guest Mike Harmon on bass

  • Cultivate Urban Rainforest & Gallery (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Cultivate is excited to host Jimmy Bennington & Steve Cohn for their international record release show! Special guest Mike Harmon on bass.

Jimmy Bennington is a self-taught artist who began playing professionally in Texas, 1990. Mentored by late John Coltrane drummer Elvin Jones during the last decade of his life, Bennington was eventually hired as Jones' band manager/drum tech, touring the world as part of the Elvin Jones Jazz Machine (2000-2002). Since then, Bennington lived on the West Coast for several years (1997-2006), and has now made Chicago his current home base (2006-Present). Jimmy has performed and recorded with legendary artists such as Julian Priester, Perry Robinson, Ed Schuller, Bert Wilson, Ken Filiano, Steve Cohn, John Blum, and Daniel Carter. Notable performances include Andy’s Jazz Club, the Chicago Jazz Festival, the Tampon Gallery in Paris, the ShapeShifter in NYC, and the famed Fred Anderson’s Velvet Lounge.

Bennington celebrated 28 years in the music field this past May.

  “….Bennington’s unique sound and loose drumming, which doesn’t follow traditional rhythmic patterns and leaves quite a bit of room to freedom.”  - Alain Drouot, Down Beat Magazine


Ever innovative, pianist Steve Cohn has developed a unique style of improvisation over the course of his career which has taken him across styles of jazz as well as around the world. With over 25 recordings in his name, Steve has played with the likes of Eddie Henderson, Sonny Simmons, Reggie Workman, Barry Altschul, Oliver Lake, Fred Hopkins, Bruce Ditmas, Denis Charles, William Parker, Bob Stewart, Frank Lowe, Karl Berger, Steve Lacy among many others. He has performed his own works at venues such as New York City's Miller Theatre, the Newport JVC Festival, the Great American Music Hall, World Shakuhachi Festivals and other festivals and tours in Europe, Estonia, Japan, Canada, Mexico and the USA.

"Cohn's intricate counterpoint and drama-infused harmonies are equally effective on muscular jazz-hued sprints and pointillistic passages. His cogent use of ethnic instruments goes well beyond stock poses of texture and transcendentalism. There are few American pianists who have Cohn's talents" - Bill Shoemaker, Downbeat Magazine

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Terrarium Workshop (Always BYOB)
Jul
19
6:30 PM18:30

Terrarium Workshop (Always BYOB)

Spark a brand-new passion: Learn how to design, build, and care for your very own terrarium. Do you get to take your new terrarium home with you? You betcha! Not only do you get to learn how to create beautiful treasures- you get to take them home, too! You'll have gained new knowledge and insight, and possibly a favorite new hobby! All materials are provided. BYOB if you feel like sipping while you create!
We also create private workshops and parties for your terrarium-themed gathering needs! Just ask... connect@cultivateurbanrainforest.com

View Event →
Plant Parenthood: Repotting Demo & Hands-on Class
Jul
15
2:00 PM14:00

Plant Parenthood: Repotting Demo & Hands-on Class

Purchase tickets here

Increase your plant parenting skills in a friendly non-judgemental atmosphere. What you'll be learning: choosing the right potting mix, finding the correct pot size, knowing when to repot, and other tips and tricks to make your plant owning journey easier. 

The class fee includes a repotting demonstration and hands-on guided practice. 

Not included: plant and pot. Purchase your plant and pot for the class at 15% off retail price!

BYOB and BYOF (Bring your own friends!)

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