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Learning Series | The Impact of Food Apartheid in Education, Part 4

May 25, 202410:00 am - 11:30 am

This event is free with registration. While it is designed for educators, all may attend. ASL is available upon request.

About the Event

The benefits of having a school garden are insurmountable and very much possible for every school. In this Learning Series, join Alexy Irving, Alexandra Antoine, and Taryn Randle as they discuss the importance of garden education in and outside of school. They dig in to the integration of gardening with art, and how a successful school garden can lead to healthier eating, mindfulness, entrepreneurship, and community togetherness. They will also demonstrate hands-on activities teachers can do with their students.

As the culminating session of our four-part series addressing the impact of Food Apartheid in Education, we hope to introduce participants to the numerous ways gardening programs combine arts, civic action, and agriculture in communities across the city.

The term “apartheid” is used as it acknowledges the existence of economic and racial segregation systems. And as history has shown us, apartheid systems can be dismantled through collective action.

Throughout the year, the MCA hosts high-quality professional development programming, open to teachers of all subjects, grade levels, and disciplines. These events are skills-based trainings on contemporary art integration. Programs are designed in connection with the cultural assets of the MCA and the needs of the Chicago area educators.

ASL is available upon request.

About the Artist

Alexandra Antoine. Image courtesy of the artist.

Alexandra Antoine is an interdisciplinary visual artist and cultural apprentice based in Chicago. Her work acknowledges the influences of her Haitian culture and interest in portraiture, food, farming, and the physical labor that goes into traditional artistic practices of the Afrikan diaspora. She honors her ancestors always and is currently growing food in several community gardens on the Westside of Chicago!

She received an undergraduate degree from a fancy art school and exhibited her work in many places but collaborating with folks throughout the Afrikan diaspora is her life’s work.

Alexy Irving. Photo: Matt Gibson.

Alexy Irving is a photojournalist and freelance garden educator that has found a string of intersections through her work. Residing in Chicago, she is gravely influenced by the vast amount of impact the agriculture community has on the health of those around her. She noticed a disparity in access and imagery of Black bodies enjoying nature and land stewarding, so she began to focus her camera lens on it.

Through this photographic journey, Irving hopes to inspire Black and Brown folks to get more involved with the land and to know where to access it. She recognizes the healing that occurs just by looking at images of nature and wants to bring those images to spaces and communities that need it.

Taryn Randle. Photo: Sadiyya Ameena.

Taryn Randle is a farmer, learner-teacher and connector. Born and raised on the South Side of Chicago, Randle is committed to connecting Black and Brown people with the land, each other, and practices that train present and future generations to survive the unexpected. Randle began growing with the land in 2017 by cofounding Getting Grown Collective (GGC) with family, friends and neighbors on 63rd & Morgan in Chicago’s Englewood neighborhood. Currently, Randle is a Backyard Gardens Senior Coordinator for both the Little Village Environmental Justice Organization (LVEJO) and Grow Greater Englewood ((GGE) as well as co-owner of Earthseed Native Landscaping & Edible Gardens LWCA.


Support for teacher programs at the MCA is generously provided by the Polk Bros. Foundation and the Lloyd A. Fry Foundation. Additional generous support is provided by Crown Family Philanthropies, Discover, Dr. Scholl Foundation, and the Siragusa Family Foundation.

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