Howard Street Studio
In 1980 Ed Paschke did something he hated to do-he moved. His new studio was located less than a mile away on Howard Street, which is the border between Chicago and Evanston, IL. While the new studio lacked the overall space and flow of the Clark Street Studio, it put Paschke into the heart of a meaner, dirtier and edgier neighborhood nicknamed the "Jonquil Jungle," something that Paschke immensely enjoyed. As he commented in 1990;
"Right outside my studio door there is the street teeming with life, and within that are sorts of diverse combinations of different types of people. Some with varying degrees of sophistication. Latinos, African blacks, Jamaican blacks, Asian boat people, American Indians, Caucasians, all types are represented. Its completely integrated, almost an insane asylum out there and I love it. That is the idea of a big city. I like the idea of the cross fertilization of cultures. Its America."
Paschke remained at the Howard Street Studio until his death 26 years later. He took great joy in showing people around the studio and often brought his students from nearby Northwestern University there as part of their class. In addition, for an artist whose work derived so much from the idea of confrontation he felt a more than a subtle satisfaction in making many art collectors, often very well-to-do people, have to navigate the chaotic city streets and its colorful, often unpredictable, occupants. For some, "the studio" became as notorious and celebrated as many of Paschke's unsettling images.
For several years the Ed Paschke Foundation worked to preserve the studio in its original state. However, rising maintenance expenses and logistical problems forced us to eventually close the space on Howard Street. However, thanks to Lionel Rabb and Vesner Stelcer the people behind the opening of the Ed Paschke Art Center, the Foundation was given enough space and funding to put together a near perfect recreation of the working space of the Howard Street Studio right down to the recorded sounds of the "El' train going by outside! Be sure to check it out the next time you are in Chicago. For more information or go to http://www.edpaschkeartcenter.org/AboutCollection.xml.