Past Event

Art of a Community Speaks - Across Generations


This week’s conversation features with Useni Eugene Perkins and Julia Perkins.

The Perkins are a father/daughter team — Mr. Perkins serves as writer, poet and organizer, while Ms. Perkins is a cultural policy maker and consultant.

This event is free and open to the public.

The Art of A Community Speaks — Across Generations is coordinated with the South Side Community Art Center’s on-going historical research project, The Art of Community Speaks, supported by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the Ford Foundation, and the University of Chicago’s Arts Council.

For more information about this event or the series, please call (773) 373-1026 or visit

More about the Perkins

Useni Eugene Perkins is a renowned poet, playwright and youth worker. He was exposed to the arts at an early age through his father, Marion Perkins, one of Chicago’s foremost sculptors. A prolific poet, author and dramatist, his many works include An Apology to My African Brother (1965) Cry of the Black Ghetto (1970), Midnight Blues in the Afternoon and Other Poems (1984), Harvesting New Generations: The Positive Development of Black Youth (1986), When You Grown Up: Poems for Children (1989) and The Black Fairy and Other Plays (1993). Perkins also served as Executive Director of the Better Boys Foundation of Chicago, Social Director of the Chicago Urban League, and as the Interim President of the DuSable Museum of African American History.

The daughter of Useni Perkins, Julia Perkins is the founder and chief strategist of MBMD Strategic Consultants LLC. Julia previously served as Community Programs Director at The Art Institute of Chicago, where she developed strategies, evaluation systems, and designed arts education programs to promote involvement between the city’s diverse communities and the museum.  She also served as a Program Officer for the AFL-CIO, working with labor unions in the Caribbean and Central America. Julia received her B.A., Marketing Research from DePaul University and a M.A., Arts Administration from the School of The Art Institute of Chicago. Perkins was one of the co-authors of “Mapping Cultural Participation in Chicago”, The University of Chicago Cultural Policy Center.